Final evaluation of the Kuwait Environmental Governance Initiative

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Evaluation Plan:
2015-2019, Kuwait
Evaluation Type:
Final Project
Planned End Date:
07/2019
Completion Date:
11/2019
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
20,000

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Title Final evaluation of the Kuwait Environmental Governance Initiative
Atlas Project Number: 00091766
Evaluation Plan: 2015-2019, Kuwait
Evaluation Type: Final Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 11/2019
Planned End Date: 07/2019
Management Response: Yes
UNDP Signature Solution:
  • 1. Sustainable
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021)
  • 1. Output 2.1.1 Low emission and climate resilient objectives addressed in national, sub-national and sectoral development plans and policies to promote economic diversification and green growth
SDG Goal
  • Goal 11. Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable
  • Goal 12. Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns
  • Goal 13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
  • Goal 7. Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all
SDG Target
  • 12.2 By 2030, achieve the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources
  • 13.3 Improve education, awareness-raising and human and institutional capacity on climate change mitigation, adaptation, impact reduction and early warning
  • 7.1 By 2030, ensure universal access to affordable, reliable and modern energy services
Evaluation Budget(US $): 20,000
Source of Funding: Project fund
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 19,685
Joint Programme: Yes
Joint Evaluation: Yes
  • Joint with UN Agencies
  • Joint with UNEP
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Magda Stepanyan Evaluator magdastepanyan@yahoo.com ARMENIA
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders: Kuwait Environment Public Authority, GSSCPD
Countries: KUWAIT
Lessons
Findings
1.

4. Main Findings This section provides the main findings from the evaluation regarding the progress made and capacities developed throughout the whole implementation period of the KEGI project.

A. Change Analysis

The purpose of the change analysis is to provide an overview of the level of completion of each of the project activities as defined in the results framework. Below is the overview: Table 4.1 Overview of the completion of project activities

Comments: The outstanding activity 2.3 requires longer period exceeding the duration of the project. Hence, the project will be officially closed by the end of June 2019, however, activity 2.3 is expected to be completed by the end of September 2019. This has been agreed between all partners and most importantly, UNDP Kuwait committed quality control over this activity after the official closure of the project. Table 4.2: Progress towards project objectives’ targets. There are multiple capacity development measures identified and implemented within the project, exceeding the target. The project also outstrips the target with regards to nationally appropriate indicators measured to assess the progress on Green SDGs, hence, seven indicators are defined, and adequate input is provided in developing the first voluntary national (VNR) report of Kuwait. The work on eMISK is delayed and it is early to indicate the achievements as of indicators, however, there are grounds to conclude that the indicator is set to be achieved.

B. Contribution Analysis

Strategic Relevance

The strategic relevance of the project is rated as ‘Highly Satisfactory’. 

The relevance analysis largely answers the following question: Is the project’s adopted strategy pertaining to each result and overall objective still valid? Through its intended results the project aims to contribute to high level national development priorities and development priorities agreed to be address jointly by UNDP and the Government of Kuwait. 


Tag: Challenges Relevance Policies & Procedures Project and Programme management Results-Based Management Theory of Change Data and Statistics SDG Integration

2.

Effectiveness

The effectiveness of the project is rated as ‘Satisfactory’. The effectiveness analysis is largely addressing the question: Are the delivery of activities and outputs contributing to the achievement of the project results and the outcome? Even though the effectiveness of the project implementation varies significantly across activities and across partners involved, however, cumulatively it is possible to consider the project’s effectiveness as satisfactory. This rating is justified by a number of important deliverables produced by the project, despite all the challenges faced across the process. One of the success factors is the high-caliber international expertise mobilized by UNDP Kuwait to support with specific and highly-specialized analytical studies. 

With regards to objective 1 to enhance KEPA’s capacities to participate in MEAs and IADGs the project has delivered several analytical papers that create basis for the KEPA’s more focused activities in the future: - In July 2018, a detailed ‘Legal and Institutional Assessment for the KEPA’ report was produced. The legal and institutional assessment was conducted against the international benchmarks, namely International Indicators of Environmental Performance and SDGs, as well as against the pillars of the Kuwait National Development Plan. The EPL was also compared with those from other GCC countries. Recommendations are provided on how to address the capacity gaps both at legal and institutional frameworks. - In August 2018, a detailed capacity assessment report entitled ‘Capacity Building Programme’ was produced to link individual learning of the KEPA staff with the organizational mission and objectives. Building capacities of the staff is considered important in KEPA to retain the knowledge and to increase effectiveness and efficiency of its operations.

