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Kazakhstan Country Programme Outcome Evaluation 2016-2018 Diversification of the economy provides decent work opportunities for the underemployed, youth, and socially vulnerable women and men
Commissioning Unit: Kazakhstan
Evaluation Plan: 2016-2020
Evaluation Type: Outcome
Completion Date: 11/2018
Unit Responsible for providing Management Response: Kazakhstan
Documents Related to overall Management Response:
 
1. Recommendation:

The knowledge and experience that UNDP has gathered by implementing three joint regional development projects should be documented and turned into a regional development model to be applied elsewhere in Kazakhstan (and the region).

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office accepts the recommendation.

At this stage the GoK prioritized to focus UNDP support on nationwide initiatives which followed by successful commencement of several sectoral initiatives for 2018-2020. UNDP country office agreed with the Government the so-called “service line” approach, having issue-based nation-wide versus territory-based interventions. However, the models and instruments piloted within the 3 said regional joint programmes informed the design of these sectoral initiative. Moreover, the UNDP flagship initiative on PVE currently implemented in 2 Kazakhstan oblasts builds upon successes of 3 regional projects.

 In response the national priorities UNDP country office is shifting from the joint programmes model to joint programming model which allows to capitalize on distinctive competitive advantages of UN agencies while keeping transactions costs to the minimum.

For example, in the framework of UNDP project in the area of social protection funded by the Government, UNDP has engaged UNWOMEN to the implementation of certain activities in order to strengthen the gender equality aspect through a joint work. Likewise, various UN Agencies have been consulted and engaged at the project development stages for such development areas as, for example, PVE and women, Local Self-Governance, Disaster Risk Reduction, eco-tourism development,  NCDs, others.

 

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Further ensure of deployment of the regional programmes best practices into the design of new and implementation of the current projects
[Added: 2018/12/26] [Last Updated: 2020/01/02]
GLD Unit, CO staff 2020/12 Completed CO ensured that the best practices of the regional porgrammes are deplyed into the design of the new projects. History
2. Recommendation:

UNDP should not underestimate the strength of non-project interventions to bring about change by using knowledge products and through micro-macro linkages.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office accepts the recommendation.

We are in full agreement that the field work should inform of policy advice, advocacy and knowledge products. In connection with this UNDP pays special attention to developing of flagship knowledge products on critical development issues on both national and subnational levels. This will help open new dialogue with the national partners and adequately equip UNDP with tools for mobilization the resources for critical development issues and national priorities initiatives.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Open new discussion around the development issues raised in the 2018 NHDR and other knowledge products
[Added: 2018/12/26] [Last Updated: 2020/01/03]
GLD and SDU Units 2020/05 Initiated History
3. Recommendation:

UNDP should work towards improving efficiency of activities by (a) embedding project staff in the implementing ministries / local authorities (b) using micro-grants sparingly and (c) keeping project management costs reasonable.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office partially accepts the recommendation.

The country office has been constantly working to improve the efficiency of the projects.

UNDP Kazakhstan has already started embedding the project staff for instance project experts in the linear ministries. Some ministries prefer close contact and some more remote with regular interactions. So, UNDP adopted flexible approach which reflects the needs of national partners and best interest of UNDP and purpose of the specific development interventions.

 

As for the micro grants scheme, UNDP has made the global launch of the new programme and project management (PPM) methods in June 2018. The roll-out of the new PPM has included a number of new tools including to engage with partners in new and diverse ways. CO delivered the training on new PPM to the programme and project staff. CO has started working to apply new tools in the projects programmatic and operational activities such as Innovation Challenge tool, responsible party agreements, etc. ensuring the efficiency and sustainability of the result.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Gradual shift to closer interaction with the national partners where deems reasonable in agreement with the national partners
[Added: 2018/12/26]
GLD Unit 2020/12 Initiated
To continue the implementation of new policy instruments
[Added: 2018/12/26]
RMA, SDU and GLD Units 2020/12 Initiated
4. Recommendation:

Partnership with private sector should be forged to add impetus to economic diversification goal and promote “business for SDGs”.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office accepts the recommendation.The country office realizes the importance of mobilization untapped potential of private sector.

