Final Evaluation - GEF Project Evaluation (Agro-biodiversity)

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Evaluation Plan:
2017-2021, Lao
Evaluation Type:
Final Project
Planned End Date:
09/2018
Completion Date:
10/2018
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
18,000

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Title Final Evaluation - GEF Project Evaluation (Agro-biodiversity)
Atlas Project Number: 00060069
Evaluation Plan: 2017-2021, Lao
Evaluation Type: Final Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 10/2018
Planned End Date: 09/2018
Management Response: Yes
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021)
  • 1. Output 1.4.1 Solutions scaled up for sustainable management of natural resources, including sustainable commodities and green and inclusive value chains
Evaluation Budget(US $): 18,000
Source of Funding: UNDP Regular Resources
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 26,300
Joint Programme: Yes
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Dr. Khosada Vongsana Consultant LAO PEOPLE'S DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC
GEF Evaluation: Yes
GEF Project Title: GEF Project Evaluation (Agro-biodiversity)
Evaluation Type: Terminal Evaluation
Focal Area: Biodiversity
Project Type: FSP
GEF Phase: GEF-4
GEF Project ID: 2416
PIMS Number: 2903
Key Stakeholders: MAF, FAO, SDC
Countries: LAO PEOPLE'S DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC
Comments:

Due to the delay in the process, we would like to move the completion date for this evaluation to end of June 2017.

Lessons
Findings
1.

3.1. Project design/formulation

The outcomes of the project as designed, were specific, measurable, achievable, relevantand time-bound (SMART). Specificity was determined in having quantitative outputs and outcomes, as well as some qualitative output, which were of course measurable. Most were determined to be achievable and time bound. However, as the project had to be extended, some time frames were adjusted. As indicated in Section 2, the project was aligned with national priorities and with UNDP programming at both the global and national levels.

Partnerships in the project were identified prior to the project inception. The main partnership was with the UN food and Agriculture Agency (FAO) to provide technical advisory services for the duration of the project. This arrangement was included in the Project Document that was approved by the GEF and wasfacilitated through a signed Letter of Agreement (LOA) between the two UN Agencies.


Tag: Relevance Global Environment Facility fund Programme/Project Design UN Agencies

2.

3.1.1. Analysis of LFA Results Framework

The objective and the two outcomes were logical and complimentary. Most of the targets set were realistic and achievable. The project managed to implement and tried to achieve all of them. All planned activities were implemented even though the project was delayed at the start.

The targets have to be expressed in measurable values and an overview of to what extent targets set have been met is presented in Annex 7. The ambition level has been set high..One target set was too 7ambitious related to number of national plans, policies, laws, and guidelines (identified) incorporating biodiversity, and especially agro-biodiversity and to integrate them in 8thNSEDP (2016-2020) and MAF master plan. The ABP project has provided significant inputs to NBSAP, PBSAP, and the Upland Development Strategy but to implement these plans is still difficult because of the capacity of relevant partners.


Tag: Relevance Results-Based Management Theory of Change

3.

3.1.2. Assumptions and Risks

The following major risks were listed in the ProDocon objective level;

  • Mainstreaming Agro-biodiversity concept and measures in 5 year Development Strategy is externally driven meaning that the process will stop when the project comes to the end. This concept is very new for senior government policy makers of Lao PDR and agro-biodiversity as making a significant contribution to the primary objective of poverty reduction and national development strategy for rural populations is not yet highlighted.
  • Threats to agro-biodiversity by commercialization of agriculture including plantations and replacing traditional varieties with few modern varieties, mono-cropping and uncritical/ overuse of pesticides and fertilizers;
  • Competing economic interests erode the base and options for Agro-biodiversity conservation to land use planning meaning that short term gains will be prioritized causing long term damages. There is limited linkages between conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.
  • Reduced access to land and water meaning that farmers will give up farming and leave the area
  • Population growth meaning constraints on availability of natural resources, particularly land resources and pressure on natural biodiversity.
  • Land use planning is still an issue in the target areas. As mentioned in the ProDoc, Land ownership and access rights will continue to be unclear and land allocation will be slow.

 


Tag: Agriculture Agriculture land resouces Crop production Rural development Biodiversity Results-Based Management Sustainability Promotion of dialogue

4.

