Evaluation of Czech-UNDP Trust Fund

Report Cover Image
Evaluation Plan:
2014-2017, RBEC
Evaluation Type:
Mid Term Project
Planned End Date:
08/2017
Completion Date:
06/2017
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
13,000

Summary of the Czech-UNDP Trust Fund Evaluation Report

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Title Evaluation of Czech-UNDP Trust Fund
Atlas Project Number: 00035692
Evaluation Plan: 2014-2017, RBEC
Evaluation Type: Mid Term Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 06/2017
Planned End Date: 08/2017
Management Response: Yes
Focus Area:
  • 1. Cross-cutting Development Issue
  • 2. Others
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2014-2017)
  • 1. Output 7.5 South-South and Triangular cooperation partnerships established and/or strengthened for development solutions
Evaluation Budget(US $): 13,000
Source of Funding: Government of Czech Republic
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 13,256
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Arkadi Toritsyn artoritsyn@rogers.com
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders: The Ministry Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic, UNDP Armenia, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, Tajikistan Country Offices, UNDP Istanbul Regional Hub,
Lessons
1.

The main lesson learned is that in the face of a highly competitive market of international development consultants, declining donors’ resources and increasingly diverse UNDP COs needs, the CTF has to be more results oriented and address both the demand and supply side of its activities. The consultant identifies the following lessons learned:

  • CTF can achieve systemic changes by focusing on a limited number of priorities. Achieving strategic and long lasting impact is challenging if CTF pursues multiple objectives and is spread too thin. CTF can achieve more results if it focuses on those areas where there is a supply of internationally recognized Czech expertise and a strong ECIS countries’ demand for Czech “know-how” and expertise.
  • It is important to focus on sustainable results, beyond activities. Achieving long-term impact is possible when individual CTF-supported activities are based on a simple but well developed log frame matrix where outcomes, outputs and indicators are properly identified and monitored and the necessary changes are made to ensure matrix relevance.
  • "Best practice" breakthroughs in the Czech Republic may not work in an entirely different country setting. While Czech expertise and experience can illuminate options for reform in ECIS countries, Czech solutions have to be adapted to local realities to be successfully implemented.

Findings
1.

Available in the Evaluation Report as a seperate Findings Section


Recommendations
1

Focus on a limited number of areas of support.[1] CTF is advised to identify priorities, countries to focus on and support modalities in close consultation with the MFA, Czech Development Agency and UNDP Istanbul Regional Hub (IRH) to reduce duplication and maximize the impact. It is advisable, in particular, to promote activities involving a number of countries, especially in the field of environment where there is a significant Czech expertise and where multiple COs implement comparable programmes/projects. In addition to promoting proven and region-tailored Czech “know how”, cross country activities would involve exchange of information among national partners that may lead to formation/strengthening of regional networks.

 


[1] CTF may focus in particular on MFA-identified priority countries in the region. See, The Development Cooperation Strategy of the Czech Republic, 2010–2017

2

Deepen partnerships with the private sector that can be seen as an equal partner of development actors. As this would be a new area for CTF, it is advisable to hire Expert on Demand (EoD) to develop a new partnership modality, including processes and accountabilities. Many UN sister agencies in Europe and Commonwealth of Independent States (ECIS) work extensively with corporate private partners and another EoD study can be commissioned to gather this information, identify lessons learned and develop recommendations for partnership with Czech and non-Czech businesses.

3

Plan activities strategically with involvement of the RBEC COs and IRH experts with at least one year planning window. Consider establishing a special budget line for long-term multi-country activities. Actively promote CTF across all COs that can learn from experiences of other COs that have benefitted from Czech expertise.

4

Encourage Czech experts to make their training and advice more practical and tailored to targeted country realities. Beneficiaries greatly appreciated support with operationalization of advice provided and expressed a need to strengthen practical aspects in those instances where the advice provided was too generic or only reflected Czech experience without customization to local realities.

