Protocols for completing Function 4

Function 4 ensures the technical rigour and neutrality of analysis as well as learning for future improvements. These are achieved through self-assessments and, if necessary, external quality reviews. By completing Function 4, analysts assess to what extent they have followed all the IPC protocols included in Functions 1, 2 and 3, and identify areas for future improvements. If all 13 protocols have been followed, the resulting product can be labelled IPC. Therefore, by inserting the IPC logo into a report, the Technical Working Group recognizes its accountability, confirming that classification was based on consensual and unbiased analysis developed according to IPC protocols. Lack of adherence to IPC protocols may result in the IPC Global Steering Committee requiring that the Technical Working Group remove the IPC logo.

Further to Function 4, the IPC initiative aims to support countries to produce analyses that meet high-quality standards. To this end, the IPC Quality and Support Strategy has been developed around three additional components: (i) Capacity Development; (ii) Country Technical, Implementation and Strategic Support; and (iii) Technical Standards and Guidelines. The IPC Global Support Unit is responsible for overseeing Quality Assurance and has a variety of ex ante and ex post mechanisms at its disposal to ensure the technical rigour and neutrality of the analysis and to identify learning for future improvements. Among these, the IPC Global Support Unit provides systematic technical support and facilitation during analyses for all countries that are in their first two years of IPC implementation. The same modality applies to a range of other contexts, such as contexts where adherence to IPC protocols has been questioned in previous analyses, contexts where partner(s) disagreement on classification is frequent, and contexts where conflict and/or insecurity is identified as a key driver of food insecurity and therefore further assurance on the neutrality of the IPC analysis may be required. Given the predominant role of IPC in informing decisions about humanitarian food assistance potentially required in these latter contexts, this mechanism aims at ensuring optimal quality for the analysis. Following the completion of IPC analyses, the IPC Global Support Unit works to support Function 4 by reviewing self-assessments and, if necessary, by conducting external quality reviews together with IPC Global Partners.

There are two protocols for Function 4: the first focuses on self-assessment and the second entails requesting and engaging in an external quality review if deemed necessary (Figure 57).