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Mid-term evaluation of Ridge to Reef Concept for Biodiversity Conservation and for the Enhancement of Ecosystem Services and Cultural Heritage in Niue Project (R2R) MTR”
Commissioning Unit: Samoa
Evaluation Plan: 2018-2022
Evaluation Type: Project
Completion Date: 10/2018
Unit Responsible for providing Management Response: Samoa
Documents Related to overall Management Response:  
1. Recommendation:

Streamline and accelerate procurement and administrative processes in order to avoid further delays that are impacting upon the implementation process.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/02/14] [Last Updated: 2019/08/07]

Agree with recommendation. The establishment of a new governance and oversight structure - the Project Oversight Steering Team (POST) – provides an opportunity to streamline processes, particularly as it meets every fortnight. Revised procurement and reporting/approval processes need to be developed to incorporate this change.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1.1 Develop revised procurement and administrative processes to incorporate the requirements of POST.
[Added: 2019/07/29] [Last Updated: 2020/01/16]
Project Oversight and Steering Committee and Project implementation Unit 2020/01 Completed New processes have been put in place History
1.2 Revised process shared with UNDP to ensure that it fits with the UNDP and GEF quarterly reporting requirements.
[Added: 2019/07/29]
Project implementation unit 2019/07 Completed Process submitted to POST and shared with UNDP
1.3 All parties provide all inputs, and requirements and approvals in timely manner in accordance with revised processes.
[Added: 2019/07/29] [Last Updated: 2020/02/09]
Project Oversight and Steering Committee and the Project implementation. Unit 2020/01 Completed This recommendation has been taken on board by the PMU, and the POST to ensure project activities are implemented in a timely manner History
2. Recommendation:

Update and rationalise the numerous activities that were originally planned in order to streamline implementation, reforming work plan as needed and seeking effectiveness and high impact processes and products, maintaining planning of the project’s second tranche focused on obtaining results, generating results-based incentives, effects and outcomes, as well as weaving in sustainability factors in all products and processes the project implements.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/02/14] [Last Updated: 2019/08/07]

Agreed with MTR  recommendation 2

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
2.1 Carry out detailed review of remaining project activities as planned in the Project document.
[Added: 2019/07/29] [Last Updated: 2020/02/09]
project implementation unit and the chief technical advisor 2020/01 Completed 2020 AWP completed and approved. MYWP revised History
2.2 Make recommendations to National Project Director, project and technical working group for approval of a revised workplan to project end
[Added: 2019/07/29] [Last Updated: 2020/06/02]
project implementation unit and chief technical advisor 2020/01 Completed CTA and project have provided recommendations to TWG History
2.3 Present modified project plan for consideration and approval by UNDP
[Added: 2019/07/29] [Last Updated: 2020/09/08]
National Project Director, project implementation unit and chief technical advisor 2020/07 Completed Project workplans are shared with UNDP MCO for consideration prior to discussion and endorsement by project boards and UNDP Senior management History
3. Recommendation:

Fully incorporate staff to Project Implementation Unit as needed (such as national technical staff) in order to have a completely functioning management unit with all needed personnel as soon as possible. 

Management Response: [Added: 2019/02/14] [Last Updated: 2019/08/07]

Agree with recommendation 3

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
3.1 Appoint a replacement Technical Officer
[Added: 2019/07/29] [Last Updated: 2021/02/21]
Niue Public Services Commission, National Project Director and Project implementation unit 2021/12 Canceled History
4. Recommendation:

Strive to generate national capacity at all levels and in all areas (technical, project management, etc.).  

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2019/08/07]

Agreed with recommendation 4

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
4.1 Maintain and enhance the practice of consultants working with local counterparts to pass on skills & experience.
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
According to each consultancy: PIU, Consultants 2021/12 Completed this is the ongoing practice with all consultancies through the project History
4.2 Provide opportunities for students to join consultants in their work
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, Consultants 2021/12 Completed This is now ongoing practice with consultancies History
4.3 Continue the practice of consultants holding workshops to share details of their activities and results
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, Consultants 2021/12 Completed This is now the ongoing practice with consultancy TORS History
5. Recommendation:

Establish and enhance work with communities being fully aware of their needs without creating false expectations, and without overburdening communities with activities. Imbed livelihood aspects and income generation issues related to comparative advantages of sustainable use of biodiversity.  