The focus was on building capacities of the (a) strategic management, (b) operational management, and (c) technical and scientific staff. A detailed training plan has been developed for the KEPA. - In August 2018, a legal study was conducted for the KEPA and report entitled ‘Enforcement and Compliance Policy Systems and Indicators for the KEPA’ was produced. The focus of the study is to support KEPA’s compliance and enforcement functions as defined by the EPL. The study maps the availability and non-availability of various tools that organization can potentially use to fulfil its mandate. Also, it provides direction on how to respond to environmental incidents with the potential to adversely affect human health or the natural environment. In December 2018, a detailed analysis was carried out to assess the readiness of the KEPA to monitor and report on Green SDGs. The report was published, entitled ‘Environmental Pillars of the Sustainable Development Goals in Kuwait’. The specific focus of the report was to objective of the report is to provide an overview of national priorities in regard to environmental SDG targets and indicators, and provide insights on data availability, quality and data gaps, and identify potential areas to strengthen national monitoring and reporting capacity to assist national SDG readiness and planning to facilitate the integration and implementation of the SDG at the national level. In total, out of 57 indicators 20 have been agreed as priority for Kuwait to report upon. 


Tag: Green Economy Effectiveness Partnership Project and Programme management UN Agencies Capacity Building Technology Technical Support Data and Statistics SDG Integration

3.

Efficiency

The efficiency of the project is rated as ‘Marginally Satisfactory’. The effectiveness analysis is largely addressing the question: What is the efficiency of the project implementation? Project manager was hired six months after the inception of the project. This has caused a delay in the project schedule. Additionally, there were multiple other delays in the project caused by a variety of reasons. Even extension of the project from 1 January 2019 till 30 June 2019 cannot be considered a full compensation of those delays simply because the implementation of the project was not sufficiently informed by the possibility of extension. This means, that the project was operating on a rush-mode while the decision about extension of the project implementation was convened to the project team at the late point. 


Tag: Efficiency Operational Efficiency Partnership Project and Programme management UN Agencies Coordination

4.

Sustainability

The sustainability of the project is rated as ‘Satisfactory’.

The effectiveness analysis is largely addressing the question: To what extent are the project effects towards building capacity of the KEPA sustainable?


Tag: Challenges Sustainability Communication Human and Financial resources Capacity Building Coordination Technical Support

5.

Impact

The impact of the project is rated as ‘Satisfactory’.

The effectiveness analysis is largely addressing the question: Are there reasonable grounds to conclude that the project is set to achieve its long-term impact? The project impact is two-fold including (a) analytical work produced during the project with clear recommendations that will guide the KEPA’s focused efforts towards further capacity development, and (b) actual skills and tools that the KEPA staff can immediately employ in their daily work. Much expectations are linked to the work related to enhancement of the internal environmental information system, but this work will be finalized only in September 2019.


Tag: Impact Communication Advocacy Data and Statistics Voluntary National Review

6.

Coherence

The coherence of the project is rated as ‘Unsatisfactory’. The value of the partnership for the implementation of this project was largely envisaged in the added value of UN to ease contracting process, to mobilize international expertise and to tap into international best practices regarding environmental governance. Meanwhile, it was expected that the KEPA would maintain high level of ownership to benefit from its international partners. While UNDP Kuwait managed to demonstrate high responsiveness to the emerging needs for the successful implementation of the project, there are multiple challenges that did not allow exploring the value of this partnership in its full capacity.


Tag: Challenges Coherence Effectiveness Communication Ownership Partnership

7.

