ARCHIVE: e-Discussion on the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation in support of the First High-Level Meeting

 

                                                    Please find below an archive of this e-Discussion, which took place in April and May of 2014 in support of the First High-Level Meeting of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation:

Dear Colleagues,

We warmly welcome you to contribute to the e-Discussion on the Global Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation in support of the First Global Partnership meeting taking place from April 15th-16th in Mexico.  This e-Discussion will be hosted by the Joint UNDP - OECD Support Team.

Your voices matter in highlighting the benefits of the Busan’s shared principles and shaping key messages drawing from the outcomes of the first monitoring exercise of the Global Partnership Monitoring Framework.

The Global Partnership monitoring report has highlighted that longstanding efforts to change the way development co-operation is delivered are paying off, but much more needs to be done to transform co-operation practices and ensure country ownership of all development efforts, as well as transparency and accountability among development partners.

Broadly the findings outline that:

The intent of this e-discussion is to:

In an effort to review and reflect on monitoring results, take stock of achievements, share good practices and address remaining challenges, we welcome your perspectives. Based on your own experiences, we invite your reflections on the following questions:

1. What type of progress has been made since Busan? Are we on track to implement key Busan commitments and meet our targets by 2015?

2. If you consider progress is taking place, what are the main areas of achievement and what factors are enabling the positive change?

3. Where challenges remain, what are they and why do you think they remain unresolved?

4. How can political leadership help to overcome identified bottlenecks? What would be the issues that need addressing at the political level?

5. Are there lessons at the technical level that could be drawn on to overcome bottlenecks?

When sharing your thoughts, reflect on your best practices and the challenges you have faced including what you have done to overcome them. Think about how you could contribute to the learning of others. Whenever possible, please provide examples to support understanding.

This e-discussion is a collaborative environment and we encourage participation. We look forward to your thoughts and hope you can participate often. Overall, we hope to stimulate thinking, share and reflect on the successes that have been made.

Thank you!

Kind Regards,

Yuko Suzuki and Hanna-Mari Kilpelainen

Attachment(s) Word Cloud - final updated.jpg

Comments

Yuko NAAB Mon, May 12,2014

Thank you very much for active contributions and sharing of your views to this e-Discussion for the Global Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation in support of the First Global Partnership in Mexico. It was beneficial to hear from the diverse group of Global Partnership stakeholders, and was valuable to extend the duration because it allowed for deeper discussions, reflections and further learnings. Also, it offered the opportunity to present a variety of examples and discuss topics that were presented during the High Level Meeting (HLM) in Mexico.

We have seen active engagement and response to the questions raised in the discussions, and the participants found it useful that it was extended as it enhanced understandings of the reflections to the e-Discussion questions. This e-Discussion accomplished its intentions,
which were to offer an opportunity to highlight the benefits of the Busan’s shared principles, reflect on the outcomes of the first monitoring exercise of the Global Partnership Monitoring Framework, provide feedback on the discussions from the workshop: Unfinished Business, as well as reflect on the Mexico HLM itself.

The second portion of the e-Discussion attracted contributions from additional countries, Civil Society Organizations (Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation and Arab NGO Network for Development), and international organizations. These actors continued to candidly share their experience and provide responses to e-Discussion questions.

Please find below an overview of the reflections during this portion of the e-Discussion, including key takeaways and suggestions for the Global Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation.

Highlights from the second portion of the e-Discussion as follows:

1. The global community’s ongoing commitment to supporting the Busan principles has made numerous efforts to move in the right direction.
Although there have been stumbling blocks along they way, stakeholders have continued to move forward. There were a number of examples provided, including in Switzerland, Kenya, and a Civil Society Organizations (CSO) working in Southern Laos. It is clear that there is a need to strengthen co-operation to reach global and national development goals. The Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation, whose value-addition was
validated at the HLM, has been and will continue to provide a valuable platform for bringing stakeholders together to work and learn from each other’s experience.

2. Improvement of the global environment is necessary moving forward to achieve development goals. Improving policies will assist in enabling sustainable paths for
development.
For example reviewing the global trading system, global financial architecture, debt restructuring, and transfer of technology. Developed and donor countries have been making efforts to support global development, however, there have been cases where actions such as enhancing industrialization and competitiveness have had counter productive impacts to the state of a developing country. The importance of a multi-sectoral/cross-sectoral approach to development as reconfirmed in the Mexico HLM goes into the right direction, but further efforts are needed to make conducive environment to ensure Human Rights-Based Approach to development.  

3. Effective development cooperation involves a critical role from the government to be successful. Key contributors such as civil society, nongovernment organizations and private business are important, but they need to be supported by government. Research
is essential to understand what needs to be accomplished. However, activities on the ground must have government support to be achieved. Thus, both agents have to work concurrently to bridge any gaps that may arise.

4. As the Global Partnership is positively growing, there are concerns of the unbalance of power relations, specifically in the political sphere and private business. Stakeholders raised the concerns that enabling environment that supports business, if not navigated well, may lead to benefiting corporate actors and bring counter effective impacts to sustainable and inclusive development. For example, farmers losing
more of their land and the livelihood of communities being disrupted due to large business investment. Also, the unbalance of power relations can continue to suppress the voices of the working poor who cannot afford a decent standard of living. To this end, as the Global Partnership expands, shared commitments and balance of power between the diverse stakeholders needs to be improved and sustained to ensure inclusive growth and development a reality.

5. Improvements need to be made towards a shared vision, with a specific focus on transparent and responsible aid between government and CSOs. Both these stakeholders are working to support similar goals, therefore they need to work together and support mutual accountability. For example, CSOs can help to support government initiatives by sharing information and assisting in negotiations with the community. Improved communication and information can support mutual accountability and address an imbalance of power to make the development work better for all.

Key Takeaways:

1. It has been confirmed in numerous instances that progress has been made due to the global community’s commitment to effective development. Some of the results may be subtle, but for this reason we must continue to keep the momentum.

2. For inclusive development, it is necessary that all stakeholders are taken into account and that there is a meaningful dialogue between them. Only through regular dialogue with stakeholders can a country successfully understand and prioritize the needs of its society.

3. Country-led monitoring is possible. There needs to be stronger political commitment through leadership, including country ownership of all development efforts and accountability to achieve this.

4. Stronger results oriented culture needs to be further developed. Donors and recipients have been making progress. However, continuous focus on quality is needed in order to improve the way development cooperation is delivered.

5. All stakeholders must continue their commitment to supporting the Busan principles to achieve our targets by 2015. Effective cooperation can be achieved through the use of focused actions, transparency and accountability as well as continued exchange
of ideas between stakeholders.

The archives of these e-discussions can be found at https://www.unteamworks.org/node/432460.

 

Attachment(s) Final Synthesis e-Discussion (4 April - 2 May 2014) on the Global Partnership for Effective Cooperation - updated.pdf
Andrea Birrer a Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation
Fri, May 02,2014
The following points are on topics dealt with in the pre-Conference Workshop that Switzerland regards as especially important and worthwhile to underline in this discussion: • Switzerland would like to thank the countries that have participated in the monitoring exercise and the Secretariat of the Global Partnership for their efforts to make it possible to measure the progress since Busan. During the preparation time of the High-Level Meeting, Switzerland has been advocating for the realization of this workshop and therefore welcomes very much the possibility to discuss more in depth the results and future challenges of the unfinished business. • Switzerland welcomes the opportunity to discuss at this HLM here in Mexico the new themes of development cooperation and the engagement of all countries and especially the middle income countries in domestic resource mobilization and new ways of working together like south-south and triangular cooperation. For the future, it is of utmost importance to apply a “lens of the unfinished business” to these challenging new themes in order to reach the Busan commitments and the MDGs in general. • Switzerland is pleased that achievements regarding important development effectiveness principles identified by the last Global Monitoring in 2010 have been sustained despite economic turbulences and budget pressures. The global community is committed to the objectives of development effectiveness. At the same time, some of the results remain elusive. This is why we need to keep up the momentum. Further progress needs to be achieved in order to transform cooperation practices and ensure democratic ownership, transparency and accountability among all development partners. The 2014 Monitoring Report shows, that the shift towards developing country-led monitoring is feasible. To that end, a stronger political commitment to the use of country’s own results and accountability frameworks is needed. Providers have to align with partner countries priorities and use centralized or decentralized country systems. If a country system cannot be used in a particular country, the focus should be on strengthening the relevant institutions according to joint assessments. Both sides, providers and partners, have to engage in more meaningful and critical country-led policy dialogue, based on joint monitoring exercises and joint risk assessments. • Of course, it is important to ensure that country priorities accommodate the needs of society as a whole. Inclusive development means that besides the central governments, a multitude of stakeholders is involved: decentralized bodies, parliaments, private sector, philanthropic organizations, media and – very importantly - civil society. In fact, inclusive process does not always translate into inclusive development. In the coming months it needs to be discussed how the monitoring indicators can better reflect not only the diversity in participation, but also the power relations among the different stakeholders. • Switzerland as co-chair of the Building Block on Results and Mutual Accountability encourages donor as well as recipient countries to foster a stronger result oriented organizational culture. This calls for a result aware leadership and indicators that measure not only quantity but also quality. • Obviously, the results and mutual accountability issues are high on our agenda. We all know that with regard to domestic resource mobilization both developed and developing countries play an important role. For developing countries, having effective tax systems and tax administrations in place is of paramount importance. Developed countries, on the other hand, are encouraged to make support to domestic resource mobilization a priority. Switzerland is very active in this regard and therefore welcomes the corresponding Action Plan that was proposed ahead of this meeting. Switzerland recognizes that illicit financial flows impede domestic resource mobilization in developing countries. A comprehensive vision and internationally coordinated action is necessary to successfully curb illicit financial flows. Switzerland contributes to these efforts aiming at working towards and implementing globally agreed standards. At the domestic level, efforts to combat money laundering and to curb tax evasion and tax avoidance will continue. • A special effort regarding the unfinished business has to be made in fragile contexts in order to reach the Millennium Development Goals. Here are some concerns:  Donors often do not sufficiently take the political context into consideration and are not good enough in analyzing and early realizing context changes. Technical solutions are not sufficient to address problems that are of political nature.  Conflict sensitivity: it is Switzerland’s experience that to be effective in fragile and conflict affected situations it is essential to apply a Conflict Sensitive Project Management approach  Inclusiveness: “country-led” is broader than “government-led”. Under inclusiveness Switzerland understands the participation of civil society, Parliaments, local Government and other important stakeholders in decision making, design, implementation and monitoring of results, including on the local level of peace building and state building. • Finally, in order to meet Busan commitments as well as the objectives for 2015 and beyond, it is clear to me that political commitments are important on both sides - providers and recipients – through a critical, transparent and constructive cooperation. Switzerland will engage for a strong role of the GPEDC in the implementation of the post-2015 agenda with a wide range of actors as well as new donors. Best regards, Suzanne Mueller Andrea Birrer
Yuko NAAB
Thu, May 01,2014

It is great to hear feedback from a CSO’s perspective as well as a response from the National Treasury. It is important for us to learn about the challenges CSOs face but also to understand that there are many factors that are involved.

