Final Evaluation: Clearing for Results Phase 3: Mine Action for Human Development Project

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Evaluation Plan:
2019-2023, Cambodia
Evaluation Type:
Final Project
Planned End Date:
12/2019
Completion Date:
12/2019
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
30,000

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Title Final Evaluation: Clearing for Results Phase 3: Mine Action for Human Development Project
Atlas Project Number: 00090541
Evaluation Plan: 2019-2023, Cambodia
Evaluation Type: Final Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 12/2019
Planned End Date: 12/2019
Management Response: Yes
UNDP Signature Solution:
  • 1. Poverty
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021)
  • 1. Output 1.1.2 Marginalised groups, particularly the poor, women, people with disabilities and displaced are empowered to gain universal access to basic services and financial and non-financial assets to build productive capacities and benefit from sustainable livelihoods and jobs
SDG Goal
  • Goal 1. End poverty in all its forms everywhere
SDG Target
  • 1.1 By 2030, eradicate extreme poverty for all people everywhere, currently measured as people living on less than $1.25 a day
  • 1.4 By 2030, ensure that all men and women, in particular the poor and the vulnerable, have equal rights to economic resources, as well as access to basic services, ownership and control over land and other forms of property, inheritance, natural resources, appropriate new technology and financial services, including microfinance
Evaluation Budget(US $): 30,000
Source of Funding: Project fund
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 20,000
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Colleen McGinn International Consultant colleenmcginn@hotmail.com
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders:
Countries: CAMBODIA
Lessons
Findings
1.

Chapter Three: Findings

The Findings chapter focuses first on the overarching themes concerning capacity building, management support, gender/social inclusiveness mainstreaming, and sustainable development linkages. All of these topics relate directly to the program’s overall output and indicator, but do not fall precisely into its Key Deliverables and associated activities. After this overview, findings from each of the program’s Key Deliverables are discussed in turn.

Output 1.5: Institutional measures are in place to strengthen the contribution of the national mine action programme to the human development of poor communities

CPD Indicator 1.5.1: The extent to which mechanisms measure and facilitate the development impact of mine action 

Capacity building. CfR  provides extensive capacity building support to the CMAA on a wide range of topics, ranging from procurement and other administrative matters to technical assistance on landmine clearance and special topics. Support encompasses formal trainings, advisors, and funding to cover the direct costs of internal meetings, coordination, and CMAA’s in-house trainings led by national actors. There is also a good deal of ongoing mentoring and coaching. Capacity building involves both national and sub-national officials, such as MAPU representatives.  

Capacity building efforts are widely welcomed by most stakeholders; indeed, most see it as key to the Cambodian mine action sector’s success and stability. Unfortunately, due a vague logframe – and a perhaps deliberate decision to keep capacity building flexible and responsive – there are no explicit aims or strategies. The lack of benchmarks, however, compromises the evaluability of these efforts, as it is extremely difficult to gauge the results of the capacity building efforts based solely on the existing documentation and interview data. Nevertheless, stakeholders speak highly of capacity-building support, and monitoring reports document various meetings and trainings. 

The last capacity needs assessment is too outdated to be useful, and despite stakeholders’ enthusiasm for capacity building there are very diverse opinions on what the fundamental needs and priorities are. The most frequent themes, however, include: 

- High government staff turnover compromises the sustainability of capacity-building efforts;

- High need for training/oversight on finance, administration, management, and reporting skills;

- High need for capacity building at the sub-national level;

- Lack of high-level data analysis skills within the Cambodian human resources base;

- Difficulty recruiting and retaining qualified personnel due to low government salaries;

- Relatively low need for training on landmine technical operations insofar as the mine action sector in Cambodia is mature.  

Cambodia’s mine action sector is making incremental progress toward greater independence from international funding, particularly as some development partners may exit the after 2025. In this context, a coherent strategy is essential to ensure that CMAA is equipped to reduce its reliance on international advisors and funding. At time of writing, UNDP has commissioned a formal capacity needs assessment. The Evaluator strongly agrees this assessment is needed and timely, and further argues that the CfRiv program should clearly articulate aims – and targets – for capacity building. 


Tag: Mine Action Effectiveness Efficiency Human and Financial resources Monitoring and Evaluation Project and Programme management Quality Assurance Results-Based Management Strategic Positioning Humanitarian development nexus Capacity Building

2.

