Mid Term Programme Evaluation Deepening Democracy and Accountable Governance

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Evaluation Plan:
2013-2018, Rwanda
Evaluation Type:
Mid Term Project
Planned End Date:
12/2016
Completion Date:
10/2016
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
12,000

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Title Mid Term Programme Evaluation Deepening Democracy and Accountable Governance
Atlas Project Number: 00075985
Evaluation Plan: 2013-2018, Rwanda
Evaluation Type: Mid Term Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 10/2016
Planned End Date: 12/2016
Management Response: Yes
Focus Area:
  • 1. Democratic Governance
  • 2. Others
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2014-2017)
  • 1. Output 2.1. Parliaments, constitution making bodies and electoral institutions enabled to perform core functions for improved accountability, participation and representation, including for peaceful transitions
  • 2. Output 4.3. Evidence-informed national strategies and partnerships to advance gender equality and women's empowerment
  • 3. Output 4.4. Measures in place to increase women's participation in decision-making
SDG Goal
  • Goal 16. Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels
  • Goal 5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
SDG Target
  • 16.5 Substantially reduce corruption and bribery in all their forms
  • 16.6 Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels
  • 16.7 Ensure responsive, inclusive, participatory and representative decision-making at all levels
  • 5.5 Ensure women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision-making in political, economic and public life
Evaluation Budget(US $): 12,000
Source of Funding: UNDP (project)
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 12,000
Joint Programme: Yes
Joint Evaluation: Yes
  • Joint with UN Agencies
  • Joint with Donors
  • Joint with UNICEF, UNWOMEN, UNDP, UNV, One UN Rwanda
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders: Government, Development Partners, UN agencies, Civil Society
Countries: RWANDA
Comments:

The recruitment of a consultant to conduct the evaluation has delayed but a draft report has been shared by the consultant and discussed at the project board. The CO is expecting to finalise the evaluation report and management response by end of December 2016. This is the reason for the extension.

Lessons
Findings
1.

Overall assessment of program logic: The DDAG Programme results chain is coherent and strategically aligned to Rwanda’s broader strategic policies and programs, in particular EDPRS II and more specifically, the accountable governance thematic area. All outputs and outcomes make clear contributions to the overall goal of the programme. The only emerging issue is the seemingly static alignment of activities to single outputs despite the clear interlinkages between key actions and need for synergy in implementation. The other issue is the placement of outputs for the programme at a level of the results chain that the evaluation posits would be more suitable at a higher more medium-term outcome level rather immediate results or deliverables of such a medium-term programme. Overall the rationale of the DDAG is evaluated as Satisfactory.


2.

Overall assessment of risk assessment and management: Overall the mid-term assessment established that the risk assessment for the programme was adequately done and well documented in the risk and mitigation matrix of the DDAG programme document. The gaps identified in the risk assessment are minor including the weak formulation of mitigation measures for the political instability and staff turnover risks and the need for reformulation of an adequate risk mitigation strategy for critical staff turnover that has been encountered during this first half of the program. Overall the risk assessment is evaluated as Satisfactory.


3.

Overall assessment of partner’s participation: Overall the mid-term assessment established that the UNDP, RGB, NFPO, Parliament, MHC and NEC have been actively involved in the planning, implementation and evaluation of the DDAG. Meanwhile there has been limited participation of the participating agents - UNV, UNWOMEN and OHCHR throughout the first half of the programme.
The overall participation of the partners of the DDAG is assessed as Marginally Satisfactory.


4.

Overall assessment of implementation arrangements: The mid-term evaluation assesses that the management and coordination structure of the DDAG was planned adequately and is being implemented through majorly a national implementation modality which is considered as a sustainable approach to programme management as well as ensures capacities are built within existing national institutions. The only gaps identified are that there is still need to further define the terms of reference for individuals directly involved with the programme to avoid duplication, overlap and/or overload of tasks during implementation as well as to ensure appropriate staff in institutions are allocated to the programme. And the programme has suffered from the effects of moderate staff turnover. Therefore the overall implementation arrangements of the DDAG is assessed as Satisfactory


5.

Overall assessment of financial management and planning: The mid-term evaluation assesses that the DDAG has adequate financial management mechanisms and procedures. Use of the pooled funding mechanisms is ensuring efficiency in fund management by avoiding duplication, cutting costs of fund management by separate entities and adhering to the delivering as one (DaO) concept thus making use of the One UN comparative advantage. Additionally IPs have the necessary human and institutional capacities supported by GoR systems such as the IFMIS to ensure efficient accountability and reporting of programme finances.
The major gaps in the financial management and planning aspect of the DDAG has been the significant cuts in funding to the programme which adversely affect planning of activities and the delayed disbursements which in turn negatively affect timely implementation of scheduled activities. Therefore the overall financial management and planning of the DDAG is assessed as Marginally Satisfactory


6.

Overall assessment of programme planning: The mid-term evaluation assesses programme-planning aspect as adequate for the context of the DDAG. Despite all the IPs having different approaches to planning, all the methods seem to suit the nature of key actions expected from them to deliver under their respective outputs. The planning review and approval structures are adequate and annual and quarterly work plans are delivered on time to the managing agent.
Therefore the overall programme planning of the DDAG is assessed as Highly Satisfactory


7.