Anna-Sophie raised a few concerns regarding corporate behavior and its effects on the public, it would be useful if some examples could be provided so that we could get a better understanding. It would also be useful to provide some instances where these issues were overcome, so that we could learn and possibly replicate in other areas.

As discussed in the Mexico HLM, the new global development architecture emerging out from the Post 2015 dialogue with its universal nature and greater emphasis on sustainable development signals the new reality of partnership on the ground. There is a shift in partnerships from that of a provider-recipient relationship to a cross-sectoral and multi-stakeholder development relationship, and it will continue to evolve in meeting the
inclusive development agenda of leaving no-one behind.

In making inclusive partnerships a reality, it would be useful to learn from examples where a multi-stakeholder development relationship has been strengthened and matured, and how inclusive dialogues have been fostered. What were the key factors contributing to this stronger relationship? How are the principles of effective development cooperation supporting this change on the ground?

Thank you to those who have participated so far in this lively e-Discussion. There are a few more days left to respond to the questions and share you thoughts. We look forward to learing more from all of you. Thank you again for your time and perspectives.

 

Monica Asuna a Economist
Fri, May 02,2014
 
There are many examples where real dialogue works. Kenya amended its NGO Coordination Act in 2013 and passed a Public Benefits Organization Act 2013. This Act has not been operationalized because immeditely after passing it, the Government introduced amendments which was to curb foreign funding to CSOs to 15%. There was no consultation in making this amendment and even Treasury was not consulated. This became contentious. Instead of the CSOs demonstrating in the streets, they channeled their grievances to the Departmental Committee on Legal Affairs of Parliament and as I am writing now, we just finished a workshop on 2nd May with Parliament, CSOs and development partners to discuss and come with a common ground. Therefore, meaningful dialogue while following the laid down government procedures really works.

The problem is where when there is an issue, especially on governance, some CSOs get funds to demonstate against the government without first seeking dialogue and demonstrate only where an audience has not been granted. This will be seen as being anti-government and the government, based on its level of democracy may shrink the space for CSOs to operate. However, demonstrations on economic and social rights and even political, if proper processes are followed is ok, because for some governments, that is the language that they understand. But has all avenues of dialogue been exhausted?

In terms of meaningful forums where dialogue works, Mozambique has a good example, where they have the G20 group of CSOs which is the advisory arm who engage with Government and then they disseminate the outcome of any dialogue with government to other CSOs involved in real implementation. This ensures that the CSOs participate in the low level planning process and accountability is guaranteed because the allowance to operate is based on performance. You may wish to learn more on the CSO platform in Mozambique because I found it very effective.

Thank you.
Anne-Sophie
Thu, May 01,2014

As to concrete examples of corporate behavior’s impact, thereare many ranging from agriculture land taken away from communities for industrialplantations, indigenous peoples losing their forests due to loggingconcessions, contamination of rivers due to mining operations, loss offisheries due to hydropower dam…

In Southern Laos, four villages saw their land turned into anindustrial coffee plantations. They had given their approval for 150 ha, butthe Vietnamese company occupied more than 1’170 ha. People lost their agricultureland, rice fields, local plantations and received very low compensations in additionto some rice. Local authorities seemed to turn a blind eye on the situation.But as the Vietnamese company is linked to the Olam group, NGOs approached UKbased Olam CSR Department and an audit mission was sent who recommended toset-up space for inclusive dialogue in order to solve the problem. NGOengagement in the process has not been easy:  local authorities were reluctantto involve CSO and tried to limit representation of villagers; the companyseemed more concerned by communicating about its “cooperation with civilsociety”, than by reaching a fair settlement. As the villagers were asking thatloss of crops be fairly compensated and that the land exceeding the initial 150ha be returned, negotiations have failed. But what has been interesting is thepotential for cooperation between company and CSO ideally supported by government,in order to facilitate conflict resolution and, - provided that engagement startsfrom the beginning of the process -, to prevent land disputes. CSO can helpsharing information with the community (on the project and on the legalframework), support consultations and assist in negotiations on faircompensations. CSO can ensure genuine Free and Prior Informed Consent (FPIC)and avoid manipulations. But where CSO engagement is restricted, situation canjust get worse. For communities losing their land, seeking justice is a highlycomplicated, hazardous and sometime dangerous way to go. Not far from there, in another case related to a rubberplantations, NGO were threatened and denied access to the area, farmers were arrestedand one was severely ill-treated in a military camp. Until today, the conflictremains unresolved…

The imbalance of power and the lack of voice of those affectedresult in top-down, non-participatory and exclusive decision making. This inturn fuels a growing number of land conflicts in too many parts of the globe. Conflicts are costly not only for affected communities and for governmentsfacing growing food unsecure population, but also for companies and investors.

I strongly believe that cross-sectoral andmulti-stakeholder development relationship isthe adequate response and that commitment made by the GPEDC for inclusivedialogue is going into the right direction. However conducive environment whichrespects basic rights of all needs to be created to enable such inclusive dialogues.

 

From: notification@unteamworks.org[mailto:notification@unteamworks.org]
Sent: 01 Mei 2014 21:56
To: annesophie.gindroz@helvetas.org
Subject: [Teamworks] UNDP commented on the Discussion "e-Discussionon the Global Partnership for Effective Cooperation in support of the FirstGlobal Partnership meeting"

 

You can post a reply on Teamworks by replying directly to this email. Textabove this line will be included in the post.

Teamworks

 

Posted on: Development Finance and Aid Effectiveness
New comment on Discussion e-Discussion on the Global Partnership for Effective Cooperation in support of the First Global Partnership meeting by UNDP : It is great to hear feedback

It is great to hear feedback from a CSO’s perspective as well as a response from the National Treasury. It is important for us to learn about the challenges CSOs face but also to understand that there are many factors that are involved.

Anna-Sophie raised a few concerns regarding corporate behavior and its effects on the public, it would be useful if some examples could be provided so that we could get a better understanding. It would also be useful to provide some instances where these issues were overcome, so that we could learn and possibly replicate in other areas.

As discussed in the Mexico HLM, the new global development architecture emerging out from the Post 2015 dialogue with its universal nature and greater emphasis on sustainable development signals the new reality of partnership on the ground. There is a shift in partnerships from that of a provider-recipient relationship to a cross-sectoral and multi-stakeholder development relationship, and it will continue to evolve in meeting the
inclusive development agenda of leaving no-one behind.

In making inclusive partnerships a reality, it would be useful to learn from examples where a multi-stakeholder development relationship has been strengthened and matured, and how inclusive dialogues have been fostered. What were the key factors contributing to this stronger relationship? How are the principles of effective development cooperation supporting this change on the ground?

Thank you to those who have participated so far in this lively e-Discussion. There are a few more days left to respond to the questions and share you thoughts. We look forward to learing more from all of you. Thank you again for your time and perspectives.

 



1 May 2014 [ read more ] [ reply ]

 

To manage your subscriptions, browse to http://www.unteamworks.org/user/104864/notifications
This is an automatic message from Teamworks

View original post: https://undp.unteamworks.org/mailcomment/redirect/%3C104864.432460.66173...

Monica Asuna a Economist
Tue, April 29,2014

Following the discussions, I note the comments by Anne-Sophie on shrinking space for CSOs. One area that we have not fully implemented is in the area of "Transparent and Responsible Aid". Inability of development partners to have the shared vision of "transparent and responsible aid" leads to lack of mutual trust. Why is this? If resources are provided to CSOs by development partners and the objective of the financing is not known to government, then this results in lack of transparency and therefore mutual trust. We have seen instances where some CSOs are misled into getting funds which finance social unrest in countries. This makes governments to pass stringent laws which curtail the freedom of association of CSOs. Therefore, we all need to have this shared vision. If truthfully the resources provided are meant for developmet, as a development actor , why does it become so difficult to disclose to governments the activities you are helping it implement? This calls for mutual accountability. It is time all CSOs agree to be mutually accountable and apply aid responsibly as development actors.

Therefore capacity building of all CSOs on the changing development landscape is critical. In addition, let us have meaningful dialogue at the county level to thrash some of the issues that do not create an enabling environment for both CSOs and private sector to operate. Of importance also is the adherence to the legal frameworks existing in the countries by all dvelopment actors.

Anne-Sophie
Wed, April 30,2014

In reaction to the comment hereunder, I would like to addfollowing points:

 

First about the notion of "social unrest": when workers gather to ask for an increase of minimum wages orwhen farmers who lost their lands mobilize to request fair compensation, whodecides that this is a legitimate expression of dissent voices, or that this ispart of social unrest? Social unrest is increasingly used by States tosqueeze out civil society andsilence dissent voices. Dissentis legitimate in and of itself, aswell as part of the development paradigms. Itis rooted in the exercise of basic rights: as enshrined in theUN Vienna Declaration of 1993, allrights are interdependent, universal and inalienable. Howeverthe comment hereunder seemsto suggest that some rights are superior to others.

A major point here is to recognize that CSO might have differentpriorities than government as they align on the priorities of theirconstituencies (Trade Unions defend workers’ rights, peasants movements engagefor peasants rights…). By defending certain interests, CSO aim at striking abetter balance in government policies and practice. Especially in countrieswhere the development agenda tends to be exclusively shaped by the government.This should not be assimilated with opposition, anti-government activities orunrest. It is precisely where spaces for civil society are closing up and nochannel are open for inclusive dialogues, that more confrontations can happen,leading to social unrests…

Then, if the problem is that “aid agencies are not accountableand transparent”, the solution is certainly not in passing laws which curtailfreedom of association of CSO. Such step will even have counterproductiveeffects, encouraging those willing to support local CSOs as necessary actors indevelopment process, to do so in a “hidden” way.

