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Gisli Olafsson – Consultant
• Determination of various stakeholders’
• Coordination with others regarding
information to be included in reports.
• Prioritization of information in reports.
Know your role
• What is your role in the response?
• Who sent you there?
• What is your TOR?
• If you are not sure about your reporting
• Who is providing you with information?
– Response organizations
• Who are you reporting to?
– Affected community?
Stakeholders - Input
• What do they want to report?
– What is their mandate?
• How do you get them to report to you?
• How do you priortize reports from multiple
• Who are your contacts?
Stakeholders - Output
• Where will your report be distributed?
• What do they want to know?
• How do they want to be informed?
• How will they use this information?
• How are you getting information for the
• When are you getting the information?
• How do you process the input?
• How do you transform the input into
• Time vs. Content
• What will the report influence?
• Who will the report influence?
• Narrative vs. Statistics
• Actionable Information
• Use Westlandia Earthquake
• Determine your reporting needs
• Determine your stakeholders
• Define a reporting process
– Who to get input from
– How to get input
– When to get input
– When to send
Writing Situation Reports
• Reports should be short and to the point
• Aim for balanced coverage
• Put numbers into context
• Explain specialist terminology
• Always explain uncommon acronyms
Short and to the point
• Generally no more than three pages.
• Avoid long narrative paragraphs.
• Use short statements, tables and bullet points.
– Heavy rains since 29 January have caused flooding in
a number of areas of the Solomon Islands. Four
provinces are reported to have been hardest hit:
Guadalcanal, Malaita, Makira and Central.
– Flow of aid and staff into Gaza remains insufficient.
• Report who is responding; do not overemphasize UN, EU agencies.
• Source all information clearly, especially numbers. Do not bulk-
source information at the beginning or end of the situation report.
Readers often cite numbers as official UN figures, so be sure you
can justify everything you include.
• Specify information sources (especially in case of reporting on
assessed needs) and the reliability/credibility of the information.
– The Government of Nepal estimates approximately 70,000 people were
affected by flooding in the Saptari and Sunsari Districts.
– ICRC reported that at least 100 people have been registered by their
families as missing since the fighting began.
• Ask your sources to explain their response in terms of
how many people they helped and for how long – not
just how many kits or tons of food were distributed.
– From 10 to 23 December, 1700 families, or 54 percent of the
population living in temporary shelters and tent sites, received
reconstruction kits and cash to cover transportation costs for the
• Indicate if information has not been verified, and provide
follow-up in future situation reports whenever possible.
– Unconfirmed reports suggest that more than 20,000 IDPs have
• Explain specialist terminology for non-specialists.
– Fifty UNICEF emergency family water kits (enough for 500
families) were distributed on 9 January through the local Red
Crescent Society. Each kit contains buckets, collapsible water
containers, soap, and water purification tablets.
• Make every effort to complete the thread of reporting on
any given situation, even if considerable time has passed
since the initial reporting.
– If you report that an assessment is taking place, make sure to
report on its outcome.
• Always explain uncommon acronyms.
• Use full name or description on first mention,
with acronym in round brackets, if needed;
thereafter, use the acronym where appropriate.
– In response to the serious risk posed by Explosive
Remnants of War (ERW) and Unexploded Ordnance
(UXO), Mine Action is airing two new radio
announcements on mine risk education. The amount
of UXO in the country is estimated to be highest in
the border region.
Joint EU/HA Reports
• Daily reports shall be prepared by the DG
ECHO-HA and EUCP experts together (in
the period when both present) and, where
required, with the assistance of the
responsible Delegation (if appropriate with
some additional contextual information
provided by the EU Ambassador).
When to report?
• The report shall be submitted by 16.00 CET each
day, unless there is mutual agreement between
HQ and the experts stipulating otherwise.
• The first report shall be submitted as soon as
possible upon arrival at the disaster site.
• Send all information available. Do not delay
because information is lacking. If delays are
foreseen because of technical problems inform
HQ by phone.
• Follow the layout of the report template*:
all items mentioned below should be
included. If there is no information
available for an item, state this fact
explicitly (i.e. "no information available" or
"nothing new", etc.).
• Be explicit, precise and double-check
• Specify phone numbers/e-mail addresses
of key interlocutors and partners.
• While writing, imagine yourself at the
• Do not repeat information that has already
1. BACKGROUND / OVERALL
SITUATION (EU DELEGATION)
• Security situation
• Impact of disaster on local infrastructure
(roads, hospitals, telecommunications etc)
• Likely developments/secondary threats
• Incidents since last report
2.0 AID AND ASSISTANCE
REQUIRED / NEEDS ASSESSMENT
2.1 Humanitarian Aid (DG ECHO-HA)
2.2 Civil Protection (EUCPT)
• Describe primary relief needs (give as
much detail as possible -
partners or teams)
2.3 Preliminary Recommendations
3. Local Response
– Response by national and local authorities of
– Response by national authorities of other
countries in the region
4. INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN
RESPONSE (DG ECHO-HA)
– Response by major humanitarian
– Response by major donors
5. International civil protection
– Assistance delivered
– Activities of Participating States' teams
6. ON-SITE COORDINATION
– National coordination structures / LEMA
– International coordination structures / which
humanitarian clusters are operational?
– Civil-Military coordination
7. DELIVERY OF ASSISTANCE
– Reception Departure Centre (RDC)
– Relief entry point
– Logistical constraints
– Customs information
– Distribution System
• 8. OTHER INFORMATION
• 9. MAPS (INCLUDING SCHEMATIC ONES,
• 10. OVERALL RECOMMENDATION /
• 11. ISSUES WHERE FEEDBACK IS
REQUESTED FROM HQ
• Bullet or number separate key updates,
keeping them brief and to the point.
• Situation overview is reserved for detailed
• Recap of the general situation, key facts
• Include important incidents since last
• Include new information on access and
security and operational constraints.
• Report on interagency assessments.
• In many cases this could simply be 2-3
bullet points with a link to FTS.
• Provide information about the total appeal
and how much has been committed so far
• Provide information about in-kind
• Provide location, name, title, email address and
phone numbers of those that can give more
information about the information in the
• Provide a link to relevant websites
• Provide information about how to get to the
SitRep mailing list