5

Further elaborate accountabilities of IRH, UNDP COs and CTF for supporting activities at the country level. UNDP accountabilities for CTF that it manages are weaker than for UNDP funded and implemented activities. Although the CTF is mainstreamed into UNDP operational processes, including procurement, such mechanisms as M&E are not explicitly elaborated for activities supported by CTF and the Project focuses mostly on inputs and outputs with very little attention to outcomes. Although the authority for activities implementation is delegated to UNDP COs, the role of IRH experts in identifying Czech experts, identification and prioritization of areas for CTF support, design of UNDP COs’ activities and their monitoring should be better elaborated to enhance the focus on results and promote ECIS cross-country collaboration. The consultant is confident that COs staff would appreciate more support from IRH advisors in identification, preparation and implementation of CTF-funded activities

6

Streamline results into monitoring, evaluation and reporting mechanisms. Establish a standardized activity-level M&E framework, including consistent formats for final reports, lessons learned summaries, mini logframes, with a focus on outcomes. Lack of clarity about specific expected outcomes/results contributes to an inability to track needed data or to tracking data that are not useful in assessing impact. CTF, in collaboration with IRH evaluation team, can develop a short guide on how to measure activities’ success, taking into account short and focused nature of these interventions, and how to select right indicators. Some results-focused indicators may include: a number of specific policy recommendations made by Czech experts adopted by the Government, satisfaction of Government officials with the quality and timeliness of advice/support provided by Czech experts; number of requests coming from national partners for Czech expertise; number of visits of CTF web-site by country and specific documents downloads; and use of knowledge and skills acquired by beneficiaries. One of study tour beneficiaries suggested, for instance, to monitor how training beneficiaries use knowledge and skills acquired in their work.

7

Give more extensive and elaborate consideration to sustainability principle. Share the sustainability strategies identified in this report more broadly across UNDP COs considering applying for CTF funding. Develop a more robust follow up process, supporting COs in ensuring that sustainability strategies/approaches outlined in their applications are implemented.

8

Increase CTF budget to at least 1M USD per year and ensure that CTF managers stay for at least 3 years in their positions. It is difficult to ensure sustainability and impact of CTF-supported activities if the funding is very limited and the Project management does not plan strategically for at least two years. It also takes time for Project managers to develop effective relationships with IRH experts and UNDP COs that is critically important in developing and implementing successful activities.

9

Knowledge is a key asset of CTF and the intersection of that knowledge with UNDP COs and countries’ needs is one of its critical comparative advantages. However, the results and lessons learned from these activities are not systematically identified, captured or generated to inform broader learning or regional knowledge for all ECIS countries. This knowledge could be better leveraged for the benefit of future activities through better capture, storage and dissemination. Concerted efforts to vet, catalogue and share knowledge products generated through CTF activities can have longer-term development benefits for ECIS, while also helping promote Czech development experts. To address these gaps, a knowledge management mechanism has to be developed, which defines a systematic process for identifying, generating, disseminating and storing/organizing knowledge.

 

CTF should develop a knowledge management strategy and in consultation with MFA and IRH determine what knowledge generated by Czech experts has to be transferred, to whom and which means of knowledge transfer should be utilized. Effective knowledge mobilization can happen if a comprehensive strategy is developed and implemented as discrete interventions cannot achieve significant long lasting impact. There is a wide range of capacity building/knowledge transfer strategies that can be considered by the CTF, but the consultant suggests exploring the following:

 