3.1.3. Lessons from other relevant projects into project design

During the project preparation period and project formulation, data and experiences were systematically screened (Ministries, UN agencies, Donors, Projects, NGOs, Mass organizations and individuals with experiences and knowledge from work in the sector in Lao PDR). A series of workshops were also held at national and regional levels to inform about ideas and to gather views.

Decisions on how to design the project and which focal areas to select including geographical areas (districts and villages) were based on this process.This process was solid and very relevant.


Tag: Knowledge management Capacity Building

5.

3.1.3. Planned stakeholder participation

The stakeholder participation as planned in the design of the project has been achieved. This has created strengthened horizontal links(between government bodies in Vientiane and between provincial and district bodies respectively) and strengthened vertical links between ministries in Vientiane and its outlets on provincial and district levels. The entry points for interaction has been concrete tasks related to agro-biodiversity conservation and mainstreaming into the land policies and plans, in terms of, capacity building, development and application of tools (manuals, procedures, technical tools).


Tag: Local Governance Policies & Procedures Country Government Capacity Building

6.

3.1.4. Replication approach

Lao PDR has a wide variety of preconditions for supporting institutional framework to conserve agro-biodiversity conservation, including areas of natural resources, policies and regulations on forest protection, drought, flood and erosion problems. Lao PDR has also areas with villages with a wide variety of status of wealth from severe poverty to well off villages.

From the point of view of replicating approaches to mainstreaming agro-biodiversity conservation in land policies and plans, there have accordingly been valuable learning opportunities for ABP and even more importantly for GoL through work in the selected target districts and villages in different part of Lao PDR.

The inclusion of villages where natural resources and bio-diversity of natural resources and poverty incident were still more dominant, could have been an asset for learning and later on for replication.


Tag: Biodiversity Natural Resouce management Site Conservation / Preservation Sustainability

7.

3.1.5. UNDP comparative advantage

The UNDP Country Programme 2012 –2015 and the UNDAF(2012-2016) Outcome 7 and Output 7.3 on government assurance of sustainable natural resources management through improved governance and community participation. More specifically, the ABP project has contributed to local land use planning, conservation and management (including regulations on protection and sustainable use) of wild tea, medicinal plans, Melienta and fish. Further, the ABP project has assisted the local and national government in promoting protection and sustainable use of landraces/ varieties and native livestock as well as farming systems/ecosystems/landscapes in the NABP-II and PBSAP for Xieng Khouang and Luang Prabang Provinces. There are important links between the UNDP programme on Ensuring Sustainable Natural Resources and Environmental Management and agro-biodiversity conservation and corresponding sections in the NSEDP 2011 –20156and NSEDP 2016 –2020. UNDP has the co-chairing responsibility in the Round Table Process, which aims at securing international development assistance to Lao PDR is aligned with national development priorities. UNDP has assisted GoL to strengthening the capacities to formulate and implement strategies and plans related to agro-biodiversity conservation and natural resources management.

UNDP is the co-chair of the SubSector Working Group on Disasters, Climate Change and Environment under the Sector Working Group of Environment and Natural Resources.

 


Tag: Agriculture land resouces Livestock Natural Resouce management Site Conservation / Preservation Effectiveness Strategic Positioning

8.

3.1.6. Linkages between project and other interventions within the sector in Lao PDR

ABP has through capacity development training events for Government staff, study tours, seminars, and workshops spread knowledge about the projects, its objective, outcomes and ongoing activities. These efforts have themselves been invitations to cooperation between ABP and other related Lao based projects.As we can see that ABP has collaborated with many centres/departments under MAF and iNGOs working in the same fields of action.

One strong link between projects in this connection has been the Sub Sector Working Group on Agro-biodiversity), which has been the means of communication it has aimed to be so far.The SSWG met 3 times each year to discuss about the agro-biodiversity strategy and action plans. ABP collaborated with TABI for land use planning, which integrated ABD in the land use planning.


Tag: Agriculture Biodiversity Partnership Capacity Building

9.

3.1.7. Management arrangements

As a UNDP-supported GEF-financed project, the UNDP procedures for financial management were a precondition for project implementation (NIM)7(i.e.rules for release and management of funds from UNDP to the project).

