Terminal Evaluation of MENARID Project

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Evaluation Plan:
2017-2021, Iran
Evaluation Type:
Final Project
Planned End Date:
02/2018
Completion Date:
01/2018
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
35,000

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Title Terminal Evaluation of MENARID Project
Atlas Project Number: 00059713
Evaluation Plan: 2017-2021, Iran
Evaluation Type: Final Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 01/2018
Planned End Date: 02/2018
Management Response: Yes
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021)
  • 1. Output 1.2.1 Capacities at national and sub-national levels strengthened to promote inclusive local economic development and deliver basic services including HIV and related services
Evaluation Budget(US $): 35,000
Source of Funding:
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 35,000
Joint Programme: No
Mandatory Evaluation: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Dr. Arun Rijal Independent International Consultant
Mr. Hamid Farahanirad National Consultant
GEF Evaluation: Yes
GEF Project Title:
Evaluation Type: Terminal Evaluation
Focal Area: Multifocal Areas
Project Type: FSP
GEF Phase: GEF-4
GEF Project ID: 2732
PIMS Number: 3232
Key Stakeholders:
Countries: IRAN (ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF)
Lessons
Findings
Recommendations
1

Solar technology was used for water heater and food drying only (limited households) but could also be used for irrigation and household energy need.

2

Still project need to convince central level officials on MENARID approach and outcomes. Project still have three months left which could be used to organise central level interaction program involving high level officers from the government including National Planning and Budgeting Organisation and high level representatives from project pilot provinces to share their experience with the central level officers. Interaction should be followed by field visits to have first-hand information. This could help them to understand MENARID approach more clearly and that could bring change in their mind-set to generate their support for future replications. Due to frequent change in management in government institution, institutional memory is weak in Sistan-Baluchistan province. Therefore need more field visits for MPO to provide first-hand information which help to change in their thinking. Similarly, training workshop should be organised for the facilitators of this province to discuss their case experiences and provide solutions to resolve the problems.

3

Provincial level watershed management strategy is developed. Provincial government should utilise it for addressing drought stress.

4

The project piloted INRM in four provinces and successfully replicated in North Khorasan province. Still there are large dry areas within these provinces and also in other provinces. It is recommended to upscale and replicate lessons learned from this project by UNDP, National and Provincial Government of Iran. Government should implement it as priority activity each year and allocated sufficient budget for this activity. The homogeneity that MENARID project maintained between policy, approach and implementation practices should be adopted in the future replications. There is also opportunity from the 6th National Development Plan to utilise lessons from this project. It will be helpful if knowledge on each and every steps of implementation and experiences are documented and disseminated to a large audience including government and nongovernment institutions from other dry areas. At the international level, UNDP and GEF could use its network for dissemination.

5

It is recommended to promote insurance mechanism in pastoralism and agriculture to safeguard farmers. Due to climate change weather became very unpredictable. If farmers whose economy is not so strong have to take risk of climate change then their situation will further worsened. Hence to encourage farming and pastoralism, insurance mechanisms should be promoted. Considering the economic situation of the farmers, premium of such insurance should not be high or be subsidised.

6

Replication of activities in the future in new areas within present pilot provinces and also in new provinces need support from the central level mainly to coordinate activities and for this continuation of the existing structure of MENARID could contribute. MENARID should now change from a project to a massive movement to cover wide dry areas of this country as also mentioned in the 6th national five year plan they have to cover 25000 villages in coming five years. From interaction with the provincial governments, it is learned that money is not barrier to continue support to the outcomes and also replicate at the provincial level but generation of administrative cost of the central office and modality of managing fund is more important. Cabinet of Iran has approved establishment of UNESCO Centre for Watershed Management in Iran. They have already allocated budget for this activities. As MENARID played role in establishment of UNESCO Centre, one option could be using MENARID office as secretariat of this centre and at the same time it coordinate replication of MENARID approach in different provinces. Similarly, Government also expressed their interest to take UNDP lead in establishing this Centre. But establishment of this centre may take some time and how to bridge MENARID in that gap will be an issue. Also UNESCO’s reaction regarding UNDP taking lead of establishing this Centre in Iran is unknown. Another option could be that the Government could continue these activities by themselves but it will have problem to coordinate between provinces and also in bringing updated technology and experiences from the international sources for the project. Third option could be bringing government contribution (money from centre and also of the provincial government) in an account and manage activities in MENARID framework in coordination with provincial governments. Since the 6th five year plan target is very ambitious (coving 25,000 villages in five year by preparing 100,000 facilitators) delay in disbursement of money could affect the implementation. In MENARID project, only 20% of the committed budget was received from the government. If same will happen to the future replication program also then that will not only affect replication and achievement of five year plan but also loose trust of the people. UNDP is globally changing its role from donor to implementing partner hence they are willing to contribute as partner in managing the implementation of activities for which they want secure fund for the project. TE recommend project board to think all advantage and disadvantages of various options and select the best for continuation of replication of lessons learned in broad landscape.

