The Grand Bargain Bimonthly updates - January 2021

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The Grand Bargain Bimonthly Updates
Latest news from the Grand Bargain | January 2021
Dear Grand Bargain Signatories,
We are going through an important period for the Grand Bargain - as you know from the constituency-level consultations during the last few months, the Facilitation Group has been working on a proposal for the future of the Grand Bargain. While constituencies had different views on how that should happen, the Facilitation Group members worked hard to consolidate those differences and find a common and ambitious way forward. The next step will be the meeting between the Principals and the Eminent Person on 1 February 2021. But more on that in the Facilitation Group update below. 
In this newsletter, you will also find updates from the workstream on reducing duplication and management costs, and from the workstream on joint and impartial needs assessments and analysis. Further below, please read the Grand Bargain in Practice stories - they importantly showcase how the Grand Bargain is being implemented at operational level. 
We wish you a pleasant reading and best regards,
The Grand Bargain Secretariat 
Latest from the workstreams
For further information or to reach out to the workstream Co-convenors, please contact the Grand Bargain Secretariat at
Workstream 4 (Reduce duplication and management costs with periodic functional reviews)

Independent Review of Individual Donor Assessments in Humanitarian Operations

The Grand Bargain commitment 4.5 specifically seeks to increase “the proportion of funding used for the direct benefit of affected people.” Toward this end, Signatories agreed to “reduce individual donor assessments.” This report summarizes the results of an independent review that collected evidence on and analyzed the effects of donor assessments conducted between 2016 and 2019 across five humanitarian organizations: OCHA, UNHCR, UNICEF, WFP, and the ICRC. >> Click here to read more

Workstream 5 (Improve joint and impartial needs assessments and analysis)

Application of the Joint Intersectoral Analysis Framework underway

The Joint Intersectoral Analysis Framework (JIAF) is now embedded within the enhanced Humanitarian Programme Cycle (HPC), enabling 28 countries to provide a more robust and people-centered comprehensive analysis of humanitarian needs across sectors, including the causes of needs and analysis of vulnerabilities and risks. OCHA and JIAF partners are monitoring feedback from country operations on the JIAF, in order to further refine and enhance the framework, its guidance and supporting tools. This learning will be further elaborated through the Multi-Partner Review of the 2021 HPC scheduled to commence in Q1 2021. Throughout 2021, significant capacity development will be undertaken to ensure that the JIAF approach is well embedded throughout the humanitarian architecture, with specific multi agency trainings and sensitizations planned throughout the year. >> Click here to read the full update

Update from the Facilitation Group
In December 2020 and January 2021, the Facilitation Group has continued the process on working out the future of the Grand Bargain. Based on several constituency-level consultations, there seems to be an emerging consensus on a few main elements, including that the Grand Bargain as a platform has a unique added value and should be continued in some form, but in a simplified structure and with a focus on a few strategic and ambitious objectives at the highest political level that will bring about transformative change in efficiency and effectiveness of humanitarian aid.
As a next step, the Facilitation Group Principals and the Grand Bargain Eminent Person, Dutch Minister Sigrid Kaag, will discuss the general direction of travel at a meeting on 1 February 2021. Following the meeting, there will be opportunities for workstream-level and constituency-level discussions in March and April 2021 to ensure that smart indicators are maintained or developed for areas where the Grand Bargain brings most added value, and that technical issues that are better placed in other fora are appropriately transferred. Contributing to these discussions will also be the Signatory self-reports and the Annual Independent Report 2021, coming out later in spring, which will also look at the collective progress in the last five years.
Beginning of February, WFP is taking over from ECHO as FG Chair. This period will be focused on the future of the Grand Bargain, and on closing the self-reporting process. The deadline for submission of the self-reports is 16 February 2021. ODI will reach out to the Signatories to conduct interviews in March 2021.
The Grand Bargain in Practice

Belgium reducing the impact of Covid-19 with flexible funding and increased local partnerships

Prompted by the effects of the pandemic, Belgium increased further its flexibility and decided to foster more coordination and collaboration between the Belgian NGOs in the framework of the Covid-19 response. “Providing predictability and flexibility for humanitarian organisations is a win-win strategy. We view it as an efficient way to support partners, given the greater proximity of these organisations to the needs. It has also helps providing the basis for quality partnerships, giving us the opportunity for strategic dialogue with the organizations and to better involve our diplomatic posts in the field,” noted Nora Loozen, Head of humanitarian unit at the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. >> Click here to read the full story

Covid-19: tracking local humanitarian action and complementary partnerships

Covid-19 has caused a substantial shock across the humanitarian sector. Travel restrictions mean that international initiatives and staff cannot be deployed, which has led to a renewed focus on the role of local actors.
The pandemic could usher in more local forms of humanitarian action and more complementarity between local and international actors. To document the role of local actors in the context of Covid-19, HPG-ODI developed a mapping tool ‘Covid-19: tracking local humanitarian action and complementary partnerships’. >> Click here to see the map

Do you have examples of how your organisation rolled-out the Grand Bargain commitments at regional and country level? Share them with us here!
Latest from the Signatories

Reclaiming Local Civil Society Space - Statement by A4EP

The way the international aid sector currently operates most instrumentalises local and national CSOs as subcontractors for their agendas, rather than supporting them as independent civil society actors catering to the real needs and priorities of the community and encouraging their governments to act as the duty-bearer and protect people’s fundamental rights. The Covid19 pandemic has extensively and adversely impacted the aid architecture, at a time when the lifesaving assistance to population facing natural disasters or protracted crises is most needed. >> Click here to read the full statement

Coming up
1 February 2021 Facilitation Group Principals and Eminent Person meeting
The Grand Bargain Secretariat is supported by ECHO and hosted by the Norwegian Refugee Council/NORCAP.
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