For the implementation of the technical parts of the project, the GoL procedures both in horizontal and vertical communication were the preconditions(e.g. formal letters from PM to implementing partners to start activities).


Tag: Implementation Modality Country Government

10.

3.2. Project implementation

3.2.1. Adaptive management

Formally the project was approved for implementation through April 2016, but an extension was requested for eight additional months, so the project was extended through to 30 December 2016, but with no extra funding. The project extension was requested by the Government and approved by the GEF through UNDP.

Adaptive management was based on the recommendations of the MTR  which was carried out in July 2014. Below is a summary of the recommendations with comments related to action taken;

It can be concluded that the MTR foresaw many of the problems APB had,to on time prepare for use of experiences gained after end of the project period, and the recommendations helped ABP to adopt actions to improve the chances for sustaining use of the valuable project results.


Tag: Integration Results-Based Management

11.

3.2.2. Partnership arrangements

For the systematic process of implementation a Project Steering Committee (PSC) was established and chaired by Vice Minister of MAF. The PSC had annual meetings to discuss progress made on project implementation, to take related decisions and to review and approve the next year’s Annual Workplan.

The main oversight mechanism in place has been the monthly coordination meetings between the PMU, UNDP, and FAO. UNDP has also conducted an annual “spot check” of execution of activities in the field. In addition, the project has had audits conducted annually.

Mainly the District Agriculture and Forestry Office (DAFO) in Phoukout and Phonexay districts have been the key entry point for the local collaboration by having delegated implementation responsibilities for a total of 10 local agro-biodiversity initiatives. ABP project team and UNDP had quarterly meeting with the Local partners.


Tag: Local Governance Oversight Partnership Country Government UN Agencies

12.

3.2.3. Feedback from M&E activities used for adaptive management

A systematic screening of ABP and its performance was undertaken during the MTR. The recommendations from the MTR have been used for adjustments in project operations. This procedure was also stated in the M&E manual, which was developed for the project based on the UNDP procedures for project implementation.

Additionally, all the annual PIR’s were completed by the project and these were reviewed in the terminal Evaluation. Along with the recommendations of the MTR and the findings of the PIR, the adaptive management techniques applied covered three main areas:

  • Management –there was a change of the department within the Ministry as Implementing Partner
  • Targets –Re-alignment of targets, with the approval the GEF Regional Technical Advisor, to ensure accuracy of data presented
  • Policy Framework and Dialogue –Regarding the establishment of the ABD Sub Sector Working as a part of the Government’s official Aid Effectiveness PlatformThese and other areas are covered in detail in Section 3.2.1 (Adaptive Management).

The main focus of project operations was to ensure that the expected results and agreed targets were achieved.


Tag: Monitoring and Evaluation Policies & Procedures Quality Assurance

13.

3.2.4. Project Finance

In reality the co-financing that was not cash contribution should have been labeled parallel funding to better clarify relationships between the projects and the donors. Parallel funding is however accepted as co-funding if it has contributed to the achievements of results of a project.

In the project document , it is also stated that “ As part of the project implementation strategy project management will be pro-actively engaged to source further co-finance during the implementation period”. The PMU prepared two project proposals (EU and the Arabic Development Fund), but none of them were successful, meaning that no additional co-funding was received.


Tag: Efficiency Implementation Modality Operational Efficiency Programme Synergy

14.

3.2.5 Monitoring and evaluation design at entry and implementation


The ABP project M&E plan is outlined in the project document under Part 5, p. 69. The project document describes each of the planned M&E activities, including roles, responsibilities, and
timeframe. The identified M&E activities include inception workshop and report, annual progress reporting (APR/PIR), PSC meetings, quarterly status reports, the independent mid-term and terminal evaluations, project terminal report, audit, and monitoring visits from UNDP and FAO. The M&E system was created through a process, starting with the development of a manual and managed only by CTA and project provincial facilitators.

GEF SP-2 Tracking Tool Score for policy and regulatory frameworks has been added. One of key indicators is to develop and improve capacity to monitor, evaluate, report and learn. ABP could achieved this indicator and aligned with the M&E framework of the project. All indicators were followed up by the ABP project.

