STEP 3 Capacity development (cross-cutting)

The ability to respond in the immediate aftermath of an extreme weather event depends on the level of operational readiness in place. Capacity-building and gap analysis of government agencies highlight the level of required capacities of all actors. This is particularly relevant for ministries, as the government has a key role to play and the staff is frequently changing. Operational preparedness aims to reduce this gap and indicates the minimum level of readiness for delivering humanitarian assistance and protection according to international standards.

Box 14: Example of the Sub-Saharan Africa Regional Climate Outlook Forums

In sub-Saharan Africa, regional climate outlook forums provide seasonal climate forecasting. They have been organized jointly by the regional meteorological institutions, the World Meteorological Organization and the International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI), with funding support from donor agencies.

This entails competence for activities such as (further details in Phase 4 Response and Phase 5 Recover):

  • Baseline situation analysis and (post-disaster) needs assessments, including gender analysis to identify underlying inequalities and vulnerabilities to be counterbalanced during response and resilient recovery.
  • Information management with a systematic process of collecting, processing, verifying and analysing sex- and age-disaggregated data and information, and disseminating relevant information to the involved actors.
  • A central legal framework for resilient recovery ensuring that the laws, processes and protocols are appropriate for responding when extreme weather events occur and incentivizing BBB instead of looking for a ‘quick fix’.
  • Contingency plans and early action contingency plans (for further details see Phase 3 B Step 2 Developing Contingency Planning).
  • Appropriate communication systems and strategies with and for all actors (e.g. the media, international humanitarian organizations, local NGOs and civil society, including women’s organizations) to ensure the timely flow of information before and during an emergency.
  • Disaster preparedness exercises and training for emergency scenarios with the population, civil society organizations and entrepreneurs.

Guiding Questions and Tools

Guiding Questions

What are the key capacities needed for implementing preparedness activities?

Was a capacity-building assessment conducted and what were the identified gaps, if any?


IASC (2015): Emergency Response Preparedness (ERP) − risk analysis and monitoring, minimum preparedness, advanced preparedness and contingency planning

UN OCHA (2013): Disaster response in Asia and the Pacific − A Guide to International Tools and Services

Platform containing various organizations that offer capacity development, including training courses in development

Guiding Questions

Are the relevant policies and legal frameworks in place for quickly implementing response and resilient recovery activities?


Focus group discussions with all potentially affected groups. For the agricultural sector, especially farmers, herders and the agricultural value change enterprises.

Guiding questions

Is there up-to-date stakeholder mapping and are the relevant stakeholders sufficiently trained for operationalizing their tasks?

How are the private sector and communities involved in preparedness measures?


EU/UNEP/World Bank/GFDRR (2015): Guide to developing disaster recovery frameworks, Sendai Conference version

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, IFRC (2012): IFRC Recovery programming guidance 2012

Guiding questions

If weather-related insurance is integrated into the DRM strategy, are insurance providers included in the coordination processes?

Training platforms

Gravitazz Institute for Disaster Reduction and Emergency Management conduct training and capacity development for all relevant stakeholders in Africa

United Nations University − ITC School on Disaster Geo-Information Management (UNU-ITC DGIM), Twente − International Institute for Geo-information Science and Earth Observation (ITC) (2011): Multihazard- Risk Assessment. Distance Education Course


UNICEF-led Government WASH Cluster to support humanitarian response through operational information


IASC (2006): Gender Handbook in Humanitarian Action – Women, Girls, Boys and Men. Different Needs – Equal Opportunities

Guiding questions

If insurance is part of the DRM strategy:

Is the insurance industry and are other organizations involved in insurance delivery capacitated for quick payouts after extreme weather events?

Are agricultural extension workers trained for insurance literacy awareness-building?

Training platforms

GIZ (2014): Aiding the disaster recovery process − The effectiveness of microinsurance service providers’ response to Typhoon Haiyan

More tools for insurance training in Phase 2.A.1 Insurance.

Focus group discussion with the relevant government officials, including MoF and regulators, the insurance industry, delivery channels (e.g. NGOs, MFIs) and technology providers (if involved in payout processes).

Expected Outputs When Using the Tools

  • Enhanced preparedness capacities contribute to efficient managing of extreme weather events, resulting in an orderly transition from response toward sustainable recovery.
  • Plans for and implementation of comprehensive early warning systems save lives and reduce losses, resulting in lower costs for response and recovery.
  • Strategy plans for effective coordination, planning and exchange of information enable the government to reach out to the affected population and speed up the recovery process.
  • Insurance-related outputs (Synergies: Insurance and the MPA Preparedness).