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End of Project Evaluation - Joint Programme on Youth Employment
Commissioning Unit: Somalia
Evaluation Plan: 2018-2020
Evaluation Type: Project
Completion Date: 05/2018
Unit Responsible for providing Management Response: Somalia
Documents Related to overall Management Response:
 
1. Recommendation:

Redesign the programme approach based on Government’s employment strategy

Programme implementation has been fragmented with evidence suggesting lack of consensus on the efficacy of the strategy and its potential to create sustainable employment. This was further compounded by the absence of a national employment strategy and associated policy instruments. For the programme to move forward with all its partners contributing towards a common result, it is imperative that stakeholders, including PUNOs and donors, led by the Federal MOLSA revisit the design and develop an agreed programme strategy and approach.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/23]

Programme Management Response:

DSP: With respect to the fragmentation of programme implementation there needs to be some consideration that the YES programme involves specific outcomes for UNIDO and UNDP under the DALDHIS programme. Further, sustainability enhancing mechanisms tend to be introduced later in programme cycles so the employment enhancing support might be picked up in the final EVAL report. Regarding commitment to programme strategy, there is broad consensus that the work of each agency is committed to the original YES strategy which was to stimulate the productivity of major sectors, especially through strengthening the links in the relevant value chains, and through improving infrastructure for transport, markets, trade and energy. The approach taken will need to also formalize different outputs between DALDHIS and YES as well as endorse the value chains we are supporting. Finally, there are a number of value chain upgrading strategies being funded in the country (OUTREACH, GEEL, PIMS, etc) and greater linkages should be established to avoid duplication and amplify in-the-fields results.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1. Programme design inputs for Phase II will include initiatives to integrate relevant employment/labour strategies and greater attention to government-led coordination;
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
2. Ensure UNDP technical assistance includes more focused commitment to the original YES theory of change between the three components and will allocate sufficient resources given scope;
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP project manager 2019/06 Initiated History
3. Will continue to work to see the finalization of a national employment strategy, to be endorsed by the Ministry of Labour;
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
4. UNDP project managers will prioritize value chain upgrading strategies in line with available resources, community action plan requests, and synergies with other value chain programmes in the country;
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
5. Support a Ministry led review of the current value chains proposed for technical assistance. Greater resource will be allocated to improve coordination activities.
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
2. Recommendation:

Recommendation No. 2: Develop government institutional capacity at all levels

Job creation requires the right policies as well as adequate capacity to enforce implementation of those policies. The programme should aim to develop government capacity in these three critical areas:

a)       Capacity to coordinate all actors in the employment sector, including development partners to ensure coherence and avoid duplication,

b)       Capacity to develop and monitor implementation of its employment policies and strategies, and

Capacity to develop, implement and coordinate programmes.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/23]

Programme Management Response:

DSP: UN agencies working under YES work directly with ministerial counterparts. Further, Letters of Agreement are in place that provide significant resources (3% of total funds) to the Ministry of Labour. These funds are used for the payment of salaries, purchase of IT and office infrastructure/assets, cover the costs of transportation and conferences. In addition to direct support to the ministry, UN agencies are working with the MoLSA to roll out M&E capacity building initiatives, information management upskilling, and study tours focused on promoting youth employment in fragile operating environments. In the future, there will be support being directed at MoLSA to fund positions like a Job Creation Specialist and a Communication/Advocacy Officer for the YES programme. YES now has a dedicated Programme Coordinator that is working with the YES technical focal points at MoLSA on calibrating YES programming between FGS and RMS (regional member states).

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
• Will continue to work to strengthen support to the MoLSA (FGS/RMS); • UNDP Phase I close out (DALDHIS) and Phase II design efforts will work with the YES Programme Coordinator to build greater federal, regional, and district linkages to support implementation and M&E activities; • Will work to finalize a MoLSA endorsed national employment strategy.
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
3. Recommendation:

Recommendation 3: Effective engagement with private sector

The private sector is the main driver for employment creation. The private sector’s capacity and ability to create employment is not only critical to the programme’s success, but also a major risk. The programme should therefore invest some of its resources towards managing this risk, by engaging the private sector and demonstrating added value for its participation.  As ‘private sector’ covers a wide range of actors and sectors; engagement should include (a) business development policy, strategy and services, (b) business linkages and value chain development, and (c) access to finance and credit.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/23]

Programme Management Response:

DSP: The original project document, if fully funded, would include efforts and interventions to address sector-specific enabling environment issues, such as: i) microfinance and matching grant schemes to improve access to finance for youth and businesses, ii) technology for value addition and iii) business development services. However, when only partial funding is available some interventions need to be scaled back and/or dropped. It is certainly the case that these sorts of recommendations can be integrated into Phase II design and development activities. Further, there should be greater attention to and commitment to providing an analysis of systematic constraints in the various value chain diagnostic studies.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
• Phase I will seek funds for its micro-grant based enterprise development proposals targeting the renewable energy and fisheries value chains; • Phase I close out and Phase II design inputs will look to develop more substantive engagement with the private sector so as to systematize and better coordinate programme implementation activities;
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
4. Recommendation:

Recommendation No. 4:  Establish an e-information management system

Considering the finding of weak of information flow at all levels, the Government with support of the PUNOs should consider establishing an e-information management system to enable integrated data collection, analysis, documentation, dissemination and lessons learned on employment creation. The e-platform should be based within Government and linked to M&E systems, as well as decentralised and integrated to FMS level.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/23]

Programme Management Response:

 DSP: Agencies have been working modestly to help develop the Ministry of Labour to develop a basic M&E platform. This includes the procurement of IT hardware and software packages for MoLSA. At the Programme Coordination level a Dropbox-centered information sharing portal is being rolled out that will provide MoLSA and YES-linked technical ministries with technical assessments, value chain handbooks, project advocacy efforts, and other reports to support government-led initiatives to engage in the process of Youth Employment in the country.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
YES Phase II design inputs will include providing resources for setting up e-information management system to link vertical/horizontal data collection, info and document management, and info sharing platforms
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
5. Recommendation:

Recommendation 5: Extend programme to December 2018 through no-cost extension

In light of Recommendation 1 above, programme implementation may have to be stalled for a month or two. It will therefore be unlikely that available funds can be exhausted by June 2018. The PSC should therefore consider a no-cost extension to extend the programme timeline to December 2018.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/23]

Programme Management Response:

DSP: In addition to this justification, looking at the expenditure profile since the start of the programme confirms that there is a need to extend the project into the end of 2018. There is no evidence to support a claim that UN agencies have the rate of delivery required to exhaust all available resources. Further, some additional funds are available to re-focus the programme back on a rigorous value chain-based upgrading strategy. Having said that, the 01 March 2018 YES Technical Working Group meeting endorsed this recommendation to extend to the end of 2018.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Phase I Annual Work plan has been updated to extend operations until the end of 2018. For this, we need additional MPTF resources to cover 2018.
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated The project period has been extended to June 2019. History
6. Recommendation:

Recommendation No. 6: Donors should consider funding second phase of the programme

In light of the strategic recommendations above, and given the overall relevance and importance of youth employment in the broader context of stability and economic development, donors should consider funding a second phase of the programme. In the second phase, donors should also consider providing specific funding for a micro-credit revolving fund to facilitate the development of a small and medium enterprise (SME) sector. On the other hand, the government, with support of relevant PUNOs, should develop relevant legislative instruments, including for example, (a) SME policy and strategy, (b) micro-finance policy and strategy, and (c) TVET capacity development.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/23]

Programme Management Response:

DSP: I would put the recommendation to consider micro-credit/revolving fund windows for the micro and small-scale enterprise sector and legislative instruments as a second order priority below building ministerial capacity to undertake value chain research, analysis, mapping, monitoring, and reporting. With respect to micro-finance there are serious institutional challenges to be addressed that will require work with the local finance/banking sector, government, remittance services, etc. These are long term financial product development challenges that will need to be addressed that are conceivably and likely to take much longer than a targeted value chain-based job creation programme initiative.  Although ILO is working to update the country’s current labour law and employment law(s) other multilaterals (like World Bank) who’s mandate is closely aligned to SME and Enterprise Finance and that have attempted to implement a SME focused strategy (like SCORE: Somali Core Economic Institutions and Opportunities’ project face continual implementation delays that are unlikely to be addressed differently by UN agencies working in the sector. With respect to legislative instruments aimed at TVET policy the challenge will be to link policy to the economic drivers and the capital, human, and technological assets that already existing VoTech service providers have at their disposal.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
• Will work with the YES Programme Coordinator to design a demand driven, government led, Phase II technical assistance programme targeting high return and commercially viable sections of endorsed value chains • Will reach out to UN sister agencies to identify subject matter experts who can advise on higher level policy development strategies to support YES outputs and objectives. • Will work with Programme Coordinator in designing a strategy for resource mobilization for the new generation YES programme
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
7. Recommendation:

Recommendation No. 7: Clearly defined roles and responsibilities for PUNOs

Joint programming entails inter-agency collaboration as well as efficiency gains arising from the collective comparative advantages of more than one UN agency working together. The programme should clearly define the roles and responsibilities of individual UN agencies such that their respective activities have mutual dependability and are demonstrably linked to and contribute to the expected outcomes.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/23]

Programme Management Response:

DSP: This recommendation is an important reminder of the importance of working collaboratively from the initial design phase to leverage presence, capacity, and mandate into the delivering of joint programming interventions. As the YES programme moves from Phase I close out towards Phase II intervention design there should be a focus on mandate, presence, and capacity. Based upon those criterion we can move towards roles and associated responsibilities. Sequencing of actions should also be looked at closely.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
• Under Phase II, will work with the YES Programme Coordinator to strengthen planning, coordination, activity implementation, between the YES UN agencies and other stakeholders
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
8. Recommendation:

Recommendation No. 8: Revive the programme Technical Committee

As the programme intends to work across multiple sectors and value chains, it is imperative that there is an institutional mechanism to drive the programme daily activities with a broad-picture lens. The PSC should therefore consider reviving the Technical Committee with clear terms of reference, and performance indicators for accountability. The Technical Committee should be accountable to the PSC and be required to report at every PSC meeting.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/23]

Programme Management Response:

DSP: The Programme Coordinator arrived in the middle of February and on 01 March held its first Technical Working Group meeting. During that meeting the TWG reviewed the Mid Term Evaluation recommendations and the Annual Workplans for the agencies. During the TWG meeting new Terms of References for the TWG were presented and endorsed. Technical Working Group members are now coordinating to set up a Heads of Agencies meeting and a follow up YES Steering Committee meeting. The YES Programme Coordinator is travelling to the Ministry of Labour on Wednesday, 14 March to discuss the MTE recommendations and an update on agency workplans, MoLSA-focused potential capacity building initiatives, and how to strengthen FGS/RMS ministerial communication and coordination.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
• Under Phase I, will work to expand the TWG to become a forum of YES multi-stakeholders meeting regularly and presenting their inputs to the YES Steering Committee.
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
9. Recommendation:

Recommendation No. 9 Establish Regional Implementation Units

As programme implementation is based in the respective FMS, the PSC should consider establishing or strengthening the existing RIU as per the planned management arrangements. In addition, the PSC may also consider establishing an Extended PSC which includes the chairpersons of the RIUs and would meet at least biannually or on an ad hoc basis particularly if/when there are major changes and/or decisions to be made about the programme strategy, funding or activities.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/23]

Programme Management Response:

DSP: At this time, there are extremely limited funds to set up these RIU. However, improving programme objectives, intervention logic, and FGS/RMS coordination are Phase I goals for the Project Coordinator. There appears to be a role for the technical focal points at regional ministerial counterparts. Building up the capacity of these project stakeholders is possible within the current resource constraints of the PUNOs.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
• Phase I programme and operational efforts will strengthen coordination activities in Baidoa and Kismaayo. • Will work with other YES UN agencies to expand and replicate this model of regional/district coordination; and • Direct the recently recruited YES Technical Advisors at the federal and regional level to take a more active role in monitoring results being reported in the field.
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
10. Recommendation:

Recommendation No. 10: Establish a Programme Management Unit

Focusing on local problem identification implies facilitating the creation of local solutions. This also suggests the need for a shift from classroom training of individuals towards creating a conducive environment for working in teams.  This approach would encourage the generation of diverse approaches to mitigating existing problems. 

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/23]

Programme Management Response:

DSP: Initial discussion with PUNOs indicate that each agency has an already existing Programme Management Unit. Efforts will be directed at better coordination between these various agency-specific PMUs.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
• Supports the efforts of the YES Programme Coordinator to pull various YES managers closer together at the operational and monitoring levels.
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
11. Recommendation:

Recommendation No.11 Progress reporting should be consistently based on the programme results, monitoring and evaluation framework

An important part of building a team approach is the provision of frequent opportunities to celebrate success with peers in other parts of the country.  Solutions that work in one part of Somalia have a greater chance of being adapted in other parts of the country than will ‘international best practices’ introduced by a consultant who has no ‘skin in the game’.  A substantial part of future UNDP programming should be devoted to peer-based exchange of experiences, joint assessment of lessons and codification of those lessons in simple to use guides that can be widely disseminated.  Such an approach provides a framework for double-loop learning to assist partners go institutionalize new learning by continually assessing it within the local socio-economic context.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/23]

Programme Management Response:

DSP: With the re-establishment of a structured Technical Working Group it was agreed that the Programme Coordinator would invite private sector informants to make short discussions on what works in establishing and growing private sector initiatives in the country. The creation of a sharing portal via Dropbox will also support this recommendation. Furthermore, joint monitoring missions will also provide project managers with evidence based intervention feedback. 

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
• Under Phase I, will work to strengthen current efforts to promote State to State knowledge and info exchanges; and • Under Phase II, will develop a more robust monitoring and results based Phase II programme framework
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History
12. Recommendation:

Recommendation No. 12: Accelerate implementation of the Daldhis project

A focus on team-based efforts calls for the provision, and use, of communication tools and skills.  Identification, provision and support for such tools should dominate UNDP assistance, replacing the current over-emphasis on the preparation of written technical analyses.  There are enough of these in circulation that needs to become institutionalized already.  Communication should be supported both for horizontal (including with non-state actors) and vertical (beginning at the level of the District Commission and ending with the FGS) linkages

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/23]

Programme Management Response:

DSP: This issue is being addressed through the DALDHIS project. It will involve a rebalancing of funds and with commercial agreements with service providers and suppliers coming into effect.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
• Under Phase I efforts will continue to be made to speed up the delivery rate now that previous constraints and activity barriers have been resolved; • Under Phase II, greater resources will be allocated in programme components to ensure more effective support in the field for building up the capacity of ministerial staff and experts involved in various Phase II outputs and activities.
[Added: 2018/05/23] [Last Updated: 2019/04/01]
UNDP Project Manager 2019/06 Initiated History

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