Chapter 3 Findings

CfRiii Output 1.5: Institutional measures are in place to strengthen the contribution of the national mine action programme to the human development of poor communities

CfRiii CPD Indicator 1.5.1: The extent to which mechanisms measure and facilitate the development impact of mine action 

Gender and Social Inclusion. CfR places a high priority on gender mainstreaming, and has made important progress in this regard. A Gender Action Plan is in place (and has been separately, and independently evaluated), and gender has been mainstreamed in several key points across CfR including human resources, community outreach, and data disaggregation. Overall, CfR appears to be is aiming to achieve gender sensitivity (as defined in the table below). Table 2: Levels of Gender and Social Inclusion (GSI) Mainstreaming (derived from Plan International 2018). 

Nationally, women constitute 38% of civil servants in Cambodia (Ministry of Civil Service 2016, as cited by Chhuon 2016), but they only constitute 20% of officials trained in CMAA during 2018- 2019 (see Annex Nine for a table of training data). There have been concerted efforts within CfR to ensure that community-level data is fully disaggregated, human resource policies are sensitive to women’s concerns, women are included in community-level outreach and committees, a Gender Focal Point has been appointed, and gender is mainstreamed by operators as well as CMAA. However, gender mainstreaming is within the mine action sector is still in the nascent phases and has not yet matured. Landmine clearance is a very specific and targeted topic, with its purpose focused on the single humanitarian imperative of making Cambodia safe from landmines.

While the program includes extensive community outreach, it does not aim to transform social relations or underlying drivers of inequality. It instead focuses on an enabling condition for development programs which are best addressed by others. Given the scope and purpose of landmine operations in Cambodia, the Evaluator agrees that it is important to fully ensure that the program is gender sensitive, but not re-frame the program in a way that changes its focus or premise. That said, the evaluator concurs with the interviewee who admitted, “Gender is a bit of an add-on.” Most interviewees considered disaggregated data, female presence in community meetings, occasional staff gender trainings, and/or the existence of a Gender Focal Point to be enough. Many made comments along the lines of the one who declared, “Gender? It doesn’t matter if a landmine blows off the leg of a man or a woman. Landmines do not discriminate.” The Evaluator concludes that CfR has laid an important foundation for integrating gender in the mine action sector, but results are nascent and superficial at this time. CfR in encouraged to strengthen its work in this regard. 

Current trends in gender and social inclusion (GSI) mainstreaming emphasize two points that are largely absent from CfR’s gender mainstreaming efforts. The first is that gender is not simply “women’s issues” but addresses distinct and differentiated vulnerability and impact among both men and women. In the mine sector, men may even be more vulnerable in some regards: for example, young men are most likely to venture into risky forest areas, and thus are most likely to be injured or killed. Secondly, global gender mainstreaming trends increasingly emphasize intersectionality, i.e., diverse, drivers of inequality and marginalization including age, disability, ethnicity, and poverty. While it is perhaps too early to expect CMAA to embrace the full spectrum of gender and social inclusion, the landmine sector is an obvious entry point to better address disability. This may include: collecting data on disabled beneficiaries, cultivating leadership and decision-making by disabled persons, ensuring that the CMAA workplace is accessible, strengthening victim assistance services, and/or structuring the program to ensure that disabled people fully benefit from the program’s benefits. This evaluation encourages CfR to think more broadly about what it seeks to achieve within gender mainstreaming, including to frankly articulate what constitutes sufficient mainstreaming for this sector and to set clear priorities and targets accordingly. It also encourages CfR to consider a more nuanced approach to gender and social inclusion, and specifically to take a leadership role in mainstreaming disability within Cambodian government agencies. 


Tag: Vulnerable Effectiveness Gender Equality Gender Mainstreaming Women's Empowerment Programme Synergy Disabilities Inclusive economic growth Social Protection Data and Statistics

3.

Key Deliverable 1: Mine action policies and strategic frameworks are aligned to national and subnational sectorial policies and planning strategies and attached to pro-poor facilities.

Activity 1.1: Develop a National Mine Action Strategy for 2017-2025 that will align Cambodia to the Maputo +15 declaration 

Cambodia’s National Mine Action Strategy (NMAS) is designed provide an organizing framework for landmine action in Cambodia, and bring it into alignment with international standards, particularly the Maputo +15 Declaration. Supporting the NMAS was a major focus of CfRiii. The Maputo Declaration on the “Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on their Destruction” was established in 1999, consisting of commitments to achieve a mine-free world and pursue a comprehensive approach to mine victim assistance. By 2014, thirty of the 161 States that had committed to the 1999 Convention had achieved clearance of all mined areas. In June 2014, the “Third Review Conference of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on their Destruction” was held to review the challenges in achieving the 1999 Convention. This meeting resulted in the development of the Maputo +15 Declaration. The Declaration identifies the following goals to be met “to the fullest extent possible” by 2025 through cooperation and partnership:  

