Last Updated
30 Nov 2021


There has been an increasing interest in area-based approaches among humanitarian actors in recent years responding to the growing complexities and protracted nature of displacement crisis. The international humanitarian community has emphasized the importance of shifting towards a more multi-sectoral and integrated response through the World Humanitarian Summit, strategy papers by OFDA, ECHO, and UNHCR, as well as the new way of working called for by the Grand Bargain.

Recent displacement trends show growing numbers of displaced population living outside of designated areas such as camp/camp like setting (traditional camps collective/transit/reception centres, informal settlements) with a majority setting in dispersed locations predominately urban and peri-urban areas such as informal settlements, unfinished buildings or interspersed in host community homes and communities, shared rooms or rental arrangements. These new trends led CCCM actors to adapt camp management tools to be able to reach, properly assess and understand local dynamics, vulnerabilities and capacities of the displaced and host populations alike.


Urban Displacement Outside of Camps (UDOC)

In response to the changing displacement trends, CCCM cluster formulated “the Urban Displacement Outside of Camps (UDOC)” publication in 2015 exploring how CCCM resources, experiences and expertise can be applied to address the needs of displaced populations living in dispersed and/or scattered settings within the host communities. The document sets out a draft framework of an CCCM area-based methodology, with the aim to collectively work towards more multi-sectoral and integrated humanitarian responses. The document does not exclusively focus on the concept of area-based approaches; however, it highlights that CCCM expertise is adaptable to outside camp displacement using an area-based approach. Visit the link below to view the document:

Urban Displacement & Out of Camps Review


More about the ABA Working Group and Area-based Approaches in CCCM

During the last years the CCCM actors have continued to field test adaptive camp management methodology based on core camp management practices (See Camp Management Tool Kit). At the implementation level, CCCM actors developed methodologies for community social-network boundary identification, CCCM mobile response teams and Community (Resource) Centres -all of may be part of a CCCM area-based response.

The Global CCCM Cluster has explicitly incorporated area-based approaches and response into its Global Cluster Strategy 2017/21 and the participants of the 2017 Global Retreat recommended the creation of an area-based Working Group. The Working Group is formed by CCCM practitioners working in CCCM responses and members of the CCCM Goal Steering and advisory group (SAG). The working group aims to contribute to the wider humanitarian discourse and to develop tools, guidance and create a platform for engagement and sharing of learnings for CCCM practitioners, humanitarian and interested actors.

Subscribe to the Area-based Approach Working Group mailing list

Click here to view the latest ABA WG Reference Group Meeting Summary


Since forming the Working Group, one of the outcomes is a paper published in 2021 outlining the CCCM Cluster’s position on area-based approaches, including operational considerations and opportunities there may be for CCCM actors. The position paper is available on the CCCM website and can be viewed via the link below:

CCCM Cluster Position Paper on Area-Based Approaches


The Working Group is chaired by Giovanna Federici - and Annika Grafweg -