Kazakhstan Country Programme Outcome Evaluation 2016-2018 Diversification of the economy provides decent work opportunities for the underemployed, youth, and socially vulnerable women and men

Report Cover Image
Evaluation Plan:
2016-2020, Kazakhstan
Evaluation Type:
Outcome
Planned End Date:
12/2018
Completion Date:
11/2018
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
80,000

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Title Kazakhstan Country Programme Outcome Evaluation 2016-2018 Diversification of the economy provides decent work opportunities for the underemployed, youth, and socially vulnerable women and men
Atlas Project Number: 00094327,00088600,00082793,00081777
Evaluation Plan: 2016-2020, Kazakhstan
Evaluation Type: Outcome
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 11/2018
Planned End Date: 12/2018
Management Response: Yes
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
Evaluation Budget(US $): 80,000
Source of Funding:
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 17,920
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Pradeep Sharma
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders: Ministry of National Economy, Ministry of Labor and Social Protection,National Commission on Women rights, others
Countries: KAZAKHSTAN
Lessons
Findings
Recommendations
1

The knowledge and experience that UNDP has gathered by implementing three joint regional development projects should be documented and turned into a regional development model to be applied elsewhere in Kazakhstan (and the region).

2

UNDP should not underestimate the strength of non-project interventions to bring about change by using knowledge products and through micro-macro linkages.

3

UNDP should work towards improving efficiency of activities by (a) embedding project staff in the implementing ministries / local authorities (b) using micro-grants sparingly and (c) keeping project management costs reasonable.

4

Partnership with private sector should be forged to add impetus to economic diversification goal and promote “business for SDGs”.

5

UNDP should scale up social protection project to also include People Living with HIV and link them with social protection services as a means to mitigate vulnerabilities, reduce stigma and create enabling environment for people infected and affected by HIV to live with dignity.

6

Gender reporting should be strengthened to accurately reflect UNDP’s contribution to gender equality and women’s empowerment.

 

7

Local governance should be strengthened to promote local development. UNDP has an opportunity to share its vast regional / global experience to promote clear vision of decentralization, building capacities of local akimats for service delivery, strengthening social accountability and promoting people’s participation in local decision-making.

 

8

UNDP should invest time and resources to cultivate the results culture and strengthen monitoring and evaluation of activities.

9

Communications and advocacy for development should be strengthened

 

1. Recommendation:

The knowledge and experience that UNDP has gathered by implementing three joint regional development projects should be documented and turned into a regional development model to be applied elsewhere in Kazakhstan (and the region).

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office accepts the recommendation.

At this stage the GoK prioritized to focus UNDP support on nationwide initiatives which followed by successful commencement of several sectoral initiatives for 2018-2020. UNDP country office agreed with the Government the so-called “service line” approach, having issue-based nation-wide versus territory-based interventions. However, the models and instruments piloted within the 3 said regional joint programmes informed the design of these sectoral initiative. Moreover, the UNDP flagship initiative on PVE currently implemented in 2 Kazakhstan oblasts builds upon successes of 3 regional projects.

 In response the national priorities UNDP country office is shifting from the joint programmes model to joint programming model which allows to capitalize on distinctive competitive advantages of UN agencies while keeping transactions costs to the minimum.

For example, in the framework of UNDP project in the area of social protection funded by the Government, UNDP has engaged UNWOMEN to the implementation of certain activities in order to strengthen the gender equality aspect through a joint work. Likewise, various UN Agencies have been consulted and engaged at the project development stages for such development areas as, for example, PVE and women, Local Self-Governance, Disaster Risk Reduction, eco-tourism development,  NCDs, others.

 

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Further ensure of deployment of the regional programmes best practices into the design of new and implementation of the current projects
[Added: 2018/12/26]
GLD Unit, CO staff 2020/12 Initiated
2. Recommendation:

UNDP should not underestimate the strength of non-project interventions to bring about change by using knowledge products and through micro-macro linkages.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office accepts the recommendation.

We are in full agreement that the field work should inform of policy advice, advocacy and knowledge products. In connection with this UNDP pays special attention to developing of flagship knowledge products on critical development issues on both national and subnational levels. This will help open new dialogue with the national partners and adequately equip UNDP with tools for mobilization the resources for critical development issues and national priorities initiatives.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Open new discussion around the development issues raised in the 2018 NHDR and other knowledge products
[Added: 2018/12/26]
GLD and SDU Units 2019/12 Initiated
3. Recommendation:

UNDP should work towards improving efficiency of activities by (a) embedding project staff in the implementing ministries / local authorities (b) using micro-grants sparingly and (c) keeping project management costs reasonable.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office partially accepts the recommendation.

The country office has been constantly working to improve the efficiency of the projects.

UNDP Kazakhstan has already started embedding the project staff for instance project experts in the linear ministries. Some ministries prefer close contact and some more remote with regular interactions. So, UNDP adopted flexible approach which reflects the needs of national partners and best interest of UNDP and purpose of the specific development interventions.

 

As for the micro grants scheme, UNDP has made the global launch of the new programme and project management (PPM) methods in June 2018. The roll-out of the new PPM has included a number of new tools including to engage with partners in new and diverse ways. CO delivered the training on new PPM to the programme and project staff. CO has started working to apply new tools in the projects programmatic and operational activities such as Innovation Challenge tool, responsible party agreements, etc. ensuring the efficiency and sustainability of the result.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Gradual shift to closer interaction with the national partners where deems reasonable in agreement with the national partners
[Added: 2018/12/26]
GLD Unit 2020/12 Initiated
To continue the implementation of new policy instruments
[Added: 2018/12/26]
RMA, SDU and GLD Units 2020/12 Initiated
4. Recommendation:

Partnership with private sector should be forged to add impetus to economic diversification goal and promote “business for SDGs”.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office accepts the recommendation.The country office realizes the importance of mobilization untapped potential of private sector.

