A companion guide to resilience: Practical guidance for people designing and implementing programmes that aim to increase the resilience of people living in poverty

Steve Jennings & Janice Ian Manlutac
2016

Summary

This guide offers practical guidance, primarily aimed at Oxfam staff and partners, for those working on project/programmes that aim to increase the resilience of those living in poverty. It highlights the importance of resilience in addressing  vulnerability to climate change, natural disasters, political instability, and escalating inequality.  It follows all stages of the project/programme cycle, and includes a checklist of things to consider at project and programme levels.  The guide is structured so that people can use the guide to inform their work as it progresses, and find the parts that are most relevant to their work easily.

Resilience in the project/programme cycle:

  • Vision: There is no definition of resilience that fits all contexts but keeping the core principle – poor people thriving despite shocks and uncertainty – when working with colleagues to develop a vision will be helpful and can be tailored to the context.
  • Design: The essential checklist helps to think through the design of resilience projects and programmes. It explores the changes that you want to see in the lives of vulnerable people and how to work to achieve these outcomes. It also includes additional checklists that explores the role of government and business and the internal context that may support (or hinder) the resilience of vulnerable people.
  • Implementation: What works in one place may not work in another. Rather than offer instructions, this section presents case studies of projects with a focus on different aspects of resilience and offers suggestions on the types of partners that may be appropriate depending on context.
  • Monitoring and evaluation: Resilience is hard to measure because it can only be measured in hindsight. The section presents indicators chosen against the outcomes identified during the design phase.
  • Learning:  There is no simple answer to ‘how to do resilience’ and so learning is key. This applies to a project/programmes you are delivering where you can check the logic and, if necessary, change course, as well as to discussing your work with fellow practitioners to acknowledge failures, success, share insights and express doubts.

Source

Jennings, S., & Manlutac, J.I. (2016). A companion guide to resilience: Practical guidance for people designing and implementing programmes that aim to increase the resilience of people living in poverty. Oxford: OXFAM.