Early recovery

The idea that a society progresses linearly from humanitarian crisis to separate stages of recovery and then to development has been proven false. Even early in the emergency response phase, it is necessary to begin laying the groundwork for recovery and development. Early Recovery (ER) addresses the programming needs of recovery that arise while urgent action to save lives is still the predominant need. ER involves both humanitarian action that is sensitive to a future transition and enhances the resilience of people, and also specific programming aimed at helping people transition from relief to development.

Volunteer workers rebuilding after the Haiti earthquake

Photo: Oxfam International

Key actors

Led by UNDP, leading global and interagency efforts to establish and maintain standards and policy, build response capacity and operational support, and strengthen linkages between humanitarian and development frameworks

Supporting countries in their development path and recovery, while also supporting early recovery in cooperation with humanitarian actors

Key references

Recommendations made by UNDP, as Chair of the Cluster Working Group on Early Recovery (CWGER), and endorsed by the IASC Principals, to strengthen early recovery as an integral part of humanitarian response

Good practice to promote and enable more systematic and strategic integration of Early Recovery across all sectors of international humanitarian response

Evaluation assessing the overall effectiveness of GCER coordination, as well as supporting UNDP’s consideration of the most appropriate way to support Early Recovery in the future

Learning resources

E-learning course providing an overview of the key aspects of early recovery, including its implementation and integration into humanitarian response

Crosscutting themes

Refugees and displaced persons

Guidance for field-based practitioners on how to develop a strategy for supporting durable solutions for IDPs and refugees returning to their country of origin

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