  • Some innovative activities were able to achieve great impact in spite of their smallness. These activities could be showcased as innovative approaches that might be replicated in other countries, be treated as lessons learned or be an example of which ingredients are needed for an activity to be successful.
  • The existing CTF web-site can be expanded to collect and systematize various know-how products developed by Czech experts. In addition, a more comprehensive web-site that contains knowledge products will facilitate exchange among beneficiaries and the information and knowledge-sharing along thematic, sectoral or other lines.
  • Explore use of new media such as facebook and twitter to support information exchange, dissemination and application.
  • Require Czech experts to produce short summaries of their work that should be easily accessible in terms of format, language and length and highlight their achievements and make them available on the CTF website. Develop videos, webinars and online resources based on Czech experts’ work implemented in ECIS that are relevant to a number of ECIS countries and make them available on CTF website.
  • Require beneficiaries who attended learning events (e.g. study tour) to provide other national colleagues with a brief, written summary of key learnings and lessons learned and make a short presentation to decision makers and staff of relevant national institutions.
  • It is advisable to translate relevant materials into national languages only if COs are committed to widely disseminate them and follow up with national counterparts.
10

One of challenges faced by CTF was identifying Czech experts with the necessary technical and practical expertise. For some positions only one or few experts have applied and sometimes they did not have the necessary qualifications and expertise that negatively affected activities’ outcomes. Some beneficiaries acknowledged that although some Czech experts have the necessary skills and competencies, they did not always have deep understanding of local circumstances and local language skills. Some experts may not have the necessary experience in the international development as well. When short-term EoD instrument was utilized, experts without the necessary language skills, country background knowledge and ability to produce practically applicable and understood by beneficiaries materials are unlikely to make long-term and sustainable impacts. It is advisable for both COs and CTF to be as specific as possible in outlining region and country expertise expectations in experts/companies TORs.

 

Once a range of areas of CTF focus is reduced and priorities for Czech experts’ engagement are identified for the next few years, CTF is advised to establish a pool of Czech experts and invest into their capacity building. More specifically, CTF may consider implementing the following activities for experts who do not have sufficient ECIS experience:

 

  • Establish pool of well recognized Czech experts and companies in narrowly defined areas who have the necessary country and language skills and actively promote them among COs by showcasing their work to UNDP COs and IRH. It is not advisable to offer support in those areas where there is no internationally competitive Czech expertise is available.

     

  • Facilitate yearly face-to-face events or online forums of Czech experts involved in CTF funded work and IRH colleagues and other relevant parties to disseminate effective practices and share lessons learned. Support professional learning communities among Czech experts who in addition to technical expertise will be able to discuss countries’ political and economic context and practical lessons learned. Some more experienced experts can be requested to develop and deliver webinars on practical hints of being an international development expert working in ECIS.
1. Recommendation:

Focus on a limited number of areas of support.[1] CTF is advised to identify priorities, countries to focus on and support modalities in close consultation with the MFA, Czech Development Agency and UNDP Istanbul Regional Hub (IRH) to reduce duplication and maximize the impact. It is advisable, in particular, to promote activities involving a number of countries, especially in the field of environment where there is a significant Czech expertise and where multiple COs implement comparable programmes/projects. In addition to promoting proven and region-tailored Czech “know how”, cross country activities would involve exchange of information among national partners that may lead to formation/strengthening of regional networks.

 


[1] CTF may focus in particular on MFA-identified priority countries in the region. See, The Development Cooperation Strategy of the Czech Republic, 2010–2017

Management Response: [Added: 2017/07/13] [Last Updated: 2017/07/17]

Management agrees with the recommendation.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Ensure better selection of and focus on priorities for CTF in the new ProDoc
[Added: 2017/07/14] [Last Updated: 2018/10/19]
To be proposed by CTF Managers for Project Board approval 2018/09 Completed The development challenges were identified and Project Board approved the Challenge fund which was launched. History
Establish cooperation with UNDP COs or IRH staff to implement at least 1 regional initiative a year, involving a number of countries to facilitate transfer of Czech know-how in areas with significant Czech expertise
[Added: 2017/07/14] [Last Updated: 2018/05/24]
CTF managers 2018/12 No Longer Applicable [Justification: As per the new Project launched upon completion of the CTF project; the number of countries was substantially reduced to only 3. They are also in separate geographical regions. This recommendation was therefore made irrelevant due to the changes to the Project. Nevertheless, Programme specialists will explore the possibility of implementing one initiative in all 3 or at least 2 countries.]
History
2. Recommendation:

Deepen partnerships with the private sector that can be seen as an equal partner of development actors. As this would be a new area for CTF, it is advisable to hire Expert on Demand (EoD) to develop a new partnership modality, including processes and accountabilities. Many UN sister agencies in Europe and Commonwealth of Independent States (ECIS) work extensively with corporate private partners and another EoD study can be commissioned to gather this information, identify lessons learned and develop recommendations for partnership with Czech and non-Czech businesses.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2017/07/17]

Key actions listed below will be taken in response to the recommendation to improve CTF work on private sector engagement for development and SDGs

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Improve CTF work on private sector engagement for development and SDGs a. Identify and collect lessons learned from UNDP and UN sisters agencies or from other international organizations b. CTF will allocate some time to work on Private sector engagement from their position as members of the New partnerships and Emerging donor’s team c. Increase capacities of CTF managers in the field of private sector engagement – CTF managers will attend at least one training/workshop related to Private sector engagement
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2018/05/24]
CTF managers (with support from the New Partnerships and Emerging Donor’s team) 2018/06 Completed Sub-action (a): due date set as December 2017. Sub-action (b): no due date set and will be monitored before June 2018 and updated accordingly. Sub-action (c): due date set as June 2018. Status update in May 2018 as completed: Programme specialists continue supporting the New partnerships and Emerging donor’s team in their work on Private sector engagement. On 13 February, Programme specialist attended the Webinar on Resource Mobilization Diversification & Engaging the Private Sector, organized by the New partnerships and Emerging donor’s team. On 11 May 2018, both Programme specialists attended the Green Bag Lunch organized by the IICPSD on the Consultation on the New Private Sector Strategy. History
Map Czech companies with potential for future cooperation with CTF on development projects
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2018/05/24]
CTF managers 2018/06 Completed Status update in May 2018 as completed: Mapping of Czech companies with potential for future cooperation with the new Czech-UNDP Partnership for SDGs project is being prepared. A list will be ready by the end of May 2018, focusing especially on potential applicants to the Challenge fund. It will be submitted to the Czech MFA for review and to be further updated. History
3. Recommendation:

Plan activities strategically with involvement of the RBEC COs and IRH experts with at least one year planning window. Consider establishing a special budget line for long-term multi-country activities. Actively promote CTF across all COs that can learn from experiences of other COs that have benefitted from Czech expertise.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/07/17]

Key actions listed below will be taken in response to the recommendation

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Dedicate financing under EoD for longer term involvement of Czech experts in multi-country activities
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2018/05/24]
CTF managers 2018/06 Completed Status updated in May 2018 as completed. Based on the new ProDoc, EoD can be involved for up to 90 days. During Q1 2018 relevant UNDP COs were informed that a longer-term engagement of experts under EoD is preferred. History
Collect Czech experience and know-how accumulated through CTF supported projects and disseminate the information to other COs and relevant stakeholders a. Create a database/shared folder of project results and best practices, which can be available for COs b. Actively engage with COs to make them aware of CTF activities that might be relevant to them c. Utilize Istanbul Regional Hub Knowledge Management Gateway
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2018/05/24]
CTF managers (with support from Country Office Support Team) 2018/06 Completed Sub-action (a): due date set as March 2018. Sub-action (b): no due date set and will be monitored before June 2018 and updated accordingly. Sub-action (c): no due date set and will be monitored before June 2018 and updated accordingly. Status update in May 2018 as completed: Lessons learned are prepared and stored. For the new project, lessons learned are to be collected for every initiative supported by the project and shared with respective parties. During Q4 2017 and Q1 2018 Programme specialist visited UNDP COs in BiH, Georgia and Moldova to discuss the new project, upcoming changes and future activities. Programme specialists regularly inform UNDP COs about Project development and especially all upcoming activities. Programme specialists regularly visit the Knowledge Management Gateway platform in UNDP to learn about the latest practices in KM in order to improve the KM of the Project. https://intranet.undp.org/country/rc/intra/Know/SitePages/Home.aspx History
4. Recommendation:

Encourage Czech experts to make their training and advice more practical and tailored to targeted country realities. Beneficiaries greatly appreciated support with operationalization of advice provided and expressed a need to strengthen practical aspects in those instances where the advice provided was too generic or only reflected Czech experience without customization to local realities.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/07/17]

Key actions listed below will be taken in response to the recommendation

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
4.1 Further clarify the need to adapt Czech expertise to local conditions and provide necessary information to service providers a. Ensure it is clearly mentioned in the ToR when required b. Ensure UNDP CO is to provide Service providers with a briefing and all relevant background documents and information on local realities
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2017/08/01]
CTF managers 2017/08 Completed The relevant documentation was updated and put in force. Namely, – Added instructions in the Important information section of the TORs, 7. Implementation and monitoring History
5. Recommendation:

Further elaborate accountabilities of IRH, UNDP COs and CTF for supporting activities at the country level. UNDP accountabilities for CTF that it manages are weaker than for UNDP funded and implemented activities. Although the CTF is mainstreamed into UNDP operational processes, including procurement, such mechanisms as M&E are not explicitly elaborated for activities supported by CTF and the Project focuses mostly on inputs and outputs with very little attention to outcomes. Although the authority for activities implementation is delegated to UNDP COs, the role of IRH experts in identifying Czech experts, identification and prioritization of areas for CTF support, design of UNDP COs’ activities and their monitoring should be better elaborated to enhance the focus on results and promote ECIS cross-country collaboration. The consultant is confident that COs staff would appreciate more support from IRH advisors in identification, preparation and implementation of CTF-funded activities

Management Response: [Added: 2017/07/17]

Key actions listed below will be taken in response to the recommendation

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Update the reporting requirements and template for monitoring of CTF initiatives, including specification on how COs should report on implementation and monitoring of CTF initiatives.
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2017/12/29]
CTF managers (With support from the Coordination, Quality Assurance and Directorate Unit) 2017/12 Completed Completed as of December 2017. Added A section included in the application template on implementation and monitoring (attached). History
Provide clear guidance to COs to discuss their applications for CTF funding before submitting them to ensure they reflect CTF priorities. a. Include a paragraph in the Call for Proposal (CfP) template with a set timeframe when COs can contact CTF for consultations
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2017/12/29]
CTF managers 2017/12 Completed Completer as of December 2017. Included in the application template; Applications will be discussed from the beginning between CO, CTF, and Czech Embassy. History
6. Recommendation:

Streamline results into monitoring, evaluation and reporting mechanisms. Establish a standardized activity-level M&E framework, including consistent formats for final reports, lessons learned summaries, mini logframes, with a focus on outcomes. Lack of clarity about specific expected outcomes/results contributes to an inability to track needed data or to tracking data that are not useful in assessing impact. CTF, in collaboration with IRH evaluation team, can develop a short guide on how to measure activities’ success, taking into account short and focused nature of these interventions, and how to select right indicators. Some results-focused indicators may include: a number of specific policy recommendations made by Czech experts adopted by the Government, satisfaction of Government officials with the quality and timeliness of advice/support provided by Czech experts; number of requests coming from national partners for Czech expertise; number of visits of CTF web-site by country and specific documents downloads; and use of knowledge and skills acquired by beneficiaries. One of study tour beneficiaries suggested, for instance, to monitor how training beneficiaries use knowledge and skills acquired in their work.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/07/17]