A vibrant civil society is a strong indication of a sounddemocracy where different voices are expressed, so as to achieve bestcompromises. There is no democratic ownership without such negotiations.Inclusive dialogues are important, including on the legal framework and ondevelopment policies. Adherence can only be genuine and sustained when therules of the game have been agreed upon together.

May the GPEDC help rebalance the power relations and foster inclusivedialogues and partnerships based on the respect of stakeholders’ differentroles.

Anne-Sophie

 

From: notification@unteamworks.org[mailto:notification@unteamworks.org]
Sent: 29 April 2014 18:16
To: annesophie.gindroz@helvetas.org
Subject: [Teamworks] The National Treasury commented on the Discussion"e-Discussion on the Global Partnership for Effective Cooperation insupport of the First Global Partnership meeting"

 

You can post a reply on Teamworks by replying directly to this email. Textabove this line will be included in the post.

Teamworks

 

Posted on: Development Finance and Aid Effectiveness
New comment on Discussion e-Discussion on the Global Partnership for Effective Cooperation in support of the First Global Partnership meeting by The National Treasury : Following the discussions, I

Following the discussions, I note the comments by Anne-Sophie on shrinking space for CSOs. One area that we have not fully implemented is in the area of "Transparent and Responsible Aid". Inability of development partners to have the shared vision of "transparent and responsible aid" leads to lack of mutual trust. Why is this? If resources are provided to CSOs by development partners and the objective of the financing is not known to government, then this results in lack of transpa! rency and therefore mutual trust. We have seen instances where some CSOs are misled into getting funds which finance social unrest in countries. This makes governments to pass stringent laws which curtail the freedom of association of CSOs. Therefore, we all need to have this shared vision. If truthfully the resources provided are meant for developmet, as a development actor , why does it become so difficult to disclose to governments the activities you are helping it implement? This calls for mutual accountability. It is time all CSOs agree to be mutually accountable and apply aid responsibly as development actors.

Therefore capacity building of all CSOs on the changing development landscape is critical. In addition, let us have meaningful dialogue at the county level to thrash some of the issues that do not create an enabling environment for both CSOs and private sector to operate. Of importance also is the adherence to the legal frameworks existing in the countries by all dvelopment actors.



29 Apr 2014 [ read more ] [ reply ]

 

To manage your subscriptions, browse to http://www.unteamworks.org/user/104864/notifications
This is an automatic message from Teamworks

View original post: https://undp.unteamworks.org/mailcomment/redirect/%3C104864.432460.66104...

Anne-Sophie a Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation
Mon, April 28,2014

This is a contribution from a CSO perspective. 

Looking backwards, the mounting evidences of shrinking space for civil society are indicating that no progress has been made since Busan in promoting an enabling environment “to maximize CSO contribution to development”. Besides, CSO contribution appears very much limited to their contribution as co-implementors of aid agencies or government programs, not as “independent actors in their own right”. In this respect, hardly any space (and resources allocation) is granted for CSO right of initiative.

Looking forwards, one major challenge remains to achieve a just development architecture, linked to Post-2015. While more diverse partners are being included in this Global Partnership, there is a need to address the political dimension of the development agenda and the unbalance of power relations. Calls were made for a transformative agenda, inclusive, human rights-based, democratic and for a just aid architecture to redress the inequities and injustices of the current development paradigm.

Concerns were expressed that private sector led development and Public Private Partnership models will lead to further commodification of natural resources of communities, and deny access to social services for the poorest. In regard to the rationale of “harnessing private sector investments” to justify ODA allocation to business, there are little evidences of such input additionality, aid providers being more interested in commercial viability or economic performance of such joint operations.

While some represented private sector players appeared genuinely committed to positively contribute to an inclusive development, there are serious fears that the emphasis put on creating an enabling environment for business will also benefit the more problematic corporate actors. There is a diverse reality of business engagement, and we have to acknowledge that bad corporate behaviors create poverty by making farmers landless, disrupting communities livelihoods, increasing the silent masses of working poor who cannot a afford a decent life. And in this respect, voluntary solutions usually promoted (guidelines, standards…) are not enough.

In the business agenda, the poor are so far perceived as consumers, suppliers, producers, but not yet as workers with rights and citizens with voice. And in many countries, making the environment attractive to foreign investors translate in restrictions on basic rights (like freedom of assembly, association, expression, access to information…) and poor legal frameworks on workers’ rights and environmental safeguards.

While this Global Partnership expands in diversity, the risk is that it becomes less concrete in shared commitments and more unbalanced in power.

If a clear shift has been made from Accra to Busan in focusing from “effective aid” to “effective development cooperation”, more needs to be done to address the effectiveness of development itself, in terms of gender inclusiveness, environmental sustainability and respect of Human Rights.

Yuko NAAB
Thu, April 24,2014

The First High-Level Meeting (HLM) of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation concluded in Mexico City on 16 April, with a clear call for strengthening co-operation to reach global and national development goals. The HLM, building upon the Busan Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation, saw 38 new initiatives launched by governments, businesses, private foundations and civil society to push forward on agendas ranging from the post-2015 development agenda, the agenda of South-South and Triangular Cooperation, role of civil society, climate financing, transparency and mutual
accountability, and more. This was a moment when the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation (GPEDC) launched in Busan in 2011, took stock of where progress has been made and where more work is needed as we head towards the internationally agreed goalpost of 2015. The meeting confirmed the role of the Global Partnership as a dynamic and practical platform for bringing a wider range of actors into partnerships for development, seeking innovative ways to make development cooperation work better, and learning from on-the-ground evidence and experience.

The HLM took stock of progress since Busan and examined the transformation towards more inclusive partnerships. Building on the findings from the Global Partnership Progress Report, the meeting agreed that more needs to be done to transform co-operation practices, ensure country ownership and use of national systems, and ensure transparency and accountability among partners. The meeting also recognized encouraging gains made by developing countries in setting clearer development strategies and ensuring country ownership through effective coordination systems and greater parliamentary oversight. It also encouraged a greater drive to increase transparency at the global level, while recognizing that more efforts are needed to ensure that countries’ need are met in areas such as development planning and enhancing accountability for delivering
development results. Inclusive partnerships – a core aspect of the Busan Partnership agenda – has also seen more recognition in terms of the need for strengthened role of non-state development actors in inclusive development and growth agenda, but more needs to happen to make this inclusiveness a reality.

A breakthrough at Busan was to place ODA in the broader context of development co-operation – a context which includes trade, investment, domestic resource mobilization, remittance and climate finance. In this context, the final communique of the HLM also stresses the importance of South-South Co-operation, the need for mobilization of public and private domestic resources, and acknowledges that a more flexible development approach was required for middle income countries. The meeting also discussed the important contribution of business, emphasizing the critical importance of promoting an
enabling business environment that lends itself to inclusive and sustainable development.

The HLM meeting was preceded by the Pre-High-Level Meeting Workshop “Unfinished Business: Moving toward to meet the Busan Commitments”. The workshop discussed that dialogue among governments, and providers, and then between governments and national stakeholders at the country level has strengthened as a result of efforts over the years, but more is needed to institutionalize the dialogue, make it more inclusive, and to make
linkages to supporting partnerships. National ownership of results, use of country systems and the ongoing untying of development co-operation, remain priority areas for many developing countries. Country-led implementation of the Busan commitments requires information and data. Coming through as an important theme, is that transparency is ssential not only for governments, but also a key ingredient for meaningful engagement of civil society and for building an enabling environment for inclusive partnerships.

Discussions on Mexico called for more actions and efforts to implement the Busan principles of development co-operation fully. Reflecting upon these outcomes of the Mexico HLM as well as the Pre-HLM Workshop, we invite your further reflections on progress since Busan and what concrete actions your organization and country are taking to accelerate progress. In particular, please share your thoughts, reflections and good practices on the following issues. Whenever possible, please provide examples for further understanding!

  • The discussion emphasized on need for more structured dialogue to advance implementation of the Busan commitments. What are good examples of structured dialogue to facilitate joint progress on unfinished business agenda? Kenya already shared their dialogue mechanisms – are there any other good practices on how to manage/lead the transition from less structured to more formalised dialogue?
  • Information and data play a key role in not only for governments’ planning process, but also a key ingredient for building an enable environment for inclusive partnerships. What are good practices to encourage providers to start reporting to national aid information management/development assistance databases and systems? Kenya pointed out that even where those systems are in place, it remains a challenge to persuade providers to use them.
  • Transforming global commitments into local implementation requires more rooms for providers’ country offices to adapt to local contexts/processes/priorities. Can providers of co-operation share good examples of how this has been managed?

 

We look forward to hearing more perspectives!

Hanna-Mari Kilpelainen and Yuko Suzuki Naab,

OECD/UNDP Joint Support Team

 

sylvester obongo a PhD candidate
Thu, April 24,2014

Dear Yoko,

Thank you very much for extending this interesting debate. Development effectiveness will remain a central debate so long us we still have countries classified as underdeveloped, developing or any other name. A number of strategies have been employed in the so called developing countries since "Aid" came into the picture. Depending on where one is standing or where they are looking the verdicts of 'no progress or much progress' are both valid. Beyond such stance I wish to not the following:

1. There is room and scope for effective development cooperation which places the Government at the Centre of the equation. Mutual Accountability must not target specific projects or sectors.  If there is any program that calls for a WHOLE OF GOVERNMENT APPROACH it is Development Co-operation.  Yes, in terms of resources that is a massive undertaking- but after all development is a massive undertaking.  Marshall Plan to Europe after the Second World War was a massive  undertaking. Getting the developing countries out of their developing mode is a massive undertaking. Civil Society, Private Sector and the Not for Profit are key contributors to the efforts but can never replace the Government. If the Government is inefficient the more reason, it ought to be the centre- to make it efficient and accountable as a first step!

2. Apportioning blame will not work or help. The emerging term -Development Partners captures the spirit of Development Co-operation extremely well. Once we are into it, both of us should be into it. When it fails, both of us have failed. In most cases in many projects, in some cases one feels that they are being set up to fail. The so called 'donors' stop disbursements mid-way, for reasons not associated with the project, giving the recipient countries an easy avenue to blame 'disbursements.  At times however the actions of the recipients also leave the donors with very little options. When such occur alternative solutions need to be found. However, such obstacles should not deter ‘kicking out polio from country X, managing or containing the spread of HIV, these are much higher level ideals that need not to be distracted by small differences. The primary objectives of development cooperation must never be sacrificed at any cost.

