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HCTT NEXUS STRATEGY (2021-2025): Humanitarian-Development Collaboration for Climate-Related Disasters in Bangladesh (22/08/2021)

The HCTT Nexus Strategy for Climate-related Disasters 2021-2025 is a humanitarian preparedness and response strategy developed to support the National Plan for Disaster Management (NPDM) 2021-25 and to complement the UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF) for Bangladesh in relevant areas.

The document portrays an evidence-based estimate of humanitarian needs in the disaster situation combining existing analysis on climate-related risks with humanitarian conditions across high-risk districts in Bangladesh. The focus is on three types of climate-related hazards: floods, cyclones and storm surges, and landslides. Based on this analysis and estimated humanitarian impacts, the Nexus Strategy outlines strategic objectives and key actions for 2021-2025 across the areas of risk and impact analysis, priority preparedness action, partnership for institutional capacity, and action plan for response. Through these strategic objectives and corresponding actions, the Nexus Strategy provides a framework for coordinated activities for the HCTT and the wider humanitarian community, addresses gaps in current efforts, and complements efforts by the Government of Bangladesh (GoB). Special emphasis is placed on the importance of innovative financing mechanisms which are at the core of effective disaster management and promoting key actions to further strengthen consistent disaster risk financing and anticipatory action planning.

The Nexus Strategy recognizes related priorities under the UNSDCF, in particular with regard to improving disaster resilience and access to inclusive social protection for vulnerable and marginalized groups. To contribute to the Humanitarian-Development Nexus, the strategy outlines key areas where improved collaboration between humanitarian, DRR and development stakeholders can create mutually reinforcing strategies and synergies. Accordingly, the HCTT Nexus Strategy represents the humanitarian community’s contribution to the Humanitarian-Development Nexus but does not represent the entirety of nexus-related work in Bangladesh.

This strategy has been informed by the SPEED Approach, which UNRCO uses to operationalize the collective outcome of humanitarian communities in Bangladesh; and the Risk and Impact Analysis study, commissioned by Start Network. It has been produced through a consultative process and is defined by consensus among the humanitarian community and with the agreement of Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief (MoDMR). Activities implemented under this strategy will uphold humanitarian principles and best practice in natural disaster response. The Nexus Strategy is supportive of the Sendai priority to enhance disaster preparedness for effective response and the Grand Bargain commitments to (1) reinforce—do not replace—national and local systems (2) transcend the humanitarian-development divide and (3) Anticipate—do not wait for—crises.

The document aims:

  1. To layout strategic objectives to coordinate and improve the quality and effectiveness of HCTT’s interventions to climate-related disasters and create linkages for collaboration with DRR and development stakeholders.
  2. To support the planning of mitigation, preparedness, response and early recovery efforts to climate-related disasters by providing a solid evidence base in the form of multi-hazard risk analysis and humanitarian impact forecast from 2021 to 2025.
  3. To support inter-agency readiness for responding to the climate-related disaster in support of national government preparedness efforts- aiming at anticipating – not wait for – humanitarian crises based on the Emergency Response Preparedness.
  4. To enhance the humanitarian community’s ability to support GoB-led response efforts with speed, volume and quality by providing clear preparedness and response activities for all clusters.
  5. To provide a costed contingency plan that can form the framework for an HCTT coordinated response plan once activated.

The document is structured as follows:


Structure of the Nexus Strategy 2021-202

ntroduction (SPEED Approach): From 2014-2020 the major climate-related disasters resulted in 1,053 deaths, 4.6 million houses damaged, and $4.1 billion in economic losses. The World Humanitarian Summit (WHS) 2016 in which they agreed to implement a “New Way of Working (NWOW)” that meets people’s immediate humanitarian needs while at the same time reducing risk and vulnerability by working towards collective outcomes. The United Nations Bangladesh 2022-2026 Cooperation Framework for development signed with the Government of Bangladesh (GoB) to make transformational and accelerated progress in the economic, social, and environmental dimensions of sustainable development as the collective outcome. To contribute the collective outcome from the humanitarian community set five-year outcome “to improve system-wide coherence in support of coordinated efforts for saving lives and livelihoods of vulnerable and exposed population”. To operationalize the collective outcome from the humanitarian community in Bangladesh, the Office of the United Nations Resident Coordinator Office (UNRCO) uses the ‘Strategic Preparedness for Response and Resilience to Disaster (SPEED)’ approach.