The resulting M&E system is a tradeoff between the energy and resources needed for implementation of project activities and the energy and resources required for M&E activities i.e. the more time spent on M&E –the less time is left for implementation.

 


Tag: Monitoring and Evaluation Quality Assurance

15.

3.2.6. UNDP and Implementing

Partner implementation/execution und has throughout the life of the project maintained frequent contact with ABP project team, both formal and informal, through regularly scheduled meetings, participation on the Project Steering Committee (PSC) meetings, provision of feedback on plans and reports and through keeping ABP informed about any event or development within UNDP related to ABP.

UNDP focused on ensuring results were delivered in timely manner and in keeping with UNDP Policies and Guidelines. Risk management was an on-going process and is reflected in the annual PIR’s.

The Executing Agency (DoPC/ABP) has had much turn over in staffing and has not been able to systematically undertake planned activities, which has led to the some troubles in delay and in completing the activities planned. However, the project team could manage to implement the project`s activities and achieved all project activities.

Overall the quality of implementation is commendable and within a limited time, ABP has produced substantial results.


Tag: Oversight Project and Programme management

16.

3.3.1. Overall results including relevance, effectiveness and efficiency

On Objective level (Supporting institutional framework to conserve agro-biodiversity)

The project has developed an institutional framework for agrobiodiversity conservation in Lao PDR, for which now a number of tools (material, manuals and procedures) are available and where the implementing partners have defined roles and responsibilities. It has basically been implemented in 4 steps–partly parallel in between IPs but through a coordinated process

1.Support to strategies plans by integrating agro-biodiversity conservation

2.Land use planning and delimitation of area under improved management for Agro-biodiversity conservation

3.Identification of agro-biodiversity taxonomic groups

4.Capacity building and extension


Tag: Agriculture Agriculture land resouces Fishery Oversight Project and Programme management Results-Based Management Sustainability

17.

3.3.1. Overall results including relevance, effectiveness and efficiency

On Outcome 1 level (Legal framework support)

The mainstreaming of biodiversity considerations into agricultural and land management legislation, including the development and promotion of policies that encourage and support sustainable use of agro-biodiversity in agricultural landscapes has been carried out. The ABP project has together with its implementing partners developed tools and organized workshops/training events for agro-biodiversity conservation in order to be a mediator/coordinator for supporting and enhancing incorporation of agro-biodiversity into national and institutional framework. Linked to the tools the knowledge among the implementing partners has increased. The most important tools and resulting products are;

Support to strategies plans

The ABP worked in cooperation with different partners to mainstreaming of biodiversity considerations into agricultural and land management legislation, including the development and promotion of policies that encourage and support sustainable use of agro-biodiversity in agricultural landscapes. ABP supported and contributed inputs to the development of strategic plans. Number of new national plans, policies, strategies, and guidelines with agro-biodiversity concerns were developed such as Upland development strategy, the second National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (NABP) to 2015, the AichiTargets in the 5th National Report to the CBD, Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan for Xieng Khouang Province (PBSAP-XK), National Agro-biodiversity Programme (NABP II), and Provincial Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (PBSAP). These outputs are very relevant and useful for the national action plans to protect and sustainably use of natural resources. The ABP helped to develop the institutional framework to conserve the agro-biodiversity at provincial level. However, to implement these strategic plans, it needs some continuing support and financial support for local partners who directly benefit. Coordination between key stakeholders is still a key challenges to achieve the success of the implementation of strategic plans.


Tag: Agriculture land resouces Biodiversity Knowledge management Policies & Procedures Results-Based Management Capacity Building

18.

Agro-biodiversity coordination

The ABP cooperated with the sector working groups on Agricultural and Rural development and Environment and Natural resources and has participated in some of the semi-annual meetings of sector workgroup of the Environment & Natural Resources (SWG ENR under MoNRE) in Agriculture and Rural Development (SWG ARD under MAF) meetings. Moreover, the project has been instrumental in establishing the sub-sector working group on Agro-biodiversity, which was launched in in September 2013. The preparation of NABP-II was also based on recommendations from this forum. An informal suggestion from NAFRI to establish and coordination committee covering all conventions and treaties related to agriculture, environment and natural resources (such as CBD, ITPGRFA, RAMSAR, CITES and CC), unfortunately has not yet materialized. However, the last meeting of ABP, these issues will be reconsidered and highlighted for other projects and key donors.