- Fulfill obligations to destroy all stockpiled anti-personnel mines and clear all mined areas;

- Ensure compliance with the Convention’s prohibitions on the use, stockpiling, production and transfer of anti-personnel mines;  

- Promote universal observance of the Convention’s norms, condemn the use of antipersonnel mines by any actor, and work to prevent any future use;

- Increase efforts to address the needs of mine victims and achieve their full, equal and effective participation in society;

- Ensure the involvement of mine victims in achieving the Convention;

- Strengthen national ownership and capacity, enhance cooperation and establish partnerships for completion; and

- Spare no efforts until the main object and purpose of the Convention are fully materialized. 

The supporting Maputo Action Plan lays out a roadmap and mechanisms for progressing toward these goals between 2014-2019. 

Cambodia’s latest landmine policy iteration is the National Mine Action Strategy (NMAS) 2018-2025. The NMAS was developed to guide the sector to achieve the following vision: “Cambodia is mine free and the threat of explosive remnants of war is minimized, and human and socio-economic development takes place safely.” The NMAS consists of 8 strategic goals, 27 objectives and associated strategies. Review of the document confirms that it is in alignment with the Maputo +15 declaration. While the NMAS spans a broad scope, many CfRiii stakeholders are especially focused on Goal 1 (release all known landmine contaminated areas by 2025); other priorities include “contribute to economic development, national capacity to address post-2025 residual threats, and information management.” The NMAS is comprehensive and clear, identifying specific goals and priorities, as well as practical matters such as mobilizing resources, monitoring and evaluation, and an implementation plan.  

CfRiii especially contributes to the following four goals of the National Mine Action Strategy 2010 - 2019 (NMAS): - Reducing Mine/ERW casualties; - Contributing to economic growth and poverty reduction; - Ensuring sustainable national capacity to address residual contamination; and - Promoting stability and regional & international disarmament. 

Development of the NMAS has by all accounts been strong, sound, and nationally driven. Cambodian nationals involved in the document expressed pride in both the process and the final product, and asserted that they were able to spearhead the process rather than rely on international consultants. As one explained, “CMAA argued can do the NMAS themselves… So we did not hire international consultants, but instead, rely on the in-house staff from CMAA. I am really proud of this, they did it without hiring anyone else.” There was wide consultation, and while that slowed progress, it increased enthusiasm, buy-in, and ownership. The landmine sector enjoys the highest level of political support in Cambodia, and clearing landmines is a government priority. Evidence of this includes the fact that Prime Minister Hun Sen personally presides over CMAA, alongside the government’s contribution to 10% of CfRiii’s budget (including tax exemption to projects implemented by national operators). 

The NMAS document acknowledges that “the nature of [landmine] contamination is very complex. The Cambodian mine action sector is reasonably optimistic that it is capable of removing landmines from all known contaminated areas by 2025” (p. 6). While the sector may be capable of meeting the Maputo target, it is evident that this is neither a realistic nor reliable planning target. The 2025 goal should be considered aspirational. Meeting the target is certainly possible, but it is not probable. To do so would require a considerable increase in funding and manpower, and there are indeed efforts underway to mobilize that. It is also tempting to assume that since past targets have been exceeded, the remaining contaminated areas can be released at a similarly efficient rate. This is not necessarily the case. Landmine clearance priorities have sensibly prioritized settled and agricultural areas. However, as Cambodia’s progress continues, it is increasingly the case that remaining known landmines are in remote areas and difficult terrain like mountains or dense forest. Operators cannot remove landmines in these locations at the same pace (or budget, for that matter). As one explained, “CMAA is talking about partnering with the army for another 2000 soldiers. That’s great, we need boots on the ground. Fine. But we do need to calculate the clearance rate based on the task ahead, not the past rate which was in places that were easier to work in.” 


Tag: Environmental impact assessment Coherence Partnership Policies & Procedures

4.

Key Deliverable 2: A CMAA mine action programme performance monitoring system exists that delivers quality evidence on sustainable development outcome/impact

Activity 2.1. Establish a CMAA mine action programme performance monitoring system that links human development and mine action

Activity 2.2. Training of Trainers (ToT) for the collection and reporting of the new set of indicators for the mine action sector

Activity 2.3. Strengthen the CMAA’s international and national participation in relevant fora. 

UNDP and RGC are strongly committed to information management. There are two significant parallel workstreams: the Performance Monitoring System (PMS), which is a new initiative and Key Deliverable 2 under CfRiii to collect data which systematically demonstrates the socioeconomic development impact of landmine clearance. It aims to complement the national database (established in 2007), which focuses on tracking key data related to the mine sector (i.e., mapping minefield locations, casualties, land releases). While the longstanding national database is not a focus of the CfRiii program, it is an important backdrop to consider when assessing the PMS. 

