UNDAF Lessons Learned

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UNDAF Lessons Learned

  1. 1. The United Nations DevelopmentAssistance Framework (UNDAF) 2005-2009 in the Philippines: Lessons Learned Final Report Manasi Bhattacharyya Consultant 5 October 2010
  2. 2. Table of ContentsACRONYMS......................................................................................................................................................... IVEXECUTIVE SUMMARY ................................................................................................................................1Introduction ....................................................................................................................................................1UNDAF 2005-2009: Formulation Process and Design ................................................................1Implementation Mechanism, UNDAF Theme Groups and Coordination ............................2Delivering as One and Joint Programming ......................................................................................3UNDAF Roll- Out: Key Emerging Issues ............................................................................................4CHAPTER-1 INTRODUCTION..................................................................................................................71.0 Background .............................................................................................................................................71.1 Objectives ................................................................................................................................................71.2 The Approach and the Scope of the Study ...............................................................................71.3 Methodology ...........................................................................................................................................8 1.3.1 Desk Review ........................................................................................................................................... 8 1.3.2 Collection of Data ................................................................................................................................. 81.4 Analysis and Report writing ...........................................................................................................81.5 Limitations of the study ....................................................................................................................91.6 Timeline ....................................................................................................................................................9CHAPTER-2: THE PHILIPPINES UNDAF (2005-2009): THE PROCESS,THEMATIC CONTENT AND KEY EMERGING ISSUES .......................................................... 102.1 Formulation Process of the UNDAF (2005-2009) for the Philippines ...................... 102.2 The Design, Content and the Implementation Process ................................................... 11 2.2.1 The UNDAF Thematic Areas ............................................................................................................ 11 2.2.2 The UNDAF Results Matrix .............................................................................................................. 12 2.2.3 Monitoring & Evaluation plans ....................................................................................................... 13 2.2.4 The UNDAF M&E Framework .......................................................................................................... 13 2.2.5 Cross-cutting issues........................................................................................................................... 15 2.2.6 Implementation Mechanism: Thematic Groups and their Evolution ............................... 17 2.2.7 Collaboration and Partnership........................................................................................................ 21CHAPTER-3 DELIVERING AS ONE AND JOINT PROGRAMMING .............................. 233.0 The approach ........................................................................................................................................ 23
  3. 3. 3.1 ‘Delivering as One’: The Philippines Context ....................................................................... 23 3.1.1Common services ................................................................................................................................. 25 3.1.2 Harmonized Approach to Cash Transfers .................................................................................. 26 3.1.3 Joint Programming ............................................................................................................................. 26 3.1.4 Advocacy and Communications..................................................................................................... 29CHAPTER-4 LESSONS LEARNED AND RECOMMENDATIONS ...................................... 304.1 Formulation of the UNDAF ............................................................................................................. 30 4.1.1 Preparatory Phase .............................................................................................................................. 30 4.1.2 Formulation Process and the Content ......................................................................................... 30 4.1.3 Addressing Cross-Cutting Issues .................................................................................................. 324.2 Implementation Mechanism: UNDAF Theme Groups and Inter-agencyCoherence ...................................................................................................................................................... 334.3 Delivering As One ............................................................................................................................... 33 4.3.2 Joint Programming: Lessons learned From the Philippines Experiences ....................... 35 4.3.3 Advocacy and Communication: Lessons learned From the Philippines Experiences 35SELECT REFERENCES ................................................................................................................................ 36ANNEXES ............................................................................................................................................................ 38ANNEX 1 UNDAF (2005-2009) – KEY OUTCOMES, OUTPUTS AND ACTIVITIES........... 38 1) UNDAF Outcome 1: Macro Economic Stability and Broad-Based and Equitable Development .................................................................................................................................................... 38 2) UNDAF Outcome 2: Basic Social Services ................................................................................... 39 3) UNDAF Outcome 3: Good Governance ......................................................................................... 40 4) UNDAF Outcome 4: Environmental sustainability and Climate Change Adaptation.... 42 5) UNDAF Outcome 5: Conflict Prevention and Peace-building ................................................ 43 6) Cross-cutting Issue: Human Rights ............................................................................................... 44 7) Cross-cutting Issue: Gender Mainstreaming .............................................................................. 44 8) Cross-cutting Issue: Humanitarian Reforms/Early Recovery ............................................... 45 9) Cross-cutting Issue: HIV/AIDS ........................................................................................................ 46 10) MDG Advocacy ....................................................................................................................................... 47 11) Avian Influenza ...................................................................................................................................... 47 12) Security Management.......................................................................................................................... 48ANNEX 2: The United Nations System in Middle-Income Countries (MIC) in South-East Asia: Development Cooperation and the UNDAF .............................................................. 49Annex 3: QUESTIONNAIRE - UNDAF (2005-2009): Lessons Learned .............................. 52
  4. 4. AcronymsADB Asian Development BankAusAID Australian Agency for International DevelopmentAWP Annual Work PlanCBMS Community-based Monitoring SystemCCA Common Country AssessmentCCPP Common Country Programming ProcessCEDAW Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against WomenCPAP Country Programme Action PlanCPD Country Programme DocumentCPR Crisis Prevention and RecoveryCSA Civil Society AssemblyCSAC Civil Society Advisory CommitteeCSO Civil Society OrganizationDRM Disaster Risk ManagementGMC Gender Mainstreaming CommitteeGOP Government of the PhilippinesHDR Human Development ReportHRBA Human Rights-based ApproachJP Joint ProgrammingLGU Local Government UnitM&E Monitoring and EvaluationMDG Millennium Development GoalMDG-F Millennium Development Goal FundMIC Middle Income CountryMTPDP Medium-Term Philippine Development PlanNEDA National Economic and Development AuthorityNGO Non-governmental OrganizationNRAs Non-Resident AgenciesODA Official Development AssistanceRBM Results-based ManagementRC Resident CoordinatorRM Results MatrixTG Theme GroupsUN United NationsUNCO United Nations Coordination OfficeUNCT United Nations Country TeamUNDAF United Nations Development Assistance FrameworkUNDG United Nations Development Group
  5. 5. Executive SummaryIntroductionUnder the leadership of National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) representing theGovernment of the Philippines (GOP) and in close consultation with the United Nations Civil SocietyAdvisory Committee (UNCSAC) and the development partners, the United Nations Country Team(UNCT)1 in the Philippines is embarking on the preparatory activities for a new United NationsDevelopment Assistance Framework (UNDAF) for the period of 2012-2016. Evaluation of the currentUNDAF2 is a prerequisite for this process.To optimize the utilization of the study, the UNCT decided to undertake a participatory lessonslearned exercise, instead of a formal evaluation, with an overall objective to inform the design andpreparation of the new UNDAF.This report is an inward-looking document, which presents the lessons learned from successes andchallenges, and identifies the issues and opportunities emerging from the current UNDAF cycle. Thestudy has drawn inputs primarily from the UN staff members and the UNCT.UNDAF 2005-2009: Formulation Process and DesignIt has been observed that, while UNDAF is important to the UN and its partners, a better appreciationof its strategic value should be ensured within the UN system. The UN staff members need to beoriented on UNDAF, and its role in the national development scenario. The relevance of UNDAF isnot clear to some UN staff in the context of an individual agency’s mandate. It will be useful todevelop a conceptual framework for providing a broader perspective and to demonstrate how agencycontributions are related to UNDAF outcomes.The current UNDAF (2005-2009) was drafted before the formulation of MTPDP (2004-2010), and, infact, it is based on the previous MTPDP (2001-2004). It is crucial to ensure that the new UNDAF isaligned with the MTPDP in terms of the cycle and priorities.The UNDAF Steering Committee was set up to guide the UNDAF formulation and it was expectedthat it would continue its functions during the implementation stage and secure the involvement of theNEDA. However, this committee ceased to function, and as stated in the Country Consultation on theTriennial Comprehensive Policy Review of Operational Activities for Development (2007)documents, this committee did not meet in 20063. There is a need for establishing a governancestructure with clear specification of shared responsibilities and accountability between the UN and theGovernment. The UNDAF should be owned by the Government to ensure an effectiveimplementation and monitoring. Government counterparts should be involved in the process as earlyas possible to ensure ownership. Participation of Local Government Units (LGUs) and other sub-national stakeholders and civil society partners is also equally important. Greater involvement of theUNCSAC and Civil Society Assembly (CSA) should be ensured in providing substantive inputs indeveloping the new UNDAF and in forging partnerships for its implementation. Efforts should alsobe made to engage the private sector, industry associations, trade unions and farmers’ cooperatives inobtaining views and perspectives external to the Government, as they are also key actors in anydevelopment process as providers of technology, financial resources, skills training, and serve as bothproducers and consumers. There is a need to define a platform for formal engagement of thesestakeholders.1 The United Nations Country Team consists of UNDP, UNFPA, UNICEF, WFP, WHO, FAO, ILO, IFAD, UN Habitat,IMO, IOM, UNHCR, UNIDO, HABITAT, UNAIDS, ICAO, OCHA, UNDSS, and the Bretton Woods Institutions WorldBank, IMF, IFC and the ADB. Non-resident agencies such as UNEP, UNESCO, UNIFEM, UNODC, and UNOHCHR arealso part of the UNCT.2 At the request of the Government, the current UNDAF (2005-2009) has been extended until 2011. The new UNDAF willstart on 2012 to align with the national planning process and the priorities of the new Administration.3 The committee did not meet beyond 2006 (based on interviews with the UN Staff).
