Commissioning Unit: Independent Evaluation Office
Evaluation Plan: 2008-2009, Independent Evaluation Office
Evaluation Title: Assessment of Development Results: Uzbekistan
Evaluation Type: ADR
Unit Responsible for Providing Management Response: Uzbekistan

Recommendations

1.
 
Recommendation: Evaluation recommendation 1. In agreement with Government, focus the programme on a smaller number of strategic interventions where UNDP has clear comparative strengths, is able to offer long-term commitment and, through relevant partnerships, able to address the underlying issue in a comprehensive manner. Make efforts to ensure UNDP activities are in line with those set out in its strategic plan and are in areas where it has comparative strengths in Uzbekistan, while remaining responsive to national priorities. Where there is national demand for interventions outside these areas, UNDP should facilitate the development of partnerships between national and appropriate international organizations with relevant expertise-for example, through joint programming. Continue to build on the UNDP comparative strength of neutrality and long-term commitment to Uzbekistan's development. As an initial step, UNDP should work closely with the government to ensure that both comprehensive environmental concerns and risk analysis are adequately integrated into national development planning instruments.
Management Response: The Uzbekistan CO already began addressing this issue in 2008, when UNDP Uzbekistan's existing portfolio was reviewed with a view to consolidate activities, and close down projects. Some 15 projects were closed last year, and 5 more projects are to be closed by mid 2009. Secondly, implementation of this recommendation had already begun with the formulation of the Country Programme which involved close consultations with governments, national and international partners where UNDP Uzbekistan identified a key set of priority objectives and areas in keeping with its comparative advantage. The Country Programme Action Plan (CPAP) formulation exercise, along with regular CPAP reviews (see recommendation 7) will provide further opportunities for UNDP to focus on more strategic and programmatic interventions based on its comparative strengths. This process will include issues related to the integration of environmental concerns and risk analysis into national development planning instruments.
Key Actions:
Responsible DueDate Status Comments
1.1 CPD Formulation; CO in consultation with the RBEC and a range of partners. 2009/07 Completed
1.2. CPAP formulation CO in consultation with the RBEC and a range of partners. 2010/02 Completed Signed in February 2010
2.
 
Recommendation: Evaluation recommendation 2. Build on existing partnerships with international development partners but ensure that UNDP adds value to them beyond purely management arrangements. Incorporate human development approaches in the interventions of international partners, building on its focus and comparative strengths on promoting human development in Uzbekistan, especially at the local level. Implement joint programmes and other forms of collaboration with international partners, particularly with international financial institutions, where UNDP can play a role in ensuring that the most vulnerable and marginalized groups benefit from interventions.
Management Response: With limited number of international development partners at the country level, UNDP Uzbekistan clearly needs to build on and strengthen existing partnerships as well as identify new potential partners. Most UNDP interventions are designed with this in mind and partnerships have been established on a substantive basis with a range of international partners. Examples include the partnership with the European Commission (EC) in community-based local development programme (Enhancement of Living Standards projects), supporting the livestock sector's development in partnership with Israel, and support to the Government's macro-economic forecasting institute in close cooperation with the World Bank, GTZ, etc. With regard to going beyond fiduciary arrangements, this for example is being addressed in the area of HIV/AIDS. UNDP currently provides administrative support to the Global Fund (where Government is the Principle Recipient). UNDP through the CPAP formation process and at the strategic
Key Actions:
Responsible DueDate Status Comments
2.1 Start implementation of the Aid coordination project, HIV/AIDS project UNDP CO: Good Governance and Economic Governance Units 2010/04 Completed Aid Coordination project is launched. New project on HIV/AIDS (CAAP) launched.
2.2 Communication strategy is to be developed UNDP CO: Communications Specialist and Communication FPs from projects in consultation with CO Sr. Management 2009/07 Completed Communication strategy is developed and its implementation is ongoing
2.3 Resource mobilization strategy is to be developed UNDP CO: Programme Coordination Specialist, with Programme Colleagues and CO Sr. Management 2010/02 Completed Strategy is developed. Its implementation has started.
3.
 
Recommendation: Evaluation recommendation 3. Build on existing experience and relationships with local government and communities. Use UNDP's existing experience, strengths and proximity to local government (in the areas where UNDP works) as a base to strengthen and expand the existing frameworks for addressing rural issues in a comprehensive manner. In the context of changing aid environment and re-engagement of many donors, however, be more strategic in local interventions and in support of local government.
Management Response: Expanding UNDP activities in the regions and addressing rural issues in a more comprehensive manner is a key priority of UNDP's Country Programme and will be a key element of the CPAP formulation discussions. UNDP Uzbekistan has a strong comparative advantage vis-à-vis other international development partners with regard to experience in working in the regions in close collaboration with local authorities and communities. Currently, the main regions of UNDP interventions are Ferghana Valley, Kashkadarya and Karakalpakstan. UNDP will also be formulating a project on regional development as well as a project on Tuberculosis (working with local communities through a volunteer concept, looking at prevention, treatment and awareness raising).
Key Actions:
Responsible DueDate Status Comments
3.1 Communication strategy for 2009-2010 will focus on increasing of advocacy and promoting development agenda in the regions. Regional development will be a key theme for work advocacy in 2009. UNDP CO: Communications Specialist and Communication FPs from projects in consultation with CO Sr. Management 2010/02 Completed Communication strategy is developed. Workplan for 2010 is being implemented.
3.2 Implementation of current projects working in regions (e.g. Area Based Development programme, Enhancement of Living Standards projects covering 5 regions), and expansion of project activities into regions (e.g. Business Facilitation centre together with Chamber of Commerce, Legal Clinics, GEF small grants programme) UNDP CO: programme units No due date Ongoing with no Due Date
4.
 
