Letztes Update:
There is so much knowledge and inspiration in the virtual room, you hardly want to leave it. Alexandra Rüth (German Red Cross) 22:55

Accelerating Anticipatory Action in the MENA region

Accelerating Anticipatory Action in the MENA region: collaboration is key

In the MENA Region, Anticipatory Action (AA) is still very nascent. In this session, WFP joined Action Against Hunger, the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) and the Embassy of Sweden in an engaging session on what is needed to advance Anticipatory Action in a region that faces compounding risks of poverty, hunger, conflict and climate change impacts.

Oscar Ekdahl, Head of Resilience & Livelihoods for the WFP MENA Region, kicked off the session by setting the scene for AA. While natural shocks and stressors are important in the region, the economy and conflict also present key vulnerability drivers that are a major challenge.

Lena Weingärtner (ODI) presented recent evidence from a regional study on AA, looking at country and regional level AA programmes and initiatives and the status of the component parts of AA - risk information, planning, financing and delivery - that lay the foundations for AA in the region. Key findings from the study, which will be released in early 2022, show that there are ongoing efforts to enhance component parts of AA; however, limited capacities, coordination and a lack of translating information into early action are evident. Lena also laid out some entry points for accelerating AA, including opportunities for embedding AA within ongoing and future national and sectoral policy and disaster risk planning processes and systems.

Presenting a practical example in the region, Asmaa Farooq, WASH Head of Department, Action Against Hunger Iraq, joined by Pierre Marie Goimard, WASH Regional Technical Advisor with Action Against Hunger in Iraq, presented an ongoing anticipatory action initiative to address water scarcity and climate change impacts in Iraq, a country that is facing severe drought and resulting economic and food security losses. The project expands on predictive tools related to water scarcity and aims to generate a monthly forecast against a number of water scarcity indicators during the dry months to predict and describe the scale of water scarcity with possibilities to facilitate replication in other areas.

With final reflections, Maria Selin, Head of Regional Development Cooperation MENA, Counsellor, Embassy of Sweden in Amman, concluded the session bringing together the experts, researchers and practitioners to emphasize the importance of collaboration and cooperation for the region. “The costs are enormous unless we do anticipatory action” she noted, adding, “we need to collaborate, to work not only between development partners […] but collaboration across the board. [...] We try to facilitate and cooperate in various ways, so that best practices are shared, partners meet, and that dialogue is where it has to be.”

Dr. Diana Mantel