Coherence (continuation)

There were also confusion and misunderstandings in the communication and relationships between UNEP, on one hand, and UNDP Kuwait and GSSCPD, on the other. Due to nondelivery status of the activities under the UNEP’s responsibility, the GSSCPD issued an official warning to the KEPA not to cooperate with UNEP in April 2019. This ban has been lifted shortly, after UNEP met with the project partners, in March 2019 and submitted a letter with request to lift the ban in April 2019. The situation with delays of the activities under the UNEP’s responsibility is partially a planning and communication problem between two UN agencies. The major challenge is that the contract signed between the UNDP Kuwait and UNEP, the so-called ‘UN to UN Agreement’, that required cost-recovery modality (the section C of the contract) contradicts UNEP’s internal rules. UNEP does not pre-finance activities. UNEP’s role within the project was largely about conducting assessments and providing technical assistance wherefor they needed international experts. However, UNEP’s internal rules does not allow the organization to hire external experts if there are no actual funds available for that activity. It took about seven months before funds were disbursed to UNEP to proceed with its activities. 


Tag: Challenges Coherence Effectiveness Operational Efficiency Partnership Project and Programme management UN Agencies

Recommendations
1

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations

Lesson 1: Ensure needs-informed capacity development

Proper capacity gap analysis is critical to inform any efforts directed to building capacity. Therefore, it is of high importance to ensure that capacity needs assessment is carried out at the early stage of the project implementation, especially if the focus of the project is building capacities of the national counterpart. 

2

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 2: Support data governance

Success of environmental governance depends largely on the availability and accessibility of environment-related data as well as the capacities of the decision-makers to interpret data adequately. Therefore, it is of high importance to explore and recommend a mechanism of environmental data governance that will engage stakeholders from the KEPA and beyond. This would require a strong and high-level leadership of such a mechanism and its direct link with the achievement of the SDGs in Kuwait. UNSD has strong expertise in this and it’s worth exploring in other project(s). 

3

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 3: Ensure sharp logic of the intervention

When project outputs are very diverse and loosely connected, they resemble a wish-list rather than achievements demonstrating strong logic of intervention. Therefore, it is recommended to ensure peer-review of the project document and ensure more active engagement of UNDP regional hub to provide technical support at the design and later on, at the implementation phase.

4

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 4: Maintain coherence of information management system

Each new software solution comes with new complexity – how to link this new software to the existing information system. Hence, when MapX was introduced, however useful, the question was raised about compatibility of the tools applied within KEPA – MapX operates on open platform and therefore only on Android (not iPhone for instance). Therefore, to maintain high-level of coherence of the information management system, while introducing a new software it is critical to offer integration solutions in the package. In this case, explore MAPEX integration or data input to eMISK.

5

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 5: Minimize language barrier

Successful environmental governance in Kuwait can be guaranteed if benefiting from the vast international expertise accumulated in this field of knowledge. Not always the experts and the resource materials are available in Arabic, while in the meantime, English (usually widely spoken within expert communities) might be a challenge to the KEPA staff. Therefore, it is recommended to ensure high quality of translation and interpretation and factor this consideration in the project design and implementation.

6

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 6: Support the KEPA to fully institutionalize compliance and enforcement functions

Compliance and enforcement functions required different modalities and different approach for implementation. While the KEPA is granted the authority for both functions, clear demarcation of the portfolios for both remains critical and requires additional efforts. Therefore, it is recommended to continue supporting the KEPA in institutionalizing compliance and enforcement functions as defined by the Enforcement and Compliance Policy Systems and Indicators report for the KEPA (August 2018).

7

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 7: Maintain the KEGI’s momentum

The KEGI project has produced a number of valuable recommendations for the KEPA and for the environmental governance in Kuwait, in general. In the meantime, some of the project activities were carried out in a rush-mode with limited consultations. Additional consultations would be highly beneficial for the KEPA. In the meantime, the project has delivered multiple valuable analytical papers that have a potential to significantly inform the effectiveness of the KEPA’s work. Therefore, it is recommended to maintain the momentum created by the KEGI project and in consultations with the KEPA staff shape a new roadmap to elevate the KEPA’s work to a next quality level. Special attention should be paid to the recommendations produced to sharpen the links with SGDs and national development priorities.

