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Global Technical Mechanism for Nutrition (GTAM) - introduction to special section

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The Global Technical Assistance Mechanism for Nutrition (GTAM) is a soon-to-be launched common global mechanism, endorsed by over 40 Global Nutrition Cluster (GNC) partners. It is being established to provide nutrition technical assistance to support quality programming for people affected by humanitarian emergencies. The story of how the GTAM has evolved is described in detail in the first article in this special section.  

What is the status of GTAM now? GTAM remains in the ‘build’ stage. Progress has been hampered somewhat by delays in launching the online platform. This is currently being resolved ready for online launch in 2020.In the meantime, the focus during 2019 has been to agree and document ways of working through standard operating procedures and principles of engagement with Global Technical Working Groups (GTWGs) on key topic areas. These groups are in various stages of development: those that have been integrated into existing forums (such as the Infant Feeding in Emergencies Core Group1) have naturally progressed faster, while others are in early-establishment phase. A baseline technical needs assessment has also been carried out, including a review of technical discussions posted on en-net (ENN’s online technical forum). Findings are summarised in articles in this section and provide insight into the technical gaps that will be prioritised in the workplans of each GTWG.

Work was also undertaken in 2019 to define ways of working with existing mechanisms, such as the GNC Technical Helpdesk, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) HQ, en-net and the Technical Rapid Response Team (Tech RRT). The continued commitment of the GTAM Core Team (UNICEF, World Vision, ENN) to work with others, use existing platforms and gain broad ownership has meant that the journey to this point has taken time. However, we hope that this will serve GTAM well in the long term by providing a stronger mechanism that will provide systematic, predictable, timely and coordinated nutrition technical assistance, true to its aim.

This special section is the fulfilment of part of ENN’s commitment to provide knowledge-management expertise to the GTAM.2 Here, we document the journey so far – why the GTAM is coming into being, what technical priorities it will address, and how. We will continue to update you periodically as the story evolves.

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Global Technical Mechanism for Nutrition (GTAM) - introduction to special section. Field Exchange 61, November 2019. p47. www.ennonline.net/fex/61/gtam

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