Launch of Humanitarian Insight

from UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Published on 07 Dec 2018

On Tuesday, we launched the Global Humanitarian Overview 2019, the most sophisticated, authoritative and comprehensive analysis of global humanitarian needs that we have ever done. It is thanks to the work of Humanitarian Country Teams and partners across the globe that collect and analyse data on needs, plan appropriate responses, prioritize, and monitor and record results that we are even able to produce such a publication. That work signifies to donors, host governments and the people we serve that we understand what happened, we know what to do about it, and we will be held accountable for results.

Over the past few years, as we have endeavoured to access and process greater amounts of data, and strengthen the quality of our analysis of it, we’ve been overhauling or developing the essential tools that enable us to acquire and manage structured information on the humanitarian programme cycle – what we call This work has included a complete rebuild of the Financial Tracking Service, the establishment of an online module for humanitarian response planning and monitoring, and the roll-out this year of a new project recording and review module. A few key donors have played a critical role by providing a steady source of funding, as have OCHA Country Offices and our UN and NGO partners by collaborating on design, development, piloting and roll-out.

With these pieces of the programme cycle information management puzzle in place, I’m pleased to launch, in conjunction with the Global Humanitarian Overview 2019, a web-based portal that connects the data and information generated through coordination processes to the managers and leaders who rely on it for decision-making. Using Humanitarian InSight, anyone can, for the first-time, access publicly available information on needs, response, funding and gaps through one innovative and intuitive online portal. Humanitarian InSight will help strengthen our commitment to greater transparency and accountability, and increasingly allow us to showcase collective achievements in coordinated humanitarian response.

Through these tools, we want to create efficiencies, make coordination processes lighter and provide incentives for more regular reporting, data sharing, monitoring and analysis. The more you put into, the more you will get out of it. We have made painstaking efforts to ensure that the tools are flexible, adaptable to different contexts and fit for the future changes we know about, and even those we don’t. Interoperability is one of our key principles when it comes to – our information management tools can “speak” to yours, allowing information to flow both ways.

One of our biggest challenges today is being able to systematically report on our collective results and achievements. This begins with baseline evidence (HNO) and a planning framework with objectives, targets and indicators (HRP), but it will only work if we get serious about more rigorous and systematic monitoring of changes in the baseline and the results of our interventions. Some countries, such as Nigeria, Burundi, Somalia, Niger and oPt, have already demonstrated the added value of the tools, which is why you’ll find 2018 results information for these crises on Humanitarian InSight. Other countries will be quick to follow suit. However, achieving this across the board will require commitments and support from all – and that is my request of you.

I encourage all of you to get connected to humanitarian response via Humanitarian InSight and to share your feedback with our colleagues.

As we come together for another year to help crisis-affected people get the humanitarian assistance and protection they need, I thank all of you for the work you are doing.

Mark Lowcock
Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator

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