United Nations Humanitarian Civil-Military Coordination 2023

On January 20, 2023, the UNOCHA Civil-Military Coordination Service jointly with the NATO Civil-Military Cooperation Center for Excellence (CCOE) held its one-week United Nations Humanitarian Civil-Military Coordination (UN-CMCoord) training course for civil and military middle-level managers. The course brought together UN Agencies, humanitarian partners, and members of the military working on CIMIC.

Participants engaged with real-life scenarios, shared their lived field experiences of humanitarian operations, and learned how to navigate the limitations, but also identify the opportunities of engaging with each other in natural disasters and complex emergencies. Among the many modules of the training, they had the chance to define the key humanitarian civil-military coordination concepts, assess operations, apply structures as it relates to humanitarian access and protection outcomes, and exercise a variety of practical skills for effectively working in field operations.

With 150 million people residing in territories controlled by non-state armed groups, the need for the military and humanitarian actors to strengthen their understanding of one another is paramount. The space which separates these actors is shrinking, calling for collaboration and complementary over competition. This course demonstrated the UN’s and NATO’s commitment to working together, and to their shared challenges in facilitating the right assistance, to the right people at the right time and in the most appropriate way. Gaining the skills, and knowledge, and strengthening the relationship between practitioners working in the civil-military space, are the cornerstone for effective civil-military coordination.

(Photos: CCOE PAO/ A. Döhring)