8

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 8: Raise awareness of policy-makers on Green SDGs

While building the KEPA’s capacities for environmental governance remains of high priority, the success of this endeavor would also depend on the traction for evidence-based policymaking and environmental data governance in Kuwait. This requires additional efforts towards raising awareness of the value of Green SDGs and their linkages with the national development priorities. Therefore, it is recommended to combine efforts for strengthening environmental governance in Kuwait with raising awareness on Green SDGs among highlevel policy makers to create necessary synergies.

9

(b) Process specific lessons learned and recommendations

Lessons 9: Include no-cost inception phase in the project implementation

When intervention modality is project-based, it implies that the project staff will be hired only when there is a formal agreement for funds allocation. The recruitment of the project staff takes from several weeks to several months usually and if not accounted as no-cost inception phase, this time will be taken from the implementation phase of the project creating unnecessary rush in the project implementation. Therefore, it is strongly recommended to negotiate with donors on no-cost inception phase to organize necessary preconditions for the project implementation including hiring project personnel.

10

(b) Process specific lessons learned and recommendations

Lessons 10: Ensure feedback loops to beneficiary while supporting with analytical papers

Quite often and for various reasons (not least, time limit) the analytical work is outsourced to external international expert. While it is required and ensured by the project quality control to produce analytical products in a highly consultative manner, it is of high importance to ensure feedback loops with the receiving organization. This implies, not simply to deliver report but ALWAYS organize a workshop and present the findings and explain the process, discuss the limitations and implications. Therefore, it is highly recommended to introduce new quality control mechanism to ensure the analytical work within any project (a) is carried out in highly consultative fashion, and (b) is concluded with a final workshop to present the findings and have a chance for the final reflection on the main recommendations. Also, ensure each analytical report has a 3-5-page summary that must be disseminated within the broader range of beneficiaries. In the case of this project, while one department of the KEPA might be interested in the details of an analytical report, another department might still benefit from the summary of the findings.

11

(b) Process specific lessons learned and recommendations

Lessons 11: Ensure readiness assessment before engaging into One UN delivery modality

This project has demonstrated that UN administrative system needs closer attention to ensure two (or more) UN agencies can work effectively and efficiently with each other. Therefore, before entering into partnership with another UN agency, it is critical to analyze and compare administrative requirements to identify conflicts and gaps and to address them in advance.

12

(b) Process specific lessons learned and recommendations

Lessons 12: Check for conflict of interest with 3rd parties

This project has demonstrated once again the criticality of checking the possible conflict of interests when awarding a contract to the 3rd party. This is also important for the possible liability issues to recover costs made in case of hidden conflict of interest has been discovered. Therefore, it is strongly recommended to ensure ‘conflict of interest’ check prior to signing any contract with the 3rd party. 

13

(c) Governance related lessons learned and recommendations

Lessons 13: Escalate if project governance mechanism is not functioning

The project governance mechanism was not functioning as it was deemed to function. This required timely intervention of the higher-level management. Therefore, it is recommended to detect early in the process if governance mechanism is not functioning and address it at the necessary level of seniority. 

14

(c) Governance related lessons learned and recommendations 

Lessons 14: Ensure multiple focal points in complex NIM projects

This project has demonstrated that when the communication and coordination within the national implementing partner dependents largely to one person, this is high risk implementation arrangement. While in some cases such arrangement might leverage more benefits, in the project where there are multiple thematic and implementation dimensions, it is highly recommended to consider appointing focal point for each thematic area. Therefore, in a complex NIM project, it is strongly recommend to ensure National Coordinator and a council of focal points with clear division of responsibilities and clear line of communication.

Management Response Documents
1. Recommendation:

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations

Lesson 1: Ensure needs-informed capacity development

Proper capacity gap analysis is critical to inform any efforts directed to building capacity. Therefore, it is of high importance to ensure that capacity needs assessment is carried out at the early stage of the project implementation, especially if the focus of the project is building capacities of the national counterpart. 