At local level provincial and district authorities meet regularly to discuss development issues including progress of ongoing projects, but unfortunately little feed back to the project. This was due to problem of coordination and reporting the outputs of ABP activities to the provincial authority. Reporting and coordinating with the provincial Authority such as Provincial Governance office is the key action to be considered for the ABP project because it could push forwards the implementation of strategic plans at provincial level.


Tag: Agriculture Biodiversity Natural Resouce management Local Governance Communication Coordination

19.

Capacity development

The integration of sustainable use and conservation of agro-biodiversity was highlighted through several meeting and interventions` implementedat central and local level. Many workshops and trainings were provided and experimented at local level. The technical capacity development of local staff was mainly done through the on-job training including trainings of trainers in IPM of more than 70 extension workers and teachers. However, these events provided only basic knowledge on agro-biodiversity conservation. Deep understanding and how to implementing the development approach still need some supports and interventions in the target areas, particularly where the livelihood depends on natural resources. The project helped to develop the strategies and action plan on agro-biodiversity conservation for the provinces but many local staff did not have opportunities to implement their knowledge and capacities in implementing these action plans. From the field visit in Xiengkhouang, many PONRE has not completed the implementation of the PBSAP. Some technical supports and funds are required to follow up the plans.


Tag: Agriculture Human and Financial resources Capacity Building

20.

Communication tools

A number of tools have been used to communicate and awareness raise agro-biodiversity such as Production information/guides for farmers(oyster mushroom production step, medicinal plant book), Training of Trainers materials, brochures (project activities, wild mushrooms, NABP II), Success Stories/Case Stories, Technical reports and booklets for publications and demonstration plots for famers and the public under IPM programme(guides and manuals). These manuals and books are very interesting and useful for other public on agro-biodiversity conservation. However, these manuals have been recently completed printing in colored booklets and need to be distributed to the central and local level.

At Pak Tak Ke Botanical Garden in Luang Prabang, ABP supported the establishment of four ethno-botanical plants to cure digestion problems, skin diseases, disorders, and fractures. Nowaday, they have been opened for a public to come to seeand learn. Moreover, Various mass media tools have been utilized such as newspapers, TV, and Youtube (video IPM rice and biodiversity day) have been used for communicating the project. These communicating channels can be attractive for national and international visitors but the content need to be updated for maintaining the materials.

 


Tag: Communication Human and Financial resources

21.

Impact on beneficiaries

  • The Government staffs involved in this exercises have now enhanced knowledge in use of the tools developed and have understanding of what villagers want and prioritize with the variations in preconditions depending on location of villages in relation to national resources management and agro-biodiversity conservation.
  • Vertical and horizontal communications within ministries and in between have been eye-openers useful for future applications in ordinary working situations and within other projects.
  • The Local Government staffs exposed to the strategies and planning exercises have new insights into importance of planning and implementing for national resources protection and agro-biodiversity conservation at provincial and district levels.

Tag: Natural Resouce management Impact Local Governance Knowledge management

22.

On Outcome 2 level (Capacities and Incentives to mainstream biodiversity)

Through FFS supported by ABP and FAO,various training events and study tours have been organized for staff of MAF and MoNRE at national, provincial and district levels to increase their capacities and incentives to mainstream biodiversity, especially agro-biodiversity, at the Provincial, District and community levels. For this outcome, indicators have been achieved although it has been difficult to assess the adoption of knowledge and skills. In case of IPM in schools, the District Education Office staff have been trained and made IPM modules and FFSs with school classes. Another important part of capacity building has been the TOT of district and TSC staff as well as community leaders for them to be able to further use and spread knowledge related to ABP and agro-biodiversity conservation. ABP has not only provided TOT training within the target districts but to staff from all districts in Luangprabang and Xiengkhoung provinces. In addition a total of 215 students have gone through a IPM/FFS course at three schools.


Tag: Agriculture Biodiversity Knowledge management Capacity Building

23.

