Final project Evaluation: Iraq Crises Response and Resiliense project (ICRRP)

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Evaluation Plan:
2016-2020, Iraq
Evaluation Type:
Project
Planned End Date:
12/2019
Completion Date:
02/2020
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
130,000

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Title Final project Evaluation: Iraq Crises Response and Resiliense project (ICRRP)
Atlas Project Number: 00085156
Evaluation Plan: 2016-2020, Iraq
Evaluation Type: Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 02/2020
Planned End Date: 12/2019
Management Response: Yes
UNDP Signature Solution:
  • 1. Poverty
  • 2. Resilience
  • 3. Not Applicable
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021)
  • 1. Output 3.1.1 Core government functions and inclusive basic services4 restored post-crisis for stabilisation, durable solutions to displacement and return to sustainable development pathways within the framework of national policies and priorities
  • 2. Output 3.3.2 Gender-responsive and risk-informed mechanisms supported to build consensus, improve social dialogue and promote peaceful, just and inclusive societies
SDG Goal
  • Goal 1. End poverty in all its forms everywhere
  • 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
SDG Target
  • 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
  • 16.1 Significantly reduce all forms of violence and related death rates everywhere
  • 16.6 Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels
Evaluation Budget(US $): 130,000
Source of Funding: Project budjet
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 82,760
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Antoine Mansour Mansour.antoine@gmail.com
Nigar Sardar nigar_idp@yahoo.com
Nazar Jamil nazar76iq@yahoo.com
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders:
Countries: IRAQIRAQ
Lessons
Findings
Recommendations
1

Evaluation recommendation 1.  Strengthen the design of ICRRP’s Results Framework

2

recommendation 2. Conflict sensitivity should be integrated in all future ICRRP interventions

3

recommendation 3. Maximizing the stability impact through supporting sustainable resilient communities.

4

recommendation 4. UNDP to support JCMC and JCC in developing a strategy on crisis prevention and response.

5

recommendation 5. UNDP to support the sustainability of JCMC and JCC through the creation of a pool of trainers.

6

recommendation 6. UNDP should ensure that the governorates/districts involve all parties in the community including the civil society organizations, community leaders and other stakeholders even with conflicting political views in the identification and prioritization of projects related to KRI and the rehabilitation of the Newly Liberated Areas.

7

recommendation 7. Engage a larger number of NGOs in project implementation and ensure the formation of consortium of NGOs of at least 3-5 NGOs to be a requirement in the selection by UNDP of the bidders.

8

recommendation 8. Promote the development of social enterprises in KRI and the Newly Liberated Areas that would create jobs for the most vulnerable population and enhance skills level of beneficiaries.

9

recommendation 9. UNDP to give priority to NGOs that can complement UNDP funding with additional resources in order to ensure the success and sustainability of small businesses.

10

recommendation 10. UNDP is to formulate a private sector development strategy for the next phase of ICRRP with emphasis to be provided to support sustainable enterprises and to medium and long-term recovery of SMEs.  

11

recommendation 11. Ensure the sustainability of community centers through the development of capacity of the centers in for example project formulation, fund raising, forging partnerships with the private sector and in the development of income-generating activities.

12

recommendation 12. Gender protection should be cross-cutting particularly in livelihood and social cohesion interventions, while the social cohesion component is to be considered a cross-cutting issue in all other components of ICRRP.

1. Recommendation:

Evaluation recommendation 1.  Strengthen the design of ICRRP’s Results Framework

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/04]

UNDP acknowledges the value added when complementing quantitative monitoring with qualitative analyses. The Results Framework is formulated using quantitative indicators, which include quantified indicators for more qualitative outputs, as the primary purpose of this framework is to ensure accountability in achieving all project activities that cover a range of components. As the revised ICRRP will continue its implementation until the end of 2021, UNDP will review the current Results Framework to see if adding qualitative indicators at this juncture is a priority, and appropriate.

