• Overview

The fifth Humanitarian Networks and Partnerships Week (HNPW 2019) will be held from 4 to 8 February 2019 at the International Conference Centre (ICC) in Geneva.

In collaboration with the UN Environment/OCHA Joint Unit and UNHCR, UN Environment’s Crisis Management Branch will host an event on Improving humanitarian outcomes by mapping and managing environmental risks.

The event will be held on 6 February from 11:00 to 12:30 in Room 5 of the International Conference Centre, rue de Varembé 17, Geneva. All other details are available on HNPW’s website.

Abstract of the event:

"Everything happens somewhere", as the saying goes. All environmental problems have a spatial dimension but humanitarian operations often suffer from a lack of understanding of the spatial context in which they are operating. Proximity to natural resources and environmentally sensitive areas, for example, are vital to comprehend in order to comply with the principle of "do no harm". But we cannot manage what we cannot measure.

The Nexus Environmental Assessment Tool (NEAT+) is a rapid and simple project-level environmental screening tool for humanitarian actors. With the integration of MapX – a user-friendly geospatial platform – into the NEAT+ process, assessments can be facilitated and improved, and results can be visualized and shared in an interactive manner, leading to better decision-making. One simple mobile application and toolkit offers an integrated solution with real-time guidance, risk/hotspot flagging and easy spatial monitoring – leading to better decision-making. The integration of these two tools solves key problems, including lack of time, lack of standardization, data fragmentation and quality concerns, and the need for a secure workspace. The app can also act as a platform for local engagement.

The ongoing 4th Industrial Revolution is a huge opportunity to leverage environmental information in humanitarian settings. We need to walk the talk on green technology and the SDGs. Drawing from the experience of field-testing in Zambia, this event will showcase the integration of NEAT+ and MapX and give the opportunity for user consultation and feedback. Come learn about these tools, shape the design of their integrated application and help make sure it meets your needs!

At this event, Emilia Wahlstrom (UN Environment/OCHA Joint Unit) will introduce the Nexus Environmental Assessment Tool (NEAT+), a simple and pragmatic tool that helps include the environment into the equation of humanitarian action. Sven Schmitz-Leuffen (UN Environment) will then present MapX, a user-friendly, independent, and impartial geospatial platform that maps and monitors the sustainable use of natural resources. Andrea Dekrout (UNHCR) will subsequently discuss real-world applications of these tools, explaining notably how they were used in refugee camps in Zambia. Sven will then seek the audience’s feedback and moderate a discussion on the design and integration of these tools.

UN Environment and its partners – UN Environment/OCHA Joint Unit, UNHCR, Groupe URD, and UNITAR – will also have a booth on Environmental Sustainability and Humanitarian Action all week.

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