Local capacity development

During the project period, the local capacity development support to the Technical Service Centers (TSCs) and DAFOs has shifted from basic development training including on-the job-training on preparation of local Agro-biodiversity Initiatives to monitoring and sustaining on going local activities for Phoukout and Phonexay districts. In Phoukout District, the local officers from DAFO is continuing implementing IPM, Organic production of KKN rice, IPM, Wild Mushrooms, Fish Conservation, and Wild Tea. In the Phonexay District, Nambor TSC plays an important role in the implementation of Oyster Mushrooms, IPM, and Melientha activities whereas the Fish Conservation activities are mainly the responsibility of DAFO. The Nambor TSCs is also responsible for running a small lab for producing mushroom spawns. However, equipment and tolls were damaged and need to be repaired. TSC staffs need some funding to support their continuity of implementing their knowledge and skills at village/community levels.


Tag: Fishery Jobs and Livelihoods Capacity Building

24.

Participatory LUP integrating agro-biodiversity conservation plans

ABP supported the TABI Project in finalizing/validating the Forest and Land Use Plans Allocation and Management in Phoukout District (Kheung Long-Hang, Tai and Long Khang clusters) and in PhonexayDistrict (Sopjia, Donekham and Chomjieng clusters). By the end of dry season 2015/16 a total of 36 villages based FALUPAM have been approved by the district governors including the allocation of village conservation areas.ABP has completed the conservation target of 100,000 ha under the PBSAPs, however, some activities in action plans have not fully completed by PONRE, particularly those of forestry resources management. This was due to lack of fund to support the activities and due to the change of responsibilities of line departments (Department of Forest resource management MONRE has moved to MAF).

The ABP project has supported Phoukout and Phonexay districts with allocation of conservation areas. This activity was considered one key essential work for supporting to achieve ABP`s overall objective. Conservation of biodiversity with natural resource management plans is a main factor of successful implementation of PBSAPs in two target provinces. Many districts under ABP adopted and implemented the action plans and land allocation for fish conservation zones, wildtea conservation areas, and medical plant conservation areas. These conservation areas help to protect and increase the agro-biodiversity for communities, however, an additional supports (technical and financial) is still required in order to maintain the zones and to ensure the sustainability of long-term use of these natural resources.


Tag: Natural Resouce management Site Conservation / Preservation Efficiency

25.

Local ABD In-situ conservation interventions

Target districts have now an in-situ agro-biodiversity conservation plans and related activities have been implemented with proactive participation of villagers including Fish Conservation (Phoukout and Phonexay districts), Oyster Mushroom domestication (Phonexay District), Wild tea Ngodphae village, Melientha conservation and domestication (Phonexay district), Medicinal plants conservation, Wild Mushrooms database, Organic Rice and Rice FFS Activities through IPM programme. The project provided supports to develop capacities. Some sources of funding are important to ensure the continuation of implementing the activities.


Tag: Fishery Site Conservation / Preservation

26.

Value added biodiversity products

ABP helped to promote and develop some value added agro biodiversity products such as oyster mushroom cultivation in five villages, wild tea production and processing in Ngodphae village, survey of wild mushroom “Xiengkhoung Matsutake”(Het waii mushroom), and domestication of wild Melientha vegetables (Phak waan). These activities have been implemented at the middle way of the project and provided some interesting results in term of production. At special events, the project has also produced labels for small tea bags and tried to develop the partnership of local traders and marketing for value added products. However, some activities such as oyster mushroom and wild seem to be stopped due to the damage of materials and equipment for production and to the low quality. Some activities will provide the first harvesting in 2017-2018 for Melienta. So, It is important to provide continuous supports to ensure the effectiveness and to follow up the success of the activities.


Tag: Fishery Biodiversity Effectiveness Trade and Development

27.

Publications analyzing economic forces

This indicator has been added into the logframe of ProDoc and related activities were designed. ABP has prepared three publications covering two biodiversity subgroups. Two studies on fungi (wild mushrooms in generaland “Xieng Khouang Matsutake” in particular) and one study on Phou San Wild Tea were carried out. Some activities were implemented to promote these two products at village level such as improved processing method and packaging for wild tea in Ngodphae village (XK), and some supports could have been provided to further development of these value added agro biodiversity products.


