Published | 25th August 2017

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Integrated Risk Management Explained

Climate change and ecosystem degradation place new demands on disaster risk reduction approaches. We describe Integrated Risk Management (IRM) as an enhanced, holistic approach to increase community resilience by integrating disaster risk reduction, climate change adaptation and ecosystem management and restoration. In this document, we set out CARE’s approach to IRM, explain our current thinking and the key characteristics of the approach, CARE’s Theory of Change, and how IRM links to international frameworks such as the Paris Agreement and the Sendai Framework

This report focuses primarily on natural hazards, climate change and ecosystem degradation as drivers of risk, to explain the basic IRM approach. The CARE International 2020 Program Strategy focuses on increasing resilience from a wider range of shocks and stresses, as described in the Increasing Resilience Guidance Note. We recognise that there is often a causal relationship between these shocks and stresses, for example, conflicts exacerbate ecosystem degradation, climate change increases conflict, disasters worsen economic development, and economic stresses can increase vulnerability to disasters. We are fully committed to building strong links with other shocks and stresses once the basic IRM approach is well established. This document can be used to develop IRM specific programmes, as well as enhancing our humanitarian response and sustainable development programmes by integrating the main characteristics of IRM.

This report gives an overview of CARE’s understanding of IRM.

  1. Chapter 1 describes IRM and its key elements.
  2. Chapter 2 describes good programming principles to ensure IRM is more than the sum of its parts.
  3. Chapter 3 describes how we translate IRM thinking into a coherent approach using the Theory of Change.
  4. Chapter 4 describes how our IRM work links to international agreements such as the Paris Agreement, the Sendai Framework and the Sustainable Development Goals. These agreements form a strong foundation and guidance to help place IRM higher on the political agenda and to help advocate for an enabling environment for those living at risk.
  5. Finally, Chapter 5 is an invitation to share your experiences, ideas and feedback. In this chapter, we list some ideas for initiatives to develop tools and technical papers to support and illustrate theoretical IRM understanding on how to apply IRM in practice.
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