The national database is a longstanding initiative within CMAA, and is the repository for mine action data nationwide. Key sources of data include the MAPUs and the mine operators. The national database generates national maps, provides decision-makers with critical data, and documents Cambodia’s progress towards ridding the country of landmines and UXOs. Involved stakeholders indicate that shepherding the national database is a large ongoing effort that poses few surprises, but also many challenges. For example, operators report that the official data is sometimes inconsistent with current field-level evidence. This is unsurprising, especially given Cambodia’s history and long periods of time since baseline data collection. Inconsistency should be interpreted as an acknowledgement of very real (and expected) challenges rather than as a criticism or shortcoming per se. Secondly, while a great deal of information is collected, data analysis is challenging and there are important capacity gaps.


Tag: Coherence Effectiveness Monitoring and Evaluation Donor Humanitarian development nexus Technology Data and Statistics

5.

(CONTINUATION)

Key Deliverable 2: A CMAA mine action programme performance monitoring system exists that delivers quality evidence on sustainable development outcome/impact

Activity 2.1. Establish a CMAA mine action programme performance monitoring system that links human development and mine action

Activity 2.2. Training of Trainers (ToT) for the collection and reporting of the new set of indicators for the mine action sector

Activity 2.3. Strengthen the CMAA’s international and national participation in relevant fora. 

The PMS may be ambitious to a fault, and the Evaluator’s preliminary assessment is that it is unlikely to be fully utilized, nor will it be sustainable without considerable ongoing technical and financial support and a clearer vision of what reports will be written and for (and by) who. Some of the manifest and potential challenges include:

 - A long history in Cambodia of government agencies collecting voluminous amounts of data but not analyzing or applying it;

- Limited capacity within Cambodia for the necessary kind of incisive, high-level statistical analysis;

- Assumptions in PMS documents that the target of removing landmines by 2025 is within reach, and therefore intensive data collection/analysis is warranted insofar that it is only short-term;

- Cost of ongoing data collection are high and unlikely to be feasible without international subsidies. For example, qualified personnel (currently funded by CfR) earn more than civil servants, and the government will not be able to recruit and retain skilled statisticians at standard rates;

- Risk of resources being drawn away from the national database (which tracks action within the mine sector) toward the PMS (which tracks development impact beyond mine sector operations);

- Lack of statistical rigor, as the PMS is dated on an intentional decision to collect “good enough” data through MAPU consultations with communities;

- Analytical complexities, since while local people are obviously the experts of their own communities, they typically do not report quantitative data with precision. In otherwords, community-level data appears quantitative but should be interpreted with a qualitative lens;

- Duplication of efforts, as some operators who are already collecting extensive socioeconomic data reportedly only forward mine-sector data to the national database (which is backlogged); - Lack of clarity about who will analyze the data, when (e.g., annual versus one-off reports), or what kinds of papers will be written, by who, and for who.  


Tag: Challenges Sustainability Human and Financial resources Knowledge management Monitoring and Evaluation Data and Statistics

6.

Key Deliverable 3: A minimum of 27 km2 of the total mine/ERW contaminated areas located in the most affected and poorest provinces are impact-free  

The raison d'être of the CfRiii program is to remove Cambodia’s remaining landmines; this Key Deliverable was the overwhelming focus of the sector (and budget). Cambodia’s landmine removal operations are mature, and have progressed at a brisk pace (see maps below). 

Many stakeholders are very proud of their work, and justifiably so. Indeed, targets under CfRiii have been exceeded, and expenses have been contained to well below international norms. These are laudable accomplishments and underscore that CfRiii has been a strong and sound program. It is not, however, without its disagreements and debates. The following discussion will touch upon some of the topics of interest within mine clearance operations, with an aim toward identifying how to make a sound program better. 

Prioritization. Operators cannot be everywhere at once, and so some areas must necessarily be prioritized for mine clearance while others fall back in the queue. Which ones are prioritized for immediate action is one of the most controversial debates within Cambodia’s landmine sector.


Tag: Agriculture Vulnerable Environmental impact assessment Effectiveness Efficiency Humanitarian development nexus Poverty Reduction

7.

