This subsidiary body completed its mandate on 31 March 2022.

Key Inter-Agency Tools and Links for Accountability and Inclusion

Published Date


Accountability and Inclusion involve making sure that affected communities - especially individuals who are most at risk - are at the centre of, and driving, humanitarian action. The Accountability & Inclusion Portal is the go-to place to access tools, resources, guidance and case studies on AAP, PSEAH, age, disabilities, gender and other diversities. Through the Portal, you will also be able to directly access specific web pages on these themes from within and outside the IASC, as well as search tools for all cross-cutting issues throughout the Humanitarian Programme Cycle.

See also the RG2 webpage for more resources relating specifically to the below in the Covid-19 response.


Summary of key IASC documents that guide the work of RG2: 


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Accountability to Affected Populations

The IASC Commitments on Accountability to Affected People and Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse were made by the IASC at their meeting in November 2017. They cover four areas: Leadership; Participation and Partnership; Information, Feedback and Action; and Results.

Menu of AAP Questions for Needs Assessments. These questions will help HCTs understand how affected people wish to receive information, provide feedback and participate in decisions about the overall response. They enable HCTs to develop a picture of how affected people feel about the response and subsequently adapt the response and/or take appropriate action. They were developed by REACH and the IASC AAP PSEA Task Team.


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Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse

IASC Global Standard Operating Procedures on Inter-Agency Cooperation in Community-Based Complaint Mechanisms (CBCM). These Global SOPs, endorsed in 2016, provide technical guidance on how agencies can coordinate complaint referrals while operating an inter-agency CBCM. The SOPs cover how to receive, assess, refer, and follow-up on complaints between agencies in line with diverse confidentiality and data protection policies.

The IASC Best Practice Guide for Inter-Agency Community-Based Complaints Mechanisms provides operational guidance on how to set up and run an inter-agency community-based complaint mechanism to handle reports of sexual abuse and exploitation by aid workers. It compiles lessons learned, examples, and case studies.

Generic Terms of Reference for In-Country PSEA Coordinators for use by HCTs and HCTs for recruiting dedicated inter-agency PSEA Coordinators. This is part of IOM's initiative to support the recruitment of PSEA Coordinators.

FAQs on inter-agency PSEA IOM's lessons learned from PSEA implementation in-country stems from IOM's experience in rolling out the 2016 IASC PSEA toolkit as tasked by the IASC Principals, and ongoing dedicated support to collective in-country PSEA programs.The FAQs capture the recurring challenges brought to the Global IOM inter-agency PSEA Project Team by in-country practitioners. The FAQs will be used for the 2020 update of the Best Practice Guide on inter-agency Community-Based Compliant Mechanisms (CBCMs)

Compilation of best practices from roll-out of IASC PSEA Toolkit -These country examples have been compiled by IOM's Global PSEA team while providing support to collective in-country PSEA programs. The country examples will be used for the 2020 update of the Best Practice Guide on inter-agency Community-Based Complaint Mechanisms (CBCMs).

The IASC PSEA Microsite offers more inter-agency resources. 


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Persons with Disabilities

The IASC Guidelines on the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action set out essential actions that humanitarian actors must take in order to effectively identify and respond to the needs and rights of persons with disabilities who are most at risk of being left behind in humanitarian settings.

In order to make humanitarian programming more responsive to the needs of people with disabilities affected by crisis, seven UN entities have designed Guidance on strengthening disability inclusion in Humanitarian Needs Assessments and Response Plans. 


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Gender and Age

The IASC Gender with Age Marker (GAM) is a tool which provides an automatic and objective calculation of the quality of humanitarian programming from a Gender and Age perspective. It examines levels of accountability, protection, and addresses the concept of "leaving no one behind". The accompanying Monitoring Information highlights the results of the GAM, which can be used for project monitoring any time after the project has been underway for at least three months.

Check out the specific web page of the IASC Reference Group on Gender and Humanitarian Action for more resources. 


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Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS)

The IASC Guidelines on Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings provides a multi-sectorial, inter- agency framework that enables effective coordination, identifies useful practices, flags potentially harmful practices, and clarifies how different approaches to mental health and psychosocial support complement one another (available in Arabic,  ChineseFrenchJapaneseNepaliSpanishTajikUkrainianPortugueseKorean and Russian).

Their dissemination and implementation are supported by a variety of IASC materials and tools, published by the IASC Reference Group on MHPSS, which can be consulted on their specific web page.


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Diagram of Linkages between Accountability to Affected Persons and Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse. A Venn diagram comparing AAP to PSEA processes, identifying linkages.

Suggested Actions to Strengthen Accountability to Affected Persons and Protection for Intercluster Coordination. This document provides suggested actions for intercluster coordination groups in field operations to fulfil commitments on Accountability to Affected Populations (AAP) and to ensure that Protection is central to humanitarian response.

Guidance note on Protection and Accountability to Affected Persons in the Humanitarian Programme Cycle. This preliminary guidance note was developed in 2015 by the IASC Emergency Directors Group, to provide practical guidance to Humanitarian Coordinators and Humanitarian Country Teams, to ensure that accountability to affected populations and protection are embedded throughout the Humanitarian Programme Cycle.