Key actions listed below will be taken in response to the recommendation

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Update the reporting requirements to include lessons learned and data/information related to outcomes achieved.
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2018/05/24]
CTF managers 2018/03 Completed Status update in May 2018 as completed: Service provides, as well as COs are asked to provide lessons learned after activities are finished. All information related to outcomes will be collected, including more detailed information about the number of beneficiaries in the projects and their feedback. This information will be stored and used for presenting the Project and its results to the Donor, project partners and general public. History
Create standardized procedures for internal evaluation of CTF initiatives after their completion, with focus on outcomes and long-term use of Czech know-how, and for capturing lessons learned.
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2018/05/24]
CTF managers 2018/03 Completed Status updated in May 2018 as completed: Programme specialists will contact service providers, project partners and project beneficiaries with questionnaire 6 months after the initiative ends to inquire about the longer-term impacts of project activities and use of Czech know-how. Based on the findings during this exercise, Programme specialists will update lessons learned collected at the end of the initiative. History
7. Recommendation:

Give more extensive and elaborate consideration to sustainability principle. Share the sustainability strategies identified in this report more broadly across UNDP COs considering applying for CTF funding. Develop a more robust follow up process, supporting COs in ensuring that sustainability strategies/approaches outlined in their applications are implemented.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/07/17]

Key actions listed below will be taken in response to the recommendation

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Update the sustainability section in CfP template to clarify sustainability requirements and to provide COs with space to present their sustainability strategy,
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2017/12/29]
CTF managers 2017/12 Completed Completed as of December 2017. Respective section added with description in the Application template. History
8. Recommendation:

Increase CTF budget to at least 1M USD per year and ensure that CTF managers stay for at least 3 years in their positions. It is difficult to ensure sustainability and impact of CTF-supported activities if the funding is very limited and the Project management does not plan strategically for at least two years. It also takes time for Project managers to develop effective relationships with IRH experts and UNDP COs that is critically important in developing and implementing successful activities.

Management Response: [Added: 2017/07/17]

Key actions listed below will be taken in response to the recommendation.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Include in the agenda a discussion on the budget increase and duration of the secondment of CTF managers for extended period with the donor at the next Project Board meeting
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2017/12/29]
CTF managers 2017/12 Completed Completed as of December 2017. Funding to be increased to cca US$680,000.00. Documented in Project Board minutes dated June 2017. The project will be managed by two Programme Specialists on rotational basis: One senior specialist stationed for 3 years (rotation every 3 years) and one junior specialist stationed for 1 year (rotation every year). History
9. Recommendation:

Knowledge is a key asset of CTF and the intersection of that knowledge with UNDP COs and countries’ needs is one of its critical comparative advantages. However, the results and lessons learned from these activities are not systematically identified, captured or generated to inform broader learning or regional knowledge for all ECIS countries. This knowledge could be better leveraged for the benefit of future activities through better capture, storage and dissemination. Concerted efforts to vet, catalogue and share knowledge products generated through CTF activities can have longer-term development benefits for ECIS, while also helping promote Czech development experts. To address these gaps, a knowledge management mechanism has to be developed, which defines a systematic process for identifying, generating, disseminating and storing/organizing knowledge.

 

CTF should develop a knowledge management strategy and in consultation with MFA and IRH determine what knowledge generated by Czech experts has to be transferred, to whom and which means of knowledge transfer should be utilized. Effective knowledge mobilization can happen if a comprehensive strategy is developed and implemented as discrete interventions cannot achieve significant long lasting impact. There is a wide range of capacity building/knowledge transfer strategies that can be considered by the CTF, but the consultant suggests exploring the following:

 

  • Some innovative activities were able to achieve great impact in spite of their smallness. These activities could be showcased as innovative approaches that might be replicated in other countries, be treated as lessons learned or be an example of which ingredients are needed for an activity to be successful.
  • The existing CTF web-site can be expanded to collect and systematize various know-how products developed by Czech experts. In addition, a more comprehensive web-site that contains knowledge products will facilitate exchange among beneficiaries and the information and knowledge-sharing along thematic, sectoral or other lines.
  • Explore use of new media such as facebook and twitter to support information exchange, dissemination and application.
  • Require Czech experts to produce short summaries of their work that should be easily accessible in terms of format, language and length and highlight their achievements and make them available on the CTF website. Develop videos, webinars and online resources based on Czech experts’ work implemented in ECIS that are relevant to a number of ECIS countries and make them available on CTF website.
  • Require beneficiaries who attended learning events (e.g. study tour) to provide other national colleagues with a brief, written summary of key learnings and lessons learned and make a short presentation to decision makers and staff of relevant national institutions.
  • It is advisable to translate relevant materials into national languages only if COs are committed to widely disseminate them and follow up with national counterparts.
Management Response: [Added: 2017/07/17]

