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FACT SHEET: Early Warning and Response Systems for Social Conflicts-BASIC DATA

  March 28, 2016

• Early Warning and Response Systems (EWRS) are mechanisms for the prevention and management of crises or conflicts, which focus on informing and warning of the occurrence of events that pose risks to the safety of individuals and to democratic stability.

• The EWRS are effective if they have: political support at the highest level, inter-institutional coordination, and sufficient financial resources for their implementation.

• The EWRS are used to identify the causes of a conflict, and to predict or mitigate its impact.

• They serve to prevent the escalation of conflicts, to safeguard political and social costs, and to avoid the loss of human life.

• The stages of an EWRS are: 1) the systematic collection of data —quantitative and qualitative—on conflicts; 2) data assessment; 3) the issuance of warnings determining the seriousness of the threat and its potential impact; 4) the identification of measures for sustainable conflict management, and the release of recommendations on measures to be considered by decision-makers; and 5) assessment of the warning’s impact and scope of the responses carried out.

• They can be used at any level—national, municipal or local—depending the intended purpose of an EWRS at the time it is created.

• The EWRS’ political neutrality is fundamental to its effectiveness, and it must have accurate information for the system to work in a timely manner.

Reference: S-004/15