  6. 6. Strengths of smaller/non-resident agencies (NRAs) should be recognized and they should be involvedin the process to make the UNDAF more inclusive. NRAs should be contacted in advance to ensuretheir participation. During the formulation process, especially in the course of identifying priorityareas, the staff members need to have the ability and willingness to look beyond their respectiveagency mandates and view issues from a broader perspective, through the lens of ‘Delivering asOne’. The challenge is to ensure inclusiveness, without losing the strategic focus.As regards the design, it has been noted that, commitment for each outcome and output in theUNDAF is shared by a number of agencies and their implementing partners. This has posedchallenges in attribution and accountability. To ensure clear accountability, outputs should beattributed to the agencies, as individual agencies have clear comparative advantages at this level. Forthe forthcoming UNDAF process, priority should be given to strengthening the Monitoring andEvaluation (M&E) framework. Current UNDAF Results Matrix (RM) has a number of indicators foreach result and for many of them, baseline values are missing. To maintain the focus of the RM and tomake the UNDAF operational, it is recommended that only few indicators are selected based on thehighest relevance, measurability and availability of baseline data. Moreover, in the UNDAFdocument, the RM does not contain risk analysis and assumptions; it should be included in the RM.The cross-cutting programming principles such as HRBA and gender equality were not adequatelyaddressed in the current UNDAF. Incorporation of these principles was left to the agencies. Therewere no mechanisms to ensure compliance and no incentives were provided. In the context of thePhilippines it is critical to mainstream these programmatic principles as the UN has comparativeadvantage in this area.For mainstreaming HRBA, it is critical to arrive at a common understanding and have the clarity ofpurpose. Development of concrete guidelines and tool kits will enhance skills and foster a commonunderstanding and vision among UN agencies, Government line agencies, LGUs and Civil SocietyOrganizations (CSOs). In the case of gender mainstreaming, it is important that gender equality ismainstreamed into UNDAF outcomes. The RM must contain specific gender indicators and means ofverification for monitoring and evaluating the gender dimension of the UNDAF.Implementation Mechanism, UNDAF Theme Groups and CoordinationUNDAF Theme Groups (TGs) were formed to facilitate the implementation of UNDAF outcomes.However, the TGs did not function optimally, and were disbanded in 2007. One of the key factorsbehind the low appreciation of UNDAF in the Philippines was discontinuity of the TGs. At the grouplevel, the functioning was affected by the lack of sustained commitment of the majority of themember agencies of each thematic group. Agency mandates confined their relationships withrespective constituencies and partners, which curbed the scope for cooperation between agencies. TGmembers also felt that the functioning and motivation of the groups significantly depends upon theleadership quality and strategic vision of the Convener/convening agency. A strong and committedleadership and a concrete work plan specifying clear responsibilities, M&E mechanism andcommunications plan are essential to sustain the functionality of TGs. At the personal level, somegroup members felt de-motivated due to the lack of genuine appreciation of their important roles. Formany agencies, it was not part of the staff performance appraisal4. To sustain the commitment ofgroup members it is crucial to recognize their contributions.The UN Coordination Office (UNCO) should continue providing direction and coordination foreffective functioning of the TGs. UNCO needs dedicated financial and human resources to ensurestrategic guidance to agencies to maintain focus on the achievement of UNDAF outcomes and M&E.4 UNFPA has already included participation in the UNDAF process in its staff appraisal.
  7. 7. Delivering as One and Joint ProgrammingIn 2007, the GOP, through the NEDA, affirmed its commitment for a One UN System in thePhilippines by 2010. As noted by some agencies, ‘Delivering as One’ has not yet been fullyimplemented in the Philippines, though some significant initiatives have been made in this direction.Over the last few years, the UN system in the Philippines has been strengthening operationalcoordination with the improvement of common services, including, domestic courier service, travelservices including negotiated corporate airfares, common procurement, information technology (IT),and hospitalization and evacuation services for the staff. Small agencies perceive that commonservices mean savings in administrative costs, which will allow them to allocate more resources forprogramme activities.A ‘One UN House’ Task Force was convened in 2006 to oversee the process of finding commonpremises for the UN system in the Philippines. Significant progress was made in this respect with thesigning of Presidential Proclamation no. 1864 in Aug 2009 designating a government building inMakati City, Manila as the common premises of the UN System in the Philippines.In 2008, the Philippines was declared by the UN Development Operations Coordination Office(DOCO) as a fully Harmonized Approach to Cash Transfer (HACT) compliant country.Valuable insights about ‘Delivering as One’ process can be gained from lessons learned of first twoyears of implementation of this initiative in eight (8) pilot countries and self-starters, many of themare relevant in the Philippines context.The ‘Delivering as One’ process should begin simultaneously with the UNDAF roll-out to simplifythe programming process to ensure strategic focus, programme coherence and alignment to nationalpriorities. Pilot countries’ experiences suggest that, the UNDAF, One UN Programme, CountryProgramme Action Plan (CPAPs) and Country Programme Documents (CPDs) need to be integratedinto a single document. The UNDAF Action Plan may prove to be a viable option. The UNDAFAction Plan reflects the results already specified in the UNDAF RM. According to the UNDAFguidelines, UNCTs have the flexibility to either keep the UNDAF RM at the outcome level, ordevelop a fuller RM, that includes outputs. To maintain the focus of the UNDAF, it is suggested tokeep the RM restricted to the outcome level and specify the outputs in the UNDAF Action Plan. TheUNCT in the Philippines has agreed to the formulation of a UNDAF Action Plan.A Joint Communication Strategy facilitates support to ‘One UN Programme’. Externalcommunication can improve the visibility of the UN, whereas internal communication is crucial tosupport the change management process and to ensure enhanced coordination. A set of “core”messages agreed by the UNCT is a good start.It is critical to ensure the promotion of effective results based joint programming (JP), which willensure optimal use of resources and capacities available according to a clear division of labor andcomparative advantages. As part of the ‘Delivering as One’ initiative in the Philippines, a number ofJPs have been launched in recent years. Several important lessons have been learnt from theexperiences of implementing JPs in the Philippines.Benefits of JP need to be clearly understood. It is important to spend time in identifying good subjectsand clear roles for agencies to work together on subjects based on their comparative advantages. JPsshould be conceptualized and implemented in true spirit of ‘Delivering as One’, and must not beregarded as a mere resource mobilization strategy without thorough assessment of internal andpartners’ capacities to deliver the required outputs. One of the critical factors for improving theeffectiveness of JP is to ensure that participating agencies, especially the convening agencies, take offtheir individual UN agency hats and work for the JP. Otherwise, there would be a lot of mistrustamong the member agencies. There was a suggestion that it might be better to have a managementteam consisting of all HOAs doing the oversight of such JPs. Multi-stakeholder consultation at alllevels is critical to promote the convergence of inputs, directions and knowledge. The lack ofinclusiveness in the project design phase and lack of ownership of the national partners may meet
  8. 8. resistance from Implementing Partners. Government commitment to JP is essential for the effectiveimplementation and sustainability of the program. UN agencies must use common implementationmodes and adopt harmonized administrative and financial systems. Until this harmonization happens,common work plans and outcomes are the only binding factors, which can be used to improveprogramme delivery. The JPs through Millennium Development Goal Achievement Fund (MDG-F)5are good initiatives but these require dedicated resources for guidance and oversight to be provided.UNCO should play this important role. It was suggested that the JP Coordinators should report to theUNCO, which would promote the principle of ‘Delivering as One’.UNDAF Roll- Out: Key Emerging IssuesThe roll out of the new UNDAF (2012-2016) and the preparatory phase are very important in thepresent socio-economic and political context. With the new government in place, the UNCT in thePhilippines has a great opportunity to cut a niche and demonstrate the relevance and efficiency of theUN system. As expected by the GOP, the UN can set an example to other bilateral and multi-lateralpartners in the Philippines6. This will call for acceleration and strengthening of the ‘Delivering asOne’ efforts and progression towards the ‘One Programme’ in a coherent and coordinated manner,ensuring alignment with national priorities. The proposed One Programme, as the central driver of the‘Delivering as One’, provides an opportunity to put in place an integrated strategic framework of theUN’s programmatic interventions, reducing overlap and fragmentation. Comparative Advantages(CAs) of the UN system in the Philippines include the following: • Normative role in advocating and promoting global norms and standards, inclusive development, the MDGs and human rights; • Wide menu of expertise combined with access to global technical knowledge and experience, including South-South cooperation; • Impartiality/neutrality and ability to convene diverse stakeholders and build consensus; and • Ability to broker and/or mobilize resources.The UN’s strength lies in “upstream” engagement in policy and sharing of best practices and technicalknowledge especially in the context of the Philippines as a lower middle-income status country.Under the Paris Declaration, donors committed to providing technical co-operation in a manner that iscoordinated with strategies and programmes in the partner country. The results of the 2008 survey onthe monitoring of the Paris Declaration shows that 43 percent of the technical cooperation provided bythe UN was coordinated with the Philippines country programmes. Thus, there is a considerable scopefor improvement in the provision of technical knowledge in a coordinated manner.For simplification of the country programming process, ‘One Programme’ can be integrated with theUNDAF exercise. Emphasis should be given on simplifying the reporting on the programming cycle.One Year-End Report for all UN activities in a country is sufficient and increases transparency,especially with reference to the Government and development partners. To ensure a smooth transition,the organizational structure should support the vision. Skill sets of staff members should shift moretowards policy advocacy.Based on the lessons learned, the emerging issues for the next UNDAF cycle can be summarized, asfollows: • Thematic/sectoral and geographical focus of UN interventions need to be determined and areas of convergence should be identified and agreed upon;5 MDG-F is an international cooperation mechanism to accelerate progress on the MDGs world-wide. This was establishedin December 2006 with a generous contribution of Euros 528 million from the Spanish Government to the UN system at theglobal level6 Report of the 2007 UNCT Annual Retreat.