Tag: Communication

28.

Cross cutting incentive

ABP has pursued some agro-biodiversity cross cutting incentive including the domestication of wild valuable species (wild tea and Melientha) and promoting clean organic rice by utilizing bio-insecticides (IPM/FFs programme) to replace chemical use within target villages. It is still an issue to follow up the outcomes/impact of these activities.It is now essential to find ways to maintain the capacity developed and further expand the capacity through initiatives by the Government bodies to, stimulate other projects and donors to support follow on projects.


Tag: Agriculture Crop production Biodiversity Sustainability

29.

Impact on beneficiaries

  • ABP has achieved the outcome indicators although it has been difficult to assess the adoption of knowledge and skills. More than 1,000 famers have been trained in agro biodiversity conservation through IPM/FFS courses and workshops at central, provincial and local levels.
  • ABP helped Government staff of the implementing partners to enhance knowledge through the training events arranged, through study tours to neighbor countries and through dialogue with visitors from neighbor during their visits to ABP project sites. They have also been exposed to reactions and questions from the village level.

Tag: Knowledge management Promotion of dialogue Capacity Building South-South Cooperation

30.

3.3.2 Country ownership

ABP products including material and in country training events have all been designed and performed in Lao language and translated in English with ABPrecruited Lao consultants/expert in cooperation with Government staff. The guides/booklets and demonstration/illustrations (in-situ agro-biodiversity conservation areas) are all from Lao villages, indigenous knowledge and environment, which makes them from a Lao user point of view reliable and convincing.

ABP has contributed to the UNDAF Outcome 7: By 2015, the government ensures sustainable natural resources management through improved governance and community participation. Output 7.3: Communities are more engaged in the management of natural resources. ABP project has contributed to local land use planning, conservation and management. ABP project has helped the local and national government in promoting protection and sustainable use of landraces/varieties and native livestock as well as farming systems/ecosystems/landscapes in the NABP-II and PBSAP for XiengKhouang and Luang Prabang Provinces.

 


Tag: Natural Resouce management Site Conservation / Preservation Effectiveness Local Governance Communication Ownership Policies & Procedures

31.

3.3.3. Mainstreaming

From the UNDP perceptive, ABP is mainstreamed with UNDP priorities as expressed in UNDP Country Programme for Lao PDR 2011 –2015, UNDAF Action plan 2012 –2015 Lao PDR, UNDP Strategic Plan 2014 -2017. It should however be noted that ABP links to poverty eradication and food security could have been stronger, e.g. through the selection of project target areas where poverty is more dominant.

From GoL perspective, ABP is mainstreamed within the Agriculture Development Strategy 2020, with NAPB-II, with the Strategic vision for Agriculture and Natural Resources until 2020, with the NAFRI Research Strategy with MAF: Upland Development Strategy (2015-20) and the 8thNational Socio-Economic Development Plan.


Tag: Partnership Results-Based Management Civil Societies and NGOs Donor Poverty Reduction

32.

3.3.4. Sustainability

During interviews, all Government partners stated that lack of fund will prevent them from on their own continue to develop, use and extend use of knowledge and products developed.

Two reorganizations of MAF and MoNRE created delays related to preparations of the second NBSAP. It also meant frequent change of staff and that the expected back stopping at central level did not take place with regard to preparation of the two PBSAPs.

For NABP-II, the commitments to fund pats of the implementation plan have been expressed by development partners including Swiss Development Cooperation (SDC) and FAO. Currently, the FAO is taking steps to prepare a Technical Cooperation Projects (TCP) on underutilized crops and livestock-related agro-biodiversity. Both NAFRI and FAO are firmly committed to the work of the sSWG on Agro-biodiversity, without secretarial assistance from ABP. Agro biodiversity coordination will be sustained for the sector.


Tag: Agriculture Fishery Livestock Biodiversity Efficiency Sustainability Partnership

33.

3.3.5. Impact

The efforts of ABP should be seen as first steps in a very long process for agro biodiversity conservation and integrating in natural resource management plans. The project interventions have raised awareness on all levelsi.e. national, province, district and village levels through training, study tours, seminars, production and use of material. Regular and continuing supports and follow-up from local partners are the key actions to be taken.

