The HMNDP in 2013 put the spotlight on what needs to be done and provided several key elements essential for developing national drought policies. It has resulted in a concerted effort through various initiatives to move forward. However, much remains to be done in terms of developing fully operational drought management policies that fulfill the multiple objectives of being proactive, mitigating impacts, improving public awareness, employing appropriate economic instruments, and linking to local and national development frameworks. The three pillars of integrated drought management— drought monitoring and early warning systems; vulnerability and impact assessments; and drought preparedness, mitigation, and response—provide a guide to structure and focus the work that needs to be done.
To support countries in putting these recommendations into practice, the IDMP uses information from its partners to keep track of the status of national drought policies and activities from around the world, working in partnership to close the gaps to move from crisis to risk management and foster horizontal integration among different sectors and actors, and vertical exchange— learning from the local through to the global and vice versa. The IDMP does not try to coordinate all drought activities around the world but rather aims to synthesize and apply existing knowledge and approaches to integrated drought management in collaboration with many international and regional organizations. The IDMP and its many partners provide a framework and commensurate technical support to countries, but the actual development and implementation of national drought plans and policies needs to be done by the governmental ministries and national stakeholders. The IDMP has already used these partnerships to create several early outputs in assisting countries to develop more proactive drought policies and plans with practical guidance and applications tailored to regional and national circumstances.