  9. 9. • There is a need for establishing a management structure for the UNDAF with clear specification of responsibilities and accountability. The UNCT and the Government should be equal partners in the management mechanism. The UNDAF should be owned by the Government to ensure an effective implementation and monitoring, which is also crucial for realizing the ‘Delivering as One’; • For an operational UNDAF, participation of all stakeholders, including LGUs, civil society, donors and private sector should be fostered at all stages; • Enhanced engagement of NRAs should be ensured in the next UNDAF cycle and their inputs should be recognized; • The focus of the UNDAF should be maintained, limiting it to the outcome level. Implementation of the UNDAF Action plan, to which the UNCT has already agreed7, is a right step in this direction. However, it has to be a living document and the RM should be modified whenever necessary. The UNDAF Action Plan must be revisited periodically by the UN agencies and its partners to review the progress; • Strong Results-based Management (RBM) should be put in place for all phases of the UNDAF; • The programming principles such as gender equality and HRBA should be mainstreamed more effectively in planning, implementation and M&E; these should also be promoted in the Government line departments; • The JP should be implemented in the true spirit of ’Delivering as One’, and clear plan should be laid out for the transition to the ‘One Programme’; • There is a need for an effective Joint Communication Strategy to support One UN Programme: external communication for improving the visibility of the UN, and internal communication to support the change management process and to ensure enhanced coordination. Communication can play an important role in popularizing the UNDAF; • The UNCT should utilize its comparative advantage in policy advocacy and knowledge transfer to maintain its relevance in a middle income country: it should be a two-way exchange; • The UN should play an enhanced role in South-South Cooperation – especially in the areas of disaster preparedness and response, good governance, democratic reform and decentralization.7 UNCT meeting, 14 April 2010
  10. 10. Chapter-1 Introduction1.0 BackgroundAs part of the 1997 reform agenda to make the United Nations (UN) an effective and efficientinstitution for world peace and development in the 21st century, the Secretary-General stressed thestrong inter-linkages between peace and security, poverty reduction and sustainable humandevelopment and promotion and respect for human rights. The Common Country Assessment (CCA)and the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) are outcomes of this coherentvision and strategy that allows for a unified approach towards common development goals. TheUNDAF is a vital strategic framework that articulates a collective, coherent and integrated response ofthe UN system at the country level in support of the national priorities and needs.In 2004, the United Nations Country Team (UNCT) and its partners in the Government and civilsociety prepared the second UNDAF (2005-2009) for the Philippines. To align with national planningprocesses and to benefit from the new Medium-Term Philippines Development Plan (MTPDP), at therequest of the Government the 2005-2009 UNDAF has been extended to a 2012 start. Concerned UNagencies developed their two-year ‘transitional’ programme to cover the period of 2010 and 2011.Under the leadership of National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) representing theGovernment of the Philippines (GOP) and in close consultation with the United Nations Civil SocietyAdvisory Committee (UNCSAC) and the development partners, the United Nations Country Team(UNCT)8 in the Philippines is embarking on the preparatory activities for a new UNDAF for theperiod of 2012-2016. Evaluation of the current UNDAF9 is a prerequisite for this process.To optimize the utilization of the study, the UNCT decided to undertake a participatory lessonslearned exercise, instead of a formal evaluation, with an overall objective to inform the design andpreparation of the new UNDAF.This report is an inward-looking document, which presents the lessons learned from successes andchallenges, and identifies the issues and opportunities emerging from the current UNDAF cycle.1.1 ObjectivesThe specific objectives of the task are the following: • To document and analyze the processes of UNDAF formulation, its thematic content and implementation as well as the processes of implementing ‘Delivering as One’ and joint programming; • To review major achievements in five UNDAF outcome areas10 ;and • To summarize the lessons learned and provide recommendations for the next UNDAF cycle.1.2 The Approach and the Scope of the StudyAs mentioned earlier, the present lessons learned exercise is not a formal evaluation following theUnited Nations Development Group (UNDG) guidelines. This is a forward-looking endeavour tolearn from successes and challenges of the current UNDAF cycle. It is a participatory exercise, whichhas drawn inputs primarily from the UN staff members and the UNCT. The study focuses more on theprocesses rather than the results.8 The United Nations Country Team consists of UNDP, UNFPA, UNICEF, WFP, WHO, FAO, ILO, IFAD, UN Habitat,IMO, IOM, UNHCR, UNIDO, HABITAT, UNAIDS, ICAO, OCHA, UNDSS, and the Bretton Woods Institutions WorldBank, IMF, IFC and the ADB. Non-resident agencies such as UNEP, UNESCO, UNIFEM, UNODC, and UNOHCHR arealso part of the UNCT9 The current UNDAF (2005-2009) has been extended by two years and the start of the new UNDAF has been postponed to2012 to align with the MTPDP cycle.10 Refer to Annex 1.
  11. 11. 1.3 MethodologyThe phases of the lessons learned exercise are discussed below.1.3.1 Desk ReviewIn the preparatory phase, a desk review was conducted to study a wide range of relevant documentsand develop a questionnaire11 for collection of data. The key documents included but not limited to – - CCA and UNDAF documents; - UNDG guidelines; - UNDAF Annual Reviews; - Annual Progress Reports of the UN Resident Coordinator (RC); - MTPDP; - Human Development Report (HDR), - Philippines Millennium Development Goals (MDG) Progress reports; - The Country Consultation on the Triennial Comprehensive Policy Review (TCPR) of Operational Activities for Development - Country Programme Action Plans (CPAP) or similar tool for the UNCT and - Reports of various agency-specific evaluations and assessments.1.3.2 Collection of DataCollection of primary data through questionnaire surveyA self-administered questionnaire survey was conducted among the UN staff and partners to elicitinformation and capture perceptions about the UNDAF cycle. There were 33 responses from theUNCT and UN staff members and one from the CSAC. In addition to that, group discussion andinformal interviews were conducted with UN staff members, who were involved in the UNDAFformulation process and were part of UN theme groups. A multi-stakeholder consultation will beorganized to share the findings and the key recommendations.Collection of secondary dataPrimary data collected through questionnaire survey was complemented by the insights drawn fromrelevant documents mentioned earlier.1.4 Analysis and Report writingData and other information collated through various sources were primarily analyzed qualitatively.The report has been organized as follows: 1. Background; 2. UNDAF 2005-2009: The Process, Thematic Content and Key Emerging Issues; 3. Delivering as One and Joint Programming; and 4. Lessons Learned and Key Recommendations. Annex 1 - UNDAF (2005-2009): Key Outcomes, Outputs and Activities Annex 2 - The United Nations System in Middle-Income Countries (MIC) in South-East Asia: Development Cooperation and the UNDAF Annex 3: Questionnaire – UNDAF Lessons Learned11 Questionnaire is enclosed in Annex 3.