3. Use of Academicians in development research in developing countries may have caused some challenges in subsequent implementations. The notion that there is a wide gap between organizational research and managerial practices is hardly a new observation. Indeed, the failure to implement research supported practices has been observed in nearly every field where there is a separation between those who conduct research and the practitioners who are in a position to implement research findings.  I have high respect for academic research however  notable differences exist between academic and practitioners with regard to the goals they seek to influence, the social systems under which they operate, the variables they attempt to manipulate and the acceptable times frames for addressing problems. This is made worse by the fact that most development agencies turn to academicians from their countries (the so called developing countries experts) to develop their concept papers and carry out research on issues in developing countries which end up being the basis of some interventions. A careful blending of the two with practitioners from developing countries would help in bridging the information and contextual gaps that may exist.

4. Regional Integration. Although regional integration is not a panacea for development, it is quite important.  Openness to trade fosters catch-up convergence as it involves the flow of capital and goods, serving natural means of coordinating economic development of the parties involved. Income convergence among countries, while far from being a worldwide phenomenon, seems to be a prevailing feature among countries trading extensively with one another.  A high level of regional integration is certainly conducive for economic development since it allows for more trade, investment and other economic interaction among its member countries. Development cooperation may therefore need to explore – a wider engagement platform at the regional level.

 

Asheesh Kumar Pandey a Educator and Educational Theorist
Thu, April 24,2014

I think at present most important is to provide a platform for educated unemployed youth for social and economical growth. To utilise young brain power for development and also not to divert in wrong path..It need emediate impliment in developing country specialy for India.  

Ziad Abdel Samad
Wed, April 16,2014

My understanding of the global partnership goes far beyond the policy of Aid. Although development and aid effectiveness based on Paris Declaration, Acra Action Agenda and Busan,  are very important for the global partnership and cooperation, but the global partnership should have as a main objective to create the global enabling environment to be able to meet the development goals. 

This includes adopting the needed policies to enable independant paths for development such as the revisiting of the global trading system, the global financial architecture, debt restructuring, transfer of Technology besides others. 

It is not clear how the same countries (developed and donor countries) that engage actively in the discussions on aid effectiveness, push at the same time for the adoption of new agreements during the trade negotiations (whether multilateral or bilateral) that are not trade related and they deprive developping countries from their ability to develop. They push for new agreements such as government procurement, services, investment, competition and  market access. They also reject the demand to revisit the financial architecture, agricultural agreements and so on

They discuss the possibility to improve or increase aid on the one hand, but they prevent the developing countries from their rights to produce by enhancing industrialisation and competitiveness, on the other hand

Moreover, the new discourse about the role of the private sector is misleading, for the private sector will not substitute the role of the state and the foreign aid unless investments and partnerships are rights based including the right to development and the labor rights; they should apply to the national concerns and strategies. these later should be democratically and nationally owned.

Yuko NAAB
Tue, April 15,2014

In an effort to continually engage Global Partnership stakeholders and keep their voices top of mind, an e-Discussion was hosted on the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation community space.

Through the Making Development Cooperation More Effective: 2014 Progress Report, it is evident that we are moving in the right direction in terms of changing the way development co-operation is delivered, however there is a definite need to improve co-operation practices and ensure there is more country ownership of all development efforts, including inclusive
partnerships, transparency and mutual accountability. This e-Discussion offered the opportunity to highlight the benefits of the Busan’s shared principles and reflect on the outcomes of the first monitoring exercise of the Global Partnership Monitoring Framework.

The e-discussion so far has been successful because a wide variety of stakeholders representing a number of countries were able to share their thoughts openly, reflect on their best practices, learn from others, as well as identify bottlenecks including key policy actions in order to proactively overcome them. There are numerous examples provided within the postings, which offered others the opportunity to learn from true examples, which supported understanding. As the Mexico HLM reflects on the achievements and remaining challenges, we thought that this e-discussion will provide a further opportunity to hear more perspectives reflecting on the outcomes of the Global Partnership monitoring, discussions from the workshop: Unfinished Business, as well as the Mexico HLM itself. Therefore, we have decided to continue this discussion for another 2-3 weeks.

Please find below a mid-point overview of the issued discussed during the e-Discussion, including key takeaways and suggestions for the Global Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation, in support of the upcoming First Global Partnership meeting taking place from April 15th-16th in Mexico.

 

E-discussion comments: 14 so far, from a wide variety of stakeholders

 

This e-discussion attracted contributions from a number of countries (including India, Kenya, Republic of Moldova and the Cooks Island), Civil Society Organizations (Oxfam, African Community of Practice on Managing for Development Results and Aid Effectiveness Secretariat), and international organizations (including UNDP) all sharing their experience on implementing the Busan’s shared principles and the outcomes of the first monitoring exercise of the Global Partnership Monitoring Framework.

 

Highlights from the discussion as follows:

 1. A definite need to ensure more mutual accountability so that all actors are  responsible to each other and the people they serve.
Although this process was intended to raise difficult conversations and to ensure actors were making the necessary changes, contributors to the e-discussion noted that the monitoring report alone does not hold specific donors and governments accountable  enough to their commitments.  When accountability and transparency are part of the global development conversations, development interventions are likely to be more inclusive. In turn citizens will have the ability to make choices and exercise their developmental rights. There is a need to facilitate evidence-based global development dialogue.

2. Significant progress has been made in increasing accountability and achieving more sustainable results. This will eventually lead to an increase in national ownership over development work. Development partners have taken national priorities more seriously by integrating them into country programmes and strategies. Efforts have been made to harmonize cooperation specifically between UN Agencies through the delivering as One UN
initiative. Also, projects and programs have shifted toward being result oriented, using for instance the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) and national aid management platforms. In turn, this has led development partners to be more accepting and open with their data, overall making development inclusive and equitable. The IATI initiative, which was referenced a number of times has endorsed the unification of standards for publishing
development cooperation data, which has facilitated the process of transparency.

3. Although there has been progress made, there still remain challenges in many areas. It is important that authority and issues that need addressing be moved from headquarters to the country level, so that capacity is better developed and implementations occur. This involves the utilizing national systems as countries have a spent so much effort and resources towards developing them but do not utilize them.
For example the Republic of Moldova is among the first to launch the BOOST platform that makes all public expenditure public, whereby components of the data are offered for public review based on type and institution. However, there is also a need to better manage the
information produced in order for it to be used more effectively and efficiently used. This will not only promote the systematic sharing of information but will help to reduce information overload.

3. There needs to be further improvements and actions towards strengthening the result oriented development agenda and country monitoring and evaluation systems. It seems that more resources are spent to put development assistance through monitoring
and evaluation systems, rather than trying to enhance and rely on the national system, which may be more constructive. For example establishment of national communities of practice (COPs) has been a great benefit to certain country's budget process as they are able to monitor budget outcomes as well as bring government and other players together. The national COPs decentralize activities, as a result leaving AfCOP as a governing body and the national COPS as implementing agencies. Therefore building Managing for Development Results capacity and helping to bring key stakeholders into the government development processes.

Key Takeaways:  

1.      It is evident that progress has been made. However, there need to make a shift from principles to practice if we are to have sustainable development post 2015.

 2.     The majority of progress achievements are in regards to principles of transparency and accountability. This is due to the use of technology monitoring tools, however quality of data shared and published still remains an issue.

3.     A method of addressing aid coordination by the use of broad government effectiveness initiatives rather than narrower development partner focused approach. This will help to promote greater harmonization and alignment. Also, this strategy will help move away from project based approaches towards sector based or budget support type approaches. Overall, results are still modest in regards to achieving common commitments at the international level.

4.     Measures have to be taken to promote constructive changes in coordination efforts and systems usage. There needs to be attention given on the real implementations of development policies in order to fight poverty and ensure wellbeing. This is achievable through joint efforts and accountability.

5.     Commitments need to be better defined and institutionalize. There needs to be a firmer grasp on the process of implementing commitments, leaving no room for discussion about the way an indicator should be addressed. This will create better communication between stakeholders within the government and development partners.

 

We look forward to hearing more perspectives from you.

Yuko Suzuki Naab

Yuko NAAB
Tue, April 22,2014

Thank you for sharing this exciting tool that was developed through the collaborative work of many partners. It is great to hear that so much was considered in creating it in order to ensure it was the more appropriate tool for managing international cooperation at the local level. I also appreciate you providing the links so that others can learn more. 

Piloting exercise of measuring effectiveness of development cooperation at the local level in Ecuador seems to suggest many areas of further efforts in enhancing the effectiveness of development cooperation delivered at the local level, including: enhancing institutional framework of managing development cooperation, the need for a comprehensive vision of cooperation which situates management of development cooperation as part of a more comprehensive framework of local development management. The pilot exercise suggests the need to look at policies and guidelines for management of international cooperation at the local level. It will be interest to learn about
whether there has been any initiative to develop/strengthen such guidelines. It will also be interesting to learn about whether this tool or elements of the tool could benefit other countries. Could you share your insight? Did you encounter any challenges along the way to implement such a tool and how such a challenge was addressed? 

It is always great to hear about the progress being made and achievements that have resulted from the measuring tool of the effectiveness. Any lessons learned we can gain from such experience? Thank you to everyone that has contributed so far. I encourage others to continue sharing their
progress, so that all of us can learn from good practices.

 

 

Luana Natali a UNDP ART Initiative
Mon, April 14,2014

Dear colleagues,

Many thanks for organizing this e-discussion and providing a space for conversation on this important topic.

As UNDP ART Initiative (Articulation of Territorial Networks for Sustainable Human Development), we would like to add to this fruitful discussion an example of a tool, created and implemented in Ecuador, to measure the effectiveness of development cooperation at local level.

With the support of the UNDP ART Ecuador Programme and UN Women, the main national counterpart, the Technical Secretariat of International Cooperation (SETECI) and three national-level associations of sub-national governments (CONGOPE, AME and CONAGOPARE) have developed a tool to measure the effectiveness of development cooperation at the local level and they have applied it to the whole country: all provinces, 98% of all municipalities and all provincial associations of rural parish governments, as well as 35 actors of international cooperation and civil society respectively.

