Preparations are under way for the first World Humanitarian Summit (WHS) in 2016, likely during the first half of the year. The United Nations Secretary-General (SG) has requested the summit in order to improve the capacity of the humanitarian system to serve people in need.
This is a unique opportunity to take stock and adapt.
The summit will be the highlight in a process of consultation and change in the humanitarian system that begins now, but lasts well beyond 2016. It will set an agenda for work beyond 2016 to make the humanitarian system more inclusive, global and effective.
The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) will coordinate the summit on behalf of the Secretary-General and the Emergency Relief Coordinator (ERC). However, between now and the summit, the entire humanitarian community must identify and prioritize proposals to set an agenda for post-2016. Possibilities include new partnerships that strengthen humanitarian response, innovative ways to coordinate work and provide assistance and proposals to build on the guiding principles that shape humanitarian action (while maintaining the fundamental principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independence at the core of humanitarian action).
At an event held in the margins of the 68th General Assembly, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon announced that the Summit will be held in Istanbul in 2016. The Summit, he said, aims to map out a humanitarian agenda for the future that is more effective and inclusive, and which addresses the significant challenges facing the world. More>>
Work is currently underway to develop a three-year plan for the Summit process. This will include setting up a Secretariat to plan and facilitate the various consultations starting in 2014, coordinate engagement with partners and ensure connectivity with ongoing processes. Please watch this space for further updates soon.
OCHA is responsible for the management of the Secretariat and accountability for its work, on behalf of the Secretary-General and the UN system. The UN Development Programme (UNDP) will provide administrative support to the WHS Secretarait (on human resources, procurement and administration of funds and other technical functions). Based on this arrangement, opportunities for employment with the WHS Secretariat are being advertised by UNDP (see Employment on the right hand side menu).
Achieving the above goals will involve gathering ideas from a diverse range of people from around the world who want to improve humanitarian action. OCHA and the UN family will work closely with affected communities, Member States and other humanitarian stakeholders to identify opportunities for more effective humanitarian assistance and stronger partnerships. In the build-up to the summit, global and regional consultations will take place to learn from stakeholders. They will take stock of achievements and identify ways of working that are more inclusive, accountable, interoperable, innovative and effective. These consultations will be the foundation and the driving force of the summit process.
The substantive themes of the summit will be defined by the priorities of interested constituencies. Four core themes have emerged from early discussions: humanitarian effectiveness, reducing vulnerability and managing risks, transformation through innovation and serving the needs of people in conflict. These themes will be developed through consultations with partners. Work to strengthen partnerships and networks for humanitarian assistance will underpin all thematic discussions.
Preparations for the summit require a clearly defined structure to support thematic work and consultations leading up to 2016. OCHA is working with the Secretary-General to coordinate this structure and process to deliver an inclusive World Humanitarian Summit that helps to build a better humanitarian response. Current thinking on a way to organize work within the United Nations and with the broader humanitarian community includes a summit secretariat, an advisory group and task teams to develop substantive work on each theme. Partnerships with networks of technical experts and humanitarian stakeholders from various constituencies will be essential to ensure that consultations are inclusive and productive.
- Humanitarian effectiveness
- Reducing vulnerability and managing risk
- Transformation through innovation
- Serving the needs of people in conflict
No opportunities at this time