UNDP regularly conducts monitoring visits and meetings with its Responsible Parties, during which more qualitative information is exchanged and insights are provided to make adjustment to project activities, when and where necessary. In reflection of this recommendation, UNDP would explore ways to more systematically include such qualitative information and analyses gathered, in the project monitoring and implementation processes.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1.1 Review of current Results Framework to assess what qualitative indicators could be introduced to the Framework, and how the monitoring will be implemented for the remaining duration of the project with an emphasis on the livelihood’s component.
[Added: 2020/11/04] [Last Updated: 2021/01/26]
ICRRP M&E Team 2021/03 Completed Integrated approach for livelihoods indicators exercise is currently underway, review of KfW 777 indicators completed and others will be completed during first quarter of 2021 History
1.2 Ensure that component leads regularly update the Programme Manager and other relevant staff to share the qualitative information gathered during programme meetings and monitoring visits, to complement current quantitative results framework monitoring with qualitative analyses
[Added: 2020/11/04] [Last Updated: 2021/01/26]
All component leads and Programme unit of ICRRP 2021/03 Completed The component leads brief the Programme Manager on a regular basis History
2. Recommendation:

recommendation 2. Conflict sensitivity should be integrated in all future ICRRP interventions

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/04]

: UNDP acknowledges the importance of conflict sensitivity in programming and implementation, especially in consideration of the current country context where tensions are still high.

The recent restructuring of UNDP Iraq country office and the vision of the new Country Programme Document (CPD 2020-2024) respond to this need. ‘Social Cohesion’ is identified as crosscutting programme priority and the new Iraq Social Cohesion Programme (ISCP) is to lead the integration of conflict sensitivity in all country office projects. Under the ISCP framework, conflict sensitivity trainings will take place for all projects staff, including the ICRRP team.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
2.1 Design the Iraq Social Cohesion Programme and consolidated team structure which will support integrating conflict sensitivity in all projects in the country office including ICRRP project activities
[Added: 2020/11/04]
Social Cohesion team 2020/01 Completed
2.2 Train ICRRP team on conflict sensitivity to raise their awareness and strengthen relevant capacities
[Added: 2020/11/04] [Last Updated: 2021/06/27]
ICRRP team in coordination with Social Cohesion team 2021/06 Completed - ICRRP Livelihoods Team attended training on the conflict-sensitivity approach organized by the social cohesion unit. - ICRRP Livelihoods held an induction session to Social Cohesion Field Coordinators, who works closely with the local peace committees where we have introduced them to the livelihoods projects being implemented by ICRRP and agreed on providing support to us to ensure enhanced integration of conflict-sensitive approach in the selection of beneficiaries and other areas throughout the implementation phase. History
3. Recommendation:

recommendation 3. Maximizing the stability impact through supporting sustainable resilient communities.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/04]

While UNDP acknowledges that strengthened resilience of communities is one of the factors that would contribute to enduring peace in Iraq, the established literature on stabilization or the overall approach of UNDP Stabilization and the international community that supports the programme, do not necessarily pinpoint resilient communities as the most exigent priority in the current post-conflict setting.

UNDP will continue supporting the Government of Iraq (GOI) through Stabilization programmes, for it to regain trust from the Iraqi people to solidify state legitimacy, which is identified as the key to stability. In the process, UNDP Stabilization and GOI will continue rehabilitation of infrastructures for services delivery and support to build municipal capacities in the communities affected by the conflict. Under ICRRP, in particular, support to JCMC and JCC will be continued for their improved coordination in crisis prevention, response and management, and services delivery will be improved in the affected communities.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
3.1 Continued support to JCMC and JCC to build their capacities in crisis prevention, response and management.
[Added: 2020/11/04] [Last Updated: 2021/01/26]
ICRRP Crisis Response Coordination Unit in coordination with EECC team 2021/03 Completed ICRRP provided capacity building and technical advisory support to JCC and JCMC through dedicated staff at JCMC and JCC Sulaymaniyah and Erbil. They continued to provide support to JCC and JCMC throughout the year despite the COVID 19 Pandemic Support to JCC on coordination of meetings concluded by 31 December 2020, while support to JCMC will be extended beyond 2020 through another UNDP programme History
4. Recommendation:

recommendation 4. UNDP to support JCMC and JCC in developing a strategy on crisis prevention and response.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/04]

