- Horn of Africa
- ECBinter-active Niger: Response Targeting
- ECBinter-active Niger: Simulations and Staff Capacity
- ECBinter-active Niger: Accountability
- ECBinter-active Niger: Disaster Risk Reduction
- ECBinter-active Niger: Response Implementation
- Ressources en français à votre disposition
- ECBinter-active Niger - Programme de l'événement (français)
- ECBinter-active Niger Agenda
- Blog / Blogue pour l’événement ECBinter-active, Niger
- ECBinter-active learning conference success in five country consortia
ECB Project on TwitterRT @unisdr: @amykirbyshire @ecbproject @ahammill_iisd You've been quoted in my #Storify story"GPDRR13: Some of Day Two."http://t.co/I34CO… 15 hours ago
ECBinter-active Niger: Simulations and Staff Capacity
|Richard Jacquot of Mercy Corps discusses his paper on simulations with event attendees © ECB Project 2012|
Staff capacity building is one of the cross-cutting themes which form a crucial part of the ECB Project. At the ECBinter-active event in Niger, Moctar Hamidou (Mercy Corps focal point) and Richard Jacquot (Mercy Corps ECB Manager) presented to attendees a paper entitled “The Simulation: Tool for Learning and Preparedness in Emergency Response” (available here in French). The paper examines the growing role of simulations in the humanitarian sector’s efforts to better prepare itself and the communities it serves for the onset of disaster, and draws on the ECB Project’s own simulation undertaken in Niger in February 2011. This page collects some of the learning and impact the paper produced at ECBinter-active.
A simulation can defined as a constructed situation in which individuals and organisations behave as though a real emergency is occurring. The simulation involves the invention of an imaginary emergency which closely reflects the kind of circumstances which can and do occur for real: in this way, participants can see what works and what does not work within the simulation, and this better prepares them to respond effectively if and when disaster does strike. Broadly speaking, there are four types of simulation for humanitarian response:
- Table Exercise – this basic model of simulation takes place in an office or conference room, is cheap to run, and takes only a few hours or up to half a day to complete. The goal in these kinds of exercises is to help participants to understand how much preparation is required in order to be ready to respond to disaster.
- Functional Exercise – taking one to two days, this style of simulation is generally used to test an approach or response plan that has been prepared in advance. It helps participants to understand whether the plan suits a particular context, and how they would be required to work together in the event of an emergency.
- Training Exercise – this model takes half a day at most and is designed to test individual capacities such as mounting a splint, making a purchase from a national or international office or run a needs assessment. The simulation is designed to ensure that participants are know and understand the specific tasks they as individuals would be expected to complete in an emergency.
- Joint Exercise - this more elaborate style of simulation takes up to a week and is designed to test the consistent application of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) across multiple actors against the backdrop of a simulated major crisis, such as an earthquake, pandemic or nuclear accident. It simulates a significant deployment of resources, equipment, communications and manpower.
Case Study: The February 2011 Flood Simulation in Niger
|Click to down the ECB Project
simulations poster in French (or
click here for English)
Participants discussed the flood simulation carried out by the ECB Project in February 2011.
This raised a number of points concerning:
- The use of military escorts
- The boundary between emergency response actions and development in a crisis
- The involvement of public autuhorities in simulations
- The identification of beneficiaries in a simulated situation
- The reliability of statistics in a simulation
Among the key lessons offered by the outcome of the simulation in Niger were the realisation that public authorities must be involved as participants of the simulation and that if children are to be included in humanitarian actions this must be coordinated through their parents.
The paper presented by Moctar Hamidou and Richard Jacquot concludes:
After three years of experience within the Emergency Capacity Building Project, it is now established that simulations allow all that has been described here and more. They represent an invaluable opportunity for active learning as they provide participants with a realistic emergency environment, albeit safe and scaled down, which allows them to test their knowledge, assumptions and decisions without jeopardizing the potential beneficiaries of their response. Simulations also give humanitarians the opportunity to establish relationships with their partners that will be very useful during the actual responses.