Guidance Note for Effective Use and Development of National Capacity in Post-Conflict Contexts

This Guidance Note provides principles, advice and resources for the United Nations as it supports the use and development of national capacity in countries emerging from conflict. The Note is intended to inform assessment, analysis and planning exercises with national as well as other partners and to guide capacity development programming, covering the entire spectrum of UN support including peacekeeping, humanitarian and development activities.
The Note lays out ten principles, advice and resources, which seek to ensure that the United Nations’ system-wide support to capacity development is based on national ownership and priorities, while acknowledging its mandates and norms:
1. Make national ownership the starting point for capacity development.

2. Analyse and manage the political aspects of capacity development.

3. Adapt capacity development support to fit the national context.

4. Prioritise the feasible within the context of national priorities, including critical capacity gap

5. Take a strategic approach to capacity development, balancing support for quick wins and long-term results.

6. Draw on countries with experience of transition, especially from the global South.

7. Minimise the risk of undermining national capacity through the use of national and international

8. Build back better: develop new capacities that don’t just replicate the past. 

9. Make more use of national systems and capacities.

10. Lead and collaborate more effectively as the United Nations in support of national capacity


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