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

The country office operates in NCC context. Due to COVID-19, declining oil prices the starting year of the new programme cycle under UN cooperation framework has shifted from 2020 to 2021. As of today, we do not have a confirmation of resources nor funding for environmental projects. In the event of a future project, we will be sure to: 

  1. Capacity gap analysis carried out all managerial levels.
  2. Mapping of various technical support from different entities, such as, bilateral development agencies.
  3. Survey before and after project to ensure capacity development is met.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
In consultation with General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning & Development, once the UN cooperation framework is signed. UNDP will further consult with General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning & Development and Kuwait Environmental Public Authority for the implementation of capacity needs assessment.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Programme Team 2021/12 Completed Discussions took place History
2. Recommendation:

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 2: Support data governance

Success of environmental governance depends largely on the availability and accessibility of environment-related data as well as the capacities of the decision-makers to interpret data adequately. Therefore, it is of high importance to explore and recommend a mechanism of environmental data governance that will engage stakeholders from the KEPA and beyond. This would require a strong and high-level leadership of such a mechanism and its direct link with the achievement of the SDGs in Kuwait. UNSD has strong expertise in this and it’s worth exploring in other project(s). 

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

For the anticipated national observatory for sustainable development support under Institutional Capacity Development Initiative project, we will have a dedicated discussion drawing both NOSD, Kuwait Environmental Public Authority and their partners who are collecting environmental data on how better to manage and update environmental data benefitting all entities, such as synchronization of data management.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
In the first consultation with NOSD for the Institutional Capacity Development Initiative project, we will co-design workplans which will include dedicated plans and actions with Kuwait Environmental Public Authority and Central Statistics Bureau.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Programme Team 2021/12 Completed Discussions done History
3. Recommendation:

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 3: Ensure sharp logic of the intervention

When project outputs are very diverse and loosely connected, they resemble a wish-list rather than achievements demonstrating strong logic of intervention. Therefore, it is recommended to ensure peer-review of the project document and ensure more active engagement of UNDP regional hub to provide technical support at the design and later on, at the implementation phase.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

The country office will ensure quality assurance of project document formulation and synergy of outputs by the regional hub.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
The country office will facilitate meetings between regional hub, General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning & Development, Kuwait Environmental Public Authority and Kuwait Institute of Scientific Research.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Programme Team 2021/12 Completed Discussions with GSSCPD done History
4. Recommendation:

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 4: Maintain coherence of information management system

Each new software solution comes with new complexity – how to link this new software to the existing information system. Hence, when MapX was introduced, however useful, the question was raised about compatibility of the tools applied within KEPA – MapX operates on open platform and therefore only on Android (not iPhone for instance). Therefore, to maintain high-level of coherence of the information management system, while introducing a new software it is critical to offer integration solutions in the package. In this case, explore MAPEX integration or data input to eMISK.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

In the event that the country office succeeds in resource mobilization to start a new environmental project, we will be sure to

include software compatibility technical information in future Terms Of Reference to ensure information system coherence.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Regardless of whether a second phase of the project is agreed on, UNDP will communicate to senior Kuwait Environmental Public Authority management on options to integrate MapX to the EMisk system.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Programme Team 2021/12 Completed Discussions done History
5. Recommendation:

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 5: Minimize language barrier

Successful environmental governance in Kuwait can be guaranteed if benefiting from the vast international expertise accumulated in this field of knowledge. Not always the experts and the resource materials are available in Arabic, while in the meantime, English (usually widely spoken within expert communities) might be a challenge to the KEPA staff. Therefore, it is recommended to ensure high quality of translation and interpretation and factor this consideration in the project design and implementation.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

The country office will get a list of vetted Arabic/English translators that are experienced in handling environmental issues, in the event that a new project starts. If resource mobilization is successful, we will budget for translation costs to ensure all reports are bilingual.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
The country office will get a list of vetted Arabic/English translators that are experienced in handling environmental issues, in the event that a new project starts.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Operations Team 2021/12 Completed Processed History
6. Recommendation:

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 6: Support the KEPA to fully institutionalize compliance and enforcement functions

Compliance and enforcement functions required different modalities and different approach for implementation. While the KEPA is granted the authority for both functions, clear demarcation of the portfolios for both remains critical and requires additional efforts. Therefore, it is recommended to continue supporting the KEPA in institutionalizing compliance and enforcement functions as defined by the Enforcement and Compliance Policy Systems and Indicators report for the KEPA (August 2018).

