Success message
error message
warn message
Strong and Inclusive Parliamentary Democracy (SIPD)
Commissioning Unit: Kyrgyzstan
Evaluation Plan: 2018-2022
Evaluation Type: Project
Completion Date: 05/2021
Unit Responsible for providing Management Response: Kyrgyzstan
Documents Related to overall Management Response:
 
1. Recommendation:

UNDP's support to the Parliament must continue, despite constitutional reforms that shift to a presidential political system. Recent transitions from parliamentary to presidential political systems (e.g. – Turkey; Sri Lanka) have shown that the Parliament will continue to play a vital role in law-making (even if no longer an exclusive role). This is despite the establishment of presidentially-mandated commissions and councils that were expected to usurp the role of the legislative branch. Its role with regard to oversight will become even more important with the clearer division of powers between the legislative and executive branches. With a new electoral system and a reduced number of seats, the Parliament may even be a more engaging institution. No matter the results of the next parliamentary election, the Parliament will still have a vital role to play in the political system and the good work completed to-date should not be lost, but enhanced through ongoing technical support.

Management Response: [Added: 2021/05/19] [Last Updated: 2021/06/20]

The recommendation is accepted. Indeed, no matter the results of the constitutional referendum held in January 2021 and the planned parliamentary elections (October 2021), the Parliament is still expected to play a vital role in the political system and policy making process. The  achievements promoted by the  SIPD project should be secured and institutionalized to the extent possible. In particular, in light of the recent political developments and the shift to a presidential form of governance, UNDP intends to design a new intervention to strengthen Jogorku Kenesh’s institutional transparency and accountability, as well as civic engagement in order to improve public access to the legislative body, public participation into law and policy-making process and demand increased accountability of the Government. Notably, UNDP will identify new mechanisms,  with special emphasis on digital solutions, for participation in oversight processes and for soliciting feedback on service delivery and policy implementation, as well as to promote a better institutionalization of regular platforms for interaction of Parliament, Executive and CSOs. A stronger focus in institutional and infrastructural capacity strengthening will  also be needed to reinforce the role of the Parliament to assess Government’s performance in implementation of Agenda 2030, including overseeing SDGs budgets and expenditures, strengthening Parliament’s linkages with Local Keneshes and role in localization of SDGs, strengthening the capacities and actions of the SDG Working Group as well as to further translate standards related to parliamentary oversight of SDGs into the national context.  

Finally, given the complex governance landscape and the ongoing volatile political situation, a new initiative with the Parliament, given the political framework engaged, shall also serve the following two purposes: 1) to serve the SDG16 cluster and the whole UNDP CO as a regular platform for political economy analysis, political engagement and for constantly learning about, and responding, to this unpredictable, evolving political context. The initiative will need to focus more on how critical information is collectively distilled within the Cluster and the Country Office to ensure programme staff and partners have a better understanding of the political, governance, rule of law setting and can adapt their development programmes to the complex political environment within which they conduct their work; 2) to apply flexible programming and implementation, including a more adaptive and process-focused approach as opposed to results-focused only. In parallel with an increased political engagement, the initiative is required to place efforts to be grounded in a framework that allows systematic recording of ‘strategic adaptation’ based on well-informed, contextually sound decisions in order to provide more flexible programming structures and processes that enable for more adaptive actions and better addressing development (including political) challenges arising during implementation.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Design a new concept note and then a Project document on civic space and parliamentary accountability and transparency strengthening, including capacitation parliamentary digital transformation with potential assistance in setting up the Council on Digital Transformation under the Office of the Speaker.
[Added: 2021/06/20] [Last Updated: 2022/01/06]
SDG16 Cluster 2022/12 Initiated History
Conduct an inclusive situational and stakeholders’ assessment driven by a political economy framework that will inform areas for future programmatic support to the Parliament and civic engagement in light of rapidly changing political landscape
[Added: 2021/06/20] [Last Updated: 2022/01/06]
SDG16 Cluster 2022/12 Initiated History
Continue to hold regular consultations with Parliament political and administrative leadership and key parliamentary staffers to assess issues related to political economy and inform a new initiative with the Jogorku Kenesh
[Added: 2021/06/20] [Last Updated: 2022/01/06]
SDG16 Cluster 2022/12 Initiated History
2. Recommendation:

Efforts are required to institutionalize the reforms piloted and adopted by the Parliament. Much of the work of SIPD showed promise, but the final stage of institutionalisation – the adoption of new legal frameworks – was not achieved in most cases. Any future work in support of the Parliament should be focused on the adoption of legal frameworks that will solidify such reforms. Specifically, areas of focus should include:

  • Adoption and implementation of the civil society engagement strategy;
  • Adoption of the Open Parliament Initiative Action Plan;
  • Approval of an oversight law;
  • Adoption and implementation of M&E frameworks for each committee; and
  • Endorsement of the Gender Equality Roadmap by the Parliament
Management Response: [Added: 2021/05/19] [Last Updated: 2021/06/20]

The recommendation is accepted. UNDP is expected to promote further the institutionalization of progress achieved under SIPD project, including to improve oversight capacities of the Parliament, deepening work around Agenda 2030, as well as to continue to pursue the implementation of the Open Parliament Initiative to enhance public access to the Parliament, civic education and public participation into law and policy-making processes and the evaluation of impact and implementation of laws and policies developed by the Government. In this regard, as recommended in the final evaluation,  future priority areas aimed  at consolidating progress promoted by SIPD so far should include institutionalize: 1) the developed civil society engagement strategy, 2) the approval of an oversight law, 3) the implementation of M&E frameworks for each committee, and 4) the roll out of the Gender Equality Roadmap by the Parliament. Moreover, this also encompasses the implementation of ongoing actions undertaken by UNDP in partnership with the Parliament, including through the Rapid Financing Facility (RRF) and the UN/EU Spotlight Initiative to improve respectively, parliamentary oversight of COVID-19 response and promote women’s rights and the parliamentary role in addressing violence against women and girls. UNDP is also expected to continue to institutionalize strides generated in partnership with the Budget Committee, including improving capacities, tools, methodologies and regulations, for scrutiny, authorization and monitoring of public spending.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Capitalizing on SIPD’s progress, continue to strengthen the Parliament’s ability to monitor implementation of adopted national policies, programmes and enacted legislation, including mobilizing capacities of relevant Committees and Parliamentary Working Groups to increase their oversight role as a tool to monitor government’s performance and promote the public interest in key development areas
[Added: 2021/06/20] [Last Updated: 2022/01/06]
SDG16 Cluster 2022/12 Initiated History
Increase collaboration with other projects supporting the Parliament across the UNDP project portfolio (including RRF, Spotlight, Women Peace Agenda, hate speech) to enhance country/regional/global programmatic complementarities and synergies and foster collaboration between implementing partners, the Parliament and responsible parties to institutionalize current progress and inform the design of new development initiatives
[Added: 2021/06/20] [Last Updated: 2022/01/06]
SDG16 Cluster 2022/12 Initiated History
Continue institutional and technical support in strengthening the Gender Council under the Speaker’s Office and promotion of policies on SGBV and gender equality in enforcement of SDG 5 agenda
[Added: 2021/06/20] [Last Updated: 2022/01/06]
SDG16 Cluster 2022/12 Initiated History
3. Recommendation:

At a time of political upheaval, a focus of support should be securing and maintaining space for citizens and civil society in decision-making. After the events of October 2020 Kyrgyzstan’s political system is in flux. This means some spaces that have existed for citizen engagement may be reduced while others will open. UNDP should be supporting the securing of space for dialogue between citizens and civil society on one side and political leadership on the other. In some cases, that space may be established within the Parliament. But such efforts should not be focused only on Parliament and UNDP should be exploring other venues and platforms for dialogue. Examples of potential space for dialogue may include:

  • Enhanced digital capacity by Parliament to receive citizen inputs to its work;
  • Strengthened parliamentary procedures to require routine public consultations and committee powers to summon executive branch to account;
  • Dedicated funding for committees and MPs to engage citizens and civil society outside of Parliament;
  • Support to key institutions (academia; think tanks) to establish and maintain dialogue venues and space, such as annual conferences and less formal, but routine, interactions between executive legislative and citizen representatives; and
  • District and constituency level public forums on specific topics of concern.
Management Response: [Added: 2021/05/19] [Last Updated: 2021/06/20]

