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Resilience Rapid Learning Series: Lessons for Building Resilience in Protracted Crises and Conflict-affected Settings

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Case Studies

REAL’s Resilience Rapid Learning Series provides the practitioner and donor communities with insights and emerging evidence on how to build resilience in protracted crises and conflict-affected settings. This series documents promising program approaches and contextual insights through research, case studies, and technical analysis.

This series was inspired by a Conflict and Resilience Roundtable in June 2020, organized by the REAL Award and the USAID Center for Resilience, and framed by Mercy Corps’ paper Towards Resilience: Advancing Collective Impact in Protracted Crises. 

Research questions for each brief in this series align with the framework presented in the Towards Resilience paper, calling for collective action around three practice areas to drive resilience:  

  • Rapid, real-time analysis of risk factors that drive and perpetuate fragility. 
  • Support to the local market and social systems to strengthen sources of resilience to the shocks and stresses defining protracted crises. 
  • Short-term violence prevention paired with efforts to transform the structural drivers of conflict.

Click here to learn more about the discussion series of online events based on this learning series.

Harnessing Local Sources of Social Cohesion in Niger: Lessons for Building Resilience in Protracted Crises and Conflict-affected Settings

This brief examines factors that contribute to local-level variation in social cohesion in order to improve programming. Hypothesized to reduce violence, social cohesion is a necessary component for building resilience and improving long-term well-being outcomes in areas prone to ongoing conflicts, natural disasters, and other shocks and stresses. 


Rapid Resilience Learning Brief: Role of Markets in Strengthening Social Resilience Capacities in Northeast Nigeria

This brief documents how a combination of livelihood support and economic collectives like village savings and loan associations (VSLAs) can develop financial and social sources of resilience in crisis contexts. In protracted crises, where the state has limited capacity or lacks the political will to provide for and protect its citizens, people rely on markets and social connections for protection, information, and economic resources. 

Rapid Resilience Learning Brief: Leveraging Crisis Analysis Towards Resilience-building Responses

The need for continuous, granular, real-time risk analysis motivated inquiry into the relevance and applicability of rapid situational analysis tools—typically reserved for humanitarian settings—to resilience investments in protracted crises. This brief provides a case study in one such analytical method, Crisis Analytics at Mercy Corps, and its application to protracted crises in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).