NIPN core team

The first step is to have the teams in place, as without the ‘hands and feet’ of the initiative, no action or implementation is possible.

A wide range of expertise is needed to implement a NIPN: policy development and analysis; socio-economic analysis; public health nutrition; data management; statistical analysis; convening, negotiation and facilitation; knowledge management and learning; and administrative and financial management.

As much as possible, existing staff of the NIPN host organisations must have time freed up to take on NIPN tasks as part of their job description, enabled by project allowances. In addition, a number of project-based positions may need to be created in order to ensure efficient implementation. This may especially be true for the coordination and management role. Strong leadership and coordination is required to ensure the various host organisations implement the NIPN approach in an efficient and timely manner, with appropriate sequencing of activities and a clear division of roles and responsibilities between the various host institutions and individuals involved.

Potential pitfalls
In some countries, a high-level individual may be appointed to lead a NIPN, but in practice this person will be too busy to take care of the day-to-day management of a NIPN. This role then needs to be delegated to another project officer who has been appointed to this effect, such as a NIPN coordinator.

In general, NIPN implementation requires a full-time coordinator who is responsible for monitoring progress and who will hold the other NIPN actors accountable for the delivery of activities as per the work plan. She or he will also be responsible for continuous risk assessment and the development of a mitigation plan. Part-time support provided to the coordinator could include administrative assistance, financial management and communications.

Examples of organisational structures of country NIPN teams are provided below.

Examples of NIPN organisational structures
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