Key Deliverable 3: A minimum of 27 km2 of the total mine/ERW contaminated areas located in the most affected and poorest provinces are impact-free  (CONTINUATION)

Efficiency and Cost-Effectiveness. CfRiii – and the landmine sector overall in Cambodia – has a reputation for being exceptionally efficient and cost-effective. The program has exceeded its target for landmine clearance, and the cost of clearing a square meter is held to be well below  international norms. Reasons given for cost savings typically include a competitive bidding process and releasing land based on non-technical surveys (which are vastly cheaper than full clearance operations). There are also subsidies to the sector which do not figure into the accounting books. The latter two reasons are the most compelling.

Although cost-effectiveness is a point of pride among many stakeholders, the Evaluator cautions against over-confidence and some stakeholders can cite very specific inefficiencies. It is outside the scope of this evaluation to investigate and re-calculate the true cost of landmine clearance per square meter in a way that fully accounts for these points, but cumulatively they flag confounding variables which deflate the calculated price of landmine clearance in Cambodia. There is little incentive for internal stakeholders to challenge the numbers demonstrating cost-effectiveness. Moreover, CfRiii is a mature program which is operating under UNDP fiduciary standards. Nevertheless, this Evaluator recommends that stakeholders take a more critical view of whether, how, and why the program is cost-effective, and explore opportunities to improve efficiency. Indeed, some donors are choosing to directly fund landmine operators directly rather than via CfRiii, and inefficiencies (whether real or perceived) are a major reason why they do that.


Tag: Effectiveness Efficiency

8.

Key Deliverable 3: A minimum of 27 km2 of the total mine/ERW contaminated areas located in the most affected and poorest provinces are impact-free  (CONTINUATION)

Community Outreach and Support: Landmine Education and Victim Assistance. CfRiii’s project document lumps all field-level operations under Key Deliverable 3, with a single meaningful metric: km2 cleared. In fact, field-level operations include a broad range of community consultation, outreach, and education, and they offer some victim assistance as well. These important tasks are poorly illuminated by the current logframe and reporting systems, however. It is therefore difficult to confidently gauge the results of this important work. Going forward, CfR is encouraged to ‘unpack’ Key Deliverable 3 to more explicitly include the community outreach and assistance components of field-level operations (and perhaps categorize under capacity building). Results based on qualitative insight are presented here. 

Operators liaise extensively with MAPUs and villagers about their work. FGDs across all three provinces expressed praise and gratitude to the operators, and there were no reported cases of misconduct. Indeed, the villagers welcome both their demining services as well as the influx of resources they bring (e.g., opportunities to earn money by providing them with food, lodging, etc.) Villagers in all FGDs had benefited directly from landmine education. In all cases, they could explain exactly what should be done if they encountered an actual or suspected minefield. They correctly answered all questions about how to report the landmine, what to do to keep themselves safe, and how to mark the location so that operators could find it and other villagers could protect themselves. Although FGDs are not the best forum to confirm actual behavior change, it is nevertheless promising that villagers can so confidently explain how they differently dealt with landmines in the past (e.g., by burning or burying them), whereas now they know to new behaviors (e.g., marking sites, retreating, and reporting to MAPU authorities). They also confirm that if an operator is in the vicinity, a reported landmine is investigated promptly. Landmine education is an important benefit of the CfR program, and should be better highlighted as an explicit aim rather than simply ‘buried’ under the operations Key Deliverable. CMAA is also committed to Victim Assistance, although again this component is not emphasized in the CfR project documents, and therefore its results are not adequately tracked. This component of the program appears to be weak and focused on immediate medical emergencies rather than sustained assistance to disabled individuals and their families. In Phnom Penh, stakeholders pointed to how demining vehicles can be used as field-level ambulances. However, in the villages people aid that in an emergency a person is taken to hospital by the nearest possible vehicle; it is absurd to think that they would contact a MAPU official to contact an operator working elsewhere in the district. The FGDs included several amputees, and many others who had disabled household members. None were familiar with any services provided or facilitated by CMAA Victim Services, and none reported any technical/vocational education and training (TVET) or other services for the disabled in the area. Although Victim Assistance is not a focus of CfR per se, it is noted that there are clearly lost opportunities to address this important aspect within Cambodia’s landmine sector, and bring it up to international standards (see Lebowitz 2011) and in alignment with the Maputo +15 declaration. KOICA has reportedly also noted this gap and is poised to finance it. CfR and CMAA should seize this opportunity. 


Tag: Agriculture Forestry Vulnerable Environmental impact assessment Effectiveness Impact Rule of law Disabilities Education

Recommendations
1

CfRIV’s logframe should be more straightforward, precise, and oriented toward results (rather than activities). The logframe should ‘unpack’ different components and frame benchmarks more precisely and place elements within a results chain. Monitoring report templates should be more detailed, and the program should track progress towards all logframe indicators in a single file which is updated periodically.