  12. 12. 1.5 Limitations of the studyAs mentioned earlier, this study is mainly based on the inputs of the UNCT, UN staff and a memberof the CSAC. Highlights of this study, however, were shared in a series of multi-stakeholderconsultations on August 24-26, 2010 with representatives of national government, civil society anddevelopment partners.1.6 TimelineThis ‘lessons learned’ exercise was commissioned in April 2010 and will be concluded in August2010. APR MAY JUN JUL AUG ACTIVITIES 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 Debrief on UNDAF Regional Workshop, including revisiting of timelines (15 April) Desk review of existing and relevant documents Development of the inception report Share inception report for comments (13 May UNDAF WG Meeting) Debrief with the UNCT, on inception report (19 May UNCT Meeting) Finalizing revised report outline, questionnaire survey Drafting of evaluation report Sharing initial results with UNDAF WG (10 June) Debrief initial results (1 July special UNCT Meeting) Receiving comments and revision of the draft report Multi-stakeholder consultation Finalization of the report
  13. 13. Chapter-2: The Philippines UNDAF (2005-2009): The Process,Thematic Content and Key Emerging Issues2.1 Formulation Process of the UNDAF (2005-2009) for the PhilippinesIn 2004, as part of the Common Country Programming Process (CCPP), the UNCT and its partners inthe Government and civil society prepared the second UNDAF (2005-2009) for the Philippines,which embodies the UN commitments in support of the national development priorities. The UNDAFwas based on the CCA drafted in 2003, which analyzed the national development situation andidentified key development issues with a focus on the Millennium Declaration/MDGs and otherinternational conventions.The CCPP in the Philippines for formulating the CCA and the UNDAF was initiated in 2002 withtraining sessions on the Human Rights-Based Approach (HRBA) to development and the conduct of agender assessment of development trends, challenges and outcomes in the country12. First, an initialCCA framework was developed, which was later enriched by inputs from the UN ExCOM agencies(UNDP, UNICEF, UNFPA)13 in the form of several sectoral assessments and situational analysisinvolving causality and Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) analysis,clustering of issues and scenario building. Focal points from each agency played crucial role in thisprocess. The findings of these assessments were validated through a multi-stakeholder, multi-sectoralworkshop. Participants in that workshop identified key developmental themes for the CCA, whichwere later analyzed by the UN Thematic Groups. Thematic Working Groups conducted individual in-depth workshops for each theme. Findings and recommendations of the thematic groups were finallypresented during a plenary session for validation and finalization of CCA conceptual framework. TheCCA was finally approved in March 2003, after several rounds of consultations. Along with the CCAfinalization process, the preparatory phase for the UNDAF was initiated. UNDAF Prioritizationworkshop was organized in October 2003. UN agencies participated in this workshop to identify theoutcomes for UNDAF. Based on the CCA findings, the Millennium Declaration and the MDGs,consensus was reached on five priority areas of UNDAF cooperation.The CCA 2004 identified the key underlying causes of poverty and exclusion in the Philippines: 1)inequitable economic growth and ownership of assets; 2) severely unequal access to opportunities andbasic social services; and 3) inability of key change agents, particularly women, to play an active rolein improving their lives and those of others.To address these causes, the UNDAF committed to contribute to five strategic outcomes which itsought to achieve by 2009: Macroeconomic Stability, Broad-Based and Equitable Development – focused on UN-GOP cooperation in the formulation of pro-poor policies and the development of management and planning capacities of vulnerable groups; Basic Social Services – focused on collaboration on the demand and delivery of services for health, education, and social protection/social security; Good Governance – focused on justice and human rights, public sector and decentralized governance, and political, electoral and legislative reforms that facilitate citizen participation; Environmental Sustainability – focused on improved natural disaster response through creating a stronger policy environment, capacity development of local stakeholders, and increasing access to services; and Conflict Prevention and Peace-Building – focused on strengthening policy environment, capacity development for Government, civil society, former combatants and communities, and ensuring the rights of those affected by the armed conflict.12 UNDAF (2005-2009)13 WFP was not present in the country during the CCA-UNDAF formulation.
  14. 14. As the CCA and UNDAF guideline14 suggests, the UNCT cannot respond coherently to every goaland objective of the national development framework. It will have to select priorities, in line with theprinciples of HRBA, gender equality, environmental sustainability, results-based management(RBM), and capacity development as well as its comparative advantages at the country level. In thecontext of Philippines UNDAF (2005-2009), in all five areas, the United Nations System identified itscomparative advantages drawing on its values, successful global knowledge base, best practices andlessons learned; its strong normative mandate; its neutrality; and its ability to encourage efficientcoordination and facilitate accountability among donors.The UNDAF aims to contribute to the national priorities, and for doing that, it is imperative to alignwith the national planning processes and ensure the ownership of national partners/stakeholders.However, the current UNDAF was formulated, at a time when the preparations for the MTPDP (2004-2010) were soon to be undertaken, and hence the cycles as well as the contents of the two instrumentsare not aligned. The current UNDAF is based on the previous MTPDP (2001-2004)15.The Country Consultation on the Triennial Comprehensive Policy Review of Operational Activitiesfor Development16 conducted in 2007 notes another drawback in the UNDAF formulation process.The report mentions that the low operational value of the current UNDAF document could be partlyattributed to the fact that, national stakeholders were invited to participate in the preparation processof the CCA and UNDAF at a stage when the UNCT had already shaped the main orientations of thedocuments. However, it is worth mentioning that the formulation of the current CCA and UNDAFwas closely monitored and guided by the UNDG. National stakeholders were engaged following thetimeframe prescribed in the UNDG guidelines.Role of Non-Resident Agencies (NRA) in the formulation of the current UNDAF was limited. As oneNRA mentioned, its participation was curbed due to delayed communication received about theconsultation process. It was felt that NRAs should be contacted in advance to ensure theirinvolvement.2.2 The Design, Content and the Implementation ProcessThe Philippines UNDAF (2005-2009) document has three parts. The first part discusses the globaland national socio-economic context, the UNDAF priority areas and the outcomes, estimated resourcerequirements, implementation strategies and approaches and monitoring and evaluation plan. Thesecond part is the results matrix (RM) that outlines the UNDAF outcomes/outputs, role of partners,resource mobilization targets, coordination mechanisms and programme modalities. The thirdcomponent of the document is the UNDAF Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) framework, whichspecifies the UNDAF outcomes/outputs along with the indicators and source of verification.2.2.1 The UNDAF Thematic AreasAs discussed earlier, the priority areas for the UNDAF were chosen on the basis of the CCA, whichconducted a causality analysis to identify the causes of poverty. As defined by the General Assembly,the CCA is the common instrument of the UN system to analyze the national development situationand identify key development issues with a focus on the MDGs and the other commitments of theMillennium Declaration and international conventions.The Country Consultation on the Triennial Comprehensive Policy Review of Operational Activitiesfor Development conducted in 2007 notes that, as a programmatic tool for greater UN systemcoherence, ‘the design of UNDAF is not perceived as fulfilling expectations’. The five priorities of14 CCA/UNDAF Guideline, UNDG, February 200915 The Country Consultation on the Triennial Comprehensive Policy Review of Operational Activities for Development(2007)16 The main purpose of the in-Country Consultations was to draw first-hand information and insights from key players atcountry level on the efficiency of the functioning of the UN system and its effectiveness to support national developmentstrategies and achieve internationally agreed development goals.
  15. 15. the current UNDAF are not very different from the UN areas of cooperation identified in the 1990s, which were: economic growth with equity human development, environment and sustainable development, governance, disaster management and peace building. During 2006 UNCT retreat, though three different priority areas for coordinated UN action, namely, good governance, human security and disparity reduction, were identified, finally existing five themes were retained. However, some UN staff members have strongly endorsed the existing priority areas, and they feel that the thematic areas of UNDAF very well capture the fundamental challenges faced by the Filipino people today, and still remain highly relevant. However, these broad areas need to be re-examined in light of changes in the operating environment. For example, the priority area on environmental sustainability will need to be re-crafted to include climate change and disaster mitigation as one of the focus areas, while the thematic area on conflict prevention and peace-building may need to be seen as a dimension of a larger crisis prevention/management and recovery framework that also includes disaster risk reduction and management. 2.2.2 The UNDAF Results Matrix UNDAF RM articulates the implementation mechanism for realizing the planned outcomes in each priority area. The RM is the crucial tool that operationalizes the UNDAF. However, a close look at the RM reveals that:(1) Outcome statements use change language but most of them are very broad. This is probably because agencies want to see their specific mandate reflected in result statements to demonstrate their relevance to the national priorities. This makes these statements mere compilations of agency agenda. UNDAF Outcome-2 in the area of basic social services can be taken up for example. UNDAF outcome-2: By 2009, increased and more equitable access to and utilization of quality, integrated and sustainable basic social services by the poor and vulnerable. CP Outcome 1: (UNICEF, UNFPA, WHO, UNAIDS, UNIC) By 2009, more Filipinos, especially children, adolescents and women, are aware of their rights, including reproductive rights, and are empowered to claim their rights to health and education. CP Output 1.1 (UNICEF, UNFPA, UNAIDS, WHO) Women, men, adolescents and children are able to make informed choices about responsible health and other behavior and practices by accessing educational services, community-based development, protection, participation and reproductive health interventions and HIV/AIDS prevention education, thereby ensuring the realization of their rights The broad UNDAF outcome has resulted in a very broad CP outcome. The CP output is also pitched at a very high level, almost at the level of the CP outcome. Broad outputs become undeliverable and difficult to measure17. In this particular case, the logical flow between the output and the outcome cannot be established. The “if - then” logic does not follow in this results chain, i.e. if the output is achieved, it is not evident that there is an increased possibility of achieving the outcome as well. (2) The UNDAF Annual review conducted in 2005 noted that, the outcome and output statements in the RM are not clearly formulated. From these statements it is difficult to derive the exact scope and nature of interventions and identify duty bearers and claim holders. During the 2005 UNDAF review, 17 CP Outcome and output indicators have not been clearly differentiated in the M&E framework, which will be discussed later.
