SUMMARY: The Pacific Risk Resilience Programme (PRRP) works with countries to ensure that managing the risks to climate change and disasters are central to development decision making. It does this by improving the core components of their risk governance structures: the people, mechanisms and processes, referred to as the risk governance building blocks. These constitute the main instruments of the programme and are delivered through development pathways from national, sub-national to community level. The main objective of this work is to risk-inform development in a gender and socially inclusive manner as defined by the core principle of the Framework for Resilient Development in the Pacific (FRDP) for achieving resilient development.
SITUATION: Climate change and disaster events have the potential to set-back years of development gains. This is often caused by unchecked development which can increase people’s vulnerability and this varies significantly by gender and social dimensions. Climate change and disasters are therefore seen as a development issues and approaches to manage these risks need to be integral to the development in the Pacific. Despite many successes, a number of reviews have revealed some shortcomings with mainstreaming efforts. What is needed is to move beyond simply adding climate and disaster risk on to development planning, but instead to fundamentally transform development itself. Diving straight into projects, without strengthening capacities to risk-inform planning, budgeting and implementation, will not support the systematic changes needed to sustain mainstreaming efforts. The recently adopted Framework for Resilient Development in the Pacific (FRDP) defines mainstreaming as a fundamental the key principle for achieving resilient development in the Pacific.
APPROACH: PRRP is working to mainstream climate and disaster risk into development, known as the ‘development-first approach to mainstreaming. The focus is on transforming the development agenda itself rather than ‘adding on’ risk. This will require: treating risk management as an ongoing and continuous process (rather than a ‘one-off’ or standalone activity); putting ‘people at the centre’ when dealing with gender and social inclusion issues underlying the causes of disaster and climate change risk; and transformational approaches targeted at deep-seated governance issues underlying development. Governance in its simplest sense is about how development decisions are made, implemented and evaluated. Risk-informing governance is therefore key to transforming the development agenda and is accomplished by focusing on the PEOPLE (the actors involved in development); the MECHANISMS (the underlying architecture for development); and PROCESSES (the procedures, tools and products such as plans guiding implementation). These instruments provide the foundation for risk informing development and are known as risk governance building blocks. In order to risk-inform development at a country level it would be important to mainstream risk into DEVELOPMENT PATHWAYS from national, through sub-national to community level. Read more
RESULTS: Building the blocks for risk governance (people, mechanisms and processes) in the programme countries will ensure that risk management becomes part of everyday development and subsequently leading to the implementation of ‘risk-informed’ development projects. The main outputs are: people with more risk-informed skills and perceptions; development planning and budgeting processes that are risk-informed; and mechanisms that institutionalise approaches to risk-informed development. These collectively provide the enabling environment for achieving the outcome of risk informed development that will in turn contribute to resilient development in the Pacific as defined in the FRDP.
Where We Work
PRRP works across four countries (Vanuatu, Fiji, Tonga and Solomon Islands) around mainstreaming climate and disaster risk into development. The approach has been developed from in-country stakeholder perspectives specifically with government development agencies in planning/finance, sectors (e.g. agriculture), local government, social welfare and women, as well as the private sector. We identify ‘development pathways’ to mainstream not only at the national level but through sub-national to community level. These can be categorized as:
- Horizontal: all of government approach linking central with sector planners across all sectors.
- Vertical: through central development agencies (i.e. national through to subnational planning).
- Diagonal: linking development actors in specific sectors (including the private sector) from national to subnational to community levels.
How We Work
PRRP’s approach to strengthening risk governance is to work through multiple entry points. This has led to innovative partnerships with finance and planning sector and local government and communities, as well as the private sector to undertake genuine capacity building to mainstream risk into development. It does this by:
- Mainstreaming ‘from within’ development. ‘Development-first’ approaches to mainstreaming engage and build the capacity of development actors (and not just climate change specialists) to lead the process of mainstreaming ‘from within’ development pathways, not only at national level but through sub-national to community levels. See diagram below
- Multi-stakeholder approach: promoting the engagement and behaviour change of multiple stakeholders (government, private sector, development actors) so that they can work collectively towards a common goal of risk informing development.
- Development pathways: identifying entry-points for mainstreaming risk from national through sub-national to local level, through analyses of a country’s current capacities to manage risk across different areas and sectors.
- Gender and social inclusion: being institutionalized within development processes to ensure the needs of different groups are recognised and addressed.
- Knowledge sharing networks: are nurtured across the programme countries on private sector engagement, gender and social inclusion, local governments and agriculture sector roles in resilience.