Information in Power- Connecting local responders to the risk information that they need
Anticipatory action is drawing global attention, with the number of actors delivering support to at-risk communities before disasters and crises strike growing in number and size. This work requires whole of society collaboration which involves collective understanding of risks, coordinated triggers and plans (including local capacity to execute this), and prepositioned financing to put plans into action. One of the critical elements of anticipatory action which will determine the quality and scale of this work is our ability to connect at-risk people to appropriate and robust forecast information.
Local people have a vested interest in acting early to mitigate disasters and crises, although there is often limited involvement of at-risk communities in early action decision-making processes. At-risk people, as both observers and responders, possess local capacities, expertise, and importantly, the agency to act. However, local responders are often unprepared, lack access to decision-making processes and are disconnected
from risk information.
Going forward, enabling communities to act ahead of a potential crisis or disaster will require a focus on locally-led anticipatory action that puts at-risk people at the centre of anticipatory action processes and supports the mainstreaming of early action into community-based humanitarian and development projects. Increased participation of at-risk people, together with experiences gained in implementing and mainstreaming
anticipatory action, should be capitalised to strengthen public accountability, build political commitment and influence national and international policies in support of an anticipatory approach.
Klassen, Saram; Oxley, Marcus
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