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agreed with MTR recommendation 5

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
5.1. Develop a community consultation plan each year to identify the different engagement activities and the outcomes sought.
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU 2021/12 Completed This has been adopted in practice by the PMU History
5.2. Assist communities to establish or further develop committees to drive their R2R activities.
[Added: 2019/08/07]
PIU 2019/03 Completed 1st Round consultations complete, R2R committees in order for most villages under village councils. History
5.3 Complete work to identify possible mechanisms to incentivize conservation area creation
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, Protected Areas consultancy 2021/12 Completed Ongoing practice with project implementaton History
6. Recommendation:

Impel work, analysis, concept notes, and other processes and mechanisms to deal with sustainable financing of the products and process the project is and will achieve

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agreed with MTR recommendation 6

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
6.1 Sustainable financing will be addressed in the 2nd phase of the Protected Areas Consultancy
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/21]
PIU 2021/12 Initiated Procurement delayed due to COVID 19 and PA consultancy under procurement through UNDP History
7. Recommendation:

Continue to promote linkages with different government departments as well as other related projects so that these linkages in turn support and anchor further collaborations and sustainability.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agreed with MTR recommendation 7

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
7.2 Draft TOR and recruit consultant for Needs Assessment and institutional strengthening
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/21]
PIU, CTA, DG 2021/12 Initiated This consultancy has been incorporated in the PA consultancy to start in 2021 Q1 History
7.3 Complete work aimed at institutional strengthening of MNR to allow its Departments to collaborate more closely with the R2R project and sustain its initiatives in the long-term.
[Added: 2019/08/07]
MNR, DG, PIU, CNA Consultant 2021/12 Initiated Preliminary strategic planning for MNR commenced quarter 4 2018. Consultancy TOR to be finalized for this task. Activity should commence Qtr 3 2019.
7.1 Continue to work closely with Government stakeholders through the POST and WG
[Added: 2019/08/07]
PIU 2019/01 Completed Technical working group now has POST oversight which provides wider policy guidance and regulatory advice.
8. Recommendation:

Generate an exit strategy/sustainability plan for all the implementing aspects of the project. This sustainability plan/exit strategy should outline explicitly what is needed for sustaining products, outcomes, and effects

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agreed with MTR recommendation 8

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
8.1 Identify expected end of project products, outcomes and effects.
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, CTA, NPD 2021/12 Initiated Task ongoing with specific activities and actions being formulated from consultations on management planning, focused on achieving key targets within Management plans for CAs and special managed Reef Areas (SMRAs). History
8.2. Work with stakeholders (particular Government Departments and communities to identify how these products, outcomes and effects will be sustained.
[Added: 2019/08/07]
PIU, CTA, NPD, UNDP MCO 2021/12 Initiated Part of needs assessment and capacity building task. Builds on from MNR strategic planning. Long term planning with key stakeholders is part of project activities, via consultation, meetings and village consultations inclusive of key stakeholder partners in MNR and relevant depts.
8.3 Complete exit strategy/sustainability plan
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/21]
CTA, PIU, DG 2021/12 Initiated New CTA under recruitment to work with PMU on completion of exit strategy by TE History
9. Recommendation:

Orientation mechanisms (presentations, inception-type meetings, written materials) should be developed at this mid-point stage.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agreed with MTR recommendation 9

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Develop report on Niue’s biodiversity incorporating survey results (for general audience)
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
CTA 2020/08 Completed CTA has finalised report History
10. Recommendation:

Improve communication as well as dissemination of the information the project is and will be generating. 

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agree with MTR Recommendation 10

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
10.3 Finalise and publish all technical and survey reports completed by the project
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/17]
CO, PM, CTA 2021/02 Overdue-Initiated History
10.1 Fully implement the Communication Strategy (and launch it)
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
CO, PM 2020/12 Completed Communications strategy is being implemented History
10.2 improve social media engagement
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
CO,PM 2021/12 Completed This is now ongoing practice by the PMU History
11. Recommendation:

Start generating knowledge management mechanisms to promote the exchange of knowledge and expertise that is being created throughout the Project and sharing best practices and lessons learned.  

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agree with MTR recommendation 11

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
11.5 Procurement for EIMS associated equipment, software and training
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/21]
PIU, CTA, UNDP, EIMS specialist 2021/12 Initiated History
11.1 Review requirements for activities in output 1.4 (Environmental Information Management System and Environmental Monitoring System) as part of project streamlining.
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/01/16]
PIU CTA 2019/12 Completed Assess scaling down of some components, without compromising usefulness and functionality of the tools to be gained. Scoping for EiMS to be undertaken in Qtr 1 2020 History
11.2 Finalize draft TOR for the EIMS scoping
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/01/16]
PIU, CTA, UNDP 2020/01 Completed TOR has has been finalised History
11.3 Advertise for scoping (design and specification) assessment consultant
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/06/02]
PIU, CTA, UNDP 2020/02 Completed Recruitment of EMIS has been finalised History
11.4 Advertise for EIMS specialist
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, CTA, UNDP 2020/09 Completed EIMS scoping underway History
12. Recommendation:

Assure that gender issues are more than just participation of women.  Interweave gender equality outlooks in all tools, studies, publications, etc

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agree with MTR recommendation 12

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
12.2 Implement Gender Action Plan and mainstream into all project activities studies etc.
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/21]
PIU, CTA, project partners 2021/12 Initiated History
12.1 Recruit a Gender Specialist (based on TOR drafted in Sept 2018) Carry out agreed work to develop a gender assessment and gender action plan.
[Added: 2019/08/07]
UNDP, PIU, CTA 2019/07 Completed UNDP recruitment delayed as selected applicant fell ill, UNDP internal consultant visited and drafting report
12.2 Implement Gender Action Plan and mainstream into all project activities studies etc.
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, CTA, project partners 2020/08 Completed PMU is following recommendation of the Gender Assessment and action plan History
13. Recommendation:

Generate exit and sustainability strategies for all the implementing aspects of the Project. 