Accepted. Any new initiative with the Parliament should be guided by increased focus on civic engagement, as well as civic education & public outreach, including for public inputs into law-making and monitoring of impact of laws and policies so that development assistance continue to build a more accessible, open and transparent Parliament as per ongoing and eventually future commitments under the Open Government Partnership. UNDP should also continue to institutionalize a platform for Parliament-CSO cooperation capitalizing on the progress generated by the SIPD’s Civic Action Fund which has enhanced public interface with the Jogorku Kenesh. As a part of this process, UNDP shall explore a stronger engagement on supporting the digital strategy of the Jogorku Kenesh as additional tool to improve parliamentary transparency, accessibility and public participation, including mobilizing parliamentary communications infrastructure to reach different groups of the society– in particular those at risk of being left behind, technologically excluded or living in remote areas. As recommended also by the evaluation, the following areas shall be also prioritized in case of new project’s initiative: a) enhancing digital capacity by Parliament to receive citizen inputs to its work; b) strengthening parliamentary procedures to require routine public consultations and committee powers to summon executive branch to account; c) strengthening committees’ capacities and MPs to engage citizens and civil society outside of Parliament, in light also of expected changes in electoral legislation which are expected to demand more interaction MPs-public, through district and constituency level public forums on specific topics of concern; d) advocate for institutionalization of CSO membership on parliamentary committee working groups; e) adoption and implementation of revised oversight procedures increasing public participation into oversight processes; f) support for post-legislative scrutiny involving the general public; g) strengthening the work of the Press Service under the new developed long-term strategy which will cover all the new convocation, including regular platforms for joint civic education initiatives conducted by the Jogorku Jenesh, CSOs, media and other important national stakeholders (ex. CEC); h) continue to build capacities of CSOs for analysis, innovation, scaling up and linking work to national development priorities

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Building also on lessons learned generated by the SIPD’s Civil Action Fund, UNDP to hold national consultation and design a concept for increased civic space, public participation into decision-making processes and promote public interface and work with the Parliament
[Added: 2021/06/20] [Last Updated: 2022/01/06]
SDG16 Cluster 2022/12 Initiated History
UNDP to continue to advocate for civic space and public participation trough ongoing projects and available national platforms. Civic engagement and education strategy shall be developed and rolled out
[Added: 2021/06/20] [Last Updated: 2022/01/06]
SDG16 Cluster 2022/12 Initiated History
4. Recommendation:

Any future support to the Parliament of Kyrgyzstan should be focused on interventions that will allow for sustainable capacity to establish an effective, inclusive and participative institution. Building on the work and modalities employed during SIPD, any future support to the Parliament should focus on UNDPs role as a knowledge broker and facilitator, by providing strategic and technical support that allows for trusted relationships to flourish in support of the Parliament’s work. In particular, such support should include:

  1. Establishing permanent budget analysis capacity within the Parliament (i.e. – a Parliamentary Budget Office);
  2. Institutionalisation of CSO membership on parliamentary committee working groups;
  3. Adoption and implementation of revised oversight procedures; and
  4. Support for post-legislative scrutiny.
Management Response: [Added: 2021/05/19] [Last Updated: 2021/06/20]

The recommendation is accepted. The management response is the same as in the recommendation#3 provided.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Continue advocacy and integration/translation of the Parliament and CSO dialogue platform concept in practice. This intervention will allow streamlining the consultation processes among CSOs and Parliament and foster better collaboration leading to increased transparency and accountability
[Added: 2021/06/20] [Last Updated: 2022/01/06]
SDG16 Cluster 2022/12 Initiated History
5. Recommendation:

Design any future project with the Parliament based on SMART indicators that have annual or interim targets along with a final target. UNDPs standard RRF template calls for indicators with annual interim targets in addition to a final target. This model of project indicators should be used for future projects as it allows for a more accurate measurement of progress. In addition, all indicators should be developed based on SMART indicator principles to ensure they are effective at measuring the results expected.

