Outcome Evaluation of UNDP Governance, Crisis Prevention and Recovery, and Poverty Reduction Initiatives in Iraq

Report Cover Image
Evaluation Plan:
2007-2010, Iraq
Evaluation Type:
Outcome
Planned End Date:
01/2009
Completion Date:
07/2009
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
200,000

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Title Outcome Evaluation of UNDP Governance, Crisis Prevention and Recovery, and Poverty Reduction Initiatives in Iraq
Atlas Project Number:
Evaluation Plan: 2007-2010, Iraq
Evaluation Type: Outcome
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 07/2009
Planned End Date: 01/2009
Management Response: Yes
Focus Area:
  • 1. Poverty and MDG
  • 2. Democratic Governance
  • 3. Crisis Prevention & Recovery
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2014-2017)
  • 1. Civil society, including civil society organizations and voluntary associations, and the private sector contribute to the MDGs in support of national planning strategies and policies
  • 2. National and local institutions have the capacities to fulfill key functions of government for recovery in early post-crisis situations
  • 3. Livelihoods and economic recovery generated, including infrastructure restoration, employment and sustainable income earning opportunities for crisis affected communities
  • 4. Government counterparts, non-governmental organizations and research institutions able to generate and analyse data to report on the status of human development in the country, to inform planners and policy makers on the situation of the poor and youth,
Evaluation Budget(US $): 200,000
Source of Funding:
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Jim Freedman Team Leader
Eduardo Quiroga Consultant
Amal Shlash Consultant
John Weeks Consultant
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders:
Countries: IRAQ
Lessons
Findings
Recommendations
1 That governance is regarded as primus inter pares among UNDP?s competencies. "Giving such primacy to governance must not exclude the range of competencies presently existing in the Country Office. This recommendation is not intended to fit all that UNDP does into a governance perspective; it is rather to view their implementation through a governance lens."
2 That UNDP support private sector development with social and ethical safeguards. "Iraq needs to wean itself from a reliance on the public sector for employment and UNDP can help. It matters little under what Country Programme pillar private sector development falls. During the evaluation timeframe there was a shift in which the MYFF is being reorganized into a results based matrix and the projects which have sat in Outcome 12 have been shifted into two outcomes that are either MDG focused or Private Sector/Economic Development based."
3 That UNDP take exceptional measures to support programmes that will improve service delivery, i.e. decentralization and public sector reform. "The restoration of a functioning state remains the pre-eminent priority in Iraq?s recovery. It depends largely on the creation in Iraq of a government capable of creating a national consensus on key issues. It is abundantly clear that amending the constitution or introducing human rights legislation, however important such policy measures may be, will not effectively serve this pressing need. What will serve this need first and foremost is for the government to provide essential services."
4 That UNDP take measures to open channels for better vertical communication. "Staff members feel their views are not always taken on board by senior management. Their frustration is matched by senior management?s own frustration at having little say in decisions made at headquarters regarding the Iraq Office."
5 Those partnerships with the Government of Iraq and civil society organizations be enhanced at different levels. "The partnership with the Government of Iraq and the civil society organizations, including NGOs, are areas where there are gaps and strengths. It is important to build stronger relationships at national, regional and governorate level for greater engagement and collaboration towards National Execution."
6 That a monitoring and evaluation function be created and given adequate resources. "Now is the appropriate moment for establishing a monitoring and evaluation function for all UNDP interventions. Integral to this function should be an evaluation plan for regular and monitored reporting; benchmarks should be established and data accumulated based on both outputs and outcomes."
1. Recommendation: That governance is regarded as primus inter pares among UNDP?s competencies. "Giving such primacy to governance must not exclude the range of competencies presently existing in the Country Office. This recommendation is not intended to fit all that UNDP does into a governance perspective; it is rather to view their implementation through a governance lens."
Management Response: [Added: 2009/08/24] [Last Updated: 2010/08/01]

