Annual Assessment (Mid-term) of Local Government Initiatives on Climate Change in Bangladesh Project

Report Cover Image
Evaluation Plan:
2017-2021, Bangladesh
Evaluation Type:
Mid Term Project
Planned End Date:
03/2022
Completion Date:
06/2022
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
50,000

Share

Document Type Language Size Status Downloads
Download document TOR_LoGIC MTE.pdf tor English 585.57 KB Posted 123
Download document LoGIC Bangladesh MTE_Report.pdf report English 1364.99 KB Posted 43
Download document LoGIC Bangladesh MTE_Annex.pdf related-document English 752.35 KB Posted 44
Title Annual Assessment (Mid-term) of Local Government Initiatives on Climate Change in Bangladesh Project
Atlas Project Number: 000-
Evaluation Plan: 2017-2021, Bangladesh
Evaluation Type: Mid Term Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 06/2022
Planned End Date: 03/2022
Management Response: Yes
Focus Area:
  • 1. Others
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
  • 2. 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
  • 3. Output 3.3.1 Evidence-based assessment and planning tools and mechanisms applied to enable implementation of gender-sensitive and risk-informed prevention and preparedness to limit the impact of natural hazards and pandemics and promote peaceful, just and inclusive societies
Evaluation Budget(US $): 50,000
Source of Funding:
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 97,975
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: Yes
  • Joint with UN Agencies
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Nationality
Richard Slater Team Leader
Shantanu Das Evaluation and Public Finance Expert INDIA
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders:
Countries: BANGLADESH
Lessons
1.

Political Ownership: One of the major learnings from LoGIC is that incentive-based systems such as the minimum conditions-performance measures of the PBCRG to improve efficiency and effectiveness would be more effective if there is political ownership at both the national and local levels of and the systems/structure facilitates the political economy context. Failing this, there is a high risk that efficiency and effectiveness gains in the project lifetime will dissipate if the program is being majorly driven by the project staff.


2.

Policy Influence and Agenda Steering: It is also important to note that having a National Project Director with a 50%-time commitment and a governing board with different government stakeholders does not necessarily lead to policy influence and embedding in government systems unless the Secretariat takes a more proactive approach to engage and steer the governing board for strategic decision-making.


3.

Convergence with Larger Sectoral Programs: Another key learning emerging from LoGIC is that the selected schemes or interventions should consciously seek synergies and complementarities with large sectoral programs and projects for improved and cascading impacts. For instance, our discussions highlighted that though drainage systems were developed to facilitate sunflower cultivation, the absence of local embankments or dykes in the area led to large-scale flooding which ultimately exposes the LoGIC PBCRG solution to risk.


4.

Efficiency: To ensure lower overheads, it is important to build/mainstream LoGIC within the existing fiscal transfer mechanism of local governments. Otherwise, it creates complexity and silos along with duplication of efforts required for maintaining separate accounts and reporting formats. Alignment with the existing fiscal transfer mechanisms helps strengthen the existing system and also enhances sustainability within the government system.


Findings
1.

Relevance:

  • LoGIC with its focus on climate change adaptation and climate-resilient livelihoods, awareness, and capacity building on climate change at the local government and community level is well aligned with Bangladesh’s national climate policy framework. LoGIC has been particularly relevant to the local context of 72 UPs in 7 Upazilas facing various climate hazards. These UPs are one remotest and most climate-vulnerable areas in Bangladesh with high levels of poverty and low awareness and capacities on climate change and CCA.
  • On gender and inclusion, LoGIC adopted a ‘gender transformative’ approach and is supporting the most vulnerable women who have not been covered under any other programs other than normal disaster relief provided. Moreover, the project is being implemented in the remotest and most climate-vulnerable areas of the country with target beneficiaries coming from most marginalized groups such as women-headed households, persons with disability, ethnic minority groups, and small/marginalized occupational groups.

2.