Key actions listed below will be taken in response to the recommendation.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Develop a knowledge management strategy on Czech expertise
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2019/08/02]
CTF managers 2019/10 Initiated Due date changed to October 2019. History
Expand the existing CTF website to include information on recent initiatives, present lessons learned and offer various know-how products developed by Czech experts.
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2019/08/02]
CTF managers (In coordination with the Communications team) 2019/10 Initiated Due date changed to October 2019. History
10. Recommendation:

One of challenges faced by CTF was identifying Czech experts with the necessary technical and practical expertise. For some positions only one or few experts have applied and sometimes they did not have the necessary qualifications and expertise that negatively affected activities’ outcomes. Some beneficiaries acknowledged that although some Czech experts have the necessary skills and competencies, they did not always have deep understanding of local circumstances and local language skills. Some experts may not have the necessary experience in the international development as well. When short-term EoD instrument was utilized, experts without the necessary language skills, country background knowledge and ability to produce practically applicable and understood by beneficiaries materials are unlikely to make long-term and sustainable impacts. It is advisable for both COs and CTF to be as specific as possible in outlining region and country expertise expectations in experts/companies TORs.

 

Once a range of areas of CTF focus is reduced and priorities for Czech experts’ engagement are identified for the next few years, CTF is advised to establish a pool of Czech experts and invest into their capacity building. More specifically, CTF may consider implementing the following activities for experts who do not have sufficient ECIS experience:

 

  • Establish pool of well recognized Czech experts and companies in narrowly defined areas who have the necessary country and language skills and actively promote them among COs by showcasing their work to UNDP COs and IRH. It is not advisable to offer support in those areas where there is no internationally competitive Czech expertise is available.

     

  • Facilitate yearly face-to-face events or online forums of Czech experts involved in CTF funded work and IRH colleagues and other relevant parties to disseminate effective practices and share lessons learned. Support professional learning communities among Czech experts who in addition to technical expertise will be able to discuss countries’ political and economic context and practical lessons learned. Some more experienced experts can be requested to develop and deliver webinars on practical hints of being an international development expert working in ECIS.
Management Response: [Added: 2017/07/17]

Key actions listed below will be taken in response to the recommendation

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Integrate in the requirement package for the COs to provide experts with all relevant documents and background information that would help them to better familiarizes themselves with country specifics context related to the initiative.
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2018/05/24]
CTF managers 2018/03 Completed Status updated in May 2018 as completed: UNDP COs are required to send all relevant documentation to service providers. This includes information about the overarching UNDP CO project the initiative is part of, to make sure the initiative is fully in line with the overarching Project objectives. History
Establish a UNDP roster of Czech experts for fast deployment under Experts on Demand (EoD).
[Added: 2017/07/17] [Last Updated: 2019/04/30]
CTF managers 2019/08 Initiated Due date changed to August 2019: The Project will focus on the Challenge Fund as per Czech MFA requirements which include technical assistance initiative and EoD. Additionally, longer expert engagement for EoD is promoted and preferred. As a result, the number of EoD initiatives per year should be around 6. This decreases the need for establishing a UNDP roster. Nevertheless, after the new Project website is operational and new initiatives under the project were started, UNDP roster of Czech expert should be established. The roster will be promoted not only for the Project EoD scheme, but mainly to all UNDP COs in the ECIS region so they could contract Czech experts to implement activities under their Projects. History

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