Risk and Impact Analysis: The overall climate-related multi-hazard risk index identifies districts at risk from humanitarian crises and disasters that could overwhelm response capacity. It is made up of three dimensions- hazard and exposure, vulnerability, and lack of coping capacity. Based on this impact distribution data, transforming to standard distribution curve, the researchers have reached an inference that 660 per 1,000 people (95 percent confidence intervals) will be impacted by climate-related hazards annually in the next five years. The climate-related multi-hazard risk analysis also estimated the severity of humanitarian conditions considering three humanitarian consequences according to the Joint Intersectoral Analysis Framework (JIAF): living standards, coping capacity, physical and mental wellbeing based on the available contextualized nine (9) indicators. The affected households for each of the three disaster scenarios for cyclone, landslides, and floods have been developed. For monsoon flood planning targets consider the top 6 very high- and high-risk districts and extreme conditions of people, in cyclone and storm surge planning targets consider the top 7 high-risk districts and extreme and severe conditions of people, in landslide planning targets, consider the top 3 high-risk districts and extreme and severe condition of people. This climate-related multi-hazard risk and impact analysis has been developed as part of the Disaster Risk Financing Strategy of Start Network for their program in Bangladesh.

Priority Preparedness Action: The HCTT plays a key role in coordinating inter-agency readiness to respond to climate-related disaster in support of national government preparedness efforts. The aim, ultimately, is to anticipate – not wait for – humanitarian crises based on the Emergency Response Preparedness. Based on the sectoral gap analysis, the coordinated actions will be promoted through the HCTT coordinated work plan. Cluster preparedness actions also are initiated based on the gap analysis. The clusters and working groups will promote seven elements as a cross-cutting issues for effective operations: 1. inclusion 2. partnership and localisation 3. quality and standards 4. natural protection 5. community engagement 6. social cohesion 7. COVID-19 Pandemic. The broader preparedness actions will guide the yearly contingency planning exercise with the Government and humanitarian stakeholders.   

Partnership for Institutional Capcity: Three inter-link HCTT mechanisms to support the humanitarian coordination efforts- national cluster system as per SOD, Inter-cluster working groups and area-based DMC coordination approach. HCTT is a forum to support national authorities in preparedness and response for climate-related disasters and earthquake. In 2019, the Government of Bangladesh, through the approved revised SOD, recognized the present cluster coordination mechanism. To support the cluster work there are eight inter-cluster technical working groups that have been established at the national level: Cash, Community Engagement, Anticipatory Action, Gender in Humanitarian Action (GIHA), Localization, Needs Assessment, Information Management, and Private Sector Partnership.  The area-based model supports the development of DMC disaster management capacity in a more coherent manner using a systematic country level approach that collectively assesses capacity and need, uses this assessment to jointly develop programmes and plans, and coherently implements these programmes and plans to strengthen preparedness. HCTT is exploring opportunity for more boarder collaboration with other partners to improve the efficiency of humanitarian action including reduce the funding gaps.

Action Plan for Response: Planning in advance for the next disaster, having the response plans and the funding in place before a disaster, releasing the funds to act to reduce the seriousness of the risk of a disaster i.e. the likelihood and/or impact of a disaster. When the agreed threshold meets – say a given probability or indicator of severity – the default decision will be to release pre-arranged finance for the implementation of ‘pre-agreed’ actions to minimize delay and mitigate the impact of the predicted shock. Annual budget requirements for floods, cyclone and storm surge and landslides budget are 57 million, 35 million and 12 million for preparedness, Anticipatory action and post response and recovery respectively. The cluster will update its sectoral budget and interventions yearly consultation with GoB and humanitarian community.

Operation(s)/ Webspace(s): 
United Nations Resident Coordinators Office
Original Publication Date: 
22 Aug 2021
Document type: 
Strategic Response Plan
Inter-Cluster Coordination
Coordination hub(s): 
Bangladesh: Floods and Landslides - Jul 2020