1.8 Relevance for decision-makers

 The IPC is designed to provide evidence-based analysis to guide strategic decision-making, providing decision-makers with clear, well-presented information on food security and nutrition situations in a reliable, consistent and accessible form. The IPC provides a general classification of the severity and magnitude of food insecurity and Acute Malnutrition, and identifies key characteristics and drivers.

The IPC follows a rigorous and globally comparable approach, and has proven valuable for awareness-raising and advocacy, and to inform strategic response planning in the fields of food security and nutrition, as in the case of Humanitarian Needs Overview and Response Plans. The IPC responds to six key questions of how severe, how many, when, where, why and who, and identifies key characteristics of the situation, as described in Table 4. 

The IPC provides decision-makers with an analysis of fundamental aspects of a current or projected situation. Hence, although the IPC supports response analysis by providing invaluable information on the complex food security and nutrition conditions, following stages of response planning and implementation should also consider other issues, such as operational and financial constraints.

Furthermore, although the IPC provides general estimates of the extent of food insecurity and malnutrition to support more strategic response analysis, the scope, methods, purpose and meaning of the figures are not to be used to monitor and evaluate response and achievement of development goals. Instead, the overall goal of the monitoring and evaluation systems is to assess achievements based on a precise detection of changes in certain key indicators that should be used to assess impact and achievements. The IPC Acute Food Insecurity Analysis may identify areas that receive or are likely to receive significant humanitarian food assistance. The identification of these areas aims to raise awareness of decision-makers on the presence of significant humanitarian food assistance that may be affecting phase classification.

The situation analysis provided by the IPC and the consequential and circular stages of response analysis, planning, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation are all indispensable for more strategic, responsible and timely action.

Figure 2 indicates where the IPC is located within the analysis-response continuum.