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

Discuss with Kuwait Environmental Public Authority and General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning & Development on stronger and more preventive roles Kuwait Environmental Public Authority can play in ensuring environmental standards of projects, implemented by other entities, such as waste management with the Kuwait Municipality.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Discuss with General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning & Development for the integration of environmental governance recommendations in a holistic manner, as well as, strengthening Kuwait Environmental Public Authority’s role as a regulatory entity.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Programme Team 2021/12 Completed Done History
7. Recommendation:

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 7: Maintain the KEGI’s momentum

The KEGI project has produced a number of valuable recommendations for the KEPA and for the environmental governance in Kuwait, in general. In the meantime, some of the project activities were carried out in a rush-mode with limited consultations. Additional consultations would be highly beneficial for the KEPA. In the meantime, the project has delivered multiple valuable analytical papers that have a potential to significantly inform the effectiveness of the KEPA’s work. Therefore, it is recommended to maintain the momentum created by the KEGI project and in consultations with the KEPA staff shape a new roadmap to elevate the KEPA’s work to a next quality level. Special attention should be paid to the recommendations produced to sharpen the links with SGDs and national development priorities.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

In consultation with Kuwait Environmental Public Authority, we will look into opportunities to link with recommendations and Kuwait Environmental Public Authority’s organizational internal strategy with a bill to ensuring buy-in of environmental governance recommendations from the top management of Kuwait Environmental Public Authority.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Discuss with General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning & Development for the integration of environmental governance recommendations in a holistic manner, as well as, strengthening Kuwait Environmental Public Authority’s role as a regulatory entity.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Programme Team 2021/12 Completed Discussions took place History
8. Recommendation:

(a) Content specific lessons learned and recommendations 

Lesson 8: Raise awareness of policy-makers on Green SDGs

While building the KEPA’s capacities for environmental governance remains of high priority, the success of this endeavor would also depend on the traction for evidence-based policymaking and environmental data governance in Kuwait. This requires additional efforts towards raising awareness of the value of Green SDGs and their linkages with the national development priorities. Therefore, it is recommended to combine efforts for strengthening environmental governance in Kuwait with raising awareness on Green SDGs among highlevel policy makers to create necessary synergies.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

The COVID-19 pandemic shed light on the importance of environmental sustainability, including accelerating non-oil economy and green recovery.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
The country office will raise awareness of the green Sustainable Development Goals through the Sustainable Development Goals accelerator to support SMEs, linking new business products and services to SDGs, in post-pandemic environment. UNDP is working on a UN Socioeconomic analysis to look into opportunities to advance green recovery and environmental sustainability issues as part of the new normal linking to the implementation of Kuwait National Development Plan.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Programme Team 2021/12 Completed worked on it History
9. Recommendation:

(b) Process specific lessons learned and recommendations

Lessons 9: Include no-cost inception phase in the project implementation

When intervention modality is project-based, it implies that the project staff will be hired only when there is a formal agreement for funds allocation. The recruitment of the project staff takes from several weeks to several months usually and if not accounted as no-cost inception phase, this time will be taken from the implementation phase of the project creating unnecessary rush in the project implementation. Therefore, it is strongly recommended to negotiate with donors on no-cost inception phase to organize necessary preconditions for the project implementation including hiring project personnel.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

The country office has established a roster of vetted project managers to streamline the recruitment process since regular recruitment is more time consuming, as pointed out by the audit report.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
In the event the pipeline matures to hard, UNDP will negotiate with donors on a no-cost inception phase to organize the pre-conditions for the project implementation.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Programme Team 2021/12 Completed Initiated the SC roster and in the process of creating the NPSA Roster as well. History
10. Recommendation:

(b) Process specific lessons learned and recommendations

Lessons 10: Ensure feedback loops to beneficiary while supporting with analytical papers

