Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection

Service tools

Needs assessments

Why is this important?

In accordance with the humanitarian principles, established by the European Consensus on Humanitarian Aid, the EU seeks to address the needs of the most vulnerable people facing a crisis. A needs-based approach is therefore necessary to ensures aid is provided in different countries according to their respective needs, independent of any pressure. The approach also guarantees the credibility and transparency of EU humanitarian aid.


How do we ensure a needs-based approach?

The European Commission's Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department (ECHO) has developed a two-phase framework for assessing and analysing needs in specific countries and crises. It provides an evidence base for funding allocation, prioritisation of needs, and development of humanitarian implementation plans (HIPs). The first phase is based on the below ECHO-based tools:

Global Vulnerability and Crisis Assessment (GVCA) 

The Global Vulnerability and Crisis Assessment is a tool based on national indicators and composite data that allows for a comparative analysis of countries to identify the level of vulnerability/ crisis. The first component identifies the most vulnerable countries, where humanitarian needs are likely to be greater in the event of a disaster, using a vulnerability index; the second component identifies countries that are effectively in a humanitarian crisis situation corresponding to the ECHO intervention criteria, by means of a crisis index. Taken together, the two indices define the priorities for intervention.

The Forgotten Crisis Assessment (FCA)
The Forgotten Crises Assessment is a methodology which identifies serious humanitarian crisis situations where the affected populations are not receiving enough international aid or even none at all.

The second phase of the framework focuses on the sub-crisis context and response analysis, carried out jointly by ECHO experts in both the field and in the Brussels headquarters. 


How do we promote needs-based decision-making?

ECHO is committed to improving the capacities, quality and coordination of needs-assessment approaches across the humanitarian sector. Such actions include::

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