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The term ‘preparedness’ refers to the ability of governments, professional response organisations, communities and individuals to anticipate and respond effectively to the impact of likely, imminent or current hazards, events or conditions. It means putting in place mechanisms which will allow national authorities and relief organizations to be aware of risks and deploy staff and resources quickly once a crisis strikes.​ Read more


The IASC’s Emergency Response Preparedness Approach

To enhance emergency preparedness within the multilateral humanitarian system, the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) has developed the Emergency Response Preparedness (ERP) approach, which was adopted for field testing in August 2015. The approach is based on a review of relief operations over the past decade and enables the humanitarian community to proactively prepare for crises requiring a coordinated international response. 

The aim of the ERP approach is to increase the speed and volume of life-saving assistance delivered in the first four to six weeks of an emergency. The approach, which is designed to be flexible and resource-light, is based on identifying and prioritising preparedness actions that will make sure that the humanitarian community can effectively respond in the first few weeks of a breaking emergency.

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Men building a shelter in Juba, South Sudan. ​Photo: OCHA/Zocherman 2014