Fully agree ? UNDP is in the process of restructuring which will merge three units into an EconoRPAP. This will facilitate additional synergies between the two pillars and prioritize strategic interventions that are common such as decentralization, local governance, public sector modernization, human rights and joint planning at multiple levels with national counterparts.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1.1 Restructuring of programme units to reflect UNDP?s strategic priorities ? shifting from rehabilitation and infrastructure to more soft interventions and development assistance, where greater synergy will be established between governance and economic recovery and poverty alleviation interventions.
[Added: 2010/08/01] [Last Updated: 2010/12/23]
UNDP Iraq Senior Management and RBAS 2010/08 Completed Submitted to RBAS, pending approval
1.2 Develop a Country Programme (CPD) for UNDP Iraq for 2011-14 which will be aligned with the UNDAF and GoI?s new National Development Plan.
[Added: 2010/08/01]
UNDP Iraq Senior Management 2010/02 Completed Approval during the June 2010 EB Session
1.3. Develop the Country Programme Action Plan, following the endorsement of the UNDAF and the CPD.
[Added: 2010/08/01] [Last Updated: 2010/12/23]
UNDP Iraq Senior Management 2010/12 Completed
2. Recommendation: That UNDP support private sector development with social and ethical safeguards. "Iraq needs to wean itself from a reliance on the public sector for employment and UNDP can help. It matters little under what Country Programme pillar private sector development falls. During the evaluation timeframe there was a shift in which the MYFF is being reorganized into a results based matrix and the projects which have sat in Outcome 12 have been shifted into two outcomes that are either MDG focused or Private Sector/Economic Development based."
Management Response: [Added: 2009/08/25] [Last Updated: 2010/08/01]

Agree. One of the top priorities of GOI is the development of the private sector. UNDP as the lead agency initiated during 2009 a large joint-programme with UN partners and the GoI which will be undertaking legislative review and legislative revision, investment policies, SME development and State Owned Enterprise restructuring - taking into account social and ethical safeguard issues. These initiatives will become increasingly important as pilot projects are implemented in three governorates during 2010. This is a key priority for UNDP Iraq and is fully aligned with the UNDAF (as ?Priority 2?) and the draft CPD (as ?Outcome 5?).

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
2.1. Publication of all the relevant laws and revision tracking of relevant laws
[Added: 2010/08/01] [Last Updated: 2010/12/23]
Task Force for Economic Reforms of the GoI (TFER); UNDP Iraq is the lead agency UNIDO responsible for the publication 2010/12 Completed Roundtable on relevant laws has been done and a working group has been established of senior Iraqi officials; publication of review will be available during 3rd quarter 2010
2.2. Establishment of four working groups in 2009 and expanded to seven thematic working groups in 2010 by the Task Force for Economic Reforms, GoI, that specifically address social and ethical safeguards.
[Added: 2010/08/01] [Last Updated: 2010/12/23]
TFER & UNDP Iraq with inputs from UN partner agencies 2010/12 Completed This initiative is nationally owned and is given high priority by the GoI, which has significant potential to restructure the private sector in Iraq.
3. Recommendation: That UNDP take exceptional measures to support programmes that will improve service delivery, i.e. decentralization and public sector reform. "The restoration of a functioning state remains the pre-eminent priority in Iraq?s recovery. It depends largely on the creation in Iraq of a government capable of creating a national consensus on key issues. It is abundantly clear that amending the constitution or introducing human rights legislation, however important such policy measures may be, will not effectively serve this pressing need. What will serve this need first and foremost is for the government to provide essential services."
Management Response: [Added: 2010/08/01]