2

CfR should better articulate the purpose of participating in international fora.  It should distinguish between educating officials from disseminating best practices and lessons learned from the Cambodia experience. If the latter is indeed a major aim, then a more comprehensive course of action should be pursued.

3

This evaluation strongly endorses CfR’s current effort to conduct a broad-based capacity building needs assessment. CfR is also encouraged to develop a flexible yet coherent capacity-building strategy. This strategy should clearly distinguish between topics (e.g., landmine technical support, financial management, reporting, gender, data analysis, etc), and between national and sub-national levels.

4

CfR should retain its focus, precisely because it is both exceptional and critical. Although there may be lost opportunities for enhancing landmine clearance-to-development pathways, CfR (and the landmine sector) should not redirect resources nor seek to implement development programs. They should, however, pro-actively seek and welcome other agencies who may be poised to more directly catalyze synergies. UNDP’s move toward area-based programming is likely to facilitate this, and so should be encouraged.

5

CfR should build on its foundation for gender mainstreaming and consider ways to strengthen and nuance the approach. CfR should also consider lost opportunities for mainstreaming disability and other social inclusion topics.

6

Cambodia’s goal of clearing known landmines by 2025 is aspirational and should be recognized as such. Stakeholders in Cambodia’s landmine sector premise their operational plans on realistic projections about remaining landmine contamination in Cambodia. Stakeholders should not assume that the 2025 target will be met.

7

The PMS is still nascent, and thus now is precisely the right time to review and course-correct if necessary. Decision-makers should realistically assess how sustainable and practical the PMS is, whether it may ultimately ‘poach’ resources from the mine action national database and identify opportunities to enhance linkages with development agencies. CfR management should define what deliverables or other knowledge products are expected to be prepared and when, and plan accordingly.

8

CfRIII should be congratulated for its impressive results, while seeking improvement to further improve effectiveness and efficiency.  For example, exceeding targets partially reflects that many suspicious areas do not pose current risk, and so can be released via non-technical survey.

9

CfR senior management should continue to seek opportunities to improve efficiency in landmine clearance. The evaluation encourages continued use of non-technical surveys and other means to improve efficiency. CMAA should maintain a high standard of quality assurance to ensure no risk of mine accidents.

10

This evaluation endorses the current approach to prioritize areas according to development priorities (i.e., settlements, agricultural areas, concentration of identified poor, etc).  The chief reasons are that villagers in FGDs unanimously endorsed this approach, and the sector’s environmental safeguards need to be strengthened before any shift in emphasis to sensitive habitats. Objections to current prioritization are nevertheless valid.

11

This evaluation endorses the Mine-Free Village Strategy. It makes no sense to leave possible ‘pockets’ of contamination, which introduces inefficiencies over the long-term. Moreover, the Mine-Free Village Strategy presents many development benefits, including psychological relief and improved land values.

12

Not all suspected minefield sites currently pose risks. This evaluation strongly calls for continued use of non-technical surveys to release land identified as contaminated, but which does not currently pose risks.

13

A number of institutions in the mine action sector – including the operators – are engaged in community outreach and landmine education activities.  However, these efforts are not included in CfR’s logframe or monitoring.  Going forward, CfR should ‘unpack’ Key Deliverable 3 to more explicitly address and follow community outreach and landmine education conducted by the operators that it funds.

14

CfR and/or CMAA should pro-actively identify opportunities to improve victim assistance and disability services. One of CfRIV donors has expressed interest in financing this unmet need and this should be encouraged.

15

CfR should liaise with the Apsara Authority in regard to safeguarding potential archeological sites, and operators should put strict controls on equipment.  Any broken or outdated equipment should be securely discarded so as to not fall into the hands of looters.

16

CfR should continue to take measures to safeguard against inadvertently contributing to land conflicts or disputes. Post-clearance monitoring of land use and tenure is also important and should be continued.

1. Recommendation:

CfRIV’s logframe should be more straightforward, precise, and oriented toward results (rather than activities). The logframe should ‘unpack’ different components and frame benchmarks more precisely and place elements within a results chain. Monitoring report templates should be more detailed, and the program should track progress towards all logframe indicators in a single file which is updated periodically.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Engage internal UNDP M&E department to update CfRIV logframe.
[Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/25]
CfRIV Project team 2020/10 Completed CfRIV project team has updated CfRIV logframe in June 2020. History
2. Recommendation:

CfR should better articulate the purpose of participating in international fora.  It should distinguish between educating officials from disseminating best practices and lessons learned from the Cambodia experience. If the latter is indeed a major aim, then a more comprehensive course of action should be pursued.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agree