Coherence:

  • LoGIC’s design and implementation strategy are aligned and coherent with the core policy directives of Bangladesh. It is coherent with the national government’s Local Government Support Project (LGSP) which seeks to fund infrastructure development in UPs through Block Grants. Some of the processes like annual audit, percentage allocation based on fulfilling certain criteria, etc. for Performance - Based Climate Resilience Grants (PBCRG) are in sync with the LGSP fiscal transfer guidelines.
  • In its design and results framework, the focus on the institutionalization of outcomes is weak. While the design attempted to address climate resilience both from the community-level livelihood and local infrastructure angles, the evaluation team did not find many synergies between the PBCRG and CRF schemes in implementation. Barring a few instances, they appear to work as two separate interventions – which pose some risks.

3.

Efficiency:

  • Despite a delayed start due to lags in project approval, LoGIC has made good progress against the targets set in its results framework. It has been rolled out across 72 UPs, albeit with varying degrees of ownership, involvement, and levels of support.
  • Though LoGIC has mostly achieved its targets, there are a few challenges related to timeliness and quality of implementation.
  • The project monitoring has been excellent, and this stringent monitoring helps ensure quality and reduces fiduciary risks, which UP chairpersons also admitted.
  • On governance and management structure, discussions with donors and other stakeholders reflect that LoGIC is perceived to suffer from weak management at the project governance level, resulting in the Project Steering Committee (PSC) meetings focusing on minor operational issues and approvals rather than strategic issues and project direction.
  • On the project’s Value for Money (VfM), a broad analysis of project expenditures highlights the following breakdown: Output-1 - 8%; Output-2 -80%; Output-3 -5% and Management fees -7%. On the economic aspect, the staffing costs are around 12% which appears reasonable given the Technical Assistance (TA) component. The average transfer value of CRF grants to beneficiaries is USD 350, roughly similar to other UNDP livelihood programs such as SWAPNO.

4.

Effectiveness:

  • LoGIC has contributed to changing the mindset of the local governments on the importance and need for climate adaptation in the local planning, budgeting, and investment. At the Union Parishad level, there have been some improvements in understanding and awareness on climate change but more sustained efforts are needed for elected representatives to own and implement climate adaptive practices.
  • While there has been a gradual shift towards adopting climate-resilient infrastructure at the UP level rather than traditional roads, culverts, and cyclone shelters, mainstreaming climate change adaptation into local development and investment planning needs to be strengthened. Additionally, mainstreaming LoGIC through building convergence and engagement with other line departments and UPs has been limited.
  • Many of the LoGIC beneficiaries are unique and excluded from other NGO programs. LoGIC has facilitated the opening of bank accounts, leading to the financial inclusion of these women for the first time.

5.

Likely Impact:

  • LoGIC has contributed to improving climate-adaptive planning and financing of community infrastructure at the UP level and adaptive livelihoods at the household level to boost resilience to climate stresses. Although at the UP level there has been an incremental shift toward climate adaptive solutions, it is still too early to assess the actual degree of climate resilience and climate additionality.
  • Furthermore, there was a unanimous perception among Local Government officials and participants that the quality of infrastructure provided under PBCRG is substantially better due to very close monitoring and intense involvement of the LoGIC team.
  • LoGIC has selected ‘unique beneficiaries’ and has brought in high levels of transparency and objectivity, and managed well potential ‘elite capture’ influenced by local politics. While the CALO options being promoted are like other livelihood diversification programs, LoGIC’s key differentiator is its attempt to demonstrate community-based climate change adaptation that is driven through government institutions while the others are more civil society-oriented.

6.