The tool was developed after a consultation process on aid effectiveness at the local level carried out in 2010 and 2011 by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), through the International Initiative for the Articulation of Territorial Networks (ART), and in collaboration with several international networks of decentralized partners. This consultation originated from the acknowledgement of “the importance of the active role of local and regional governments and social and economic partners in order to deepen and democratize the agenda for aid effectiveness”. The reflections stemming from this consultation identified local experiences for the “articulation of local processes with national policies and strategiesas an appropriate mechanism for achieving a “comprehensive development impact”.

This innovative tool takes into consideration some key factors for managing development at the local level as: the involvement of different stakeholders - central and local governments, social organizations, the private sector, among others - and the articulation of national and local policies and plans.

For further details, we invite you to read the publication:
http://issuu.com/artpublications/docs/2013_art_measuring_cooperation_effe/1   

For further information on the UNDP ART Initiative, visit our website and for other publications, visit our virtual library: https://issuu.com/artpublications

Hope this information will be of your interest.

With best regards,
Luana Natali

 

ART Initiative -   United Nations Development Programme,  Brussels Office
info.art@undp.org │  http://undp.org/eu  │  https://issuu.com/artpublications

 

NCHEKOUA TCHOUMBA Jean Robert a CONSULTANT M&E from Cameroon
Sat, April 12,2014

 

 

Evaluation de l’Impact des Projets de Développement sur la Pauvreté

Le métier d’évaluateur est jeune et il n’existe pas encore d’ordres des professionnel des domaines des certifications permettront la professionnalisation en cours. De considérables progrès ont été réalisés dans le domaine du suivi-évaluation largement amplifiées par la crise financière internationale, les pressions budgétaires n’ont pas fait qu’affecter l’aide au développement, elles ont poussé à une forte demande de la part des acteurs externes. La focalisation sur les résultats est sans précédent et s’accompagne de la demande des systèmes de suivi et d’évaluation tangibles ainsi qu’un appui à des décisions adossés sur ces preuves. Dans plusieurs banques multilatérales de développement, le rôle classique de la fonction d’évaluateur indépendant consiste à se concentrer sur la performance des programmes financés par ces institutions. La plupart des évaluations effectuées sont de type ex post. Toutefois indépendamment de la façon dont elles sont effectuées et du degré de leur influence sur les réformes, elles constituent une petite portion du programme national d’investissement.

Il va de soi qu’influence l’ensemble du programme d’investissement est la meilleure voie à suive. A cet effet, les institutions de développement y compris leurs départements d’évaluation indépendante doivent repenser leur rôle traditionnel. Le renforcement de capacités a été pendant de nombreuses années une partie quoique négligeable du programme de ces départements mais il ne s’agit que d’une composante du système au côté de la formation du personnel, de la mise en place de structure organisationnelles adéquates, de la garantie de la bonne qualité des données et de leur transmission, enfin bien entendue, des preuves pour éclairer les prises de décisions que devrait être le rôle, des départements chargés des évaluations. Dans la consolidation de ces systèmes, ces départements ont-ils  d’ailleurs pour mission de consolider ces systèmes ?

Notre avis est qu’il est vain de continuer à renforcer des capacités sans le faire pour les autres composantes du système global. La valeur d’une vision globale constitue l’une des leçons qu’ont dispensées les divers rapports d’évaluation sur le renforcement des capacités pendant des années. Le groupe des Nations Unies pour l’évaluation  entend par capacité l’aptitude des individus, des institutions et des sociétés à remplir des fonctions, à résoudre des problèmes à fixer et à attendre des objectifs de manière durable. Quant au développement des capacités il est définit comme étant le processus à travers lequel des aptitudes pertinentes sont obtenues renforcés, adaptées et maintenues au fil du temps.  Pour l’OCDE les capacités d’évaluation renvoient à l’aptitude des personnes et des organisations à définir et à atteindre des objectifs d’évaluation. La capacité se situe à trois niveaux individuels, niveau  organisationnel et environnement propice. Ces capacités interdépendantes fonctionnent ensemble pour le compte de la demande, de l’offre et de l’utilisation de l’évaluation. Les capacités d’évaluation comprennent le pouvoir d’établir la programme d’évaluation et de déterminer ce qui est évalué ainsi que les questions qui sont posées. Elles comprennent également la capacité à produire des évaluations, mais aussi à gérer les processus d’évaluation et à  utiliser efficacement les résultats d’évaluation dans l’optique d’influencer les décisions politiques et de programme. Il convient de distingue entre la capacité à gérer des évaluations et la capacité de les effectuer, les deux missions étant nécessaires. Le développement des capacités d’évaluation étant perçu comme le processus de libération, de renforcement et de maintien des capacités d’évaluation, l’idéal voudrait que nous commencions par une analyse du système de suivi-évaluation existant notamment en identifiant les déficits.

Conformément à l’esprit de la récent Déclaration de Busan, les organisation de la société civile peuvent et doivent jouer un rôle central dans la promotion de la transparence dans l’affectation et l’utilisation des derniers publics, dans la responsabilisation lors de la mise en œuvre des politiques publiques, ainsi que dans le développement des capacités des évaluateurs qualifiés afin qu’ils produisent  des évaluations crédibles, utiles et conformes aux normes nationales et internationales en la matière. Afin d’influencer l’esprit des décisionnaires, l’opinion publique et d’autres intervenants, l’objectif  ultime étant que les politiques publiques soient équitables, efficace et basées sur des données de preuve, l’objectif final est d’influer sur le programme d’investissement public et don sur l’allocation budgétaire axée sur le rendement et les résultats. On n’en est qu’au début, mais la vision et la direction à suivre sont très importants et louables.

 La communauté de l’évaluation peut-elle tirer les enseignements de l’expérience et peut-elle jouer un rôle central dans l’apprentissage sud-sud tout en l’entendant au monde du développement ? Je suis particulièrement intéressé dans le cadre de cet appel à manifestation d’intérêt aux sujets suivants :

1-Le rôle des partenariats public-privé dans l’agenda post-2015 ;

2-Les progrès de la GRD en Afrique depuis la Déclaration de Paris : enseignements, défis et opportunités ;

3- Pour un suivi-évaluation efficace des interventions de développement : apprendre des expériences réussies et des défis rencontrés partout dans le monde ;

3-Le financement du développement : les financements privés et les autres stratégies novatrices ;

4-La gestion des déchets urbains dans les grandes villes : une meilleure gestion et une meilleure planification pour des résultats de développement.

 5-Le renforcement des capacités pour la gestion des données et le partage des connaissances : quelles sont les stratégies, les approches et les méthodes clef ?

Asheesh Kumar Pandey a Educator and Educational Theorist from India
Sat, April 12,2014
Dear colleagues, i want to discuss only about problem and solution about India poverty and youth unemployment. 1- Most of farmers in India are poor: solution is to educate them mainly in field of market, technology and reduce interference of government bureaucrats. 2- For youth employment need to drastic change in education system in India and let them teach and training about modern technology, Innovation promotion and entrepreneurship skill development. 3- Industrialization development support with no interference from government bureaucrats..
Tariq Ahmad a Researcher - Aid Effectiveness - Oxfam from United States
Fri, April 11,2014

Thank you to the joint-support team for organizing and allowing spaces and conversations like this to exist.

One of the most crucial remaining challenges in the GPEDC process is the need to fulfill promises on accountability. In fact, Oxfam would argue that the participants in the GPEDC have retreated from the fundamental purpose of the global partnership – the need to ensure all actors are accountable to one another and to the people they serve.

Despite the intentions to streamline inclusivity into the different Mexico High Level Meeting work streams, inclusive development, transparency and accountability are all but absent from the agenda. First, the monitoring report in both results and process, fails to be a useful tool to hold specific donors and governments accountable for their commitments. Second, in iteration after iteration of the Mexico communiqué, writers of the document watered down commitments to human rights based approaches and recognizing the importance of space for civil society to engage their governments. And finally, the private sector discussions and the South – South dialogues are almost void of really tackling the complicated nature of accountability in their efforts. Without concrete commitments for diffusing power and accountability, the Mexico HLM risks becoming more of a development trade show and less of a proactive attempt by the international community to find ways to support men, women, boys, and girls in their attempts to raise themselves out of poverty.

In the early 2000s, experts, practitioners and officials knew there was a something broken in the aid system. Aid wasn't working as well as it could, and the reason was bad donor behavior - lack of harmonization, inattention to achieving results, little sustainability. These challenges hindered the ability of partner countries to own their development. In essence, top-down development planning, despite the donors' good intentions, was doing more harm than good. The commitments made in the Monterrey, Paris, and Accra[1] meetings were intended to solve a collective action problem - how to change donor behavior, when donors, inherently, are sitting on top of the food chain and are usually only accountable to their own governments. The only way to rectify the problems of donor driven aid was to bring all the participants together and create a system of accountability at the international level. The monitoring system would be transparent, to allow donors to be held account to their constituencies and to one another. With a dispersion accountability both horizontally to other donors but more importantly, downward, towards the governments and intended beneficiaries aid programs are intended to serve, aid would become a more useful tool to help the women, men, boys and girls raise themselves out of poverty.

The monitoring process was intended to spark difficult conversations and to ensure donor agencies were making the necessary internal changes they needed to make.
One of the biggest successes of the process was the inclusive nature of the partnership. The resulting commitments exemplify the influence of civil society, private sector, parliamentarians, and officials from partner countries. The objectives of the partnership grew to include poverty reduction and gender equality. But with the needed expansion of the process to include new themes, financial flows and actors, it seems the diffusion of accountability may have been lost.

When accountability and transparency are integral parts of the global development conversations, this translates to development interventions that are inclusive and transparent. Only with transparency and accountability can local citizens be allowed to make choices and exercise their developmental rights.  

In India, when the government established the Rural National Health Mission in 2005, CSOs started a program that would allow communities to monitor and plan with local clinics and gave citizens the ability to provide feedback and help make decisions with service providers. The results - citizens in communities with community oversight were nearly twice as likely to utilize their clinics.[2]  


But in the current discussions around the Mexico Ministerial, transparency, accountability and inclusion are not being sufficiently integrated across the spectrum of issues.