  16. 16. theme group members attempted simplifying the RM. However, formal adoption of the simplificationby both the UN and the NEDA, GOP partners did not happen.(3) As per the UNDG guideline (2009), risk analysis and assumptions are probably the most importantaspect of the results matrix. A SWOT analysis is used to identify key risks and assumptions, whichenables the UNDAF to serve as an instrument of implementation, and not only a planning tool. In theUNDAF document the RM does not contain risk analysis and assumption and the identification andadoption of risk mitigation measures, which makes it incomplete.2.2.3 Monitoring & Evaluation plansSince development is a process, the UNDAF was meant to be a living document to adapt to changesin the country’s economic, social and political situations. An M&E plan was put in place by theUNCT to track the changes and measure the progress in achieving the desired results, which wasexpected to be carried through the results based management (RBM) approach. M&E activitiessuggested by the UNDG guideline (2009) include: • Annual progress reviews carried out and brief reports produced for each UNDAF Outcome. • Annual UNDAF Reviews carried out to enable UNCT and partners to make decisions based on evidence of results that will enhance subsequent performance. • An UNDAF Evaluation commissioned in consultation with national partners to feed its findings into the development of the next UNDAF.During the 2005-2009 cycle, UNDAF Annual Reviews were conducted for the years 2005 and 2006and a Country Consultation on the Triennial Comprehensive Policy Review of Operational Activitiesfor Development took place in 2007. Internal UNDAF theme group reviews were carried out as partof the annual UNDAF reviews.However, both the 2005 and 2006 annual reviews were delayed and did not follow the UNDG guidedtime schedule. Instead of the last quarter of the year, they were conducted respectively in the firstquarters of 2006 and 2007. Consequently, most agencies had to develop their Annual Work Plans(AWP) without the inputs from the annual reviews. The RC’s annual progress reports also could notfully benefit from the annual reviews for the same reason.The mid-term review, which was due in 2007, became redundant, as the second UNDAF annualreview was conducted the same year. However, the Country Consultation on the TriennialComprehensive Policy Review of Operational Activities for Development in 2007 provided someuseful insights about the performance of the UNDAF. The end-line lessons learned exercise has beenundertaken to inform the next UNDAF.2.2.4 The UNDAF M&E FrameworkA properly developed M&E framework ensures accountability of an UNDAF. It also helps inidentifying key challenges in order to make mid-stream changes in the approach and delivery ofactivities, outputs and outcomes or their targets.However, the M&E framework of the UNDAF has several weaknesses as discussed below – (1) A number of indicators have been listed at each level of result. For many of them, base-line values are missing. As suggested by the UNDG CCA/UNDAF guideline (2009), the UNDAF M&E framework should specify the outcome/output, the indicators with baseline and targets. However, the Philippines UNDAF (2005-2009) has not specified targets in the indicators column of its M&E framework, as shown below. The absence of a target, and baseline in many cases, renders the RM an ineffective tool for measuring the progress. In the absence of overall and annual targets it has been difficult to assess the yearly progress, as has been pointed out in the annual reviews. Given the constraint, the annual reviews were only able to document the yearly achievement in each priority area.
  17. 17. Table 1: UNDAF RM Format prescribed by UNDG GuidelineUNDAF Outcome Indicator(s) and Means of verification Assumptions and Risks BaselinesUNDAF Outcome1 Indicators; Baselines, Sources: At the interface: targets18 Responsible agencies/ (1) Between national partners priorities and UNDAF outcomes; and (2) UNDAF outcomes and Indicators; Baselines, Sources:1.1 Agency outcome Agency outcomes targets Responsible agencies/- Output 1.1.1 partners- Output 1.1.2- Output 1.1.3…1.2 Agency outcome Indicators; Baselines, Sources: targets- Output 1.2.1 Responsible agencies/ partners…. …Source: UNDG guideline for CCA and UNDAF (Feb 2009) Table 2: Actual Philippines UNDAF (2005-2009) RM for Outcome 1Country programme Indicators and baselines Sources of verificationoutcome/outputCP Outcome 1: • Proportion of caretakers aware of children’s rights MICS Baseline: 1999 : 84.3 %By 2009, more Filipinos,especially women, children •% increase in the number of women, adolescents andand adolescents, are aware men seeking RH information and services inof their rights including DOH Records /Reports government health facilities, teen centers, schools andreproductive rights and are clinics in the workplaceempowered to claim their Baseline : Not available·rights to health andeducation. •% increase in the number of community networks of women organized to advocate for RH issues DOH Records/Reports Baseline : Not availableSource: The Philippines UNDAF (2005-2009) (2) In the Philippines UNDAF (2005-2009) commitment for each outcome and output is shared by a number of agencies and their implementing partners. Common outcomes and outputs have posed challenges for accountability; there are no measures to identify agency contributions. Outputs are the level of results where clear comparative advantages of18 Note that targets for outcomes are to be reached by efforts beyond those specified of the UN.
  18. 18. individual agencies emerge. To ensure accountability, outputs should have been attributed to the agencies. As noted during the annual reviews, the lack of systematic way to identify agency contributions for specific results caused significant level of inaccurate reporting at the UNDAF AWP review stage. (3) The ExCOM agencies have aligned their current CPAPs with the UNDAF (2005-2009). Other agencies also have adjusted their work plans to contribute to the UNDAF outcomes. However, as the annual reviews reveal, agencies were primarily driven by their agency- specific mandates and there has been a lot of scope to align the agency CPAPs with the UNDAF CP outcomes and outputs. For example, as noted by UNDP, HIV/AIDS is covered under Basic Social Services and Governance outcome areas in the UNDAF results matrix, whereas in UNDP CPAP it is covered under the outcome area of macroeconomic stability. This caused difficulty in reporting agency-specific contribution to UNDAF outcomes. (4) It has been noted by annual reviews and reported by agencies that their M&E frameworks are disjointed with the UNDAF M&E framework19. In 2006, following the recommendations of the 2005 UNDAF annual review, an M&E Task Force was established under the UN Programme Support Group to support the M&E requirements for the UNDAF and MDGs and to harmonize agency M & E systems. The task of revising the UNDAF M&E framework and aligning the agency M&E systems were undertaken. However, it was a work-in-progress and never completed. As noted by a staff member, this was because M&E focal persons had to focus on their agency specific deliverables. There was no clarity on their role in the UNDAF process. M&E should be an ongoing process and an integral part of the implementation of UNDAF. However, the UNDAF M&E mechanism was not operational because of the factors discussed above. For the RC’s annual progress report, UN agencies accomplished the matrices and UNCO prepared the consolidated matrix. Thus, it has been a retrofitting exercise to comply with HQ requirements. (5) For an effective M&E system, availability of accurate data is essential. Data, desegregated by relevant analytical categories (such as demographic and geographic) should be made available for proper tracking of progress. However, during the 2005-2009 UNDAF cycle, UN agencies had difficulty monitoring output-level performance because of the lack of relevant and reliable sources of verification, as available data sources were not adequately disaggregated by municipality, sex, age, etc.2.2.5 Cross-cutting issuesHuman Rights Based Approach (HRBA)UNDAF’s compliance with HRBA requires a systematic application of human rights standards andprinciples in all phases of the programming processes including the formulation of result chains. Theinstitutional and behavioral changes are imperative for right-holders to claim their rights and/or forduty-bearers to fulfill their obligations and should be reflected in all UNDAF and Agency outcomes.Agency Outputs should be intended to narrow the capacity gaps which prevent claim holders and dutybearers to fulfill their roles. The UNCT should show greater rigor and clarity on how their programswill lead to outcomes that will fill the various capacity gaps and highlight how they will identify thoseaccountable for meeting obligations. Accountability establishes a clear difference with traditionaldevelopment approaches. HRBA depends on good statistical database and strong country analyticalwork on social and regional disparities.The Philippines UNDAF has documented its commitment for the HRBA to development. As thedocument mentions, “The UNCT has emphasized the creation of an enabling environment thatenhances the Government’s ability to formulate rights-based and pro-poor policies as well as to buildthe capacities to pursue and institutionalize political, economic and social reforms.” In the19 The 2006 annual UNDAF review noted that among the UN agencies, the programme framework of UNDP adheres mostclosely to the design of the UNDAF.