The application of ABP products is however not in place, where availability of fund is one reason both for the continued use within project target areas but even more so for expansion into other areas (districts, villages). Material produced may now be kept in drawers and forgotten, not least when officers and Village Heads are replaced by others, who have not been exposed to ABP training and material.NAFRIwill have key responsibilities for keeping the knowledge and linked material alive.


Tag: Impact Capacity Building

Recommendations
1

It is very important to ensure the continuation of ABD Sub Sector Working Group (SSWG) (ABP Project was instrumental in starting SSWG and ensuring FAO chairmanship)

2

Continue and scale out capacity development to further develop awareness and knowledge among concerned parties with expansion to new vulnerable geographic areas

3

Continue to support and furhter strengthen cooperation and networking between partners

4

Evaluate techical trials made to be able to modify and improve with expansion into markets and rural financing issues

5

Institutionalization of ABP Project outputs and Expertise (how will DOP continue ABP work, role of TABI)

6

Resource Mobilization for ABP initiative (discussion with UNDP CO and GEF SGP)

1. Recommendation:

It is very important to ensure the continuation of ABD Sub Sector Working Group (SSWG) (ABP Project was instrumental in starting SSWG and ensuring FAO chairmanship)

Management Response: [Added: 2018/10/02] [Last Updated: 2020/12/07]

Agree

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Discuss with FAO and Ministry of Forestry (MAF) to ensure SSWG on ABD continued
[Added: 2018/10/02]
UNDP 2017/01 Completed SSWG on ABP is one of recognized SSWGs under the SWG of Agriculture and Rural Development. The SSWG on ABD has met at least two times per year since it was formed and this is expected to continue
2. Recommendation:

Continue and scale out capacity development to further develop awareness and knowledge among concerned parties with expansion to new vulnerable geographic areas

Management Response: [Added: 2018/10/02] [Last Updated: 2020/12/07]

Agree

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Share information and ABP Project achievements and outputs to seek opportunities of up-scaling and expansion.
[Added: 2018/10/02]
UNDP 2017/01 Completed ABP Project information has been shared through UNDP Project briefs at various events and with various stakeholders. Discussions have been held with other UN agencies and development on the potential for a new project in agro-biodiversity.
3. Recommendation:

Continue to support and furhter strengthen cooperation and networking between partners

Management Response: [Added: 2018/10/02] [Last Updated: 2020/12/07]

Participate in meetings workshops and networking opportunities.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Participate in meetings workshops and networking opportunities.
[Added: 2018/10/02]
UNDP/FAO/MAF 2017/12 Completed UNDP has continued to participate in events with FAO and MAF and to seek opportunities for cooperation. UNDP, FAP and MAF has since submitted a Funding Proposal to the Green Climate Fund in October 2017. History
4. Recommendation:

Evaluate techical trials made to be able to modify and improve with expansion into markets and rural financing issues

Management Response: [Added: 2018/10/02] [Last Updated: 2020/12/07]

Agree.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Review and evaluate trials
[Added: 2018/10/02]
UNDP 2017/12 Completed Review and evaluation of the technical trials have provided a basis for some of the local communities to seek additional financing to continue expanding production and supply local markets
5. Recommendation:

Institutionalization of ABP Project outputs and Expertise (how will DOP continue ABP work, role of TABI)

Management Response: [Added: 2018/10/02] [Last Updated: 2020/12/07]

Agree

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Project outputs printed and disseminated
[Added: 2018/10/02]
UNDP/MAF 2017/06 Completed Project outputs have been printed and disseminated, including in Lao language. The TABI Project has now moved into a Phase 3, and the ABP project outputs such as the Provincial Biodiversity Strategies have been approved and being implemented by provincial authorities.
6. Recommendation:

Resource Mobilization for ABP initiative (discussion with UNDP CO and GEF SGP)

Management Response: [Added: 2018/10/02] [Last Updated: 2020/12/07]

Agree

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Connect ABP Project communities with GEF SGP
[Added: 2018/10/02]
UNDP 2017/03 Completed UNDP connected ABP former TA with GEF SGP

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