Thematic Areas: Transition from Relief to Development

OCHA’s role in transition contexts

The key challenge in this area remains the identification of appropriate institutional structures and funding to allow humanitarian, recovery and development needs to be addressed in parallel.  During this period OCHA among other things continues to reduce remaining acute vulnerability through well-coordinated assistance efforts and encourages strategic and coherence between humanitarian, recovery, reconstruction and development assistance. Several mechanisms, assessments and planning tools help address these challenges.

“The key to an effective transition from relief to early recovery and development is for the United Nations system to enable systematic and predictable planning and coordination support, with clear roles and responsibilities, and the appropriate guidance and resources allocated to support these roles. Efforts to ensure lasting recovery should take place during a crisis as well as when it [the crisis] is winding down.”  (ASG/DERC Catherine Bragg at the Economic and Social Council Humanitarian Segment, July 2009)


The Report of the Secretary-General on peacebuilding in the immediate aftermath of conflict helped articulate the United Nations’ strategic engagement in the area of peacebuilding.

Peacebuilding interventions in the immediate aftermath of conflict such as Guinea-Bissau, Sierra Leone and the Central African Republic (CAR) are often undertaken in humanitarian and recovery contexts. As such it is essential that conflict analysis informs the humanitarian response and programming and complements financing tools, including the Peacebuilding Fund (PBF), the Central Emergency Fund (CERF) and the Common Humanitarian Fund (CHF).

OCHA’s engagement in the peacebuilding agenda focuses on ensuring that humanitarian issues are well articulated where relevant in the peacebuilding agenda.  OCHA also supports drafting and  implementation of the above-mentioned Secretary-General’s Reports. In this regard, OCHA is supporting the process of clarifying roles and responsibilities in priority areas, which is a key step in strengthening global capacity, greater predictability of response and accountability; and the institutionalization of the gender marker. 

Report of the Secretary-General on peacebuilding in the immediate aftermath of conflict, A/64/866-S/2010/386
Joint Guidance Note on Integrated Recovery Planning using Post Conflict Needs Assessments and Transitional Results Frameworks, 2007 - UNDG and World Bank
Post-Conflict Needs Assessment and Framework (PCNA/F) - Background Note for UNDG Principals Meeting, 19 Apr 2007 - UNDG
Guidance note on Early Recovery, Apr 2008 - Cluster Working Group on Early Recovery
Transtion, OCHA On Message, Aug 2010 [Click here to see Arabic, French and Spanish versions]  
Peacebuilding and Linkages with Humanitarian Action: Key Emerging Trends and Challenges, August 2011 - OCHA