UNDP acknowledges that the JCMC and the JCC have a crucial role in crisis prevention, preparedness, response and recovery. Both institutions have played a crucial role in promoting preparedness in Iraq and the KR-I over the past few years, and capacity development support from UNDP proved highly beneficial. However, the continuity of support from UNDP to both institutions depend upon availability of funds. UNDP has tried to mobilize funds over the past 2 years for JCMC and JCC capacity development, however, without success. 

 

In 2019, UNDP initiated dialogue with the sister UN agencies on formulating a joint support package to strengthen JCMC and JCC capacities. Agencies welcomed this suggestion. However, it was agreed that unless there is an ownership by the Iraqi government and the KRG, it will be difficult to achieve change. Therefore, it was agreed to design a joint advocacy campaign to work with the JCMC and JCC. Through stakeholder consultations, the campaign would identify key issues, draft messages and target influencers in the Iraqi government to achieve essential governmental support for the strengthening of JCMC and JCC.  The work on this campaign couldn’t start earlier due to the disruption caused by the protests and political instability, and later due to the spread of Corona pandemic.

 

Additionally, UNDP will in 2020 continue to provide support to the JCC through utilizing the funds available under the ICRRP from one of its donors.  Other UN agencies also plan to continue their support in agency related areas of work to both the JCMC and the JCC.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
4.1 Support to coordination meetings and workshops with humanitarian organizations and for the JCC network of offices, including support to response volunteers’ coordination.
[Added: 2020/11/04] [Last Updated: 2021/01/24]
ICRRP 2021/01 Completed The JCC was supported to hold meetings, most of these meetings were held virtually due to COVID 19 pandemic in 2020 History
4.2 Provide ICT equipment to upgrade JCC operations room and network of offices.
[Added: 2020/11/04] [Last Updated: 2021/01/24]
ICRRP 2021/11 Completed Through UNDP-ICRRP support, the Operation Room is upgraded and is now connected virtually with relevant departments and the Federal Government in Baghdad. The upgrading of the Operation Room established a strong and harmonized system for multi-stakeholder crisis management at the regional and governorate levels and linking the system to the Federal Iraqi Government. With the spread of COVID 19, the upgrading of the Operation Rooms became a high priority mechanism to coordinate and respond to the Pandemic crisis. History
4.3 Support for awareness raising of JCC network of offices, including newly integrated entities (BRHA and DoDM), about the JCC Strategic Plan.
[Added: 2020/11/04] [Last Updated: 2020/12/21]
ICRRP 2020/11 No Longer Applicable [Justification: The work on this couldn’t happen due to the disruption caused by the protests and political instability, and later due to the spread of Corona pandemic.]
History
5. Recommendation:

recommendation 5. UNDP to support the sustainability of JCMC and JCC through the creation of a pool of trainers.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/04]

While, UNDP appreciates fully the need for continued training and skills development of the JCMC and the JCC, however, since UNDP is not a training institute therefore, it can’t form and retain a pool of trainers on its own. In the area of training, UNDP follows a two pronged approach; i) to develop and strengthen national training institutions so that they could design and conduct regular  training for national stakeholders on crisis management, ii) organizes specialised training by hiring the services of international training institutes in order to boost national capacities in areas of urgent importance.

In the case of Kurdistan Region, UNDP has already helped to draft the strategy for the Kurdistan Crisis Management Training Institute which is pending approval of the KRI government. Also, UNDP has designed curriculum for 8 different themes and handed it over the JCC for eventually applying it at the CMTI. The KRG government is expected to continue to finance this Institute.

