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Minimum Economic Recovery Standards Image

An Industry Consensus on Minimum Standards for Economic Recovery Programs in Crisis Environments

MERS in Action


MERS Capacity Building and Training in Myanmar initiates as new president is announced

MERS Myanmar 2016

“On the same day that the first democratically elected president of Myanmar, U Htin Kyaw, was announced, 11 staff working for local NGOs were the first in the country to be accredited as MERS General Practitioners. They are now well placed to ensure the quality and accountability of economic recovery programs in the country,” stated Adam Clark, MERS master trainer. Get the full story >>



Economic Recovery and Resilience in Crisis Environments

On November 10, 2015, MERS and the SEEP Network participated in a Microlinks-hosted webinar on Economic Recovery and Resilience in Crisis Environments. If you missed the webinar or would like to learn more about the tool, you can view the recording here.

After Haiyan: Integrated Programming for Economic Recovery

The first installment in this webinar series focused on the experiences of SEEP member Catholic Relief Services’ (CRS) work in the Philippines following Typhoon Haiyan

  • For presentation slides and the webinar recording, click here


Economic and market resilience before and after shocks

Written by Becky Carter, this report focuses on humanitarian and disaster risk reduction interventions that aim to reinforce economic resilience to anticipated shocks and support economic recovery after a shock, both in situations of natural disasters and conflict. Read more>>

Are cash transfers the ‘new normal’ in the Philippines? Challenges and opportunities from Typhoon Haiyan

An article written by MERS trainer Alesh Brown is featured in the January 2015 issue of Humanitarian Exchange Magazine. In the article, Brown reflects on his experiences delivering cash in the Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan. He draws out key observations, challenges and opportunities for moving forward.

As Typhoon Haiyan made landfall on 8 November 2013, aid agencies and donors alike realised that, if ever there were an environment where cash transfers would be appropriate, it was the Philippines. Some 16 million people were affected; 1.1m houses were damaged or destroyed, 4.1m people were displaced and around 6,200 lost their lives. In response, at least 45 international humanitarian agencies implemented cash transfer programmes in one of the most sophisticated humanitarian cash interventions to date...  Read More >>


Video Testimonials

See how the MERS are impacting practitioners:

Ancelim Gituma

Nelly Shonko

Abdillahi Farah

ChildFund Kenya Video MERS Video Testimonial MERS Video Testimonial

ChildFund Kenya


MercyCorps Ethiopia


La Recuperación Económica después de Desastres Naturales y Conflictos: Lecciones de América Central

William Wallis | Apr 6, 2015

MERS in GuatemalaLa experiencia particular de América Central y el Caribe nos puede brindar muchas lecciones sobre las estrategias de vida de las personas en proceso de recuperación después de una catástrofe o desastre natural. También brindan lecciones sobre como las economías se ven afectadas por los conflictos incluyendo la violencia que no está directamente relacionada a un conflicto armado como tal, sino al fenómeno de las maras y el crimen organizado...  Más >>

Reflections on Recovery: Taking #MinRecov to the Great Lakes Region

Jean Damascene Hakuzimana | Nov 12, 2014

Jean Damascene HakuzimanaMy last direct contact with humanitarian aid work dates back to 1994, when I was eight years old. I went with my parents into one of the internal displacement (IDP) camps in Rwanda’s southern province of Cyanika. The country was in the middle of a horrible fight between the government and rebels, the situation worsening when a Tutsi genocide occurred some months before the war ended. I remember waving hands rejoicing for the arrival of World Food Program food trucks, and water distributing trucks as the salvation for our refugee community’s immeasurable problems...  Read more >>

Don’t forget the markets! How can we make markets a core part of the humanitarian business?

Radha Rajkotia | Apr 11, 2014

Radha RajkotiaOver the last three days, 50 representatives from the humanitarian and financial sectors got together in New York to discuss how to engage with and strengthen markets during humanitarian crises.  The non-humanitarian might question why this discussion is even necessary -- haven’t we already worked out that it’s important not to squash local markets by dumping food or other forms of aid into them? Don’t we already work with the private sector to make sure markets can get up and running as quickly as possible after a crisis? 

