Table of contents by the first letter of the term:
Please send suggestions for glossary items, or other comments, to OCHA-FIS-GVA@un.org
Underlined terms in the definitions refer to other defined terms. Links go to other documents.
Humanitarian Terms definition page on Relief Web
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Who does What Where When' maps or tables. These depend heavily on CODs and particularly their associated gazetteers. 3W information and examples
A geographic polygon or polygons representing the perimeter of one administrative unit.
A set of recognised and hierarchical levels of administrative authority and geographic partition of a country or territory. Increasing administrative level numbers represent lower (geographically smaller and administratively subservient) units, with administrative level 0 representing the entire country, administrative level 1 representing the next lower level, and so on.
In some countries, an administrative level may consist of more than one type of administrative unit.
The numeric level in the Administrative hierarchy. Level 0 represents the entire country, and larger numbers represent deeper hierarchical levels. The term 'administrative level' is a useful generic replacement for actual terms that vary between countries and sometimes which are not consistent within a country. For example, as some administrative level 1 units in Canada are 'provinces' and others are 'territories', and as administrative level 1 units in Cameroon are called 'regions'. Furthermore these terms can be represented differently in different languages.
The suggested standard abbreviation for particular levels is “ADM1”, “ADM3”, etc.
An individual place in the administrative structure of a country. “Texas”, for example, is an administrative unit at administrative level 1 for the United States of America. Each administrative unit occupies a record in the gazetteer or COD-AB or COD-PS tables for its particular administrative level. That record contains the administrative unit name, in one or more languages, and the administrative unit P-code.
Business intelligence comprises the strategies and technologies used by enterprises for the data analysis of business information.
Common Operational Dataset (COD)
Authoritative reference datasets needed to support operations and decision-making for all actors in a humanitarian response. They provide essential baseline data and data standards that allow humanitarian actors to collaborate, coordinate and exchange information. CODs provide the basis for a common operational picture and a shared situational awareness. .
An administrative boundary COD is a spatial dataset that identifies the various administrative level boundaries, names and unique codes (P-codes) in a country. It is a core COD, and provides a spatial/visual way to view and analyze data as well as a common way of referring to places allowing datasets to be aggregated and analyzed more easily. See Administrative Boundaries (COD-AB).
A population statistics COD is a tabular baseline demographic dataset that is (ideally) disaggregated by age and sex and presented at various levels of administrative levels in a country and includes P-codes. It is a core COD that is used to identify initial affected numbers and understand the pre-emergency situation. See Population Statistics COD (COD-PS).
Humanitarian Profile COD that provides the number of people affected, including when relevant: displaced, missing, injured, dead, as well as people in need. It is a Core COD that is only available post-crisis. It is used to make programmatic decisions. See Humanitarian Profile COD (COD-HP)
Core Common Operational Datasets
Core CODs are required in all countries with ongoing humanitarian operations or in which emergency response preparedness (ERP) activities are underway. They provide a critical data standard and support initial analysis in the first 48 hours of a new emergency of impact, scope, and scale and thus inform decisions on any subsequent response. There are three Core themes: Administrative Boundaries, Population Statistics, and Humanitarian Profile. See Core CODs.
Emergency Response Preparedness. To improve the humanitarian system's readiness to respond to breaking crises, the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) developed the Emergency Response Preparedness (ERP) approach. The aim is to increase the speed and volume of life-saving assistance delivered in the first four to six weeks of an emergency. For more information see: The ERP approach
Field Information Service is a section of OCHA based in Istanbul that supports information management, products and services to OCHA country and regional offices.
Financial Tracking Service
Database of Global Administrative Areas project created the spatial data for many countries from spatial databases provided by national governments, NGO, and/or from maps and lists of names available on the Internet.
Global Administrative Unit Layers. The GAUL compiles and disseminates the best available information on administrative units for all the countries in the world, providing a contribution to the standardization of the spatial dataset representing administrative units. The GAUL always maintains global layers with a unified coding system at country, first and second administrative levels. (Where data is available, it provides layers on a country by country basis down to third, fourth and lowers levels.)