  19. 19. Philippines, the UNCT found that physical and social barriers to participation for the most vulnerablegreatly undermine any right-based development in the country. Thus the UNCT agenda in the countryfocuses on targeting poor regions and specific impoverished groups.Though the UNDAF document explicitly underlines the need for adopting HRBA for achieving theMDGs, the M&E framework is not fully compliant with the HRBA.As regards the implementation, UN agencies mentioned that though efforts were made to incorporatethe HRBA, it was not adequately addressed. Instead of being the basic underpinning principle, theHRBA was seen as “afterthought” and real mainstreaming did not happen. As has been mentioned,sometimes it was not clear how it will be effectively mainstreamed and translated into specific outputsand activities. However, there were some efforts worth mentioning (discussed in details in Annex-1).UNDP has been supporting NEDA in the implementation of the project “Mainstreaming of theHuman Rights Based Approach (HRBA) on Development Policies, Programs and Activities ofNEDA”, which has also been supported by UNFPA, UNICEF, and UNAIDS. The project’s mainactivity has been the conduct of HRBA capacity building trainings for the NEDA Central andRegional Offices to effectively mainstream HRBA in the MTPDP exercise. This initiative has createdsignificant interest among National Government Agencies (NGA). There is a commitment of NEDAto cost share 40 percent of the total budget. The strong political will provides a great opportunity foreffective mainstreaming of HRBA in government planning in the Philippines. However, there is alack of common understanding on mainstreaming HRBA among the line agencies of GOP. There is aneed to develop guidelines on application of HRBA in policies, programmes and M&E. Capacitybuilding tools and mechanisms are generally inadequate and hence a plan should be developed fortransfer of HRBA skills from the national level to LGUs.Gender EqualityGender Equality is one of the five key programming principles of the UNDAF, which is also at thecore of the HRBA. The Philippines UNDAF (200520-09) documents its commitment to genderequality. However, it is imperative to get this priority translated into strategic UNDAF results chainsand consequently into holistic programming for gender equality.In 2007, a workshop on Mainstreaming Gender and Women’s Rights in Development Programmingand its application to the UNDAF and CPAPs was organised for the UN staff. In this workshop, theUNDAF outcome/output statements and the indicators were analyzed through a gender lens. It wasfound that, in many cases outcome/output statements were not gender-sensitive. The participants inthe workshop revised the UNDAF country programme outcome and output statements from theagency Country Programme Action Plans to demonstrate mainstreaming of the gender and humanrights perspectives. Corresponding indicators and sources of verification were also enhanced.However, these revisions were never formalized. Sample Output from the Workshop: Enhanced UNDAF Outcomes and Indicators from Gender and Human Rights PerspectiveUNDAF Outcome: Basic Social ServicesOriginal Outcome Statement: By 2009, more Filipinos, especially children, adolescents and womenare aware of their rights, including reproductive rights, and are empowered to claim their rights tohealth and education.Enhanced Outcome Statement: The goal by 2009 is to increase by 2 to 5% the number of Filipinos,specifically those belonging to the poor and most vulnerable groups, such as children, adolescents andwomen, with greater access to quality education and health care, specifically in reproductive health.This is to be done through a participatory educational process which provides them with necessarytools and resources to actively advocate and claim their rights.Indicators & Sources of Verification:• Lower maternal mortality rate (MMR) - National Demographic and Health Survey• Lower infant mortality rate - National Demographic and Health Survey
  20. 20. • Increased number of women accessing prenatal care - National Demographic and Health Survey• Increased English, Math and Science scores of children – both girls and boys - TIMMS• Survey of increased number of women going into non-traditional disciplines - Commission of Higher Education (CHED)Source: Workshop document (2007)As a programmatic principle, gender equality has not been fully mainstreamed. Like HRBA, genderequality has also been attempted to be incorporated later, which has never been done in a systematicway.However, there have been some success stories also. In 2004, a UN Gender Strategy Framework inthe Philippines (GSF PHI) 2005-2009 was developed with support from UNICEF, UNFPA andUNDP. A Gender Mainstreaming Committee (GMC) was formed in 2006, which was chaired byUNICEF. The GMC is composed of the gender focal persons of the UN Agencies in the Philippinesand provides technical support to the UNCT and the UNDAF Working Groups to ensure that genderequality and women’s empowerment are prioritized in the UN supported programmes and projects.GMC’s main functions include (1) technical assistance in gender-responsive programming, (2)partnerships and networking, (3) communications and advocacy, (4) knowledge management and (5)institutional and capacity building. The GMC has initiated the institutionalization of UN Guidelinesby conducting UN staff and partners’ orientation on the use of the Harmonized Gender andDevelopment (GAD) Guidelines. It also provided technical assistance for the review and update of thePhilippine Plan for Gender responsive Development and the MTPDP.GMC engaged in the preparation of the UNCT Confidential Report to the CEDAW Committee in2006. This report was appreciated by the CEDAW as a good practice of UN coordination by theCEDAW Committee members. As follow-up to the CEDAW reporting, GMC developed a JP onResponding to the CEDAW Recommendations (JP-CEDAW) to address issues related to theimplementation of the Convention in the Philippines. The JP assisted in enhancing capacity ofselected national stakeholders, UN programme staff and academic partners. Among other activities,JP-CEDAW conducted participatory gender audits of UNDP and UN-HABITAT, which raised thebenchmark of gender compliance and catalyzed gender responsive programming. Anotherachievement of JP-CEDAW was enactment of the Magna Carta of Women (Republic Act 9710 signedinto law) realized on 14 August 2009. Major results achieved in gender equality have been discussedin annex-1.2.2.6 Implementation Mechanism: Thematic Groups and their EvolutionIn order to ensure that the programmes of the UN during the UNDAF programming cycle contributeto the identified development outcomes, an inter-agency technical working group, comprising ofrepresentatives from UN agencies, was established to serve as the mechanism to develop strategies tosupport the realisation of the UNDAF outcomes. The group was formed also to ensure that the UNagencies collaborate efficiently and effectively and promote partnership with the Government, civilsociety, private sector and donors.Following the UNDG Guideline20, in the March 2004 Annual Retreat of the UNCT, the Heads ofAgencies (HoA) agreed to form the inter-agency UNDAF Thematic Groups (TGs). These TGS weresmall, composed of 5 – 7 participating agencies. Five TGs, delineated along the five UNDAFoutcome areas, were, as follows:20 It is recommended that thematic groups for each UNDAF outcome are convened to refine the details of the RM matrix.These groups should be capable in the application of HRBA, gender mainstreaming, RBM, capacity development, South-South cooperation, and environmental sustainability. Following the finalization of the UNDAF, these UNDAF outcomegroups are responsible for using the results matrix, together with partners, for joint monitoring of progress towards eachUNDAF outcome. The outcome group will use this monitoring to report to the individuals leading the UNCT. (UNDG,February 2009)
  21. 21. Table 3 Thematic Groups UNDAF Outcomes Convenor Macroeconomic Stability, Broad-Based and Equitable Development UNFPA (Lead), ILO (Co- Lead) Basic Social Services UNICEF (Lead), WHO (Co- Lead) Good governance UNDP (Lead), UN- HABITAT (Co-Lead) Environmental sustainability FAO (Lead), UN- HABITAT, UNDP (Co- Leads) Conflict prevention and peace building UNDP (Lead), IOM (Co- Lead)In all their endeavours the theme groups were expected to project a ‘Delivering as One’ image andstrive towards achieving the MDGs. According to the generic terms of reference of UNDAF thematicgroups, specific responsibilities of these theme groups included: (a) As a Strategic “think-tank: Provide strategic recommendations for accelerating achievement of UNDAF Outcomes/Output and recommend appropriate action to the UNCT on relevant concerns/issues; (b) Joint-Programming: Identify and operationalise priority areas for JP or collective action and recommend a mechanisms for implementation; (c) Monitoring and Evaluation: Support UN-initiated and government efforts to develop monitoring and evaluation system by identifying priority outcomes and indicators per relevant area of cooperation/theme; and Report to the UNCT on the progress and accomplishments of the TG (taking into account the inputs from various sub-groups), including presenting outputs and raising issues and concerns and recommendations to the UNCT for appropriate action. (d) Linkage with the Philippines Development Forum (PDF)21: Identify areas for collaboration to strategically situate the UNCT in the PDF by ensuring high level visibility and effective coverage of UNCT common issues and agenda in the PDF Working Groups (i.e., MDGs and Social Progress, Growth and Investment Climate, Economic and Fiscal Reforms, Governance and Anti-Corruption, Decentralization and Local Government, Mindanao, Sustainable Rural Development, and Infrastructure).In addition to these five (5) TGs, UN support groups were also formed, namely, a. Information and advocacy working group; b. Programming support group; c. Gender Mainstreaming Committee, d. Mindanao Support Group; and e. Joint Team on Aids (JTA).UN statutory groups were as follows: a. Operations Management Team; b. Disaster Management Team; and c. Security Management Team.21 A venue for interaction among government, civil society and international development community to fostergreater partnership in achieving aid effectiveness and aligning with national goals and priorities
  22. 22. These TGs became functional towards the last quarter of 2005. For the specific TGs, the Convenerand Co-Convener coordinate the work of the theme groups, with a representative from the UNCoordination Office present in all meetings of the five TGs.In addition to the groups enlisted above, three new inter-agency groups were formed in 2006 withspecific mandates. First was the Harmonized Approach to Cash Transfers (HACT) Task Force,composed of UNDP, UNICEF and UNFPA, to plan and operationalize the implementation of theHACT.The second inter-agency group formed was the ‘One UN House’ Task Force under the OMT to takethe lead in searching for new premises. An M&E Task Force for the CCA/UNDAF was also createdfollowing the recommendations of the 2005 annual UNDAF review.As noted during the annual review of 2006, the functioning of TGs in terms of regular meeting, followup actions and reporting has not been uniform across the groups. In most cases, there were no writtenprogress reports to track the progress of the TGs.22It was also noted that these groups were not aligned with the larger PDF Working Groups in order toachieve intended results23. In 2007 UNCT Annual Retreat it was decided that as the TGs were notfunctioning optimally, these groups would be replaced by the TGs at the strategic, programmatic andthematic levels, aligned with the proposed work-plan and the proposed ‘transition’ to ‘One UN’. Thestrategic level groups were comprised of HoAs, with designated agency heads providing leadershipand determining the scope of work.However, disbandment of the TGs was a setback in the UNDAF process. It resulted in very weaklinkages between agency initiatives and absence of joint efforts. There was a two-year hiatus until theUNCT recognized the need to identify a mechanism to deliver/link its results towards the UNDAFOutcomes. In the 20 May 2009 UNCT Meeting, there was a decision to reinstate the UNTGs,subsuming under them relevant sub-working groups, which can directly contribute to the progresstowards achieving the UNDAF outcomes. Mandatory and operational groups were separatelycategorized given the specific objectives and functions it has to perform. It was noted, however, thatthe initiatives of the Humanitarian Country Team (HCT) and the UNTG on Conflict Prevention andPeace Building should be mutually reinforcing and interlinked. The function of the ‘Delivering asOne’ group was decided to be carried out by the UNCT itself through the UNDAF. While it wasrecognized that gender mainstreaming cuts across all UNTGs, for reporting purposes the GMC wascategorized under the UNDAF Outcome on Macroeconomic Stability and Broad-Based Growth.Re-establishment of these theme groups contributed to the revival of the UNDAF process. As noted, italso allowed the UN to regain trust and visibility among the development partners such asCSAC/UNCSAC and Government.Among the five TGs, the Macro-economic stability group was the first one to be revived in 2009 afterabout two and half years of inactivity. The need for discussions on the global economic crisis and itspossible impact on national economic development triggered the meeting.After reinstatement, TGs on Governance, Mindanao/Conflict Prevention and Peace Building, andEnvironmental Sustainability are also active. Recognizing the immediate need for enhancing theirroles to include communication and bridging efforts, these groups revised their ToR to add theresponsibility of Advocacy and Communications for accelerating progress on the MDGs by raisingawareness, strengthening broad-based support and action, and increasing citizen engagement onUNDAF and MDG-related policy and practice.These groups are now chaired by the UNDP CountryDirector unlike before where the convener was a senior technical /management staff. Membership ofthese groups has been extended to include civil society and relevant development partners. The usual22 UNCT Minutes of Meetings, 8 February 2007, p. 3.23 UNCT Minutes of Meetings, 8 February 2007, p. 3.
