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Overview

There is currently a wave of enthusiasm for “building resilience” in the international humanitarian and development sectors. This has coincided with a number of attempts to both define what resilience is and devise ways of measuring it.  However, rather than comprehensively reviewing these attempts, this paper presents Oxfam GB’s own approach for both understanding and measuring resilience. It begins by interrogating the essence of resilience and substantiating its multidimensional nature.  This is followed by describing the conceptual framework underlying the approach and how it applies the Alkire-Foster method used in the measurement of multidimensional constructs, such as poverty and women’s empowerment. Thereafter, the approach’s utility in informing situational analyses, outcome tracking, and impact evaluations is described, using primary data collected from Ethiopia’s Somali Region. A critical review of its strengths and limitations is presented.

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