A table of administrative unit attributes at each administrative level. Attributes include administrative unit names, in one or more languages, and their P-codes. Gazetteers are provided in .XLSX format with COD-AB and COD-PS datasets.
Global IM Functional Team
GLIDE number a globally common Unique ID code for disaster to be associated with the dataset after the onset of a natural disaster. (See about GLIDE number) It is used ReliefWeb, HR.info, (HID, Events, Assessment Registry)
The Humanitarian Coordinator (HC) is responsible for assessing whether or not an international response to the crisis is warranted and for ensuring the humanitarian response efforts if needed, are well organized. The HC is accountable to the Emergency Relief Coordinator. HCs lead the HCT in deciding the most appropriate coordination solutions for their country, taking into account the local situation. The agreement must be reached on which Clusters to establish, and which organizations are to lead them.
Humanitarian Country Team (HCT) is a strategic and operational decision-making and oversight forum established and led by the HC. The composition includes representatives from the UN, IOM, international NGOs, the Red Cross/Red Crescent Movement. Agencies that are also designated Cluster leads should represent the Clusters as well as their respective organizations. The HCT is responsible for agreeing on common strategic issues related to humanitarian action.
Humanitarian Data Exchange is an open platform for sharing data, launched in July 2014. The goal of HDX is to make humanitarian data easy to find and use for analysis.
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HPC.tool sare the information services provided by OCHA which enable the humanitarian community to manage the structured information around the humanitarian programme cycle (HPC): needs indicators, strategic and cluster plan frameworks, response indicators, activities and projects, 3W, and financial data. They support the cycle at all stages: identification of needs; strategic, cluster-level and project planning; periodic monitoring; presence mapping and financial tracking.
HumanitarianResponse.info is a platform where humanitarians can share, find, and collaborate on information to inform strategic decisions. Its purpose is to support efficient, effective, and coordinated humanitarian response through the sharing of operational information.
The Carl Vinson Institute of Government's Office of Information Technology Outreach Services (ITOS) is a leader in GIS innovation and is part of the University of Georgia. ITOS provides three services for Common Operational Datasets:
Joint Intersectoral Analysis Framework
KoBo is a free open-source tool for mobile data collection, available to all
An L3 emergency is the classification for the most severe, large-scale humanitarian crisis. An L3 declaration by the IASC principles means that a system-wide mobilization is required to significantly scale up a humanitarian response and improve overall assistance. Level . L3 Guidance - Current L3 Emergencies.
Important note: The term "L3" is not longer correct. The new terminology to refer to this concept is "SCALE-UP". Please refer to the IASC Transformative Agenda for further information.
Une urgence de niveau 3 correspond à une crise humanitaire de grande ampleur, elle considérée comme étant la plus grave. Selon les principes du IASC, une déclaration d’urgence de niveau 3 signifie qu’une mobilisation à l’échelle du système est nécessaire pour augmenter considérablement l’ampleur de l’intervention humanitaire et améliorer l'assistance globale. Directive sur les urgences de niveau 3 – les urgences de niveaux 3 actuelles.
Note importante: Le terme "L3" n'est désormais plus approprié. La nouvelle terminologie pour se référer à ce concept est "SCALE-UP". Pour plus de détails, veuillez consulter IASC Transformative Agenda.
Map and feature services of administrative boundary Common Operational Datasets (COD-AB.
Unique place code associated with an individual administrative unit. P-codes have a hierarchical structure so that each contains the P-code of the parent administrative unit. For example, the P-code for the “Chulumani” administrative level 3 unit in Bolivia is BO021101. “Chulumani” is contained in the “Sud Yungas“ administrative level 2 unit, which has the P-code BO0211. “Sud Yungas” is contained in the “La Paz” administrative level 1 unit, which has the P-code “BO02”. Finally, “La Paz” is in the “Bolivia” administrative level 0 unit which has the P-code “BO”. Administrative level 0 P-codes are normally set to the ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 country code, although there are exceptions.
The Response Planning and Monitoring tool manages the creation and subsequent monitoring of the strategic framework the inter-cluster and cluster levels, supporting first the HRP planning process, and then the periodic monitoring processes which happen several times a year.