  23. 23. meeting format has been de-emphasized to allow for more informal interaction especially amongdonors.Interagency coherence: The strength of the UN system lies in its capacity to provide multi-sectoralsupport to development with the diverse resources applied to common issues. Inter-agency thematicgroups were formed to foster coordination and coherence in achieving UNDAF outcomes. However,as mentioned, interagency coordination did not prove to be very effective during the current UNDAFcycle. Although the agencies worked ‘beside each other’, they were ‘not doing things together’.24Agency mandates confined their relationships with respective constituencies and partners, whichcurbed the scope for cooperation between agencies.As theme group members pointed out25, it is imperative to have the ability and willingness to lookbeyond the respective agency mandates and look at issues from a broader perspective through the lensof ‘Delivering as One UN’. At the personal level, group members also felt de-motivated due to thelack of genuine appreciation of their important roles as theme group members. For many agencies, itwas also not part of the staff performance appraisal.The coordination and effectiveness of the group have been influenced by the working relations andteam work among its members. Some TG members also felt that the functioning and motivation of thegroups significantly depends upon the leadership quality and strategic vision of the convener and alsothe direction provided by the UNCO. A strong leadership and a concrete work plan are critical tosustain the functionality of theme groups. As a TG member noted, the group normally met when afunding window/facility was available and a possible JP proposal was submitted. In some cases, evenif the group met, discussions were not substantive. It was felt that, there was a need to elevate thediscussion in the TGs to make it more effective in policy advocacy and programme design. TGs wereoften viewed as added work/ responsibility, as no clear objectives or concrete outputs were generatedthrough them. As the Country Consultation on the Triennial Comprehensive Policy Review ofOperational Activities for Development (2007) noted, lack of coherence within the UN system waspartly attributable to the lack of coordination within the national system and the ability of theGovernment to provide strategic directions.However, there were good practices of inter-agency coordination and partnership also, which areworth mentioning. The UN Disaster Management Team was expanded into Inter-Agency StandingCommittee (IASC). The government adopted the IASC structure at national and regional levels. TheIASC partnered with National Disaster Coordination Council (NDCC) in humanitarian responsewhere each of the 13 clusters has a Government lead agency and IASC member co-lead agency. TheIASC, now called the Humanitarian Country Team (HCT), in collaboration with the National DisasterCoordination Council (NDCC) conduct joint rapid assessments, share situation reports, provide reliefand early recovery services through the clusters.HCT improved the coordination and strengthened partnerships among risk management agencies intheir mapping and Information Education Communication (IEC) activities resulting in clear andharmonized prioritization of vulnerable areas, paving the way for coordinated technical assistancee.g., in the implementation of mitigating measures like early warning systems and contingencyplanning. Enhanced linkage and coordination also occurred between the disaster management, climatechange and development planning agencies and communities, especially in the area of long termdevelopment planning, including land use, with the NDCC, Climate Change Commission, NEDA andHousing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB).There were many positive aspects of this joint initiative. There was a government ownership in theapproach. Decision making was informed by the joint assessment and analysis. The whole processwas characterized by joint planning, implementation and monitoring, improved accountability, and an24 Annual Review 2006 and TCPR 200725 Inputs provided through self-administered questionnaires for the UNDAF (2005-2009): lessons learned exercise
  24. 24. overall effectiveness of service delivery. The effort for the emergency response was commended bythe funding agency (e.g. Central Emergency Response Fund).2.2.7 Collaboration and PartnershipAs the Philippines UNDAF (2005-2009) states, for achieving goals ‘the United Nations will pursuecomplementary and collaborative strategies in the interest of furthering concerted efforts towardnational priorities, particularly including a partnership strategy, that involves joint dialogue andmaintaining a high-quality environment for the state, civil society organizations and the privatesector’. The role of partners, in achieving the UNDAF outcomes is outlined in the UNDAF resultsmatrix.In the Philippines, the UN system has a long history of engaging various civil society organizations inits development work. As mentioned earlier, in 2004 as part of the UNDAF formulation process civilsociety organizations participated in a series of national consultations. Changes in the nationaldevelopment scenario confronting civil society organizations and the challenges faced by the UN inthe context of ‘Delivering as One’ roll out, there was an urgent need for a new framework to guide theUN-CSO engagement in the country. Against this backdrop UNCSA with an initial membership ofabout 47 organizations was established in November 2006 together with the election of the 15-member UN Civil Society Advisory Committee (UNCSAC). UNCSAC serves as a regular forumbetween the UNCT and CSOs in the Philippines, and provides UNCT with strategic and substantiveguidance on policies and programmes, to enhance development effectiveness and improve its relationswith civil society in the Philippines.The UNCSA/UNCSAC in the Philippines has identified priority advocacy issues including,reproductive health, human rights, extra judicial killings and CSO participation in governance. It wasagreed that the UN and the advisory committee would work on these issues together. Civil societyorganizations were also engaged in the 2006 UNDAF annual review and The Country Consultation onthe Triennial Comprehensive Policy Review of Operational Activities for Development (2007).However, in 2007, the dissolution of the UNTGs curbed the scope for civil society participation in theUN system’s development efforts. Civil society representatives also felt that the UN showedreluctance to be involved in issues such as accountability and transparency, which clearlydisappointed the CSOs represented in the UNCSAC.UNDAF TGs were reinstated in 2009 and the re-energized UNCSA established five TGs, aligned withthe five outcomes of the UNDAF. Membership in the TGs is voluntary and a UNCSA member maybe a member of one or more TGs. The extension of the current UNDAF until 2011 and the re-establishment of the UNTGs by the UNCT have provided a scope for improving the interactionbetween CSA/CSAC and the UN in the Philippines, both for advocacy and programmatic work.Apart from engaging with the CSAC on policy debate and advocacy, the UNCT in the Philippinesalso situated itself more strategically in the broader development arena through its participation in thePDF. Since the adoption of the current UNDAF, the UN has been actively engaged in the PDF,bringing issues on the accelerated achievement and funding of MDGs.In 2006, UN agencies and PDF groups advocated for a multi-year budgeting framework for socialsectors - education and health. The importance of population management and reproductive healthconcerns were explicitly recognized in the closing statements of the PDF meeting. UN/PDF workalso contributed to a growing appreciation of, and commitment to, the Basic Education ReformAgenda (BESRA), with significant progress on School-Based Management (SBM) and Competency-Based Teachers Standards (CBTS), as well as an expanded implementation of Province-wideInvestment Plan (PIPH) for health. In the same year (2006), as members of the PDF MindanaoWorking Group, the UN contributed to the development of a framework to operationalize HumanSecurity as a basis of donor convergence in Mindanao. In 2007, UN agencies’ active participation inthe PDF ensured a strong link between the economic and social policy agenda of the government,which recognized MDGs, human development and enhanced financing for social sectors.
  25. 25. In 2008, given widening disparities and increasing poverty incidences, the Joint UNCT Statement toPDF underscored inclusive growth as a means to achieve the MDGs and advocated for a humanrights-based approach to development.