UNDP will explore the options of developing similar institutional capacities at the federal level together with the JCMC through work continuing under the Environment, Energy and Climate Change programme portfolio. Financial resources will however remain a challenge in this regard

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
5.1 Support training on GIS for JCC staff and on GBV for government officials, police and community leaders.
[Added: 2020/11/04] [Last Updated: 2021/01/26]
ICRRP 2021/12 Initiated The LOA between UNDP and JCC has been amended to extend duration of support on gender to Sept 2021 History
6. Recommendation:

recommendation 6. UNDP should ensure that the governorates/districts involve all parties in the community including the civil society organizations, community leaders and other stakeholders even with conflicting political views in the identification and prioritization of projects related to KRI and the rehabilitation of the Newly Liberated Areas.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/04]

Management response: UNDP acknowledges the importance of engaging community stakeholders especially in identifying the needs as prioritized by the community, and also having the selected projects validated. ICRRP has piloted an Area Based Recovery Approach (ABRA) where different community groups were engaged through meetings, group discussions, town halls and other means to identify and implement projects in consultative and participatory manner.

ICRRP will be further employing ABRA in four of the locations selected for the upcoming livelihood project activities. Lessons learned from the pilot as well as findings from this Evaluation will be reflected upon, for the implementation.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
6.1 ABRA is employed for the locations selected for new project activities initiated in 2020.
[Added: 2020/11/04]
ICRRP Livelihoods Unit 2020/06 Completed
7. Recommendation:

recommendation 7. Engage a larger number of NGOs in project implementation and ensure the formation of consortium of NGOs of at least 3-5 NGOs to be a requirement in the selection by UNDP of the bidders.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/04]

ICRRP engages with a number of NGOs for the project implementation: in 2019, there were 11 NGOs that signed a Responsible Party Agreement with UNDP for ICRRP. While acknowledging the need to further support local NGOs, however, making a bid from consortium of local NGOs as a requirement in the procurement process is not realistic in the current project context. Given the limited number of actors on the ground, it is already a big challenge to find a qualified (on both technical and financial aspects) responsible party.

ICRRP will continue to work with NGOs present in the country (international as well as local NGOs) to ensure effective implementation while also supporting capacity building. ICRRP will encourage its INGO partners to work with local NGOs, and will extend workshops and trainings where local NGOs could learn about UNDP tendering processes, network with potential partners (to explore possibilities of forming a consortium, among other benefits), and to build overall capacities in project management and implementation.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
7.1 Continue to engage with NGOs (national and international) as Responsible Parties where deemed the most suitable for each area of work and undertake selection in keeping with UNDP’s established rules and regulations.
[Added: 2020/11/04]
ICRRP team with the support from Procurement and Operations Units 2020/06 Completed
8. Recommendation:

recommendation 8. Promote the development of social enterprises in KRI and the Newly Liberated Areas that would create jobs for the most vulnerable population and enhance skills level of beneficiaries.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/04]

UNDP acknowledges the importance of creating business opportunities to revive local economies that were disrupted and destroyed during the conflict, and to create jobs and livelihoods for the Iraqi population including the most vulnerable.

ICRRP has been supporting the small and medium businesses with microgrants to support asset recovery and their re-entry into local economies. In beneficiary selection, vulnerabilities such as their household constitution (ex. who is the household head, how many dependent members against how much income, whether there are members with disabilities, etc.), displacement history, and others are taken into consideration. ICRRP will continue to support creating inclusive jobs and business opportunities and provide employable skills trainings.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
8.1 Continue supporting small and medium businesses with microgrants, asset recovery, or business development services while encouraging them to hire more women, youth and IDPs under new project activities.
[Added: 2020/11/04]
ICRRP Livelihoods Unit 2020/06 Completed
9. Recommendation:

recommendation 9. UNDP to give priority to NGOs that can complement UNDP funding with additional resources in order to ensure the success and sustainability of small businesses.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/04]

UNDP acknowledges that the support provided by UNDP (directly or via its partners) is not always sufficient by itself to secure sustainable livelihoods, especially given the  country context. However, UNDP finds this recommendation to be conflicting with above recommendation 7, as adding this priority criterion will most likely disadvantage local NGOs over their international counterparts given the limited financial capacities of local NGOs 

