Independent Review of the Central Emergency Response (CERF) Fund in Pakistan

Evaluation and Lessons Learned
Originally published
View original




  1. While some hard fought development gains have been made over the years, more recently Pakistan has been plagued by natural disasters with the National Disaster Management Authority’s (NDMA) 2012 Disaster Risk Management Needs Report citing landslides, earthquakes, hill torrents, monsoons, flooding and cyclones as key hazards. Military action and associated IDP movements in north-western Pakistan have served to exacerbate the vulnerability of communities to natural disaster in addition to requiring significant levels of humanitarian assistance.

  2. Between 2006 and 12-May 2013 Pakistan received $154 million from CERF making it the 5th largest recipient and the third largest recipient of funding from the Rapid Response (RR) funding window. The value of CERF to overall humanitarian funding in Pakistan (captured on the Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs [OCHA] Financial Tracking System) has been significant with a peak in 2008 where it accounted for over 15% of total humanitarian funding. Since that time it has regularly accounted for between 6% and 8% of total funding. Pakistan submitted 3 successful CERF applications in 2012 with total approved funding of $36.7m.

Scope of the review and methodology

  1. The main purpose of the review is to assess the value-added of CERF funding towards the humanitarian response in Pakistan during 2012. A major aim of the country reviews is to provide the Emergency Relief Coordinator (ERC) with an appropriate level of assurance around the achievement of key performance benchmarks and planned results for the CERF mechanism as outlined in the 2010 Performance and Accountability Framework (PAF). 2 The review includes recommendations aimed at improving operational aspects of the CERF and also identifies relevant policy issues which need to be addressed at a global level (see annex 4 for the full ToR).

  2. The review was undertaken over a period of 3-weeks including 11-days spent in Pakistan during which Interviews were conducted with key stakeholders at the federal, provincial and sub-provincial level which included staff from UNOCHA, Senior UN and Non-governmental organisation (NGO) staff, donors, cluster coordinators and government representatives (a full list of participants is provided in annex 1). Country-level discussions were supplemented by interviews with members of the CERF Secretariat.

  3. The analytical approach was deliberately kept rapid and light (an overview of the methodology is provided in annex 3). The field work in Pakistan was accompanied by a literature review of country-specific and general CERF documents in addition to recent evaluations.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit