Education in emergencies is a key priority of the EU's humanitarian work. Pupils in a class receiving a lesson on mathematics at Lufunda Primary School in Mpati/North Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo.
Photo: NRC/Christian Jepsen


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In order to put the nexus concept into practice, adjustments have to be made at all levels of the programming cycle – from information sharing to financing. Our author explains what this means for the work of the EU Commission and how integration is to result in more effective action in addressing protracted crises.

The European Union’s work on saving lives, eradicating poverty and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals has evolved through the decades, responding to the different challenges and adapting to the evolving realities. We observe that humanitarian crises often last for multiple years, demonstrate regional spill-overs and force people to abandon their homes for long periods. At the same time, the prevalence of violence and conflict fuels instability that continuously undermines humanitarian and development efforts.

Reality therefore shows that a traditional, largely compartmentalised approach, where the European Union's humanitarian, development and peace activities are separated from one another, does not correspond to the challenges we currently face in our neighbourhood, in Africa or across the globe – wherever there are anthropogenic or natural disasters. Due to the protracted nature of crises, humanitarian, development and peace work often take place at the same time. The key philosophy behind the nexus therefore is about rising up to the current challenges, maximising our potential and finding lasting solutions for protracted crises.

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