Overall assessment of programme monitoring and evaluation: The mid-term evaluation assess the programme M&E arrangement as appropriate because they are fully engaging and create mechanisms for prompt action and feedback from the required channels and stakeholder. The shortcomings are in the design of programme outputs and performance indicators that are more of longterm results and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) which negatively affect quality of quarterly monitoring that is mainly activity based. There is also limited synergy between IPs in monitoring KPIs which leaves some results attributable to the programme untracked.
Therefore the overall programme planning of the DDAG is assessed as Satisfactory


8.

Overall assessment of programme results and actions sustainability: the mid-term evaluation assess that the sustainability of activities and results varies across IPs because they differently implemented varying sustainability mechanisms. Ownership has been enhanced through direct implementation by existing GoR structures and use of the ordinary budget for some project activities. However the overall assessment is that the DDAG has not developed a comprehensive sustainability strategy that caters for uniform sustenance of the programme outputs and activities in the absence of One UN funding.
The overall rating is moderately likely.


Recommendations
1

The DDAG programme needs to further demonstrate its consciousness of the August 2017 presidential, 2018 lower house and 2019 upper house elections. Acknowledging the tasks ahead and reorienting focus of the programme efforts can demonstrate this consciousness by the programme increasing its focus on peaceful elections through strategic emphasis of civic and voter education. This would require some slight deviation from implementing the programme through a “business as usual approach” but still ensuring the programme targets for 2018 are met.

2

Improve approach to planning and implementation of trainings. During planning ensure media practitioners are aware of the Training Needs Assessments conducted and ensure trainings are specialized to focus on specific types of practitioners and/or content. Implementation should be supported with more proactive monitoring and evaluation to assess changes in practice and provide follow-up technical assistance to the trainees as well as to devise mechanisms for scaling up and replication of lessons learnt.

3

Undertake advanced capacity building in the area of gender mainstreaming in accountable governance. Other than activities done by NFPO and MHC there is limited evidence of systematic approaches to gender mainstreaming in the programme activities. However this plausibly stems from the implementers limited knowledge and awareness of how to mainstream gender in their activities and operations. Therefore a tailored gender-mainstreaming programme in governance would be useful to the programme.

4

A lot of programme resources have been used in capacity building efforts for election volunteers, staff at NEC as well as civic and voter education. There is need to conduct a detailed impact assessment of all these training efforts to obtain lessons of best practice, establish how effective the trainings have been and what needs to be adjusted to improved results and delivery of the trainings.

5

The civic and voter education has mainly been provided to the general population and to a lesser extent specific groups such as media, political organizations, public servants, private institutions and others. These have comprised only 0.17% of the target groups reached in the last year. There are suggestions to enhance synergy between the IPs, more specifically, NEC, RGB, MHC and NFPO to develop a systematic strategy through which civic and voter education can be delivered to their different target groups in a harmonized approach that would ensure efficiency in delivery and prove effective through joint planning and implementation.

6

Furthermore given the programme’s financial constraints, the programme managers need to venture into possible alternative funding for later stages of the DDAG. One identified option is through the UNV global programme fund opportunities as a possible source of funding for some programme activities. Also consider using the national volunteerism policy to access locally available human resources to fill the capacity gaps and utilise the USD 16.000 budget per annum available from UNV.

7

Increase usage of evidence-based tools such as the Rwanda media barometer in planning of capacity building interventions for the media sector. RGB needs to develop systems and mechanisms to monitor and evaluate the findings and adoption of recommendations of the RMB to ensure the tool is used in decision-making and not merely reporting status. Also to increase the credibility and acceptability of the media barometer, donors and other key actors in the media industry need to be engaged more actively in the design of the barometer and not only in data collection and report dissemination.

1. Recommendation:

The DDAG programme needs to further demonstrate its consciousness of the August 2017 presidential, 2018 lower house and 2019 upper house elections. Acknowledging the tasks ahead and reorienting focus of the programme efforts can demonstrate this consciousness by the programme increasing its focus on peaceful elections through strategic emphasis of civic and voter education. This would require some slight deviation from implementing the programme through a “business as usual approach” but still ensuring the programme targets for 2018 are met.

Management Response: [Added: 2016/12/19]

The recommendation is valid and it is being already carried out by the programme team in NEC and UNDP. The remaining activities of UNDP and NEC toward effective election cycle management and for which implementation is going on include capacity building of volunteers, electoral committees and political parties’ trainings on BRIDGE methodology. Furthermore, electoral stakeholders meetings at national and decentralized levels will be conducted with electoral stakeholders at all levels. Activities also involve the use of NAM findings for strengthening further support to fair and transparent elections, gender mainstreaming, support to CSOs for civic education as well as elections monitoring.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Capacity development of electoral stakeholders
[Added: 2016/12/19]
NEC UNDP 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated History
Implementation of the NAM recommendations for electoral support
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated History
Monitoring elections and gender mainstreaming
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated History
2. Recommendation:

Improve approach to planning and implementation of trainings. During planning ensure media practitioners are aware of the Training Needs Assessments conducted and ensure trainings are specialized to focus on specific types of practitioners and/or content. Implementation should be supported with more proactive monitoring and evaluation to assess changes in practice and provide follow-up technical assistance to the trainees as well as to devise mechanisms for scaling up and replication of lessons learnt.