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Mention more specific results in sharing information with other member states, lessons learned. Specify actions for learning at the forum, and actions for sharing Cambodian best practices. Work with UNDP M&E department to develop indicators to monitor results from attending international fora.
[Added: 2020/08/07]
CMAA 2020/12 Overdue-Not Initiated With support from CfRIV Project team, CMAA will develop indicators to monitor results from attending international fora.
3. Recommendation:

This evaluation strongly endorses CfR’s current effort to conduct a broad-based capacity building needs assessment. CfR is also encouraged to develop a flexible yet coherent capacity-building strategy. This strategy should clearly distinguish between topics (e.g., landmine technical support, financial management, reporting, gender, data analysis, etc), and between national and sub-national levels.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Capacity building will be addressed in the management response to CDNA recommendations.
[Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/25]
CMAA/CfRIV project team 2020/10 Completed CMAA and CfRIV project team has finalized management response to CDNA recommendations in Jun 2020 History
4. Recommendation:

CfR should retain its focus, precisely because it is both exceptional and critical. Although there may be lost opportunities for enhancing landmine clearance-to-development pathways, CfR (and the landmine sector) should not redirect resources nor seek to implement development programs. They should, however, pro-actively seek and welcome other agencies who may be poised to more directly catalyze synergies. UNDP’s move toward area-based programming is likely to facilitate this, and so should be encouraged.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
CfRIV will continue to maintain its focus on mine clearance and capacity development of CMAA. As recommended by CDNA, CMAA with support from CfRIV will establish Coordinator position at MAPU office in BTB, BMC and PLN to provide referral pathways for post-clearance development in villages receiving mine clearance intervention. The development of this capacity will be addressed in the management response to CDNA recommendations.
[Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/25]
CMAA/CfRIV project team 2020/10 Completed CMAA and CfRIV project team has finalized management response to CDNA recommendations in Jun 2020 History
5. Recommendation:

CfR should build on its foundation for gender mainstreaming and consider ways to strengthen and nuance the approach. CfR should also consider lost opportunities for mainstreaming disability and other social inclusion topics.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Action plan to support and engage with gender mainstreaming is included in the CfRIV 2020 work plan. Based on GICHD Gender and Diversity Baseline Assessment in 2019, CfRIV will recruit a gender consultant who will provide technical training in gender analysis, planning, monitoring, and communication.
[Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/25]
CMAA with support from CfRIV project team 2020/10 Completed Gender assessment completed and management response to assessment recommendations developed. History
6. Recommendation:

Cambodia’s goal of clearing known landmines by 2025 is aspirational and should be recognized as such. Stakeholders in Cambodia’s landmine sector premise their operational plans on realistic projections about remaining landmine contamination in Cambodia. Stakeholders should not assume that the 2025 target will be met.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Diagreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
NA
[Added: 2020/08/07]
CMAA 2020/06 No Longer Applicable [Justification: This does not sound like a recommendation for action. CMAA is confident that the mine-free Cambodia by 2025 is achievable provided that: • The sector receives the amount of funding as stated in the NMAS, • 2,000 deminers from RCA are trained and equipped to do humanitarian demining as plan, • Current land release methodologies are improved. ]
7. Recommendation:

The PMS is still nascent, and thus now is precisely the right time to review and course-correct if necessary. Decision-makers should realistically assess how sustainable and practical the PMS is, whether it may ultimately ‘poach’ resources from the mine action national database and identify opportunities to enhance linkages with development agencies. CfR management should define what deliverables or other knowledge products are expected to be prepared and when, and plan accordingly.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
PMS aims to measure sector outputs and outcomes. Output matrix is used to collect data to measure the outputs and outcome matrix is used to collect data to measure the outcomes. CMAA will continue to collect data to measure outputs and will stop measuring outcomes when quality evidence of mine action contributions is available to present to development partners.
[Added: 2020/08/07]
CMAA 2021/12 Initiated Note: Cambodia is obliged to clear all known mined areas from its territory. It is anecdotal that mine clearance contributes in many ways (save lives, improve livelihood of affected communities and support development)
8. Recommendation:

CfRIII should be congratulated for its impressive results, while seeking improvement to further improve effectiveness and efficiency.  For example, exceeding targets partially reflects that many suspicious areas do not pose current risk, and so can be released via non-technical survey.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
CfRIV will continue to conduct land reclamation non-technical surveys (LRNTS) in its target villages to release land requiring no technical intervention (TS and/or clearance).
[Added: 2020/08/07]
CMAA/CfRIV project team 2021/12 Initiated CMAA/ CfRIV project team will continue to ensure that mined land/minefield requiring no technical intervention (TS and clearance) can be released to C1.
9. Recommendation:

CfR senior management should continue to seek opportunities to improve efficiency in landmine clearance. The evaluation encourages continued use of non-technical surveys and other means to improve efficiency. CMAA should maintain a high standard of quality assurance to ensure no risk of mine accidents.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Same as #8
[Added: 2020/08/07]
CMAA/CfRIV project team 2021/12 Initiated
10. Recommendation:

This evaluation endorses the current approach to prioritize areas according to development priorities (i.e., settlements, agricultural areas, concentration of identified poor, etc).  The chief reasons are that villagers in FGDs unanimously endorsed this approach, and the sector’s environmental safeguards need to be strengthened before any shift in emphasis to sensitive habitats. Objections to current prioritization are nevertheless valid.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
We believe that high density minefields should not be the deciding factor for clearance prioritization. Mine action is more than the removal of mines themselves from the ground. It is about addressing the needs and priorities of the affected communities. This approach is in line with ‘needs-driven, people-centered’ principles. CMAA will continue to apply the current approach to prioritization.
[Added: 2020/08/07]
CMAA 2020/12 Overdue-Initiated The current planning and prioritization is being applied.
11. Recommendation:

This evaluation endorses the Mine-Free Village Strategy. It makes no sense to leave possible ‘pockets’ of contamination, which introduces inefficiencies over the long-term. Moreover, the Mine-Free Village Strategy presents many development benefits, including psychological relief and improved land values.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
The project will continue to implement mine-free village strategy initiated in 2018. A procedure to implement the mine-free village strategy has been drafted and presented to CMAA management in August 2019. The CMAA will accelerate the introduction of mine-free village procedure in the sector.
[Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/25]
CMAA 2020/10 Completed MRE component of the project has been finalized in consultation with CMAA and KOICA History
12. Recommendation:

Not all suspected minefield sites currently pose risks. This evaluation strongly calls for continued use of non-technical surveys to release land identified as contaminated, but which does not currently pose risks.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Same as #8
[Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/25]
CMAA and CfRIV project team 2021/12 Completed VA component of the project has been finalized in consultation with CMAA and KOICA. History
13. Recommendation:

A number of institutions in the mine action sector – including the operators – are engaged in community outreach and landmine education activities.  However, these efforts are not included in CfR’s logframe or monitoring.  Going forward, CfR should ‘unpack’ Key Deliverable 3 to more explicitly address and follow community outreach and landmine education conducted by the operators that it funds.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Partially agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
CfRIV will mainly focus its efforts on clearance activities to enable Cambodia to achieve its 2025 target. However, as per CfRIV donor requests, CfRIV will support some MRE activities. This will include training community leaders and police officers in high-risk communities in the targeted provinces. The number of beneficiaries of the mine risk education component of CfRIV will be recorded and reported in project quarterly and annual reports.
[Added: 2020/08/07]
CfRIV project team 2020/12 Overdue-Initiated Workplan 2021 is on discussion with CMAA MRE department as well as KOICA.
14. Recommendation:

CfR and/or CMAA should pro-actively identify opportunities to improve victim assistance and disability services. One of CfRIV donors has expressed interest in financing this unmet need and this should be encouraged.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
CfRIV team will work closely with CMAA Victim Assistance department as well as KOICA to discuss detailed workplan for 2021. More detailed VA activities and the work plan 2021 will be discussed in 2020.
[Added: 2020/08/07]
CMAA with support from CfRIV project team 2020/12 Overdue-Initiated Workplan 2021 is on discussion with CMAA VA department as well as KOICA.
15. Recommendation:

CfR should liaise with the Apsara Authority in regard to safeguarding potential archeological sites, and operators should put strict controls on equipment.  Any broken or outdated equipment should be securely discarded so as to not fall into the hands of looters.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Disagreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
NA
[Added: 2020/08/07]
NA 2020/06 No Longer Applicable [Justification: There is no known archaeological site in CfRIV target villages. The safeguarding of potential archaeological sites is under the responsibility of Apsara authority and CMAA has no authority to control equipment of operators. ]
16. Recommendation:

CfR should continue to take measures to safeguard against inadvertently contributing to land conflicts or disputes. Post-clearance monitoring of land use and tenure is also important and should be continued.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/11/11]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
CMAA will continue to ensure that post-clearance monitoring (PCM) by MAPU is conducted every year to detect any land conflicts or disputes.
[Added: 2020/08/07]
CMAA 2020/12 Overdue-Initiated MAPU is conducting PCM every year.

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