In response to the findings in the recently released monitoring report[3], David Hall-Matthews, Director of Publish What You Fund, said,

“This is a timely wake-up call that more is needed for donors to fulfill their original commitments. All donors must accelerate their efforts to publish high quality aid data, which the report confirms is not yet happening.

“But the report does not go far enough in measuring donors’ aid transparency accurately. There’s not enough emphasis on donors publishing current activities, which partner countries have identified as being critical for their own planning, and which is a key element of the methodology behind our Aid Transparency Index (ATI).”[4]



[1] http://www.oecd.org/dac/effectiveness/parisdeclarationandaccraagendaforaction.htm

[2] http://www.oxfam.org/en/policy/held-account

[3] http://effectivecooperation.org/progress/

[4] http://www.publishwhatyoufund.org/updates/news/wakeup-call-donors/

Jakob Schemel
Fri, April 11,2014

Dear colleagues, the week has nearly ended and time is fleeting – so let me provide some quick personal 2 cents to some of the questions raised here:

As the Global Partnership Progress Report shows, advancement on development effectiveness is modest but steady across all areas, not only since Busan. In the countries I have worked in (in South-eastern and Eastern Europe) I have noticed progress on most fronts over the past decade, for instance:

  • Slowly but surely, national ownership over development work is increasing,
  • Development partners are taking national priorities more seriously and integrating them into their country programmes and strategies, i.e. work is becoming less donor driven,
  • Efforts are being made to harmonize cooperation - such as by the different UN Agencies through the Delivering as One UN initiative
  • Projects and programmes are becoming more results-based - thanks to the increasing adoption and understanding of RBM and thanks to initiatives such as the AfCOP mentioned by Sylvester, 
  • Development partners are beginning to open up their data, and
  • Development is becoming more inclusive.

this progress is certainly modest and one small step at a time - but significant in terms of increasing accountability and achieving more sustainable results, especially if we zoom out and look at what has happened over the last 10 (or even 20) years.

 

Challenges continue in many areas... A few that come to my mind are:

  • The continued fragmentation of development partners: Incentives from some headquarters and capitals sometimes seem to remain more focused on the amounts of funds delivered than impact and sustainability.
  • Monitoring and Evaluation remains to be improved and truly integrated into our work.
  • There is continued hesitancy to seriously address corruption, or to even bring it up. Corruption features once, in an apropos manner, in the Global Partnership Progress Report. Yet corruption is probably one of the key factors that impede effective development cooperation. In this light I do not understand how national procurement and PFM systems can receive such good ratings.
  • There is a discrepancy between what exists on paper vs. reality – such as aid coordination policies and structures that formally exist but do not work in practice, and aid information systems and aid effectiveness indicators that are fed with low quality information.
  • Political leaders need to promote their aid policies among all Government ministries and agencies - both in donor and recipient countries. As Monica has mentioned, capacity building on aid effectiveness for those closely involved would be critical. She also raised a crucial point on delegating authority from headquarters to the country level to enable country offices to be more flexible in their approach, adapt to the country context, and better harmonize with other partners in the country.
  • Given the information overload we are all faced with, as Lucretia mentions, bottlenecks could be overcome by promoting systematic information sharing through initiatives such as for instance IATI, national aid management platforms and (for UN) Delivering as One, and ensuring interoperability, i.e. making sure systems better talk with each other, with the Busan indicators and with the different bilateral and multilateral partners’ systems.
  • It would be important to promote coherent aid policies within donor countries, where ministries and agencies sometimes drive different “silo” development agendas that are not harmonized with each other.
  • The monitoring of progress of aid effectiveness is key, as it reminds us of the commitments made and brings them to the forefront of our attention on a regular basis. I think from the OECD/UNDP secretariat’s side, whose work we much appreciate, it would be important to communicate even better. The 40 page guidance note on the Global Partnership monitoring may have scared some countries off - why not simplify it next time around? Also the Global Partnership Progress Report could be even better communicated. What about using information graphics with key facts, linked to key messages to communicate? The attention of development actors is limited, many colleagues are overworked, and do not have the time to read long reports. Again this is related to my above point on information overload and better managing the information we produce, so that we can make sense of it, and better use it.
Monica Asuna a Economist/Head Aid Effectiveness Secretariat/Policy Unit from Kenya
Thu, April 10,2014

I am responding as someone who has been in the Aid Effectiveness agenda and forums since Accra in 2008. I thank the GPDEC joint support team for their tireless efforts and for providing an enabling forum for discussions.

Progress since Busan: As concerns progress since Busan, not much has been done especially from the Development Partners side. Government has however tried to initiate major reforms in PFM but there is little or no results in some areas, especially as concerns use of country systems. In as much as dialogue has improved at the country level and there is improved inclusivity of stakeholders and public participation, it still boils to much talk and no action especially in use of country systems.

Political leadership and also technical leadership seems to be lacking from Government, I am talking in the case of Kenya. Capacity building of officers across the board on issues of aid effectiveness is still critical. High turnover of parliamentarians as well as government officials makes it even more difficult as most time is spent in sensitizing officers on aid effectiveness principles before real work can begin. 

Therefore when we talk of mutual accountability, can there be real commitment from both sides to finish the "unfinished business". Can there be a timeline for the unfinished business since governments are getting fatigued by Development Partners not walking the talk.

Kenya has made remarkable progress in Development Asssiatnce Database and has developed a web-based electronic Project Monitoring Information System (e-ProMIS). This is both a project mangement tool, budgeting tool as well as a monitoring tool. Kenya also joined the Open Aid Parnership and is a member of the Internatuional Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI). All these are geared towards transparency and accountability. World bank has also supported the geo-coding of projects in e-ProMIS.Therefore what remains is for development patners to use this system to report on their support to Kenya. "Charity begins at home", so development partners should start by giving recipient governments the information and data, for verification and validation by the recipients before they report to OECD? It adds no valu to recipeint government of data is released to OECD but not to recipent governments where their parliaments should interrogate the information before being apporved as authentic.

The challenges that remain unresolved are: Mutual Accountability and with it goes transparency and accountability;use of country systems inlcuding procurement, accounting and budgeting; aid on budget by eliminating off budget financing; untying aid; harmonization and division of labour process.

Harmonization has worked with the UN system in Kenya as the current UNDAF 2014-2018 is based on the "UN Delivering as One" principles. Although the UNDAF is based on the Deliverng as One principles, implementation remains to be seen at the country level if the UN will deliver as one. Therefore other development partners should emulate this and also work more through Programme Based Approaches (PBAs) or  Sector Wide Approaches (SWAps). This reduces transaction costs to governments.

Poilitoal leadership:Political leadership can help overcome these challenges but only if our political leadership is commited to the Global Partnership. Decisions made at the global level can only work if the headquarters of donor agencies are also given the delegated authority to execute the commitments at the country level. Therefore headquarters should delegate more powers to the country offices. In addition, capacity building of parliamentarians to legislate the relevant laws is critical since a strong legal framework and oversight in implementation is required for development effectiveness.

Issues that need addressing at the political level is harmonization of practices and more delegated powers at the donor country offices. True commitment to the Mutual Accounatbility principle is important.

For kenya, in areas where there is progress, it is due to dialogue. The high level forum, the Development Partnership Forum (DPF) has helped shaped reforms. This is a bi-annual meeting of ministers and ambassadors to discuss both political and economic issues of concern. It was formed in 2009. This has helped in that critical issues of mutual concern are discussed and commitments made become policy issues which are followed and implemented and progress made reported in the next forum. Therefore, structured dialogue is critical in achieving positive change.

Lessons at the technical level: Kenya has joint sector working groups where membership is all inclusive, Government, development partners and CSOs. The political leadeship relies on information from the technical leadership to make decisions. Therefore strong technical leadership is also necessary. For kenya, just before the DPF mentioned earlier, there is usually a technical meeting of senior officers and permanent secretaries who identify areas that need high level intervention. These are presented for commitment and endorsement by the high level forum. This has helped in that drives the reform agenda and amendment of some laws, for example, the Kenyan procurement law is currently being amended due to the technical leadership who have championed this agenda. This is because the law is deemed to be causing procurement delays and this makes development partners not to prefer using the governmet procurement laws. We hope this once finalized, will reduce the procurment process and also our dvelopment partners will our procurement laws.

Therefore the technical leadership should be proactive and provide the political leadership with the requisite information to enable them make informed decisions.

So some progress has been made but we need to really move from principles to practice. Hope that after Mexico, we now become more practical if we are to have sustainable development post 2015.

 

Lucretia Ciurea
Mon, April 07,2014

Dear Yoko,

Thank you very much for the additional details you have provided about the successful results on transparency initiatives. As I have mentioned the IATI initiative is very actual and relies a great deal on IT support. Having in mind the specificity of the initiative, one that involves not only policy makers but experts in the field of IT communications as well.

The participation of booth IT professionals and policy experts within steering bodies of the initiative move things toward successful results and ensure new and innovative solutions. Pioneers from developing countries as well as development partners take transparency very seriously, allocating resources to best address this issue with the preeminent practices of the times.

Public financial management systems – indeed a great deal of time and resources have been spent on strengthening them. The reform on PFM in Moldova was initiated and launched in 2005 with the support of the World Bank. Other development partners activating in the country joined this reform and provided a lot of support.  The PEFA evaluations started in Moldova in 2006, initial assessments of the early utilization of the PEFA framework followed by a third assessment in 2012 (covering the period for 2008-2010.The results shows improvement in the PFM.

A second tool for validation of the same system is used by the World Bank, CPIA were also good results had been reported (for 2012 the scoring is 4.0).

And the third fact confirming the quality of PFM is BOOST which I have mentioned in my previous reply. More information about BOOST can be found on the link http://wbi.worldbank.org/boost/country/moldova. In regards to how the BOOST addressed challenges? A variety of public policy actors got the possibility to identify high value areas, to design targeted interventions around a more effective use of budget data for improved budget processes and outcomes. All information about public expenditures are available. The platform http://budgetstories.md is one of the examples how the inclusiveness of the civil society is expressed in the monitoring of development in Moldova. 

One small clarifications on AMP usage and evaluation indicators. I have mentioned that Moldova participated in all evaluation exercises of the Paris Declaration. The AMP was developed in 2013 and officially launched as a public platform in January of 2014 (www.amp.moldova.md). The benefit of using AMP is again linked to principles of transparency and accountability, directly and indirectly to inclusive development.

