IEO @UNDP Quarter 4 Newsletter Issue: December 2015 FROM THE DIRECTOR'S DESK As the year comes to an end, I would like to take this opportunity t

   
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IEO @UNDP Quarter 4 Newsletter Issue: December 2015
FROM THE DIRECTOR'S DESK
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As the year comes to an end, I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere appreciation for the continued collaboration and support of our valued stakeholders, the UNDP Executive Board members, UNDP colleagues, government representatives and partners. I would also like to thank the IEO team for their hard work and dedication. 2015 has been an eventful and interesting year for us and I foresee an equally challenging and motivating 2016. We look forward to exploring new pastures, collaborations and setting milestones. As we come to this juncture I would like to share IEO's 2015 snapshot which sums up our action-packed year! I wish you happy holidays and a happy new year.
-- Indran Naidoo, Director, IEO UNDP

NEWS
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Assessment of Development Results Stakeholder Workshop - Zimbabwe

The Zimbabwe stakeholder meeting took place on 20th October in Harare to share the assessment of UNDP contributions in the country. Bishow Parajuli ( UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative) opened the workshop which was attended by more than 70 people including government officials, donor representatives and members of civil society. The event was jointly chaired by the UNDP country office and Zimbabwe’s Ministry of Finance and Economic Development. The ADR was well received, and the team was thanked for their insights and for the collaborative process taken in completing this work. It was noted by UNDP management at the workshop that they found the ADR helpful while completing their Country Programme Document and the management response provided indicated acceptance of all the recommendations. On behalf of the IEO, remarks and presentations were provided by Indran Naidoo (IEO Director) and Alan Fox (Evaluation Manager).

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SDG's and evaluation policies workshop - Uruguay

The Management and Evaluation Division (AGEV) of the Office of Planning and Budgeting (OPP), invited the IEO as a partner to establish a road map for a monitoring and evaluation (M&E) system intended for the SDGs. This cooperation emerged at an ideal and critical time for Uruguay which has a new government in place along with a new UNDAF and Country Programme Document for Uruguay (2016-2020). Roberto La Rovere (Evaluation Manager) participated from 15th-17th November and presented on the challenges for M&E of the SDGs in the short, medium and long term and he also provided comparative international experiences and lessons to define strategies for M & E at the national level. The outcome is intended to be a strategic partnership of UNDP and the Uruguay Government to design and implement a public policy evaluation strategy and strengthen national evaluation capacities within the context of the SDGs.

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Assessment of Development Results Stakeholder Workshop - Gabon

The stakeholders’ workshop took place in Libreville on 25th November with 38 people in attendance including government officials and UNDP country team. The conference was opened by Indran Naidoo (IEO Director), Marie-Evelyne Petrus-Barry (UNDP Resident Representative) and H.E. Régis Immongault Tatangani (Minister of Sustainable Development, Economy, Promotion of Investments and Prospective). Roberto La Rovere (Evaluation Manager) presented the findings and recommendations of the evaluation. The Gabon Ministry of Economy Investment Promotion and Planning was collaborative in the process and appreciated the evaluation which assessed UNDP’s work over the last 8.5 years in the country. The country office team found the evaluation comprehensive and contributing towards learning and reflections. The country office acknowledged that the assessment underlines the importance of M&E and needs to analyze what works within the context of an upper middle income country like Gabon and the national execution modality.

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EvalYear visit to Seton Hall University

IEO partnered with the Center for UN and Global Governance Studies, Seton Hall University and hosted a webinar discussion on 10th November. The topic was Can evaluations lead to change? and the visit was part of IEO’s journey to celebrate EvalYear as outlined in this infographic. The webinar presented by Indran Naidoo (Director, IEO) provided an introduction to evaluation basics, scope and future in the post-2015 context. It also touched on how this impacts emerging evaluators and what skills and experience they should be seeking to play a role in this field. Martin S. Edwards (Associate Professor and Director) moderated the session. The webinar is available on video.

