Assessment of Development Results: India

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Evaluation Plan:
2009-2013, Independent Evaluation Office
Evaluation Type:
ADR
Planned End Date:
04/2012
Completion Date:
04/2012
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
150,000

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Title Assessment of Development Results: India
Atlas Project Number:
Evaluation Plan: 2009-2013, Independent Evaluation Office
Evaluation Type: ADR
Status:Completed
Completion Date:04/2012
Planned End Date: 04/2012
Management Response:Yes
Corporate Outcomes (UNDP Strategic Plan 2008-20013)
Evaluation Budget(US $): 150,000
Source of Funding:
Joint Programme:No
Mandatory Evaluation:No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Team Leader
GEF Evaluation:No
Key Stakeholders:
Location of Evaluation:Country Level
Countries: INDIA
Lessons
Findings
Recommendations
1 Recommendation 1: Shift the main focus of UNDP activities away from small projects upstream to become more of a development think-tank, a locus for learning and unlearning about development issues and engaging in policy advocacy.
2 Recommendation 2: Look for overarching focal issues around which to organize work and shed extraneous or small activities that are not part of the central focus. Human development should once again become the organizing principle for UNDP work in India.
3 Recommendation 3: Strengthen the capacity of the country office, while setting up strong and viable offices in each of the UNDAF states. Shift all field project activity to the relevant states.
4 Recommendation 4: Improve and strengthen monitoring and evaluation systems.
1. Recommendation: Recommendation 1: Shift the main focus of UNDP activities away from small projects upstream to become more of a development think-tank, a locus for learning and unlearning about development issues and engaging in policy advocacy.
Management Response:

Partially Agreed While we agree there is a need for upstream policy engagement, there needs to be a balance between project and policy work. This balance is required to ensure UNDP?s credibility with national partners and donors. This balance is also key to ensuring that UNDP?s policy work is not just based on academic research and analysis but rather on evidence derived from projects on the ground. The need for a balance between upstream policy work and project activities on the ground has been repeatedly stated by our counterparts as well, both in the CPAP MTR 2010 and during the ADR stakeholder workshop. Based on the current resource situation and fund raising climate, it is evident that the size and nature of some projects will be dependent on donor requirements.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Based on the findings of the CPAP MTR 2010 and discussions with the Government of India during the formulation of the CPD, a better balance between upstream policy work and projects has been embedded into the CPD (2013-17). In future, the prototype approach will be embedded in project design with a view to learning/unlearning and the potential of scaling up. CO Senior Management 2011/12 Completed We would like to emphasize again that the ADR falls short of adequately presenting a substantive assessment of development outcomes in India and making recommendations for future positioning of UNDP. However, the Evaluation Office, in its review of the new CPD, has acknowledged that all the main lessons learned from both the ADR and the outcome evaluations have been incorporated in the CPD, namely , greater strategic focus and emphasis on upstream policy work.
The new CPD has already made a marked shift towards being more strategic and focused, with fewer outcomes and outputs. It follows, that the CPAP under construction will also have fewer projects. Several of the new programme outcomes are cross-practice in nature, e.g. sustainable development, gender and inclusion. CO Senior Management 2011/12 Completed
The new Partnership Framework Agreement signed with the Government of India in March 2012 defines the new direction towards engaging on policy advocacy and cross-fertilization of knowledge and experience in the region CO Senior Management 2012/03 Completed
2. Recommendation: Recommendation 2: Look for overarching focal issues around which to organize work and shed extraneous or small activities that are not part of the central focus. Human development should once again become the organizing principle for UNDP work in India.
Management Response:

Agreed This was a finding of the CPAP MTR as well conducted in 2010 and has already been addressed in three ways mentioned below

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
A new long term programme on human development has been established with the National Planning Commission, based on the findings of the CPAP MTR 2010. CO Senior Management 2011/10 Completed
An international center for human development has been conceived of and designed in partnership with the Government of India. CO Senior Management 2013/12 Completed
The CPAP MTR 2010 had suggested using the HD framework as the overall organizing principle. Accordingly, the draft CPD (2013-17) states explicitly that the core thrust of UNDP will be ?just, sustainable human development with an increased focus on issues of greater equity, participation and empowerment of marginalized people (such as dalits, tribal groups, women, and populations affected by HIV/AIDS) to achieve lasting transformational change?. CO Senior Management 2011/12 Completed
3. Recommendation: Recommendation 3: Strengthen the capacity of the country office, while setting up strong and viable offices in each of the UNDAF states. Shift all field project activity to the relevant states.
Management Response:

Partially Agreed This recommendation reflects only a partial understanding of the functions performed by the central office and the state offices. Project activity, as mentioned in this recommendation, is undertaken with more than 15 central line ministries. Hence the critical importance of the central office. This recommendation also does not take into account the financial viability of the implementation of such a decentralized structure. UNDP has in fact been progressively increasing its state level presence over the past cycle, as funds permitted, as is evidenced by its current presence in three UNDAF states.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Given the shrinking core resources, this recommendation can be carried out only after a careful consideration of the current and future resource envelope, including the availability of a much larger management budget. Decisions will be taken after the new CPAP is signed off by the GoI CO Senior Management 2013/12 Completed
Given the logic of economies of scale and the centralized nature of control to ensure accountability and compliance, functions undertaken by the state offices can be done from the core team in the central office in a way that may be more efficient and cost effective. UNDP will operate in the focus states, through its system of state project offices as well as nodal UN agencies established by the UNCT to support implementation and monitoring of the UNDAF. Decisions will be taken after the new CPAP is signed off by the GoI CO Senior Management 2013/12 Completed
4. Recommendation: Recommendation 4: Improve and strengthen monitoring and evaluation systems.
Management Response:

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
As required specialized trainings will be provided to staff with increased emphasis on RBM and rsults monitoring CO SEnior Management No due date No deadline established
Special tools are used for closer delivery monitoring. Field level monitoring will be used more systematically. CO SEnior Management No due date No deadline established
Based on the M&E framework developed in the new draft CPD and the CPAP, the assurance function of the programme team will be strengthened with better results tracking and project monitoring system CO SEnior Management 2013/12 Completed
For the new CPAP -a detailed results monitoring plan will be developed and implemented in consultation with implementing partners CO Senior Management 2013/12 Completed
Moving away from quantitative indicators will require appropriate action on ERBM and ATLAS OSG 2013/12 Completed

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