Progressive Resolution of Displacement Situations Framework (PRDS)
Crises are forcing record numbers to flee their homes seeking relative safety within or across international borders. The growing complexity and unpredictability of those crises are resulting in increasingly protracted displacement situations, with seemingly insufficient political will to resolve many current crises. Complementing the three recognized durable solutions described below, IOM has developed a new framework to guide IOM's approach to the progressive resolution of displacement situations as part of its wider response to migration crises. The Progressive Resolution of Displacement Situations (PRDS) Framework integrates a mobility perspective and recognizes the impacts of crisis and displacement on displaced populations, as well as on other migrants and affected populations.
Contemporary forced migration dynamics bring into sharp focus conceptual questions about the application of "durable solutions". The three pathways, as typically defined in durable solutions frameworks, comprise: (1) sustainable voluntary return, (2) sustainable settlement elsewhere and (3) sustainable local integration. These pathways are generally predicated on finite conditions which often do not fully reflect contemporary forced migration trends or fluid post-crisis environments and are underscored by a preoccupation with ending mobility and movement.
While durable solutions terminology should continue to be used as appropriate to the displaced populations and context concerned, in many contexts, the broader resilience-based approach which is at the heart of the PRDS Framework better reflects contemporary forced migration dynamics and the commensurate need for earlier, more inclusive and more responsive engagement.
The objectives of the IOM PRDS Framework are (1) to identify and strengthen coping capacities weakened as a result of displacement situations; (2) to foster self-reliance by responding to the longer term consequences of displacement situations; (3) to create conducive environments by addressing the root causes of crisis and displacement.
Objective 1: To identify and strengthen coping capacities weakened as a result of displacement situations.
- Displacement situations, particularly when protracted or recurring, may undermine or exhaust existing coping capacities, with savings depleted, families and communities dispersed and livelihoods assets destroyed.
- It is important to identify existing coping mechanisms and their actual and potential impacts, reinforcing those with positive outcomes and mitigating against the adoption of harmful practices, which can have detrimental long term well-being consequences and undermine recovery. A do no harm approach should be applied to programme design and implementation, to reinforce positive coping mechanisms and avoid unintended negative impacts.
- Examples of coping strategies include: circular migration, pre-emptive movement or displacement to specific safe havens based on actual or perceived opportunities, remittances, informal labour, community-based safety nets, temporary or longer term family separation or selling livestock or other assets.
Objective 2: To foster self-reliance by responding to the longer term consequences of displacement situations.
- Particularly when protracted, displacement situations can hamper the achievement of self-reliance, notably where access to livelihoods and employment opportunities is limited by policy or physical location, assets have been abandoned or destroyed, infrastructure damaged or freedom of movement is restricted, reinforcing dependency on external aid.
- Displaced populations and other migrants potentially bring a diversity of skills, talents, services and new markets as well as investment through remittances and development interventions.
- Mobility may play a contributing role. For example, affected populations may follow socio-economic opportunities and fill labour market gaps, including fulfilling short term or seasonal gaps.
Objective 3: To create conducive environments by addressing the root causes of crisis and displacement.
- Beyond the immediate triggers of displacement are frequently a range of contributing factors which are often diverse, inter-dependent elements of crisis, such as fragile underlying conditions related to governance, economic, environmental and/or social factors.
- Creating conducive environments can contribute to the resolution of displacement as well as to reducing the risks of potential future displacement, and often entail working at different levels, from more systemic laws and policies to more direct interventions with communities.
- Processes, such as supporting inclusive community-based decision-making, often play as much of a role in contributing to stability as the outcomes, such as the provision of basic services or rehabilitated infrastructure, although both are important.
Interventions guided by the PRDS Framework are grounded on four programmatic pillars, these respective pillars are based on the eight criteria outlined in the IASC Framework on Durable Solutions for Internally Displaced Persons. The four programmatic pillars of PRDS are: (1) Protection, safety and security (Legal safety and physical and material security); (2) Adequate standard of living (sustained access to adequate food, water, housing, health services and basic education); (3) Sustainable livelihoods and employment (enabling individuals and households to meet their own daily needs and live in dignity); (4) Inclusive governance (individuals participation in decisions and processes of public affairs).
For further guidance on IOM's transition and recovery interventions relating to the four programmatic pillars, please reference the entries on Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience; Community Stabilization; Transition; and Reintegration Assistance.
Relevance to IOM’s Emergency Operations
IOM has an obligation to seek solutions for all situations of displacement, beginning early in the humanitarian response in an incremental process. Recognizing that resolving displacement is typically a long-term, inter-agency effort, IOM should engage where it offers a comparative advantage. Early efforts to progressively resolve displacement situations are in-line with the early recovery approach which applies development-principled programming in humanitarian contexts and seeks to seize development opportunities, build resilience, and establish a sustainable process of recovery and transition from crisis.
A critical component of the humanitarian response, and a first step towards resilience, is the identification and reinforcement of individual, household and community-level coping strategies to avoid interventions which may undermine existing coping mechanisms and mitigate against the adoption of harmful practices, which can have detrimental long term consequences and undermine recovery.
IOM has extensive experience in humanitarian action, as well as wider stabilization, peace-building, security and development work in communities of origin, transit and destination which contribute to the progressive resolution of displacement situations. Building on contextual analysis, IOM should understand and embrace mobility dynamics which support progression towards resolving displacement, while ensuring safety nets are in place to mitigate against the adoption of harmful practices.
Under the guidance of the Transition and Recovery Division (TRD), IOM divisions across the Department of Operations and Emergencies (DOE) and the Department of Migration Management (DMM) have a role to play in seeking innovative pathways and seizing opportunities to foster the resilience of those affected by crisis and displacement. As thematic lead, TRD promotes coordination around, and monitors the implementation of the PRDS Framework. Its broad portfolio, framed by the Migration Crisis Operational Framework, supports a comprehensive response, considering the immediate impacts of displacement, as well as its longer term consequences, particularly evident in protracted displacement situations, and contributes to resilience-building efforts and addressing the underlying drivers of displacement.
The PRDS Framework is designed to, amongst others; optimize humanitarian, development, peace and security interventions by employing a progressive approach to resolving displacement situations. Beyond IOM's own interventions, this approach calls for wider and stronger partnerships with traditional and non-traditional actors in recognition of the complexity of resolving displacement situations.