ACAPS' Global Risk Analysis outlines a number of key contexts where a notable deterioration may occur within the next six months, leading to a spike in humanitarian needs.
What is a risk?
Risk is a function of impact and probability: i.e., the risk posed by a potential hazard increases as either the expected impact of the hazard increases or the probability that it will occur increases. Risk analysis is not an exact science. The occurrence of a risk prompts a change from the status quo that leads to a notable deterioration in the humanitarian situation and a higher number of people in need (exposure), or a higher severity of need (intensity).
The ACAPS risk methodology combines the probability with the impact for each hazard, or combination of hazards. This gives us the risk. Risks will fall into one of three categories: Low, Medium and High.
The crises identified in this report have been selected because there are certain triggers that may emerge over the coming six months that point towards this potential shift. A deteriorating humanitarian situation that continues at the same rate is considered a trend rather than a risk. Such crises are not included in the report.
Objective of risk analysis
The objective of ACAPS’ GlobalRiskAnalysis is to enable humanitarian decision makers to understand potential changes that would likely have humanitarian consequences.
By exposing the more probable developments and understanding their impact, they can be included in planning and preparedness, which should improve response.
For the next six months, ACAPS has identified the following nine risks:
High Risk Level: Burkina Faso, Ethiopia
Moderate Risk Level: Colombia, Honduras, India, Libya, Myanmar, Nigeria, Yemen
Key principles of risk analysis
Risk analysis depends on a solid understanding of the context and on investigating the interaction of the variables that cause or resist change.
Risk analysis is not an exact science: an event identified by one analyst as a hazard, might be identified by another as a trigger for different event which the second analyst considers the hazard. This is of little consequence; the important issue is that the sequence of events and a hazard are identified.
The probability of a risk does not need to be high for it to be of concern. That a hazardous event is estimated to have a 50% probability of occurring should be cause for concern for humanitarians. In some cases, a probability as low as 30% (just under a one in three chance of occurrence) may be a concern.