UNDP Kazakhstan is developing a strategy of private sector engagement into SDG nationalization. A series of dialogue with business sector (fully private and quasi-governmental) have been conducted in 2018, with the goal to enable these actors to become transformative partners in implementing SDGs. The strategy will aim to position UNDP as a partner of choice for private sector in SDG implementation, while maximizing the impact of the business sector on sustainable development.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
To elaborate the strategy and action plan and commence new initiatives on the private sector engagement in implementation of the Sustainable Development Agenda 2030
[Added: 2018/12/26] [Last Updated: 2020/01/02]
SDU and GLD Units 2019/12 Completed At the start of 2019 CO has started the dediacted SDG project aimed to create a national platform for all stakeholders to nationalize, implement and monitor the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). by strengthening the capacity of the Ministry of National Economy of Kazakhstan (MNE) as the responsible authority and secretariat for the coordinating and monitoring of the implementation of the SDGs. The project will also assist the National Statistics Committee of Kazakhstan in the provision of statistical reporting on the SDGs and the Economic Research Institute under the MNE to perform duties. The project will include the following four major components: 1) improving coordination mechanisms and supporting SDG reporting; 2) capacity development for SDGs mainstreaming into the national development programs and financial plans; 3) setting up SDGs database and boosting national statistical capacity and 4) establishing a dialogue on SDG financing. The project will offer a platform for other UN agencies and societal stakeholders to support the project partners and sectoral ministries in SDGs implementation within their competence. History
5. Recommendation:

UNDP should scale up social protection project to also include People Living with HIV and link them with social protection services as a means to mitigate vulnerabilities, reduce stigma and create enabling environment for people infected and affected by HIV to live with dignity.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

As part of this work UNDP will make sure that the interest of this specific group is adequately addressed.

The country office partially accepts the recommendation. UNDP Kazakhstan supports the efforts of the Government to improve quality and accessibility of special social services for vulnerable people

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Initiate and promote national dialogue on advancing the rights of PLHIV
[Added: 2018/12/26] [Last Updated: 2019/09/12]
GLD Unit 2020/06 Initiated History
6. Recommendation:

Gender reporting should be strengthened to accurately reflect UNDP’s contribution to gender equality and women’s empowerment.

 

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office accepts the recommendation

UNDP will ensure that all programmes will apply a human rights-based approach and gender mainstreaming throughout this country programme cycle, thus capacity development of programme managers/staff on gender tools, including the use of sex-disaggregated data in screening of the programme outcomes needs to take place and will become a part of the new CO Gender Equality Strategy.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Gender mainstreaming in programme and projects will be ensured in 2019 and reflected in the CO’s Gender Action Plan for 2019. Reporting of gender equality results will be strengthened by building a stronger process of planning, monitoring and evaluating gender related indicators.
[Added: 2018/12/26] [Last Updated: 2020/01/02]
ARR/Gender Focal Point, Gender task Force, Gender Specialist. 2019/12 Completed Gender mainstreaming in programme and projects is reflected in the CO’s Gender Action Plan for 2019. The gender planning, monitoring and reporting is reflected in CO SOP on Project Management. History
7. Recommendation:

Local governance should be strengthened to promote local development. UNDP has an opportunity to share its vast regional / global experience to promote clear vision of decentralization, building capacities of local akimats for service delivery, strengthening social accountability and promoting people’s participation in local decision-making.

 

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office  accepts the recommendation.