The short answer is yes - sort of... Read more >>

Why Recovery Programs in Somalia Need to be More Market-Based

Zaki Raheem | Dec 18, 2013

Zaki RaheemAs I write this blog from Somaliland, I’m thinking back to SEEP’s Minimum Economic Recovery Standards (MERS) training. It makes me wonder, are we really doing enough to live up to these standards in the field?  Read more >>

Promoting Minimum Economic Recovery Standards in the Horn of Africa

William Wallis | Aug 30, 2013

MERS in NairobiThe SEEP Network hosted a training session on the Minimum Economic Recovery Standards (MERS) at the REDR UK-Kenya Program’s Training Center in Nairobi, August 12-15, 2013. The training session included a two day general practitioner training followed by a two day training of trainers (TOT) course. The training session brought together a group of committed humanitarian practitioners whose active participation and varied experiences confirmed the effectiveness and strength of the participatory course design and methodology. Participants shared experiences from a wide range of humanitarian emergencies in the Horn of Africa, including the conflict in Darfur, experiences with Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) fleeing from violence in Northern Uganda, economic recovery with pastoralists in Ethiopia, and enterprise development and livelihood programs in the world’s largest refugee camp Dadaab in the North Eastern province of Kenya. Read more >>

An Overview of the Minimum Economic Recovery Standards Training in Dakar (French)

Absa Gueye | Jul 3, 2013

MERS in Dakar

Le Réseau SEEP a organisé, du 03 au 06 juin 2013 à l’hôtel le NDIAMBOUR de Dakar au Sénégal, une formation sur les Normes Minimales de Relèvement Economique (NMRE) en faveur de cinq  participants représentant des professionnels du développement, de  l’humanitaire et des praticiens de la formation. Lire plus >>

When it all falls apart: VSLAs in crisis

Sarah J Ward | Sep 14, 2011

VSLAsIn the spring of 2011, election violence consumed Ivory Coast. The village of Tchebloguhe in the north of the country was brutally attacked. The village was burned. After the armed men left, slowly the villagers returned. One woman found her house and all her possessions gone—burned to the ground. But she began digging in the charred soil, and unearthed a metal box with three locks, still intact... Read more >>

Applying Economic Recovery in Regional Contexts – The Minimum Economic Recovery Standards Trainings in Beirut

Nakul Kadaba | Jun 18, 2013

MERS in Beirut

MERS hosted a training session in Beirut, Lebanon from June 3-6, 2013. Thirteen participants came from various NGOs and different parts of the country, filled with expectations of how this would help them as humanitarian practitioners and livelihoods programmers. Participants saw this as an ideal opportunity to relate their work to the standards, which present an organized and comprehensive set of key actions, indicators, and guidance notes for practitioners to abide by when promoting economic recovery in areas recently affected by crisis. While opinions were divided on whether to include government agents in economic recovery operations, all participants agreed that there should always be time to assess the market and include the beneficiaries in the process of economic recovery.  Read more >>
Floods and financial crises: What is a network’s role in risk management?

Supriya Sinhababu | Sep 9, 2011

Floods and financial crisesFrom natural disasters to political upheaval, a number of threats can put microfinance institutions (MFIs) and their clients in jeopardy. As a result, microfinance networks increasingly need the ability to take fast, effective action in response to crises that threaten their member MFIs. Read more >>

After the storm: How disaster relief workers can boost economic recovery

Supriya Sinhababu | Aug 24, 2011

Minimum Economic Recovery StandardsAfter the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2005, many organizations promoted cash-for-work programs in an effort to inject cash into the economy and help households meet basic livelihood needs. Unintentionally, many of the cash-for-work programs provided daily wage rates that were much higher than those earned by local farmers through their normal agricultural activities. Needless to say, this created a negative impact on the availability of local food and potentially had a longer-range harmful impact on agricultural production. A more thorough market analysis could have assisted in better targeting of potential workers, by recommending daily labor rates that did not provide disincentives to continue local production. In order to provide quick, simple ways for crisis responders to keep the broader economic picture in mind, SEEP created the Minimum Economic Recovery Standards. This document represents a consensus across 63 development and relief agencies on what constitutes effective economic recovery, as well as what good practices can improve the impact of economic recovery programs. Read more >>

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