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USG Evaluation Forum

The U.S. State Department hosted an Evaluation Forum on 2nd December to celebrate the International Year of Evaluation (EvalYear). Indran Naidoo (IEO Director), was invited at the forum to represent the UN and accept the glass flame as a gift and a symbol in honor of EvalYear and in thanks for the UN’s leadership and advocacy on evaluation. The flame symbolizes the U.S. State Government's enduring commitment to evaluation as a means to more effective, inclusive and transparent assistance. The event was opened by Heather Higginbottom (Deputy Secretary of State for Management and Resources) during which the Torch Ceremony took place. The ceremony was followed by a presentation by Indran Naidoo and Cynthia Clapp-Wincek (State/International Organizations Advisor for SDGs) on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – Indicator Development and M&E Efforts Overview. The discussion focused on how the international community will monitor and evaluate progress toward the SDGs. Presenters discussed the process going forward to finalize the list of SDG indicators and associated efforts such as Sustainable Development Data and how evaluation can complement and strengthen the assessment of progress.

Indran Naidoo’s speech

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13th ODA Evaluation Workshop, Tokyo | Japan Evaluation Society Annual Conference, Okinawa

The 13th Official Development Assistance (ODA) Evaluation Workshop organized by the Government of Japan was held in Tokyo 9th-10th December. Masakazu Hamachi (Parliamentary Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan) opened the conference and highlighted the need for Japan to strengthen their evaluation efforts even further. He also indicated Japan’s wish to contribute to the advancement of evaluation by working in tandem with other movements in the international community including EvalNet, an organization of OECD-DAC. The goal of the conference was to deepen understanding and build knowledge on evaluation for countries in the Asia-Pacific region, and to bring a platform to discuss methodologies and issues regarding ODA evaluations. Indran Naidoo (Director, IEO) was invited as a speaker for the plenary session on New Topics for Evaluation to Achieve SDGs in light of the ambitious SDGs and targets (17 goals and 169 targets). Yuriko Minamoto (Professor at Meiji University, Graduate School of Governance Studies, Vice President of Japan Evaluation Society), proposed the application of innovative and transformative evaluation approaches for SDGs. Yasuko Nishino (Director General, Evaluation Department at JICA) shared her perspectives and described the efforts made by JICA in that respect. Ryokichi Hirono (Professor Emeritus at Seikei University / Former President of Asia Pacific Evaluation Association) moderated the discussion, followed by a Q&A session.

The Japan Evaluation Society (JES) held its international session on Governance for Independent and Effective Evaluation at its Annual Conference on 12th December, in Okinawa. Indran Naidoo (Director, IEO) presented the experiences of UNDP in Evaluation governance and its link to credibility, and utility. The session aimed to promote sharing of knowledge and experiences in terms of the relationship between evaluation and governance at local, national and international level among participants such as evaluation experts, JES members, academia, practitioners and students.

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United Nations University, Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability Seminar

On 14th December, the UN University, Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability and the Japan Evaluation Society co-organized a public seminar at the UN University Headquarters. Indran Naidoo (Director IEO) delivered a lecture on UNDP on Monitoring and Evaluation of the Sustainable Development Goals. The lecture reflected on the experiences of the MDGs based on IEO’s evaluation, and bridged discussions by drawing upon the recent National Evaluation Capacity conference held in Bangkok, and the resulting Bangkok Declaration, which lays out principles on national evaluation capacity for the SDGs era. The lecture reflected on what this means in practice for achieving the SDGs, which are best understood using a monitoring and evaluation framework whereby both challenges and opportunities emerge.

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Assessment of Development Results Stakeholder Workshop - São Tomé and Príncipe

IEO organized a stakeholder workshop for its São Tomé and Príncipe country evaluation to share the main findings, conclusions and recommendations. The workshop was virtually held in New York and São Tomé and Príncipe on 16th December and was attended by 60 people which included government officials, donor representatives, UNDP Regional Bureau and Country Office staff. The meeting was chaired by H.E. Manuel Salvador dos Ramos (Minister of Foreign Affairs and Communities) and was opened by Jose Salema (UNDP Resident Representative). The recommendations of the assessment were well accepted and will be taken into consideration for the way forward in the country as expressed by the Government and UNDP counterparts. Indran Naidoo (Director IEO) and Oanh Nguyen (Evaluation Manager) presented at the workshop on behalf of IEO.

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Assessment of Development Results Stakeholder Workshop - Ethiopia

IEO with the support of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development (MOFED) and the UNDP Country Office organized a stakeholder workshop to present the main findings, conclusions and recommendations of the ADR. The workshop was held in Addis Ababa on 17th December and was attended by government officials, donor representatives and UNDP staff. The meeting was presided over by Ato Admassu Nebebe (Director General, MOFED). He expressed his appreciation for the assessment's effort and looks forward to taking up the recommendations of the evaluation together with the UNDP Ethiopia Office. The IEO was represented by Arild Hauge (Deputy Director) and Deqa Musa ( Evaluation Manager).