Recommendation: Evaluation recommendation 4. Expand the role of UNDP in supporting government efforts at aid coordination. As a committed and neutral partner, UNDP is in a good position to support government aid coordination activities and ensure more effective use of external assistance. UNDP should play the leading role in supporting government coordination of aid at local level, linking to its support to better aid coordination in the centre. This includes donor coordination, facilitating partnerships and disseminating information about donor agencies and funding opportunities.
Management Response: UNDP Uzbekistan is currently formulating a programme with the Ministry of Finance (newly created department on Aid Coordination) on aid coordination that is aimed at strengthening the Government's capacity to coordinate the process of elaboration and implementation of technical assistance projects and to better align donor assistance with the government's reform priorities. This will result in improved external resources management, and effective use of foreign assistance in supporting development priorities of the country towards achievement nationalized MDGs.
Key Actions:
Responsible DueDate Status Comments
4.1 Formulation of programme on Aid Coordination UNDP CO: Economic Governance Unit 2009/07 Completed The project is launched, implementation is ongoing
5.
 
Recommendation: Evaluation recommendation 5. Strengthen UNDP support to capacity development in Uzbekistan through more rigorous and systematic application of corporate capacity development tools and approaches. Use needs and institutional assessments in all project preparations while ensuring that corporate tools are adapted to the specific context of Uzbekistan. Anchor UNDP capacity development interventions in existing institutions where appropriate to facilitate greater sustainability of results.
Management Response: Based on the recommendations of the ADR and a request from the Uzbekistan CO, a mission was undertaken by the Capacity Development Practice Leader and Policy Specialist from the Bratislava Regional Centre. A half-day training was organized for staff on the issue of capacity assessments. Secondly, the Enhancement of Living Standards/Area-Based Development (ELS-ABD) programme team with UNDP Regional Office and UNICEF has developed the capacity assessment questionnaire, is sharing it with local authorities, building up the capacity of the ELS-ABD team to administer the questionnaire, develop and implement a capacity response in 5 regions of Uzbekistan under the ELS-ABD.
Key Actions:
Responsible DueDate Status Comments
5.1 Briefing/training for staff on capacity assessment Bratislava Capacity Development Practice Leader and Policy Specialist 2009/07 Completed
5.2 Piloting capacity assessment in ELS Project ELS Programme Coordinator 2009/11 Completed
5.3 Ensuring the inclusion of capacity assessment of partner institutions during project formulation UNDP CO: programme units No due date Ongoing with no Due Date
6.
 
Recommendation: Evaluation recommendation 6. Ensure that mechanisms are in place to facilitate linkages between all direct interventions and decision makers. Ensure direct and explicit linkages with decision makers in all UNDP interventions. Lessons learned should feed into policy making and mechanisms should be put in place where necessary to facilitate such linkages. Moreover, such linkages will facilitate replication of successful interventions and scaling up across regions. At the same time it is necessary to strengthen evaluation in the country office to facilitate the learning process.
Management Response: UNDP Uzbekistan will continue its interventions both at macro and micro levels (pilot projects) ensuring their linkages and piloting of some initiatives at micro level for further replication more widely. One mechanism to ensure the linkage is the regular publication of Policy Briefs prepared by the CO, where experiences and lessons learned will feed into the policy recommendations that will be widely disseminated and discussed. In the new Country Programme cycle UNDP Uzbekistan will pay more attention to evaluation of projects and programmes to identify best practices and lessons learned and sharing obtained knowledge among projects and with development stakeholders.
Key Actions:
Responsible DueDate Status Comments
6.1 Evaluation plan for programmes and projects is to be regularly updated and its implementation is to be closely monitored. Participation of development stakeholders is to be ensured during evaluation exercises. Follow up actions on the recommendations made by the evaluators to be closely monitored. UNDP CO: Evaluation Focal point No due date Ongoing with no Due Date
6.2 Regular publication of Policy Briefs (3-5 a year) UNDP CO: all programme units No due date Ongoing with no Due Date
7.
 
Recommendation: Evaluation recommendation 7. Undertake annual CPAP reviews to increase transparency and facilitate greater stakeholder accountability of UNDP's activities in Uzbekistan. Ensure wide participation in annual reviews and greater participation of relevant government bodies in programming processes to ensure the transparency of decision making and use of resources.
Management Response: The necessity of regular reviews of CPAP is well understood especially in the conditions of global economic crises and rapidly changing environment. The annual reviews of CPAP for 2010-2015 are included in the Evaluation plan for the next programme cycle and particular attention will be paid to this issue.
Key Actions:
Responsible DueDate Status Comments
7.1 New CPAP for 2010-2015 reviews are to be made on an annual basis where national ownership is to be promoted UNDP CO: DRR, ARR (P) 2010/12 Completed Ongoing process of CPAP annual review
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