Management Response: [Added: 2021/05/19] [Last Updated: 2021/06/20]

UNDP acknowledges that the M&E framework as designed at the inception of the project had some limitation and a number of indicators were not SMART as required. The occasional disconnect between narrative results reporting (predominantly at activity level) and achievements reported at the level of the Output Indicator under the SIDP logframe made it also difficult in a number of cases to determine the extent to which results have been achieved. In addition, the framework has not been referred to as a flexible tool during project’s implementation. In case of a new project with the Parliament, it will be important to maintain flexible approach toward the results framework and adapt as necessary over the course of implementation with Project Board endorsement (to be established), and under the strategic guidance of the Steering Committee. The M&E framework shall be designed in line with additional criteria, including feasibility/implementability of actions, considering the unpredictable and volatile national political context.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
In case of a new initiative with the Parliament, to design results framework in a participatory manner and aligned with best practices in UNDP results-based management to develop objectively verifiable SMART indicators mapped to data sources
[Added: 2021/06/20] [Last Updated: 2022/01/06]
SDG16 Cluster 2022/12 Initiated History
6. Recommendation:

Any future support to the Parliament and/or the political governance system should be based on interventions that use more active tools to transfer knowledge. Where SIPD had the most success it used tools for capacity development and knowledge sharing that were based on active engagement and hands-on learning. The “coaching while doing” approach allowed MPs and parliamentary staff to see the added value in such interventions, which, in turn, resulted in greater cultural and behavioural changes from the institutional top the individual level.

Management Response: [Added: 2021/05/19] [Last Updated: 2021/06/20]

Accepted. In any future support to Parliament, UNDP recommends investing significant resources also for capacity development and mobilization of Parliament apparatus and MPs as a tool to strengthen institutional performance and institutionalize practices within the Jogorku Kenesh which are aligned with international standards and contribute to sustainable reform despite also political turnovers between convocations.  Though SIPD did not pursue a capacity building intervention, a new initiative with the Parliament might reconsider strategic and ad-hoc learning and skills development actions for Parliament Apparatus as this is also strategic to generate incentives for permanent staff, build Apparatus’ capacity to mentor and guide the new MPs and strengthen partnership and collaboration with additional agents of change. In this regard, UNDP shall design a strategic package to continue to strengthen capacities of Parliament and the Parliament Apparatus at systemic and individual levels to include technical/digital skills and competency based training, develop tailored capacity building assistance to ensure implementation of Open Parliament Initiative’s commitments related to involvement of CSOs and citizens during the work of the Parliament as well as develop a dedicated capacity building and networking initiative that brings together CSOs and media outlets to properly monitor and report on the work of the Parliament (plenary session, parliamentary committees and MPs) vis-à-vis citizen’s needs. Lessons learned generated by SIPD and other development projects implemented with the Parliament, recommend in particular to a) update training needs assessment (building on progress of the working group formed to support a capacity-building training programme for Apparatus staff?); b) develop a plan including a cost-effectiveness analysis; c) develop roster of resource persons and trainers - consolidate lists of experts hired from inception, reflecting their technical niche/area of expertise, accompanied by a brief comment on their performance; d) implement training and capacity building plans in phases, including relevant indicators in the project results framework to more easily capture the intended change, i.e., ‘before’ and ‘after’ as newly acquired knowledge, skills and competencies are gained and applied.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Conceptualize a strategic multi-year capacity development programme to contribute to strengthening capacities of Parliament and the Parliament Apparatus at systemic and individual levels
[Added: 2021/06/20]
SDG16 Cluster 2021/06 Completed Actions will be taken during the design of the next project.
7. Recommendation:

UNDP and the donor must ensure there is a clear understanding of the role of the donor in the management and detailed implementation of any future project. Prior to approval of any future project, UNDP must ensure there is a clear understanding between UNDP, the donor and beneficiaries as to the role played by the donor in management of the project. Optimally, UNDP should be provided with the flexibility to implement any such project with limited technical interventions from the donor.

