We will now look more closely at coordination in humanitarian crises. Humanitarian coordination is complex and not easily understood. The goal of this component is to provide you with the basics of humanitarian coordination and give some examples in natural disasters and conflict. The photos shown here are examples of coordination meetings in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake. You can see a lot of people in a tent quite crowded and quite basic conditions. This is often the case with various coordination meetings that occur in disasters. The Sphere Project was briefly discussed in a previous module, and I will briefly discuss some of the issues again right now. As a reminder, the Sphere Project consists of the Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Humanitarian Response. Following the Rwandan genocide in 1994, there were many issues that arose in terms of ethics and basic minimum needs and standards in humanitarian crises. The Sphere Project and handbook was an attempt to address these issues by ensuring that responders were aware of humanitarian principles, their responsibilities to persons affected by disasters, and that they are aware of the minimum standards and indicators. For example, it was agreed by consensus and not necessarily based on data that one key indicator for water is that the average water use for drinking, cooking, and personal hygiene in any household is at least 15 liters per person per day. Another important event was the crisis in Darfur, Sudan and the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004. These led to the Cluster Approach and the Central Emergency Response Fund, also called CERF. I will shortly be discussing the Cluster Approach, which was instituted in 2006 as part of the UN Humanitarian Reform process, an important step on the road to more effective humanitarian coordination. The massive Haiti earthquake and Pakistan floods in 2010 led to another humanitarian reform process called the Transformative Agenda. The Transformative Agenda was an initiative to make improvements to the humanitarian reform process, particularly to strengthen humanitarian leadership. It was also meant to result in more effective coordinated responses that meet the needs of, and are accountable to, affected populations. Much of the focus of the Transformative Agenda has been around the response to future large scale emergencies. A national government has the primary responsibility for leadership, provision, and coordination of preparedness and response to humanitarian emergencies. In practice, this means that the government will use some sort of sectoral approach. For example, the Ministry of Health will most likely lead the health response. If food assistance or shelter is needed, these might be led by different ministries. The World Health Organization takes its lead from the Ministry of Health in these situations. International and national humanitarian organizations support governments and respect their coordination function. However, there are some exceptions, when authorities are themselves responsible for abuse and violations or when their assistance is not impartial. Note that this is the general rule. In practice, however, national governments have often not had the capacity and experience to lead and coordinate two major emergencies and or have not respected humanitarian principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality, and independence. Consequently, the international community has often taken a significantly larger coordination role than would be expected. Within the United Nations, the coordination falls under the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and the Emergency Relief Coordinator, or ERC. The ERC is Head of the Office of Coordination and Humanitarian Affairs, or OCHA. As you can see, we like a lot of acronyms. We did talk about OCHA earlier in this module. The ERC is responsible for oversight of all emergencies requiring UN humanitarian assistance except for refugee situations where UNHCR, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, has the mandate to coordinate those responses. In other words, OCHA coordinates the UN's response to complex emergencies and natural disasters except in refugee settings. The UN has designated humanitarian coordinators, or HCs, who are responsible for leading and coordinating humanitarian action of relevant organizations in a country. OCHA supports the humanitarian coordinator at country level. It needs assessments, contingency planning, and formulation of humanitarian programs. So what does this mean in practice? If there's a major emergency tomorrow, be it a major flood or a major conflict, the UN will likely respond to support the government, who has overall responsibility for an emergency on their soil. The UN will designate a humanitarian coordinator, or HC, who will be responsible for leading and coordinating the UN response in country. As part of the Transformative Agenda mentioned earlier, the concept of Humanitarian System Wide Emergency Activation was developed to ensure a more effective response to humanitarian needs of affected populations in very large emergencies. This means that all of the international system must react to an event in a standardized and robust manner. This exceptional measure will only be applied in relatively rare circumstances where the seriousness of the situation and the need to support governments is needed. In the UN system, we speak about different levels of emergencies, and the following criteria are used. One, the scale, two, the urgency, three, the complexity, four, the capacity, and five, the reputational risk. We also categorize emergencies, L1s, L2s, and L3s. An L1 emergency is at the national level, meaning that the national government and the NGOs and the UN should be able to handle it at the country level. An L2 is at the regional level, and the L3 is at the system wide level. It is the highest level of a declared emergency, and this is the humanitarian system wide emergency activation that I discussed above. Examples of L3 emergencies that are occurring in 2016 and 17 include Syria, Iraq, and Yemen. Of course, this will change over time as some are deactivated, and thus no longer will be considered L3s, and others as of yet unknown or undeclared crises may become L3s. For example, if a major natural disaster or conflict event occurs tomorrow, a group called the Interagency Standing Committee, or IASC, will examine the above five criteria, and then they will decide if a system-wide emergency activation should occur. If indeed a system-wide emergency activation is needed, then an L3 emergency will be declared, and numerous UN and non UN organizations have an obligation to respond in a systematic and timely manner.