In recent years UNDP has been involved in local self-governance reforms on both a policy formulation and implementation levels. For instance, to support the roll out of the reform UNDP provided hands on training to over 2,500 governors (2017-2018) and staff of their apparatus to make sure they are adequately equipped with necessary knowledge and skills to implement the reform on the ground. In turn, the feedback received from the trainees was used to inform further changes and adjustments in the local self - governance reform vision.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Consolidate knowledge base and expertise into the practical easy- to use guides for local authorities to facilitate reform implementation
[Added: 2018/12/26] [Last Updated: 2020/01/06]
GLD Unit 2019/12 Completed The United Nations Development Program in Kazakhstan, in partnership with the Ministry of National Economy of the Republic of Kazakhstan, as well as with the participation of the Academy of Public Administration under the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan held 14 regional capacity building workshops and seminars were implemented in all regions of Kazakhstan, covering 1,000 local akims and their personnel, 38 or every 5th local district in the country. The trainings discussed issues related to the implementation of intergovernmental relations and the budget process, the management of communal property of local self-government, the procedure for public procurement and the imposition of administrative fines. Based on conducted seminars, Academy of Public Administration produced a series of video-lessons to be utilized for training/retraining of Civil Servants on local level on regular basis, which contain practical-oriented cases (illustrative examples with calculations, an algorithm of actions, etc.). In addition, comprehensive resource book was produced, which encompass all aspects / issues / successful solutions in Local Self-Governance Reform. History
Analytical note to be developed and brought to the attention of MNE on the ways to accelerate self- governance reforms
[Added: 2018/12/26] [Last Updated: 2020/01/06]
GLD Unit 2019/12 Completed Analytical reports were prepared by two national experts. The work of experts was aimed at developing proposals and recommendations for improving the system of local government and self-government taking into account international best practices, as well as at developing proposals and recommendations for improving the system of local government and self-government, taking into account the implementation of the fourth level of the budget and municipal property in the Republic. History
8. Recommendation:

UNDP should invest time and resources to cultivate the results culture and strengthen monitoring and evaluation of activities.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office partially accepts the recommendation.

UNDP Kazakhstan has been continuously working to enhance the monitoring system and RBM and will ensure the improvement of planning and reporting (internally and outside UNDP) both on the programme and projects outcome level. Programme and projects staff are duly informed and trained on the reporting tools and how to make best use of it. Anyhow the country office sees the place for the improvement of M&E system in the office.

Regarding the evaluation of outcomes and outputs, the country office fully observes CPD evaluation plan to ensure outcomes and projects are evaluated on time in line with UNDP and the donor requirements e.g. GEF, EU. Even if it’s not requirement of the donor, the CO always evaluates a large-scale thematic project where funding allows to plan the evaluation. With this there are small with a tight budget for the implementation only. Thus, the CO should balance the efficiency of the operational costs and effectiveness.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Reinforcement of M&E and RBM in the country office Standard Operating Procedures for the project management through the design, implementation and closure stages
[Added: 2018/12/26] [Last Updated: 2019/12/01]
M&E Associate 2019/12 Completed CO has developed and launched the SOPs on the project implementation cycle reinforced based on the PPM reforms and POPP. SOP adequately articulates the role and the procedures for M&E and RBM use in the project management. ? History
Maintenance of the practice of M&E trainings for the projects staff for M&E programming and implementation in the projects.
[Added: 2018/12/26] [Last Updated: 2019/12/01]
M&E Associate 2019/12 Completed CO has developed and launched the SOPs on the project implementation cycle reinforced based on the PPM reforms and POPP. SOP adequately articulates the role and the procedures for M&E and RBM use in the project management. ? History
Introduce and maintain the exchange of the best M&E and RBM practices among the programme and projects i.e.project document development, report writing, presentation of the project results to the national partners
[Added: 2018/12/26] [Last Updated: 2019/12/01]
M&E Associate 2019/12 Completed CO reinforced the knowledge sharing practice in M&E and RBM in CO through the presentations of the projects best practices at all staff meetings as well as the Units meetings. CO regularly circulates the best samples of the reports and presentations among the projects for a wide use History
9. Recommendation:

Communications and advocacy for development should be strengthened

 

Management Response: [Added: 2018/11/21] [Last Updated: 2018/12/26]

The country office accepts the recommendation.

UNDP Kazakhstan has been actively communicating the project success stories inside and outside UNDP using various mass media tools.

Anyhow the country office sees the need to strengthen communications and advocacy for development initiatives.UNDP will take the best use of new PPM which puts partnerships, resource mobilization, and communications at the center of UNDP programming efforts  to work with new partners and mobilize financing

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
To elaborate and implement Partnerships and Communications Strategy and Action Plan (PCAP)
[Added: 2018/12/26] [Last Updated: 2019/12/01]
Communications Officer 2019/12 Completed CO has started to work at the Partnerships and Communications Strategy and Action Plan (PCAP) for the new CPD cycle 2021-2025 which is due to be submitted in mid of 2021 History

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