Quite often and for various reasons (not least, time limit) the analytical work is outsourced to external international expert. While it is required and ensured by the project quality control to produce analytical products in a highly consultative manner, it is of high importance to ensure feedback loops with the receiving organization. This implies, not simply to deliver report but ALWAYS organize a workshop and present the findings and explain the process, discuss the limitations and implications. Therefore, it is highly recommended to introduce new quality control mechanism to ensure the analytical work within any project (a) is carried out in highly consultative fashion, and (b) is concluded with a final workshop to present the findings and have a chance for the final reflection on the main recommendations. Also, ensure each analytical report has a 3-5-page summary that must be disseminated within the broader range of beneficiaries. In the case of this project, while one department of the KEPA might be interested in the details of an analytical report, another department might still benefit from the summary of the findings.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

In the event that the project is funded, we will ensure that a multi-stakeholder validation workshop in the terms of reference of all consultants, both internal and external.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
In the event that the project is funded, we will ensure that a multi-stakeholder validation workshop in the terms of reference of all consultants, both internal and external.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Programme Team 2021/12 Completed We are using our internal experts within UNDP and mainly the HUB in Amman History
11. Recommendation:

(b) Process specific lessons learned and recommendations

Lessons 11: Ensure readiness assessment before engaging into One UN delivery modality

This project has demonstrated that UN administrative system needs closer attention to ensure two (or more) UN agencies can work effectively and efficiently with each other. Therefore, before entering into partnership with another UN agency, it is critical to analyze and compare administrative requirements to identify conflicts and gaps and to address them in advance.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

In view of ensuring national ownership, government counterparts will decide on participating united nations entities based on merit and comparative advantage.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Discussions will take place prior to and during the steering committee for the UN Cooperation Framework.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management 2021/12 Completed done History
12. Recommendation:

(b) Process specific lessons learned and recommendations

Lessons 12: Check for conflict of interest with 3rd parties

This project has demonstrated once again the criticality of checking the possible conflict of interests when awarding a contract to the 3rd party. This is also important for the possible liability issues to recover costs made in case of hidden conflict of interest has been discovered. Therefore, it is strongly recommended to ensure ‘conflict of interest’ check prior to signing any contract with the 3rd party. 

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

The country office will exert all efforts and will ensure checking any potential of conflict of interest through obtaining written confirmation and signature, from all involved in the awarding of the contract including a statement from the company or consultant and when possible from the beneficiary prior to awarding the contract to consultants and or companies.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
The country office will ensure no conflict of interest between consultants, companies, UNDP staff and beneficiaries through obtaining necessary written confirmation and signature, from all involved prior to awarding the contract to consultants and or companies.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Procurement Team 2021/12 Completed done History
13. Recommendation:

(c) Governance related lessons learned and recommendations

Lessons 13: Escalate if project governance mechanism is not functioning

The project governance mechanism was not functioning as it was deemed to function. This required timely intervention of the higher-level management. Therefore, it is recommended to detect early in the process if governance mechanism is not functioning and address it at the necessary level of seniority. 

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

The country office and the project management have a real-time multi-dimensional risk management matrix around which a weekly meeting will be conducted for early detection and mitigation of risks.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
In the event that a new project is in place with government funding, the country office and the project management have a real-time multi-dimensional risk management matrix around which a weekly meeting will be conducted for early detection and mitigation of risks.
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Programme Team 2021/12 Completed Weekly/Daily follow up with GSSCPD is being implememted History
14. Recommendation:

(c) Governance related lessons learned and recommendations 

Lessons 14: Ensure multiple focal points in complex NIM projects

This project has demonstrated that when the communication and coordination within the national implementing partner dependents largely to one person, this is high risk implementation arrangement. While in some cases such arrangement might leverage more benefits, in the project where there are multiple thematic and implementation dimensions, it is highly recommended to consider appointing focal point for each thematic area. Therefore, in a complex NIM project, it is strongly recommend to ensure National Coordinator and a council of focal points with clear division of responsibilities and clear line of communication.

Management Response: [Added: 2020/11/17] [Last Updated: 2020/11/30]

The country office and hub will technically and strategically engage with both technical staff and senior management on a regular basis, in addition to the project board meeting.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
The country office and hub will technically and strategically engage with both technical staff and senior management on a regular basis, in addition to the project board meeting.M
[Added: 2020/11/30] [Last Updated: 2021/09/02]
Management & Programme Team 2021/12 Completed Implemented History

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