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agree with MTR recommendation 13. This is linked to MTR recommendation 7 and  8

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
13.2 Ensure long term sustainability of terrestrial and marine conservation areas is factored into management planning via development of business plans for tourism related activities to sustain the terrestrial and marine conservation areas long term.
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, CTA, PA, VCs and R2R committees 2021/12 Initiated Management Plan development in progress, factoring in non-extractive tourism related alternatives to over harvesting of at risk species Implement once draft approved by village and endorsed by government History
13.4 Implement recommendation form the Capacity needs assessment to ensure key stakeholder partners are committed, well equipped and resourced to take on the extra responsibility of providing support, coordination and sustainability of the CAs and Reefs long term at Govt and Community level.
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, MNR Niue Tourism, NCOC and relevant Government and community partners 2021/12 Initiated Incorporated into PA Specialist consultancy History
13.1 Ensure CAs and Reefs have long term sustainability cemented into long term maintenance plans of village communities well before project termination.
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, CTA, PA, VCs and R2R committees 2021/12 Completed Sustainable financing developed to ensure longterm support for CAs post R2R. ongoing for the duration of the project History
13.3 Complete and launch and implement Vaiea Business Plan and replicate and customize for other sites. Ensure the economic benefits of these business plans are being implemented successfully prior to project termination.
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, CTA, PA, VCs, Niue Tourism, NCOC and R2R committees 2021/12 Completed Vaiea business plan has been launched. Implementation of Vaiea business plan to provide lessons learned for other village CAs and Reefs. Shortfalls to be highlighted and amended for implementation in other villages. History
14. Recommendation:

An extension should be requested for the Project

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
14.1 Agree with POST and WG whether an application for an extension is to be made and for how long, based on revised work planning (in response to recommendation 2)
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2021/02/21]
PIU, PEB, PD, POST, CTA, UNDP MCO 2020/10 Completed Project extension for 12 months to April 2022 was approved History
15. Recommendation:

Generate exchange mechanisms (South-South, between and among Ridge to Reef Projects in the Pacific, etc.) sharing best practices and lessons learned as well as technical issues that arise out of the interventions.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agree with MTR recommendation 15

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
15.1 Ensure clarity between projects and what sector specific activities are being targeted to ensure closer cooperation and coordination ongoing
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, Regional R2R PM, 2021/12 Completed this is ongoing History
15.1 Ensure clarity between projects and what sector specific activities are being targeted to ensure closer cooperation and coordination ongoing
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, Regional R2R PM, 2021/12 Canceled STAR R2R activities, progress and outcomes to date shared with regional R2R to assist in the regional R2R MTR. Regional R2R Mid-term review currently in progress. Positive outcome will attest to commitment and support between both projects.
16. Recommendation:

Support staff and associated stakeholders in generating and obtaining capacity (both at the technical and at the organizational level and well as technical issues that arise out of the interventions.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agree with MTR recommendation 16

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
16.1 Support MNR staff undertaking capacity building
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, MNR 2021/12 Completed This is ongoing. 1 x participant completed JCU PGC online course DAFF staff engaged in USP upskilling Project has provided on-the-job through the various specific capacity components of all consultancies History
16.2 Assess ongoing outcomes of community consultations to ensure responsiveness to changing dynamics within communities as interventions impact at ground level
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, MNR 2021/12 Completed Ongoing practice by PIU. PIU undertake quarterly site visits and reporting to WG and included in Qtrly reports. Implementation and support for community projects ongoing as changing dynamics call for adaptive measures as needed. History
17. Recommendation:

Having learned that whatever is or is not included in design of projects permeates into implementation and often in results, design should be specific in certain aspects and expected results.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/08/07]

Agree with MTR recommendation 17

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
17.1 Develop and use a Monitoring matrix for project to gauge progress of project outcomes
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
CTA, PIU 2021/12 Completed Ongoing. PIU closely follows outcomes matrix in prodoc to assist in tracking deliverables. Specific monitoring matrix in development to assist in template for long term monitoring after R2R. History
17.2 Monitoring of outcomes to gauge successful outcomes needs to be measurable in terms of results. Assess outcomes in prodoc and provide specific measurable gauge upon which the project results can be assessed.
[Added: 2019/08/07] [Last Updated: 2020/09/16]
PIU, CTA, UNDP 2021/12 Completed Ongoing History

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