  26. 26. Chapter-3 Delivering as One and Joint Programming3.0 The approachAs part of the UN reform agenda, in 2006 by a high-level panel appointed by former Secretary-General Kofi Annan recommended the establishment of an initiative, ‘Delivering as One’ (DaO),aimed at avoiding fragmentation and duplication of development efforts at the country-level in anoverall effort to enhance the efficiency and the responsiveness of the UN development system throughincreased system-wide coherence26. The One UN Programme is thus an instrument for ensuring UNcompliance with the Paris and Accra agendas. Following the high-level panels recommendations,eight countries - Albania, Cape Verde, Mozambique, Pakistan, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uruguay and VietNam - subsequently volunteered to become “Delivering as One” pilots, agreeing to implement andtest different models of reform at the country level. The pilot countries implemented the "Deliveringas One" intiative with four main pillars: One UN program, One budgetary framework, One leader27and One Set of Management Practices/ One office. Some pilot countries also adopted an additionalcomponent of One voice. In each case, the basic reform model has been adapted to the unique countrycontext to deliver in a more harmonized and cost-effective manner at the country level.In pilot countries the One Programme substantially enhanced28:i. Alignment with national priorities;ii. Transparency for the government, development partners, civil society and UN agencies, as onedocument outlines what the UN will be doing during the programming cycle;iii. Predictability: there is a clear overview of activities, expected results and budget;iv. Simplification: Government only needs to sign one document instead of several documents, andjoint monitoring and reporting decreases the burden on implementing partners;v. Accountability: there is a better division of labour within the UN. Agencies are clearly accountablefor the results achieved;vi. Efficiency (reduction of transaction costs): Joint Programming has meant an increase in internalUN transaction costs. However, transaction costs with external partners, Government and donors havesubstantially decreased, ensuring more transparent and streamlined communication, decision-making,and M&E. Improved development impact is also a significant benefit.vii. Aid coordination: the system represents an opportunity to systematize the UN’s contribution to thenational aid coordination and management architecture;viii. Synergies and strategic focus; andix. Better use of resources.3.1 ‘Delivering as One’: The Philippines ContextIn 2006, the UNCT in the Philippines started preparing for the transition to one UN. An assessment29was undertaken as part of the preparation. The assessment recommended three critical steps for initialpreparations for a One UN programme, namely (1) to strengthen the UNDAF mechanism in two (2)areas: (a) UNDAF Results Matrix and (b) UNDAF M&E System (2) to harmonize agency M&Esystems with that of UNDAF and (3) to support the functions of UNTGs. These recommendations26 Delivering as One: Report of the High-level Panel on United Nations System-wide Coherence in the areas ofDevelopment, humanitarian assistance and the environment (United Nations General Assembly, Nov 2006)27 However, the option paper on ‘Delivering as One in the Philippines (May 2010) mentions One Communication as one ofthe four main pillars and One Leader as additional.28 Delivering as One: Lessons Learned from Pilot Countries (UNDG,2009)29 Quick Assessment: Preparing for a One UN Programme in the Philippines (UNCO, June, 2006)
  27. 27. were in line with findings of the 2005 UNDAF annual review. Since then the UN system in thePhilippines made some efforts to strengthen the UNDAF mechanism (refer to 2.2.4).In 2007, the GOP through NEDA affirmed its commitment for a One UN System in the Philippinesby 2010 and full implementation of the Paris Declaration Principles on Aid Effectiveness30. Duringthe same year the UNCT and NEDA jointly organized a series of consultations with external partners(the Government; NGOs and the academia; development partners) and with the UN staff for acommon understanding on the High Level Panel Report on ‘Delivering as One’. The feedback fromthese exchanges was used in providing a framework for formal process of transitioning to ‘Deliveringas One’. The Government’s expectation about the reform included31 (a) full operationalization of keyelements of ‘Delivering as One’ (b) utilizing Government’s organizational structures for servicedelivery of UN programmes, rather than establishing parallel structures (c) managing for developmentresults, and (d) demonstrated leadership by the UN system in operationalizing the reform agenda. TheGOP expected the UN to lead by setting an example to other bilateral and multi-lateral partners in thePhilippines. The 2007 UNCT retreat defined the scope of operationalizing the ‘Delivering as One’ inthe Philippines context. In implementation of ‘One Programme’, importance of ‘process’ of building a‘team’ and development of a collective ‘vision’ and ‘mission’ and simultaneous up-scaling of UNcollaborative/joint programming were emphasized. The Government was expected to providestrategic leadership in determining ‘the scope’ of the ‘One UN’ in the Philippines. It was emphasizedthat, the process toward a ‘One UN’ would also take into account lessons learnt from pilot countriesas well as the outcomes of the important inter-governmental debate on the report. Mutualaccountability of the members of the UNCT towards delivering on a common vision/mission wasemphasized as critical to success of the leadership of the UNCT.Guided by the outcome of the multi-sectoral consultation and the Country Consultation on theTriennial Comprehensive Policy Review of Operational Activities for Development (2007) andUNDAF review conducted in 2007, a major part of the harmonization and coherence efforts of theUN system in the Philippines in 2007 were focused around issues of joint advocacy on key MDGsleast likely to be achieved, human rights, population management and peace building and up-scalingof joint programmings, primarily through submission of five (5) proposals to the Spanish MDG Fund(MDG-F). The UNCT situated itself more strategically in the broader development arena through itsparticipation in the PDF. In 2008, the UNCT discussed the lessons learned from the stocktakingreports of the ‘One UN’ pilot countries during the preparatory meeting for the next CCA/UNDAF (asthe start of the new UNDAF was originally scheduled in 2010). During this deliberation, the UNCTidentified facilitating and hindering factors in ‘Delivering as One’. Facilitating factors, among others,included: • For the One UN programme, geographic commonality is a favorable factor in the Philippines, for example Mindanao. • There is common thematic focus and approach dealing on issues such as poverty, widening disparities and human rights-based approach and the GOP is supportive of UN efforts. • UN Agencies in the Philippines have the ability to complement each other through partnerships, and their expertise cuts across agency programmes and themes including their experience in implementing joint programming. • The ongoing CCA/UNDAF process provides a good opportunity for common programming and one budgetary framework. • Mandates by UN Headquarters and/or UN Regional Offices to mainstream approaches that will allow the UN agencies to work together. • The decision to implement the Paris Declaration principles provides opportunity and compelling reason for UN agencies to synchronize aid effectiveness measures.30 RCAR 200731 Report of UNCT Annual Retreat April 2007
  28. 28. • Funds from UN agencies can be pooled to leverage more funds/resources through joint programming. • Presence of harmonized donor funding strategic plans with government is a facilitating factor.On the other hand, challenges included: • Agencies have different programming and budget cycles and mandates. • There is a lack of predictability of government support for harmonized funding. • There is a lack of clarity and common understanding regarding the role of one leader. • Changing mindsets of the UNCT - There needs to be a genuine willingness and readiness to change the way the UN does business. Given the expected changes in the control structure, the UN agencies may be reluctant to give up control. • A need to adopt participatory programming approach. However, the process needs to balance inclusiveness and strategic focus. This is challenging as there are different parameters for prioritization according to agency mandates. • One office poses security risk.In continuation with its effort to harmonize the UN system, the UNCT in 2008 made significant effortfor implementation/up-scaling of joint programming (discussed in 3.1.3).In 2009, the UNCT invested in team building exercises and signed off a code of conduct in‘Delivering as One’ at the country level. With unequivocal support for the reform process by thegovernment, the UNCT moved towards greater interagency collaboration and harmonization efforts atthe country level.In least-developed countries, the focus of the UN system is on enhancing donor coordination andincreasing governments’ capacities to lead their development processes, whereas in middle-incomecountries (MIC), the UN System advocates the full realization of MDG- 8 and adherence to the globalcommitments for the effective delivery of aid, which is based on a mutually beneficial partnershipbetween the UN and the government in areas of strategic importance. For this, moving beyond thetraditional donor-recipient relationship, the UNCT in the Philippines needs to be engaged in a two-way exchange of knowledge and expertise. As a MIC, the Philippines should focus more on upstreamrole/ providing policy and programme advisory services to governments and CSOs, rather thanimplementing programmes and projects themselves. The role of the UN in some of the MICs in theregion, such as Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam, is discussed in Annex 2.Though, ‘Delivering as One’ has not yet been fully realized in the Philippines, some significant effortshave been made in this direction. Following are some positive outcomes of ‘Delivering as One’initiative in the Philippines.3.1.1Common servicesCommon Services form an integral part of the ‘One UN’ concept advocated in the 2006 “Deliveringas One” High-Level Panel Report to the Secretary-General. The call for Common Services has beenreiterated in subsequent General Assembly resolutions, in which the member states advocate for theUN system to promote the sharing of administrative systems and services. The objective is to assurethat support services are cost-effective, high quality, timely, and provided on a competitive basis,resulting in full client satisfaction. Common services arrangements focus on the guiding principles ofinter-agency partnership and cooperation. The UN system’s Funds, Programmes and SpecializedAgencies are to take concrete steps in the following areas: • Rationalization of country presence through common premises and co-location of UN Country Team members; • Implementation of the joint office model; • Common shared support services including: Security, IT, Telecommunication, Travel, Banking, Administrative and Financial Procedures, Procurement; and • Harmonization of the principles of cost recovery policies, including that of full cost recovery.

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