Sustainability:

  • In its current form, prospects for sustainability and mainstreaming appear to be challenging. While counterpart staff from LGD have assisted delivery across the 7 project districts, the project activities have been heavily dependent on and driven by LoGIC staff. At the UP level, it is crucial to acknowledge that while the project has attempted to build institutional capacity, the human and monetary resources of LGIs still remain low.
  • The decision to construct a Climate Vulnerability Index and use it as a parameter for fiscal transfer is a good beginning. If implemented, it will help vulnerable regions to access funds. Hitherto the focus has been on capacity building and setting up processes, but it will also be crucial for LoGIC to aggressively focus on advocacy and influence with the LGD as well as other agencies such as the Local Government Engineering Department (LGED), Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, Water Resources, Agriculture and Disaster Management.

Recommendations
1
  1. LoGIC’s success is primarily due to the intensity and active engagement of the project staff in planning, delivery, and monitoring. However, to ensure sustainability and scaling up, the focus going forward will need to be on mainstreaming the project within the government system. Although the project is being implemented under the National Implementation Mode, there is a need to embed it successfully within the parent LGD department. This can be done by:
    1. Deepening the level of awareness of LoGIC amongst the senior officials of LGD and issuing directives to the district and Upazila officials to monitor, facilitate, and mainstream climate adaptation within the existing LGD programs and schemes implemented at the local level. 
    2. Using the Climate Risk Atlas as a tool to embed climate adaptation in planning LGSP works at UP, Upazila, and district levels. The LGD/LGI should encourage and support UP chairpersons and elected representatives to adopt the Atlas for planning both LGSP the ADP. LoGIC can provide structured support for this in the remaining time to strengthen the embedding process.
    3. Streamlining and simplifying LoGIC processes for sustained use and training on the institutionalization of these processes at the UP level. 
    4. Supporting LGD to leverage additional resources from the Finance Ministry during the budget preparation process for local climate-adaptive projects and schemes, which would complement or supplement LoGIC funding and help scale up.
2

LoGIC should also focus on building strong and formalized linkages and engagement with other relevant line departments at the national and local levels, which hitherto has been limited and ad-hoc. These include LGED, and the Ministries of Environment and Water Resources, Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries.  Apart from the national level, the project also needs to focus on improving the local level capacity.

Also, building the capacity of the local CSOs (which has not been a major focus to date) would help in mobilizing and amplifying the voice of the most climate-vulnerable in planning and decision making. At the beneficiary level, it is equally important to facilitate market linkages, access to low-cost capital, and build portable skills for sustaining and scaling up their individual or groups' livelihood options.

3

Given that LoGIC is being conceived and developed as a proof of concept for local climate adaptation, it needs to generate and share learnings of both process and implementation across other UPs for scaling up. This aspect has been largely missing. Here, learnings and experiences could be shared among the pilot UPs, which might help them adopt best practices and avoid the pitfalls.

4

The other important area for the project to invest in over the remaining period is policy advocacy.  Along with deepening the engagement with the Government for policy advocacy, it is also essential that the project develops a policy influencing strategy that could lay out the issues, approaches, mode, and responsibilities. Policy advocacy work needs to go beyond workshops. Here, LoGIC could explore other approaches such as developing policy briefs, hosting talk shows, engaging with the media, and reaching out to key influencers or advisors in government.  Also, broadening the policy dialogue platform to incorporate and create more space for donors to engage on relevant policy issues might be helpful since they also have other funding and strategic political leverage that could help in taking forward the agenda.

1. Recommendation:
  1. LoGIC’s success is primarily due to the intensity and active engagement of the project staff in planning, delivery, and monitoring. However, to ensure sustainability and scaling up, the focus going forward will need to be on mainstreaming the project within the government system. Although the project is being implemented under the National Implementation Mode, there is a need to embed it successfully within the parent LGD department. This can be done by:
    1. Deepening the level of awareness of LoGIC amongst the senior officials of LGD and issuing directives to the district and Upazila officials to monitor, facilitate, and mainstream climate adaptation within the existing LGD programs and schemes implemented at the local level. 
    2. Using the Climate Risk Atlas as a tool to embed climate adaptation in planning LGSP works at UP, Upazila, and district levels. The LGD/LGI should encourage and support UP chairpersons and elected representatives to adopt the Atlas for planning both LGSP the ADP. LoGIC can provide structured support for this in the remaining time to strengthen the embedding process.
    3. Streamlining and simplifying LoGIC processes for sustained use and training on the institutionalization of these processes at the UP level. 
    4. Supporting LGD to leverage additional resources from the Finance Ministry during the budget preparation process for local climate-adaptive projects and schemes, which would complement or supplement LoGIC funding and help scale up.
Management Response: [Added: 2022/07/25]

