Guide on Livelihoods & Economic Recovery in Crisis Situations

from UN Development Programme
Published on 15 Feb 2013 View Original

The purpose of the Guide on Livelihoods and Economic Recovery Programming in Crisis and Post-Crisis Situations is to connect UNDP Country Offices and their partners with global knowledge and experience on this subject. The Guide documents, for the first time, the accumulation of expertise that UNDP has gained in livelihoods and economic recovery programming in crisis and post-crisis situations over the years. Dozens of UNDP practitioners at the country, regional, and headquarters levels contributed to its preparation. The Guide also draws upon the documented experiences of other development partners.**

The Guide on Livelihoods and Economic Recovery Programming in Crisis and Post-Crisis Situations provides a practical “how to” resource for development practitioners, particularly those in UNDP Country Offices. By sharing the knowledge and experience that UNDP and its partners have gained over the years, the Guide aims to facilitate effective and sustainable programming for livelihoods and economic recovery in crisis and post-crisis situations. It will be most useful at the onset of programming, especially in preparations for high-level discussions with national authorities, resource mobilization, project and programme development, and the provision of training and technical and policy advice.

Context and Approach

Crises interrupt and sometimes reverse the development process. They generally result from either violent conflict or disaster. One billion people are estimated to live in countries where the state is breaking down or is overcome by conflict, and the number and human impact of disasters in the developing world continues to rise. The poor, women, and youth are particularly vulnerable. The destruction of livelihoods and local economies is an immediate impact of crisis. Programming for livelihoods and economic recovery aims to help build the human, natural, physical, financial, political, and social assets of crisis-affected people and countries.

The Guide calls for an early and sustained UNDP presence in crisis and post-crisis situations. UNDP’s areas of expertise—including democratic governance, poverty reduction, energy and the environment, human rights, gender, and the empowerment of women and youth—are critical in these situations. The organization’s resources for supporting livelihoods and economic recovery programming include its network of offices, technical personnel, programmes, and relationships around the world.
Adapted from UNDP’s Sustainable Livelihoods Approach (1996), the Guide’s overall approach to livelihoods and economic recovery in crisis and post-crisis situations is illustrated in Figure 1.1. The outcomes to be achieved are resilient livelihoods for crisis-affected people and inclusive economic growth. When achieved, these outcomes provide a foundation for development and contribute to peace-building and stability, poverty reduction, and MDG progress.

The entry points are the various strategies and interventions undertaken in order to achieve the outcomes. Good governance/national ownership and private sector recovery are the drivers of sustainable livelihoods and inclusive economic growth.

The conflict/disaster risk filter is the process of ensuring that the selected entry points will have a positive impact on crisis-affected people, create resilience, and address the root causes of crises.
Successful livelihoods and economic recovery programmes can create a virtuous cycle wherein outcomes stimulate drivers or become drivers themselves. For example, when inclusive economic growth is realized, it fuels further investment and gives people a vested interest in governance and growth-sustaining policies. The revival of growth also raises expectations, creates confidence, and stimulates market participation among people previously forced to adopt highly conservative coping strategies as the result of a crisis.

Such a phenomenon, in turn, stimulates inclusive economic activity.