The openness of the Government towards cooperation with both civil society and private sector alike was expressed by laws and actions towards this goal.  The UN Public Service Award 2013 is an important recognition of the efforts of this undertaking. http://cancelaria.gov.md/libview.php?l=en&id=1450&idc=277/

 

In relevance to other Principles Dear Yoko I have also mentioned about recognizing results on ownership of the development agenda. The alignment of development assistance is also on track (in Moldova). Further improvements and actions are needed towards strengthening the result oriented development agenda and country monitoring and evaluation systems. I agree that national M&E systems are not always perfect, yet resources are spent to put development assistance through provider M&E systems, instead of trying to enhance and rely on the national system, this approach is by far the least constructive one.

 

I hope I managed to answer your questions. Looking forward to others reflecting on it as well.

 

Lucretia     

 

 

 

 

From: notification@unteamworks.org [mailto:notification@unteamworks.org]
Sent: Sunday, April 06, 2014 9:24 PM
To: lucretia.ciurea@gov.md
Subject: [Teamworks] Yuko NAAB commented on the Discussion "e-Discussion on the Global Partnership for Effective Cooperation in support of the First Global Partnership meeting"

 

Yo

sylvester obongo a PhD candidate from Australia
Mon, April 07,2014

Development Effectiveness is indeed critical to all aspects of development financing-both local and foreign. It is for these reasons that during the Plenary for the Aid-Effectiveness Cluster Meeting at the OECD HQ in Paris in 2007 I made a proposal to that to the Developing Countries who are the main receipients of Development Assistance- reference to Aid-Effectiveness does not reflect their situation on the ground because- for their projects and programs they are seeking for effectiveness of not only development funds from the international development agencies, but also effectiveness of their own funds. Furthermore, Joint Funding mechanisms and development of local accountability systems targets both local and foreign funding.  That level of debate is crucial but can also be too long and at terms lost in semantics.

I am a founder member of the African Community of Practice on Managing for Development Results which, in my view is a brilliant idea for spreading and building capacity across board for adoption of Managing for Development Results Principles.  The core principles of managing for and not by results of mutual accountability, performance monitoring and evaluation, reporting goes beyond the concept of results based management. Because, MfDR is not just interested in any results, but in those results that lead to development.  The first task of African Community of Practice was to build a basic critical mass of professionals across Africa who are capable of applying the MfDR principles within their respective organizations and countries.  We wanted to educate people on MfDR.

However, within two years we noted that whereas the membership to AfCOP had grown to over 800 in 37 countries, no matter how well placed a member was, that member was a member on their own individual basis. The members did not represent organizations or government. But policies are implemented within organizational frameworks and development policies specifically by Governments. Secondly we noted that given that structure, AfCOP could end up being just a talk shop where good ideas were discussed and ended there. The community has now grown to over 1,950 members as at 2014 from different countries in and out of Africa.

Therefore very we had to look for avenues of ensuring that these MfDR ideas and principles parcolated down to government systems. We therefore came up with the idea of National Community of Practice.  Under the support of African Development Bank, we designed a structure of a National Community of Practice that would bring together in clusters, Government, Civil Society, Youth, Parliament, Private Sector and Academia.  Each cluster would be represented in the Core Management Team, but the National Community of Practice had to be housed within Government- preferrably within Ministry of Finance or Planning under the Directorate of Monitoring and Evaluation.  Whereas the Government houses the National COP- they do not have a bigger say in the running of the COP.  The core management team runs the National COP.

Through the National COPs the African Community of Practice has managed to disseminate MfDR principles to Governments.  To date over 20 National Communities of Practice have been launched or are in the process of being launched in different countries in Africa. The National Communities of Practice have facilated Capacity Assessment Scans (CAPScan)  for Managing for Development Results in their various countries and are helping to bring key stakeholders into the Government Development Processes.  In some countries, the National COPs are becoming an integral part of their country's budget process and therefore being able to monitor more closely the budget outcomes.

At present the African Community of Practice having identified Regional Integration as a key element to Africa's development, with the support of African Development Bank launched the Africa for Results Initiative. (Afri4R).  The fast major project under this initiative is fast-tracking regional integration issues by fast-tracking three critical areas of Monetary Convergence, Trade and Investment, and Business Climate Environment Reforms in two regional cooperation blocks of COMESA and WAEMU.  A Readiness Assessment has already been conducted in over 15 countries in these two blocks coordinated by the National Community of Practice and validation workshops bringing together key stakeholders are underway.  The validation workshops are organized under the National COP bringing together Government and other players. 

The journey has not been as smooth, but the beauty with this is that, what started as aid-effectiveness has now been tranformed as an effective development initiative underpinned by the key MfDR Principles of evidence based policy and managing for development results. Government policies have found through the National Communities of Practice, avenues for input and and enrichment of implementation support.

Through the AfCOP, the emphasis is that Africa's development will not just be achieved through, effectiveness utilization of development assistance but through effective utilization of all resources both local and foreign, including effective utilization of its most valuable resource, the human resource.  Therefore, from Paris, to Accra and Busan, progress in MfDR are being made in Africa, they may not be as quantum as we would have wished, but these need to be supported and solidified.

In June 2009 Mr. Jameleddine Khemakhem, a Senator in the Tunisian Republic, noted "I am truly impressed by the way AfCoP members promote results-based management with such energy and enthusiasm. AfCoP members are visionaries because, in the future, results-based management will be a necessity and not a choice.” Similarly, Stefane Side, Head of Planning, Ministry of Planning & Development, Cote D’Ivoire, in September 2009 noted " “The AfCoP helped me better understand my responsibilities as an agent of change in my country and I was able to benefit from new tools which helped me lobby my country’s lead official responsible for Result Based Management.”

 

 

 

Yuko NAAB
Thu, April 10,2014

Thank you for sharing this positive example of the progress being made in Africa.

 

It is clear that a lot of good work has resulted from the African Community of Practice on Managing for Development Results. For those who may not be familiar with it I have provided the link - http://www.cop-mfdr-africa.org/page/about-afcop – which provides a good overview of the initiative. You mentioned that one of the first tasks’ was to build a critical mass of professionals across Africa
who were capable of applying the MfDR principles. I would be interested to know how the AfCOP was able to do this?

 

As the AfCOP grew, it was very insightful that the group was aware that it might just become
a “talk shop” and through recognizing this took the necessary steps to develop the National Community of Practice. Could you elaborate on how this realization came about? It is evident that the establishment of National COPs has been a great benefit to certain country's budget process as they are able to monitor budget outcomes as well as bring government and other players together.

 

Thank you again for sharing. I look forward to learning about the success stories from others as well.

 

sylvester obongo a PhD candidate from Australia
Fri, April 11,2014

Dear Yuko,

 

Thank you for your feedback and sharing the AfCOP link.  I will briefly highlight and feedback on the the issues you have sought further information on:

1. African Community of Practice - Capacity Building Initiatives.

(a) Annual Meeting

During the formative years, at every annual meeting - we set aside one and half days for capacity building (training) on key MfDR Principles. Although most of the AfCOP activities takes place virtually through the web platfporm, the Community holds face to face annual meetings in selected member countries.  One of the key cluster at this stage was the Capacity Building Cluster, which identified key member needs and a facilitator to conduct the training back to back with the annual meeting.  The invitation to the annual meeting was and still is as representative of membership geographical spread as much as possible and inclusive of all sectors.

During the Annual Meetings, the host country organizes study tours to in country projects where delegates can learn first hand MfDR Practices.

(b) On-Line Expert Facilitated Discussions.

AfCOP ran and still runs a number of on-line discussions on topical MfDR issues. The COP has therefore successfully facilitated on-line discussions on Integrated Results Based Budgeting, Results Based Management and Rapid Results Approach.  Through these forums members shared posed and contributed experiences relevant to their own environment.  The platform also offers opportunity for peer to peer learning where professionals from different countries share ideas.

(c) On-line Resource.

The Community had assembled an impressive collection of e-resources on various MfDR topics for reference. However, sometimes in 2009 as the web-hosting was being migrated this valuable resource was corrupted. The Community has however now a Knowledge Management Expert in place coordinating all e-learning activities and knowledge sharing and this data base is being rebuild. The AfCOP project with African Capacity Building Foundation has also opened new avenues for members to build their capacity and get access to resources out side the primary confines of the COP.

 

2. Vision for National Communities of Practice

These were established as chapters of the African Community of Practice.  A number of 'us' who founder members of AfCOP had our roots in Government.  After two years of operation and attending two annual meetings, We were began to wonder and think aloud, how these ideas could actually be translated in to action. Coming at a time when almost every organization outside the Government had lost faith in the Government and even held high profile meetings and came up with resolutions, the reality was that GOVERNMENT remained not only a key player but the Central player in the implementation of development policies.

The Government therefore had to be involved. Because AfCOP does not represent Government we had to devise means of ensuring that discussions in AfCOP find their way into Government. The idea of the National COP with a slightly different configuration was therefore born out of that need. The Primary focus is to instil MfDR Principles in the management of development finance. MfDR is a way of doing things, it is not an activity on its own.  So if we could get the Senior Government Officials as our members attending annual meetings then through sharing of these ideas, they would similarly use the National COP to disseminate the same. In this case we were creating a direct link between-AfCOP and Government through the National COP. Government is managed by people, and the Government does not manage projects, it is the people in Government who manage projects and programs. We appreciate that fact that When the government has the right people, and the right system, and the intentions, many good things are possible.  Through MfDR advocacy at AfCOP we intend through the National COP, to possitively influence those in Government.

Lastly, the National COPs are also a way of decentralizing activities. Leaving AfCOP as a THINK TANK and the National COPS as implementing Agencies- and in the process building MfDR CAPACITY.

 

Thank you very much.

 

Sylvester Obong'o

Phd Candidate- Public Sector Reform,

University of Necastle-Australia.

Lucretia Ciurea
Tue, April 08,2014

 

Dear Mr. Obongo,

I fully agree with your opinion about the effectiveness of projects and programs. When a developing country identifies a development program, especially in the case of big infrastructure projects, it allocates part of its budget but as well seeks to attract external resources as well, be it under the form of grants or loans. These resources even if initially not part of the budget should not be treated differently just because they have a different source. That why I am a strong proponent of utilizing national systems; this refers to monitoring and evaluation as well as PFM. In countries that have a spent so much effort and resources towards perfecting their national systems, what higher proof is required to start utilizing them finally?!  