Agreed.

LGSP will end in 2022 and its modality is expected to be mainstreamed by the LGD. By institutionalizing risk reduction action plan in UP planning process, mainstreaming of climate risks will be part of UP process.  Through inclusion of climate rationale in allocation formula, government’s Annual Development Programme fund transfer will ensure sustainability of climate change issue in UP resource allocation.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1.1 Project Steering Committee (PSC) meeting for awareness of LOGIC model in Local Government Department officials
[Added: 2022/07/25]
LOGIC PMU 2022/12 Initiated
1.3 Training for the Union Parishads, government officials, CSOs and local institutions on the process of climate risk
[Added: 2022/07/25] [Last Updated: 2022/07/26]
LoGIC PMU 2022/12 Initiated Due to the election of the Union Parishads, the activity is delayed. The training schedule has been prepared and will start in August 2022. History
1.4 Training of the Union Parishads on LoGIC process including simplified PBCRG indicators
[Added: 2022/07/25] [Last Updated: 2022/09/26]
LoGIC PMU 2022/12 Initiated The schedule of the training of Union Parishad has been finalized. The trainings will be completed by December 2022. History
1.5 Develop Climate Vulnerability Index (CVI) for LGIs to include as criteria for budget allocation from LGD to LGIs
[Added: 2022/07/25] [Last Updated: 2022/07/26]
LoGIC PMU 2022/12 Initiated The draft of the Climate Vulnerability Index (CVI) for LGIs is already developed. Now, the validation and consultation with the ministry are ongoing. History
1.6 Local Government Division has a primary commitment of co-finance of $75 million with GCF's expected contribution of $25 million as grant, $25 million as guarantees and $50 million as reimbursable grant - $100 million in total.
[Added: 2022/07/25]
LoGIC PMU 2023/06 Initiated
1.2 Risk updating, risk prioritising and develop climate model of 7 Districts, 18 Upazila and 72 Union Parishads
[Added: 2022/07/25] [Last Updated: 2022/07/26]
LoGIC PMU 2022/07 Completed Risk prioritised and climate model developed for 7 Districts, 18 Upazila and 72 Union Parishads History
2. Recommendation:

LoGIC should also focus on building strong and formalized linkages and engagement with other relevant line departments at the national and local levels, which hitherto has been limited and ad-hoc. These include LGED, and the Ministries of Environment and Water Resources, Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries.  Apart from the national level, the project also needs to focus on improving the local level capacity.

Also, building the capacity of the local CSOs (which has not been a major focus to date) would help in mobilizing and amplifying the voice of the most climate-vulnerable in planning and decision making. At the beneficiary level, it is equally important to facilitate market linkages, access to low-cost capital, and build portable skills for sustaining and scaling up their individual or groups' livelihood options.

Management Response: [Added: 2022/07/25]

Agreed.