Furthermore, given the medium to long-term tasks for the country to diversify its economy, revive the private sector and create more employment opportunities, UNDP proposes to support the Government of Iraq with priority reforms,  under the new CPD, that will make markets and financial sector more inclusive and accessible to (small and medium) businesses and individuals.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
9.1 Continued technical support through complementary programming platforms in the UNDP Iraq Country Office to support the Government of Iraq and Kurdistan Regional government on reforms to make markets and financial sector more inclusive
[Added: 2020/11/04]
Funding Facility for Economic Reform 2020/06 Completed
10. Recommendation:

recommendation 10. UNDP is to formulate a private sector development strategy for the next phase of ICRRP with emphasis to be provided to support sustainable enterprises and to medium and long-term recovery of SMEs.  

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/04]

While acknowledging that private sector recovery is one of the key drivers for sustainable livelihoods and inclusive economic growth, it should be noted that such recovery efforts must be driven by the government, who has the primary responsibility for the national development. Moreover, suggested action is outside the scope of ICRRP.

In line with the global and national strategic agenda, and under the framework of new CPD (2020-2024), UNDP will support the Government of Iraq to reform its policies, institutions and processes, to create an enabling environment that facilitates inclusive economic growth to benefit all Iraqi people. Specifically, UNDP will provide technical assistance for GOI to formulate a private sector development strategy and to implement related reforms to improve the country’s business climate.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
10.1 Develop a Livelihoods Strategy to provide overall guidance for project development under new CPD (2020-2024)
[Added: 2020/11/04]
Diversification of Economy Pillar 2020/05 Completed
11. Recommendation:

recommendation 11. Ensure the sustainability of community centers through the development of capacity of the centers in for example project formulation, fund raising, forging partnerships with the private sector and in the development of income-generating activities.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/04]

UNDP acknowledges the importance of making the community centers sustainable, as these centers could play a very significant role in promoting social cohesion and harmony in the targeted Iraqi communities, many of which are facing serious tensions and conflicts.

 

However, the ability of UNDP to make further investments to support these centers depend upon availability of resources, which as of early 2020 were available to ICRRP from donors. Under the  new Integrated Social Cohesion Programme under design in UNDP Iraq however lessons relating to sustainability will be taken into consideration in the design.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
11.1 Design the Iraq Social Cohesion Programme and consolidated team structure which will lead on implementation of social cohesion activities in Iraq across all projects, taking into account lessons learned in social cohesion programming including from ICRRP.
[Added: 2020/11/04]
Social Cohesion team 2020/01 Completed
12. Recommendation:

recommendation 12. Gender protection should be cross-cutting particularly in livelihood and social cohesion interventions, while the social cohesion component is to be considered a cross-cutting issue in all other components of ICRRP.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/04]

UNDP acknowledges the importance of gender and social cohesion as the crosscutting priorities across its programme. Most of UNDP Iraq projects and all of ICRRP activities have gender marker 2, reflecting gender analysis results in the design and implementation. ICRRP will also pilot a new initiative that links gender-based violence prevention training with livelihoods intervention, starting in 2020.

Moreover, the Iraq Social Cohesion Programme (ISCP) under the Country Programme Document (2020-2024) is to lead the integration of conflict sensitivity in all country office projects.  

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
12.1 Initiate the pilot project on increasing awareness and support for strengthen local capacities on GBV prevention in the conflict-affected communities, through linking GBV prevention training with livelihoods intervention
[Added: 2020/11/04]
ICRRP Livelihoods Unit in close coordination with Gender Team Iraq and HQ advisors 2020/09 Completed
12.2 ICRRP will be supported by a team of Gender Specialists from the Stabilization Pillar who will advise on approaches for gender mainstreaming and developing a gender workplan for the project.
[Added: 2020/11/04]
Stabilization Pillar 2020/03 Completed

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