UNDP Kazakhstan is developing a strategy of private sector engagement into SDG nationalization. A series of dialogue with business sector (fully private and quasi-governmental) have been conducted in 2018, with the goal to enable these actors to become transformative partners in implementing SDGs. The strategy will aim to position UNDP as a partner of choice for private sector in SDG implementation, while maximizing the impact of the business sector on sustainable development.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
To elaborate the strategy and action plan and commence new initiatives on the private sector engagement in implementation of the Sustainable Development Agenda 2030
[Added: 2018/12/26]
SDU and GLD Units 2019/12 Initiated
5. Recommendation:

UNDP should scale up social protection project to also include People Living with HIV and link them with social protection services as a means to mitigate vulnerabilities, reduce stigma and create enabling environment for people infected and affected by HIV to live with dignity.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

As part of this work UNDP will make sure that the interest of this specific group is adequately addressed.

The country office partially accepts the recommendation. UNDP Kazakhstan supports the efforts of the Government to improve quality and accessibility of special social services for vulnerable people

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Initiate and promote national dialogue on advancing the rights of PLHIV
[Added: 2018/12/26]
GLD Unit 2020/06 Initiated
6. Recommendation:

Gender reporting should be strengthened to accurately reflect UNDP’s contribution to gender equality and women’s empowerment.

 

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office accepts the recommendation

UNDP will ensure that all programmes will apply a human rights-based approach and gender mainstreaming throughout this country programme cycle, thus capacity development of programme managers/staff on gender tools, including the use of sex-disaggregated data in screening of the programme outcomes needs to take place and will become a part of the new CO Gender Equality Strategy.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Gender mainstreaming in programme and projects will be ensured in 2019 and reflected in the CO’s Gender Action Plan for 2019. Reporting of gender equality results will be strengthened by building a stronger process of planning, monitoring and evaluating gender related indicators.
[Added: 2018/12/26]
ARR/Gender Focal Point, Gender task Force, Gender Specialist. 2019/12 Initiated
7. Recommendation:

Local governance should be strengthened to promote local development. UNDP has an opportunity to share its vast regional / global experience to promote clear vision of decentralization, building capacities of local akimats for service delivery, strengthening social accountability and promoting people’s participation in local decision-making.

 

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office  accepts the recommendation.

In recent years UNDP has been involved in local self-governance reforms on both a policy formulation and implementation levels. For instance, to support the roll out of the reform UNDP provided hands on training to over 2,500 governors (2017-2018) and staff of their apparatus to make sure they are adequately equipped with necessary knowledge and skills to implement the reform on the ground. In turn, the feedback received from the trainees was used to inform further changes and adjustments in the local self - governance reform vision.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Consolidate knowledge base and expertise into the practical easy- to use guides for local authorities to facilitate reform implementation
[Added: 2018/12/26]
GLD Unit 2019/11 Initiated
Analytical note to be developed and brought to the attention of MNE on the ways to accelerate self- governance reforms
[Added: 2018/12/26]
GLD Unit 2019/12 Initiated
8. Recommendation:

UNDP should invest time and resources to cultivate the results culture and strengthen monitoring and evaluation of activities.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office partially accepts the recommendation.

UNDP Kazakhstan has been continuously working to enhance the monitoring system and RBM and will ensure the improvement of planning and reporting (internally and outside UNDP) both on the programme and projects outcome level. Programme and projects staff are duly informed and trained on the reporting tools and how to make best use of it. Anyhow the country office sees the place for the improvement of M&E system in the office.

Regarding the evaluation of outcomes and outputs, the country office fully observes CPD evaluation plan to ensure outcomes and projects are evaluated on time in line with UNDP and the donor requirements e.g. GEF, EU. Even if it’s not requirement of the donor, the CO always evaluates a large-scale thematic project where funding allows to plan the evaluation. With this there are small with a tight budget for the implementation only. Thus, the CO should balance the efficiency of the operational costs and effectiveness.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Reinforcement of M&E and RBM in the country office Standard Operating Procedures for the project management through the design, implementation and closure stages
[Added: 2018/12/26]
M&E Associate 2019/06 Initiated
Maintenance of the practice of M&E trainings for the projects staff for M&E programming and implementation in the projects.
[Added: 2018/12/26]
M&E Associate 2019/06 Initiated
Introduce and maintain the exchange of the best M&E and RBM practices among the programme and projects i.e.project document development, report writing, presentation of the project results to the national partners
[Added: 2018/12/26]
M&E Associate 2019/09 Initiated
9. Recommendation:

Communications and advocacy for development should be strengthened

 

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office accepts the recommendation.

UNDP Kazakhstan has been actively communicating the project success stories inside and outside UNDP using various mass media tools.

Anyhow the country office sees the need to strengthen communications and advocacy for development initiatives.UNDP will take the best use of new PPM which puts partnerships, resource mobilization, and communications at the center of UNDP programming efforts  to work with new partners and mobilize financing

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
To elaborate and implement Partnerships and Communications Strategy and Action Plan (PCAP)
[Added: 2018/12/26]
Communications Officer 2019/12 Initiated

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