7

Requirement of large number of facilitators to achieve target of 6th National Development Plan is challenge and also opportunity. MENARID could lead to organise consultative workshop for its national and provincial facilitators to compile their experiences in a practical guidelines which could be a training resource material to train targeted 100,000 new facilitators.

1. Recommendation:

Solar technology was used for water heater and food drying only (limited households) but could also be used for irrigation and household energy need.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/16]

A MOU between Sharif University of Technology, Yazd Province and Sistan and Baluchistan Province is being signed. It is decided that a power generation system will be built on homes with the support of private sector investment and public participation. As a result, people could generate electricity from solar energy and take action on energy sales initiatives.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
This was negotiated with the government partner and will be taken care by the government.
[Added: 2018/09/10] [Last Updated: 2018/12/12]
FRWO 2018/12 No Longer Applicable [Justification: The project ended and UNDP is no longer engaged in the process. ]
UNDP is not involved anymore as the project terminated however the government implementing agency, FRWO, is following it up with relevant partners.
2. Recommendation:

Still project need to convince central level officials on MENARID approach and outcomes. Project still have three months left which could be used to organise central level interaction program involving high level officers from the government including National Planning and Budgeting Organisation and high level representatives from project pilot provinces to share their experience with the central level officers. Interaction should be followed by field visits to have first-hand information. This could help them to understand MENARID approach more clearly and that could bring change in their mind-set to generate their support for future replications. Due to frequent change in management in government institution, institutional memory is weak in Sistan-Baluchistan province. Therefore need more field visits for MPO to provide first-hand information which help to change in their thinking. Similarly, training workshop should be organised for the facilitators of this province to discuss their case experiences and provide solutions to resolve the problems.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/16]

The issue was raised by the PBO and the governors at the last Steering Committee and was approved by the head of FRWO, MFA was also emphasized to continue MENARID missions. On this basis, it was decided to conduct a joint workshop between MPO and PBOs, along with an exposure visit of the successful measures carried out by MENARID, in the workshop will discuss how to fund the MENARID activities and financial supports of central office to continue its mandates. PBS's of North Khorasan province committed to holding the workshop.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
This was discussed in extend during the last project steering committee. PBO is fully supportive to the project and FRWO is directly negotiating this with PBO. Provincail PBOs, have allocated local resources to support the project extension however this should be complemented by the national fund.
[Added: 2018/09/11] [Last Updated: 2018/12/12]
FRWO 2018/12 No Longer Applicable [Justification: The project ended and UNDP is no longer engaged in the process. ]
As the project closed , UNDP is not involved in the process.
3. Recommendation:

Provincial level watershed management strategy is developed. Provincial government should utilise it for addressing drought stress.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/16]

The issue of drought is not only addressed in the Provincial Committees, but also has been considered and emphasized by the National Integrated Watershed Management Committee. The project central office is required to provide provinces with expertise in drought and resilience during the implementation of Integrated Watershed Management plans.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
The project hired a consultant to work to incorporate climate change and drought dimensions to the project work.
[Added: 2018/09/11]
Project office / FRWO 2017/12 Completed
4. Recommendation:

The project piloted INRM in four provinces and successfully replicated in North Khorasan province. Still there are large dry areas within these provinces and also in other provinces. It is recommended to upscale and replicate lessons learned from this project by UNDP, National and Provincial Government of Iran. Government should implement it as priority activity each year and allocated sufficient budget for this activity. The homogeneity that MENARID project maintained between policy, approach and implementation practices should be adopted in the future replications. There is also opportunity from the 6th National Development Plan to utilise lessons from this project. It will be helpful if knowledge on each and every steps of implementation and experiences are documented and disseminated to a large audience including government and nongovernment institutions from other dry areas. At the international level, UNDP and GEF could use its network for dissemination.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/16]

The use of the MENARID approach is addressed in the Sixth National Development Plan and the theme of rural development and job creation are also considered by the "Deputy of Rural Development and Deprived Areas (DRDDA), of Presidential Office" who are in charge in this area. It is decided that the workshops will hold by the DRDDA at the national and provincial level with participation of MPO and PBOs and the MENARID achievements will be transfer.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
This was fully addressed in North Khorasan. The provincial general governor requested all relevant entities to extend the project to entire province (where applicable) instructing that PBO should allocate the required resources. There were also negotiations in other provinces such as Yazd to further upscale the project in new areas.
[Added: 2018/09/11]
FRWO 2017/12 No Longer Applicable [Justification: Although initial up-scaling activities were accomplished during the later part of the project but as the project is closed, the next steps are led by FRWO. UNDP is still exploring possible future engagement in this area but due to termination of the subject project, currently UNDP can not be engaged in the activities. ]
5. Recommendation:

It is recommended to promote insurance mechanism in pastoralism and agriculture to safeguard farmers. Due to climate change weather became very unpredictable. If farmers whose economy is not so strong have to take risk of climate change then their situation will further worsened. Hence to encourage farming and pastoralism, insurance mechanisms should be promoted. Considering the economic situation of the farmers, premium of such insurance should not be high or be subsidised.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/16]

With the support of the FRWO (Office of Promotion), a meeting will be held with the rangeland cooperatives and guild, discussing the challenges and the manner of payment, and this issue will also be proposed there.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
The project hired a climate change consultant to integrate response and mitigation dimensions of the project works. At the same time, Ministry of Agriculture in consultation of National Disaster Management Organization have extended insurance coverage for farmers.
[Added: 2018/09/11]
FRWO NDMO, Project office 2017/12 No Longer Applicable [Justification: The project is terminated and although the government is extending these type of insurance mechanisms but UNDP is not involved anymore. ]
6. Recommendation:

Replication of activities in the future in new areas within present pilot provinces and also in new provinces need support from the central level mainly to coordinate activities and for this continuation of the existing structure of MENARID could contribute. MENARID should now change from a project to a massive movement to cover wide dry areas of this country as also mentioned in the 6th national five year plan they have to cover 25000 villages in coming five years. From interaction with the provincial governments, it is learned that money is not barrier to continue support to the outcomes and also replicate at the provincial level but generation of administrative cost of the central office and modality of managing fund is more important. Cabinet of Iran has approved establishment of UNESCO Centre for Watershed Management in Iran. They have already allocated budget for this activities. As MENARID played role in establishment of UNESCO Centre, one option could be using MENARID office as secretariat of this centre and at the same time it coordinate replication of MENARID approach in different provinces. Similarly, Government also expressed their interest to take UNDP lead in establishing this Centre. But establishment of this centre may take some time and how to bridge MENARID in that gap will be an issue. Also UNESCO’s reaction regarding UNDP taking lead of establishing this Centre in Iran is unknown. Another option could be that the Government could continue these activities by themselves but it will have problem to coordinate between provinces and also in bringing updated technology and experiences from the international sources for the project. Third option could be bringing government contribution (money from centre and also of the provincial government) in an account and manage activities in MENARID framework in coordination with provincial governments. Since the 6th five year plan target is very ambitious (coving 25,000 villages in five year by preparing 100,000 facilitators) delay in disbursement of money could affect the implementation. In MENARID project, only 20% of the committed budget was received from the government. If same will happen to the future replication program also then that will not only affect replication and achievement of five year plan but also loose trust of the people. UNDP is globally changing its role from donor to implementing partner hence they are willing to contribute as partner in managing the implementation of activities for which they want secure fund for the project. TE recommend project board to think all advantage and disadvantages of various options and select the best for continuation of replication of lessons learned in broad landscape.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/16]

Replicating actions (in current pilot sites and newly added replicated provinces) are ongoing through provincial funding and this issue have been emphasized in the project steering committee. It was decided that the MENARID Central Office should continue its work in FRWO to guide these actions. In the first step, in pilot sites, PBOs have accepted the use of MENARID lessons learned and the capacity of Provincial facilitators with the advice of the Central Office to implement the Sixth National Development Plan and the coverage of the target villages, and the Central Office in FRWO should follow these steps.

The Project Central Office will provide funding to continue providing technical support and advice to the provinces, and capacity building in other provinces to replicating the actions, and the required funds for central office will be provided.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
The replication is being followed up by FRWO under 6th Five year development plan but UNDP / Project are not involved as the project terminated.
[Added: 2018/09/11]
FRWO 2017/12 No Longer Applicable [Justification: The project is terminated. ]
7. Recommendation:

Requirement of large number of facilitators to achieve target of 6th National Development Plan is challenge and also opportunity. MENARID could lead to organise consultative workshop for its national and provincial facilitators to compile their experiences in a practical guidelines which could be a training resource material to train targeted 100,000 new facilitators.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/16]

Training workshops for transferring the facilitators' experiences will be held considering the sixth national development plan and training of new facilitators.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
FRWO is handling this task
[Added: 2018/09/11] [Last Updated: 2018/12/12]
FRWO 2021/04 No Longer Applicable [Justification: The project ended and UNDP is no longer engaged in the process. ]

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