With regards to you description about the African Community of Practice I’m sincerely very impressed by their achieved results. The tendency is good and we can follow the interesting processes when the developing countries started with the ownership and identification of the development agenda. At the same time result based, monitoring and evaluation definitions and the practicioners are becoming more and more important and relevant. More politicians and lead officials have to be aware about this elements and their role in the process of change.

With kind regards and.    

Yuko NAAB
Sun, April 06,2014

Thank you for your response to the questions and reflections.

You have mentioned that the majority of progress has been made in transparency and accountability due the current times we live in. The examples you provided as support are helpful in understanding your perspective, such as the IATI initiative. I have provided a link to the website for those who may not know about it: http://www.aidtransparency.net/-
as well as a this video - http://player.vimeo.com/video/29786722?color=a2ad00&title=0&byline=0 which provide a summary of this initiative. It would be interesting to learn about the factors that resulted in some of theses initiatives being successful. Do you have any insight into this? We also look forward to hearing from other
colleagues on success factors as well. 

Another point that you raised was that a great deal of time and resources have been spent on strengthening national public financial management systems, however they do not seem to be used as intended. What do you think this is the case? Also, I would be interested to know whether and how BOOST Platform has addressed some of the challenges? 

I see that the Republic of Moldova has used national system level evaluation indicators since 2006 supported by AMP - http://www.developmentgateway.org/programs/aid-management-program/aid-management-platform. What are the benefits of using this tool? Are there other tools that you have used that have supported your successes?

Could you also share more about your thoughts on the other principles and why you believe we have not achieved similar results?

Indeed there is a lot of excitement around the discussions that will take place in Mexico. I thought I would share the blog written by Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala (Nigeria's minister of finance and coordinating minister for the economy as well as a co-chair of U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's high-level panel of eminent persons on the post-2015 development agenda) who is also one of the Global Partnership co-chairs at the upcoming High Level Meeting
in Mexico  - https://www.devex.com/news/we-must-seize-the-opportunity-of-the-first-high-level-meeting-of-the-global-partnership-for-effective-development-cooperation-83060.
She provides a brief overview of the achievements so far, mentioning the Republic of Moldova, where there have been some definite successes. She also recognizes that a lot of work still needs to be done, but is confident that the GPEDC offers the forum to address them for positive improvements.

Look forward to hearing your feedback and the reflections of others.

Yuko Suzuki Naab

 

Lucretia Ciurea from Republic of Moldova
Sat, April 05,2014

 

Esteemed colleagues, and experts of the agenda to make development assistance more efficient and effective.

I would like to present myself as someone who holds relevant knowledge in this field. I’ve worked with development assistance for more than 15 years, and as a focal point at the country level in commitment evaluation since the Paris Declaration.

As you are all aware, the previous High Level Forum in Busan set the ground for more defined steps towards the principles of the Paris Declaration and pointed out the importance of Ownership of development priorities, results , Inclusive development partnerships and not lastly Transparency and accountability to each other.

The question stands on the type of progress that has been made since Busan and if we are on track to implement key Busan commitments by 2015? My fear is that we are not on track towards the objectives we had set for 2015. The majority of progress achievements are in regard to principles of transparency and accountability because these had become a priority of the times we live in, the age of advanced information technology and demand from constituents and of voters towards their elected officials has become the driving factor behind this progress. It is a fact that developing countries are getting better at determining their development agenda, as reiterated in Busan. After Busan, countries with well-set development strategies have concentrated on perfecting their systems for monitoring results. In the cases where the elements of transparency and result based systems have been well established the principle of inclusive development partnership has no barriers for development, once information is available and the expected results are clear all the premises for civil society and media involvement are there, they are a contributing factor towards responsible economic development if offered the right tools, the most essential one being able to monitor development agenda activities.

Another very relevant factor that has contributed to our accomplishments in regard to transparency is the ACCRA (IATI) initiative, which has endorsed the unification of standards for publishing development data, definition wise as well as the necessary set of data for a better management of the development agenda. This has greatly facilitated the process of transparency; when all partners discus with the same terms and the aid management systems can share data among each other without special provisions and intermediaries.

The quality of data shared and published still remains an issue. Projects that have been piloted in the field of the IATI initiative have proven that if there is will the goals are achievable.

We should not overlook the efforts of developing countries, they have been another determining factor towards achieving transparency, especially e-governance agendas launched at the country level that have set for themselves the task to develop and improve upon the quality of services being offered by public authorities utilizing the latest in information technologies. 

A far greater challenge in my vision is the utilization of national systems. The public finance management system is the backbone towards spending effectively public funds, of which development assistance is part of. If this were to work fine we could then address our attention towards other issues. Yet the problem lies in the fact that partner countries have spent a great deal of time and resources on enhancing the capabilities of national public finance management systems but subsequently fail to utilize them time after time again.

The Republic of Moldova is among the first to launch the BOOST platform that makes all public expenditure public, disaggregated data is offered for public review based on type and institution. I believe that with such national systems their utilization should be by default.

There are several factors that undermine progress in this regards, among which are beneficiary institutions that are only happy to maintain the status quo but as well development partners that lack sufficient incentives to take more determinant actions due to rigid internal guidelines. 

I think political factors once aligned with policy priorities should responsibly pursue their achievement. It has proven a very good experience to set performance based indicators and monitor them over time, giving political leadership the possibility to react on them and to be held accountable for their achievements. The Republic of Moldova has utilized national level evaluation indicators since 2006 and will continue to do so with the help of the newly developed Aid Management Platform (AMP), launched publicly in January this year. The Global Partnership monitoring exercise will be held annually at the country level.

As far as technical limitations, that we need to overcome, and other bottlenecks as well as lessons learned during monitoring exercises before and after Busan, they would primarily be in regard to the documents that define commitments and the space that they leave for interpretation, initial ideas commonly being subject to changes as a result. We need to institutionalize a more firmer grasp on the process of implementing commitments, leaving no room for discussion about the way an indicator should be addressed and to create a better communication between stakeholders within the government and development partners. One more thing that I believe will be very fruitful for subsequent collaboration is the standardization of processes, that would greatly ease understanding between partners, very relevant in the cases of systems for monitoring results, evaluation methodologies and guidelines for the appraisal of national systems, as well as other processes.

With all the best and looking forward to good discussion in Mexico.

 

 

Hilary Gorman a Development Programme Manager from Cook Islands
Thu, April 10,2014

Kia orana and warm greetings from the Pacific. Thank you for the fruitful discussions thus far, some interesting insights have certainly been shared from different parts of the world.

We would like to add to this discussion based on experiences from the Cook Islands – a nation made up of 15 islands within the Pacific Ocean. Under the coordination of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (http://www.forumsec.org/) several Pacific Island countries have participated in a peer review of their national planning, budgeting, public financial and aid management systems. In 2013 the Cook Islands became the 12th Forum Island Country to undertake the peer review under the Cairns Compact on Strengthening Development Coordination in the Pacific (Forum e Compact). “Peer reviews focus on how governments use their own and donor resources for their citizens and in working towards achieving national priorities including the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) (p. 4).”

In discussing the issue of aid coordination and management the report notes that the Development Coordination Division (DCD) “has adopted a sound approach to aid effectiveness emphasizing broad government effectiveness initiatives rather than using a narrower development partner focused approach. It is also promoting a move towards greater harmonisation and alignment and a move away from project based approaches towards sector based or budget support type approaches (p. 19).” This method of addressing aid coordination is noted as a best practice yet there are also significant challenges.

The report also notes that “While there has been notable progress on improving the effectiveness of engagement with the main bilateral donors, regional and thematic budget lines as well as various projects continue to represent significant transaction costs for Government. Greater information on regional flows, in particular, is essential as the government struggles to get a clear picture from regional organisations on exact levels of support to the Cook Islands. There have also been concerns raised about lack of coordination among regional organisations with unannounced or short noticed visits or visits that could be more effective and efficient if combined. It appears that regional organisations and programs were more likely to bypass national systems and reporting than bilateral aid. While capturing bigger bilateral programs within national disbursement and reporting systems may be the greater priority CIG (Cook Islands Government) should also further encourage regional partners to act in a coordinated way with development partners and bring their aid on budget (p. 19).”

The report notes related challenges including low rates of overseas development assistance (ODA) spending – in 2012 37% of planned ODA was spent. Related to this is the fact that much ODA remains in the project modality rather sector and budget support which, hampers “the transition from a relationship based on financial and administrative discussions to that of bigger picture policy dialogue (p. 20).” There is a need for internal consultation on this matter as well as communication with development partners. The annual development partners meeting is one of the key ways in which these discussions are being facilitated in the Cook Islands.

The Cook Islands peer review document is available at: http://www.mfem.gov.ck/mfemdocs/amd/275-pif-peer-review-cooks-02a

Hilary Gorman

Lucretia Ciurea
Fri, April 11,2014

 

Dear Hilary,

 It is amazing how much similarity still exists in the common efforts and challenges on the way towards effective cooperation. Moving from a project based approach towards a sector approach as well as harmonization and alignment were also the subjects of the Paris Declaration in 2005 and of the following Forums as well. The information presented in you comment, about 37% on ODA spending  and still significant transaction cost on regional cooperation and various projects, emphasize again that results are still modest in regard to achieving our common commitments at the international level. Urgent measures have to be undertaken in order to promote constructive changes in coordination efforts and systems usage. Much more attention is required on the real implementations of development policies in order to fight poverty and ensure wellbeing. This is achievable through joint efforts from both sides, and of course accountability for our actions.

In case of Moldova we have 65 % of ODA spent (for 2012) but only 55% reflected in the budget! Within the budget support instruments were the usage of national systems is 100% the share of disbursements of tranches is also more that 90%.

 With kind regards, Lucretia Ciurea   

Type forum
Date Created Fri, April 04,2014
Created By Yuko NAAB
Original Space Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation Community
Cross posted in Development Finance and Aid Effectiveness
Capacity Development Network (Capacity-Net)
Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation Community
Collaborative Capacities
UNDP Global Innovation Meeting 2013
UNDP Development Impact Group (DIG)
# of Teamworks Views 4866
# of Teamworks Recommendations 0
Visibility Public
Domain of origin Teamworks