Management Response: [Added: 2021/05/19] [Last Updated: 2021/06/20]

Partially Agree. UNDP acknowledges that, during project’s execution, given the nature of the instrument guiding the UNDP-SDC collaboration, the UNDP’s role as a Contractor, i.e. technically working under a ‘Mandate for Implementation’, has generated a number of challenges, which probably have not been fully foreseen by both SDC and UNDP when the contract was entered into. While UNDP fully acknowledge the critical SDC’s guidance and strategic efforts to support the effective re-adjustment of the project after the low-performing first year of implementation, however UNDP, as important lesson learned, has also acknowledged that this particular contractual modality and the related governance arrangements may have diminished UNDP’s positioning within the project and contributed to UNDP not having the desired space to fully deliver according to its corporate development mandate (ex. placing a stronger focus on reinforcing the role of the Parliament in assessing implementation of the 2030 Agenda, among other focus areas). Moreover, while the project provided several platforms for consultation among partners, the decision-making mechanisms, including where final lines of accountability lie, were in a number of occasions not entirely clear to project’s teams. As a result, the lack of a clear delineation in decision making between UNDP and SDC has contributed to prolonged clearance times in relation to UNDP deliverables to SDC, and extended exchanges between SDC and the project team on day-to-day management decisions. Also, as per UNDP’s corporate requirements in terms of decision-making, accountability and oversight, a standard project would look to its Project Board and/or Steering Committee for approval and endorsement of project reporting, workplans and budgets. In the case of SIPD, the Steering Committee and Project Board have been functioning as one, but the Steering Committee has not functioned primarily as a decision-making body as per usual UNDP’s corporate practice. The governance and accountability structure for SIPD would therefore have benefitted from some re-structuring and strengthened Terms of Reference for each management body, to ensure clear delineation of roles and clarity among all key stakeholders as to where final decisions and accountability rest.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
UNDP to capitalize on challenges, best practices and lessons learned generated by SIPD governance mechanisms to inform future negotiations and agreement on standard legal and financing agreements with donors, as well as to provide clarity on governance arrangements, including the institutional role of the Project Board, the Steering Committee, etc.
[Added: 2021/06/20] [Last Updated: 2022/01/06]
SDG16 Cluster 2022/12 Initiated History
8. Recommendation:

Utilise CSO Low Level Grants as a means of achieving strong, disparate results with the Parliament. The CAF grants showed great promise, with some innovative work and impactful results achieved by grantees. By funding local initiatives that have been selected based on a competitive selection process, the project can focus on supporting the building of sustainable relationships between civil society and the Parliament. A similar tool can be employed in the future with the Parliament, but must include sufficient pre-assessment for each grantee or the promotion of partnerships to ensure all grantees have the capacity to deliver, monitor and report their work.

Management Response: [Added: 2021/05/19] [Last Updated: 2021/06/20]

Accepted. UNDP acknowledges the important contribution of the Civic Action Fund (CAF) as a tool to promote strategic public engagement and development outcomes in a number of areas, including public oversight and monitoring, civic education, and public participation into law and policy-making processes. UNDP also acknowledges that lessons learned and best (and negative) practices generated by the CAF under SIPD would also need to fully inform future design and implementation of similar components aimed at institutionalizing public engagement with the Parliament as clearly this CAF the way it was designed and also implemented by UNDP, have shown a number of limitations and the need, in future, to enhance strategic approach, including collaboration and partnership between grantees, to avoid stand-alone projects so that grants collectively contribute to key national development priorities. For instance, the project teams recognizes the need for providing more strategic guidance to CSOs implementing the CAF, as well as that the input of the CAF grantees on civic education did not follow a coherent or systematic approach that would ensure greater understanding and involvement of citizens or vulnerable groups (women, youth, ethnic minorities and disabled persons) with the Parliament, while CAF grantees projects did not sufficiently reach a wide and diverse audience to impart knowledge and understanding about becoming informed citizens. In this regard, it will be pivotal to continue to build capacities of CSOs for analysis, innovation, scaling up and linking work to national development priorities, as well as consider potential for high-performing Cooperation Grant recipients to gradually assume more ownership of project components, and to possibly be engaged as Responsible Parties, in subsequent project phases.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
UNDP to capitalize on best practices and lessons learned generated by the CAF to inform the design and implementation of similar tools aimed at strengthening public interface, engagement with the Parliament, and promote civic education and public participation into decision-making
[Added: 2021/06/20] [Last Updated: 2022/01/06]
SDG16 Cluster 2022/12 Initiated History

Latest Evaluations

Contact us

1 UN Plaza
DC1-20th Floor
New York, NY 10017
Tel. +1 646 781 4200
Fax. +1 646 781 4213
erc.support@undp.org