Management Response: [Added: 2016/12/19]

The recommendation is valid and already being reflected on the programming phase of the remaining half of the DDAG programme.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Ensure that the findings of the Training Needs Assessment are used in planning capacity building of Media houses and practitioners
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP MHC, Media Associations 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated
Ensure the theoretical and practices knowledge are part of the curriculum used in trainings of Media houses and Practitioners
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP MHC, Media Associations 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated
Conduct monitoring and evaluation of capacity building to Media houses and practitioners
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP MHC, Media Associations 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated
3. Recommendation:

Undertake advanced capacity building in the area of gender mainstreaming in accountable governance. Other than activities done by NFPO and MHC there is limited evidence of systematic approaches to gender mainstreaming in the programme activities. However this plausibly stems from the implementers limited knowledge and awareness of how to mainstream gender in their activities and operations. Therefore a tailored gender-mainstreaming programme in governance would be useful to the programme.

Management Response: [Added: 2016/12/19]

The recommendation is valid and will be integrated in the 2017 and 2018 planning.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Ensure that all IPs are mainstreaming Gender in the governance programme implementation
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP/ All IPS 2017/06 Overdue-Initiated
Mainstream gender in 2017 and 2018 plans
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP/All IPs 2017/01 Overdue-Initiated History
Conduct monitoring and evaluation activities to monitor Gender mainstreaming activities and produce a report
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP/ All IPs 2017/06 Overdue-Initiated History
4. Recommendation:

A lot of programme resources have been used in capacity building efforts for election volunteers, staff at NEC as well as civic and voter education. There is need to conduct a detailed impact assessment of all these training efforts to obtain lessons of best practice, establish how effective the trainings have been and what needs to be adjusted to improved results and delivery of the trainings.

Management Response: [Added: 2016/12/19]

The necessity of the systemic and regular impact survey is acknowledged. This recommendation will be submitted to the steering committee for approval of the impact assessment including its timeline.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Ensure this recommendation is set on the agenda of the quarter one 2017 steering committee for further direction and action by PSC
[Added: 2016/12/19]
Chair and co-chair of DDAG Programme steering committee 2017/01 Overdue-Initiated History
Implement the proposed actions by the steering committee
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP and NEC 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated History
5. Recommendation:

The civic and voter education has mainly been provided to the general population and to a lesser extent specific groups such as media, political organizations, public servants, private institutions and others. These have comprised only 0.17% of the target groups reached in the last year. There are suggestions to enhance synergy between the IPs, more specifically, NEC, RGB, MHC and NFPO to develop a systematic strategy through which civic and voter education can be delivered to their different target groups in a harmonized approach that would ensure efficiency in delivery and prove effective through joint planning and implementation.

Management Response: [Added: 2016/12/19]

The recommendation is valid and already has been carried out. All political parties’ trainings organized by NFPO are facilitated by NEC and monitored jointly with all Implementing Partners. NEC also facilitated the bridge training for the Media.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Produce and disseminate 2016 and 2017 reports on joint activities with implementing partners such as Joint Field Visits.
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated
Create synergy between NEC, NFPO and MHC for civic education in 2017
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated History
Create synergy between Parliament, NEC, NFPO IN 2018
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated History
6. Recommendation:

Furthermore given the programme’s financial constraints, the programme managers need to venture into possible alternative funding for later stages of the DDAG. One identified option is through the UNV global programme fund opportunities as a possible source of funding for some programme activities. Also consider using the national volunteerism policy to access locally available human resources to fill the capacity gaps and utilise the USD 16.000 budget per annum available from UNV.

Management Response: [Added: 2016/12/19]

This recommendation is valid and is reflected in the planning document.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Ensure that UNV policy is applied in order to ensure human resources is available for support to Governance Unit
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP, UNV 2017/01 Overdue-Initiated
Ensure that Volunteers remains the main targets in supporting the national elections
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP & NEC 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated
7. Recommendation:

Increase usage of evidence-based tools such as the Rwanda media barometer in planning of capacity building interventions for the media sector. RGB needs to develop systems and mechanisms to monitor and evaluate the findings and adoption of recommendations of the RMB to ensure the tool is used in decision-making and not merely reporting status. Also to increase the credibility and acceptability of the media barometer, donors and other key actors in the media industry need to be engaged more actively in the design of the barometer and not only in data collection and report dissemination.

Management Response: [Added: 2016/12/19]

This recommendation is valid and is reflected in the planning document.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Engage development partners in the process of planning, delivery and dissemination of the Media Barometer
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP, RGB 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated
Monitor the process of Media Barometer planning, delivery and dissemination with involvement of development partners
[Added: 2016/12/19]
UNDP, RGB 2018/06 Overdue-Initiated

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