NEW PRODUCTS
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Assessment of Development Results (ADR) – Zimbabwe

This is the first such assessment of UNDP’s work in Zimbabwe. This evaluation comes at a time of great anticipation for the future of Zimbabwe. The approval of a new Constitution in 2013 ushered in a new chapter in the country’s history and sparked great hopes and expectations for its people. UNDP has been a close partner of the Government of Zimbabwe for several decades. The evaluation found that UNDP has worked constructively in a number of pivotal policy and service delivery areas, especially in support of the successful constitution-building process, and potentially transformative new opportunities for women. Of particular note, following the 2008- 2009 upheavals in Zimbabwe UNDP assumed temporary responsibility as implementing agent of the Global Fund for Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria. UNDP performed well in its management role and now must succeed in the crucial effort to build capacities and transfer authority for this programme to the Government of Zimbabwe. UNDP has recently embarked on a new series of essential programmes in partnership with the Government of Zimbabwe and various donors, including support for strengthening land tenure security policies and land dispute resolution systems. UNDP is also helping to develop critical resilience-building mechanisms to enhance the absorptive, adaptive and transformative capacities of at-risk communities in Zimbabwe, in particular to cope with problems of drought and flooding that have been exacerbated by climate change.

Report | Evaluation Manager: Alan Fox

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NEC Baseline Study

This baseline study is the result of a collective effort and collaboration of the IEO with the International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth (IPC_IG). This Study documents the current state of national evaluation capacities (NEC) and existing institutional set-ups in the 43 UNDP programme country signatories of those commitments. Documenting existing capacities will enable the assessment of progress made towards fulfilling these evaluation needs in the future. The Study focused on compiling and assembling a collection of resources by country to serve as a foundation upon which to build a more comprehensive baseline study. This Study revealed a variety of institutional settings and legal frameworks among the countries analysed. Many combinations are in place, reflecting a variety of government interests, political contexts and national developmental stages.

Report | Evaluation Manager: Ana Rosa Soares

COMING SOON
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Evaluation of the UNDP contribution to Mine Action

The objective of this evaluation is to determine, to the greatest extent possible, the UNDP contribution to mine action, taking into account its global programme and considering evidence at country and community levels. The evaluation includes a global portfolio analysis covering all UNDP global, regional and country-based mine action programmes and projects since the beginning of UNDP involvement in mine action in the mid–1990s. Recognizing that most UNDP mine action support is focused on establishing the enabling environment and management capacities rather than the physical seeks to understand the extent to which the UNDP contribution to mine action has strengthened national institutional capacities to deliver mine action services that reduce vulnerability, enable equitable development, advance the rights of persons with disabilities and support compliance with relevant international treaties.

Due date: January 2016 for the UNDP Executive Board Session | Evaluation Manager: Alan Fox

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Assessment of Development Results (ADR) – Ethiopia

The IEO of UNDP conducted a country-level evaluation, in Ethiopia in 2015. The evaluation has two main components: (i) the analysis of UNDP’s contribution to development results (specifically, against the outcomes contained in the Country Programme Document); and (ii) analysis of the strategy UNDP has adopted to enhance contribution to development results in Ethiopia. It also attempted to assess the role and contribution of United Nations Volunteers (UNV) and United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) in relation to joint work with UNDP. The ADR covers the period 2012 through June 2015 while also taking into account some longer term activities that have continued from the previous programme cycle.

Due date: January 2016 for the UNDP Executive Board Session | Evaluation Manager: Deqa Musa

ABOUT THE INDEPENDENT EVALUATION OFFICE RESOURCES
At UNDP, evaluation is critical in helping countries achieve the simultaneous eradication of poverty and significant reduction of inequalities and exclusion.

The Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) reports to the UNDP Executive Board. The IEO is governed by the organization's Evaluation Policy and the UNDP Executive Board is the custodian of the policy. The core function of the IEO is to conduct two types of independent evaluations: thematic and programmatic. The IEO also prepares the Annual Report on Evaluation, sets standards and guidelines on evaluation, monitors compliance on evaluation and shares lessons for improved programming. IEO hosts and supports the United Nations Evaluation Group (UNEG) Secretariat and actively participates in UNEG to strengthen coherence, quality and innovation of evaluation across the UN system. Visit our website at www.undp.org/evaluation for more information.

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