Forward to ‘Clusterwise 2′

Forward to ‘Clusterwise 2′

As editor and principal author of ‘Clusterwise 2’’,  I am clearly a “Cluster Nut” who needs to get a life. I might as well tell you that I also happen to be co-founder of ‘’, a global public good provided by an informal ‘community of practice’ of experienced Cluster Coordinators and Information Managers whose sole interest in life is to provide those involved with Clusters some practical tips on how to manage the coordination of humanitarian action based on their own experience of what works. And, believe me, we have learned the hard way ! More detail on how to actually do the tasks outlined, complete with templates, ‘best practice’ examples, and case studies can be found at our website:

The sections that follow are designed to complement, not replace, the ‘official’ tools and guidance notes coming out of the formal Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) process, which can be found on the UN’s official ‘’ web platform.

As ever, the content is supposed to evolve to reflect changes in the humanitarian system. It is in other words, a living document. Comments from anyone at any time are welcome, even encouraged, as we all need to learn from each other’s experience. It would be great if you could post a comment in the space provided at the bottom of each section. One of us will do our best to reply.

As lead-editor, I would like to thank the various humanitarian experts, all of whom are members of ‘’, who contributed to the writing of these sections, and who provided invaluable technical advice based on their experiences of applying the Cluster Approach in the field.

They are:

Dave Hodgkin of Benchmark Consulting

Brian Kelly of IOM

Anna Pont of UN-Habitat

Neil Bauman, independent

Joseph Ashmore, independent; and

Pete Manfield of UN-OCHA


Copyright © 2009-2011 by James Shepherd-Barron

Use of the information not explicitly produced by the Inter Agency Standing Committee or the Global Cluster Lead Agencies, and therefore already in the public domain, is encouraged although due recognition and mention of the author and ‘’ would be appreciated when doing so.


‘Clusterwise 2′  is dedicated to Yantisa Akhadi who has helped us so ably over the years since ‘’ was formed by volunteering to keep our website not just up, but reasonably up to date.


The views expressed in ‘Clusterwise 2′  are solely those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the views of their clients and/or employing agencies.

Updated 22 May 2011
This is is a section from Clusterwise 2. Reproduction is encouraged. It would be nice if the author, James Shepherd-Barron, and were acknowledged when doing so.


  1. Dear all,

    Thank you for this great initiative.
    I didn’t read all the chapters yet, but am doing it little by little.
    A few questions before I continue:
    1. This is the ‘Clusterwise 2′ what or where is the ‘Clusterwise 1′?
    2. Was the information updated since March 2011?
    3. Is there a French version of this website? If not, would you be interested to do one?

    All the best,
    CIAO Gina

    • Hi Gina, Clusterwise 2 is an updated version of Clustewrwise 1 which no longer exists. It all gets updated this year anyway but the links will remain the same.

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