Agree. UNDP Iraq is increasingly addressing in both its upstream and downstream projects to enhance national, regional and local capacity to deliver services to the people of Iraq. Within the draft CPD developed in 2010, there is a focus to support development plans and budgeting at the local level to improve delivery of essential services, whilst continuing work at the national level. Currently, there is much more synergy on cross-cutting issues, including human rights, gender and environment, which are fully integrated in most of UNDP?s efforts to improve service delivery. In addition, UNDP is increasingly utilizing participatory approaches to build consensus and priorities at local levels.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
3.2 Gender-sensitive budgeting and budget execution in place
[Added: 2010/08/01] [Last Updated: 2010/12/23]
ERPAP and UNDP Senior Gender Adviser 2011/12 Overdue-Initiated
3.1 Participatory development plans for enhanced service delivery and capacity development in place
[Added: 2010/08/01] [Last Updated: 2010/12/23]
Local Area Development Programme & Samarra Project (ERPAP); Decentralization Project (Governance) 2010/12 Completed Plans are in place and are being currently reviewed based on which they will be expanded to additional areas
4. Recommendation: That UNDP take measures to open channels for better vertical communication. "Staff members feel their views are not always taken on board by senior management. Their frustration is matched by senior management?s own frustration at having little say in decisions made at headquarters regarding the Iraq Office."
Management Response: [Added: 2010/08/01]

Agree. This was also reflected in the 2009 GSS.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
4.1 UNDP is restructuring its programme into thematic areas under a cluster system with a team leader and a coordinator function that will enable better communication between project staff and senior management
[Added: 2010/08/01] [Last Updated: 2010/12/23]
UNDP Senior Management 2010/12 Completed
4.2 Under a newly introduced post, the Deputy Country Director is expected to assume a leadership role for both programmes and operations
[Added: 2010/08/01]
DCD 2010/05 Completed
5. Recommendation: Those partnerships with the Government of Iraq and civil society organizations be enhanced at different levels. "The partnership with the Government of Iraq and the civil society organizations, including NGOs, are areas where there are gaps and strengths. It is important to build stronger relationships at national, regional and governorate level for greater engagement and collaboration towards National Execution."
Management Response: [Added: 2010/08/01]

Fully agree. In 2009 UNDP started working with multiple NGOs and INGOs to build their capacity and develop synergies towards national execution. The draft CPD and the UNDAF lay a much stronger foundation for national execution, which will allow UNDP to strengthen its efforts to engage diverse groups within civil society, government and private sector that will in turn assist UNDP to shift it focus on long term development issues within identified priority areas.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
5.1 Since 2009 UNDP has significantly increased its engagement with Iraqi and international NGOs ? and UNDP will continue to expand work with civil society
[Added: 2010/08/01]
UNDP, CSOs, NGOs & GoI 2012/12 Overdue-Initiated Presently UNDP is working with over 35 national NGOs
5.2 UNDP?s engagement with the GoI is expanding at multiple levels, including at the technical level and capacity development
[Added: 2010/08/01]
UNDP & GoI 2012/12 Overdue-Initiated
5.3 UNDP?s will increasingly facilitate effective engagement between national and sub-national institutions in policy, planning, budgeting and execution
[Added: 2010/08/01]
UNDP, CSOs, NGOs & GoI 2012/12 Overdue-Initiated
6. Recommendation: That a monitoring and evaluation function be created and given adequate resources. "Now is the appropriate moment for establishing a monitoring and evaluation function for all UNDP interventions. Integral to this function should be an evaluation plan for regular and monitored reporting; benchmarks should be established and data accumulated based on both outputs and outcomes."
Management Response: [Added: 2010/08/01]

Fully agree. An M&E post is considered critical for UNDP Iraq?s accountability and learning, especially in view of its remote management, the size of its operations and transition into Iraq.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
6.2 Assigning and maintaining M&E focal points in programmes and operations and building respective capacities, which will require dedicated budget and staff
[Added: 2010/08/01]
DCD & M&E Specialist 2012/12 Overdue-Initiated
6.1 An office-wide M&E post to be created to report directly to the Country Director
[Added: 2010/08/01]
Country Director 2010/05 Completed
6.3 Development of an evaluation plan for five years (linked to the CPD) and allocation of appropriate funds for the conduct of mandatory (decentralized) and other types of evaluations
[Added: 2010/08/01] [Last Updated: 2010/12/23]
DCD, M&E Specialist and Programme Heads 2010/12 Completed

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