Involvement of other line department offices have already been initiated at local level. Project has already listed the CSOs and involved them at Union level interventions. A partner organization named ‘PCC & MEC’ has been engaged to ensure financial inclusion and market linkage support to the climate adaptive livelihoods implemented by CRF beneficiaries.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
2.1 Strengthen linkages between project beneficiaries and Upazila govt. line department officials e.g. agriculture, livestock, fisheries etc. Project is benefiting from and using inputs from these line departments on both PBCRG and CRF funded schemes.
[Added: 2022/07/25]
LoGIC PMU 2022/12 Initiated
2.2 Capacity building of CRF beneficiaries on financial inclusion services and market linkage
[Added: 2022/07/25] [Last Updated: 2022/07/26]
LoGIC PMU 2022/12 Initiated The training module is prepared and under review. The training will start in September 2022. History
2.3 Cooperative formation of CRF beneficiaries is being facilitated for market linkage and access to capital.
[Added: 2022/07/25]
LoGIC PMU 2023/09 Initiated
2.4 For amplifying voice of the people, a social audit manual has been developed and training of CSOs will be provided on social audit process.
[Added: 2022/07/25]
LoGIC PMU 2023/09 Initiated
3. Recommendation:

Given that LoGIC is being conceived and developed as a proof of concept for local climate adaptation, it needs to generate and share learnings of both process and implementation across other UPs for scaling up. This aspect has been largely missing. Here, learnings and experiences could be shared among the pilot UPs, which might help them adopt best practices and avoid the pitfalls.

Management Response: [Added: 2022/07/25]

Partially Agreed.

Cross learnings will be planned for processes and systems, but climate change issue is location-specific, and vulnerability varies from place to place.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
3.1 Conduct Annual Progress Review, Mid-term Evaluation and End-line survey to capture learning and experiences of LoGIC.
[Added: 2022/07/25]
LoGIC PMU 2024/12 Initiated
3.2 Organize national level policy dialogue with key national stakeholders and development partners for sharing LoGIC learning and experience on local level risk informed planning, local climate financing and mainstreaming climate adaptation actions.
[Added: 2022/07/25] [Last Updated: 2022/11/27]
LoGIC PMU 2023/01 Initiated History
3.3. Organize advocacy meeting with different ministries, CSO and other stakeholders for sharing LoGIC learning and experience on local climate fiscal framework (LCFF).
[Added: 2022/07/25] [Last Updated: 2022/11/27]
LoGIC PMU 2022/12 Initiated History
3.4. Cross learning/Learning sharing visit within districts (LoGIC working area).
[Added: 2022/07/25] [Last Updated: 2022/11/27]
LoGIC PMU 2022/12 Initiated History
4. Recommendation:

The other important area for the project to invest in over the remaining period is policy advocacy.  Along with deepening the engagement with the Government for policy advocacy, it is also essential that the project develops a policy influencing strategy that could lay out the issues, approaches, mode, and responsibilities. Policy advocacy work needs to go beyond workshops. Here, LoGIC could explore other approaches such as developing policy briefs, hosting talk shows, engaging with the media, and reaching out to key influencers or advisors in government.  Also, broadening the policy dialogue platform to incorporate and create more space for donors to engage on relevant policy issues might be helpful since they also have other funding and strategic political leverage that could help in taking forward the agenda.

Management Response: [Added: 2022/07/25]

Agreed.

A number of policy issues have been identified and work is in progress for mainstreaming. Donors have already been involved in management, monitoring and policy advocacy issues.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
4.1. Organize advocacy meeting with different ministries, CSO and other stakeholders on climate LCFF
[Added: 2022/07/25]
LoGIC PMU 2022/12 Initiated
4.3 Safeguarding the climate investment: a) Climate risk insurance, b) Environmental risk insurance and c) Disaster risk insurance
[Added: 2022/07/25]
LoGIC PMU 2022/12 Initiated
4.2. Organize inter-ministerial meeting of working group on the inclusion of climate change vulnerability in IGFT allocation formula for local government bodies
[Added: 2022/07/25] [Last Updated: 2022/09/26]
LoGIC PMU 2022/09 Completed The meeting was held in September 2022 as planned. History

Latest Evaluations

Contact us

1 UN Plaza
DC1-20th Floor
New York, NY 10017
Tel. +1 646 781 4200
Fax. +1 646 781 4213
erc.support@undp.org