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How to plan EC-funded projects

How to plan EC-funded projects? find a compilation of a presentation, handouts and additional tips from a workshop for civil society organisations held in Bratislava on 4 June 2013.

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How to plan EC-funded projects

  1. 1. How to Plan Projects Fundedby the European Commission?Inka Píbilováinka@evaluace.com4 June 20131
  2. 2. Managing (not only EC) ProjectsProgrammingIdentificationFormulationFinancingImplementationEvaluation Delivery Methods PCM - Project Approach Guidelines2
  3. 3. Non-State Actors Local AuthoritiesMigration and asylumInvesting in peopleFood securityThe Environment and natural resourcesEC Financing Mechanisms - What are the options for CSOs?Nuclear SafetyEuropean Instrument for Democracy & Human RightsInstrument for Stability3
  4. 4. (IPA) 4
  5. 5. Geographic Instrument - ENPI
  6. 6. Geographic Instrument - EDF
  7. 7. Geographic Instrument - DCILatin America, Asia and CentralAsia, the Gulf region (Iran, Iraqand Yemen) and South Africa. 7
  8. 8. How successful were V4 CSOs in getting EC grants in 2007 – 2010?The Involvement of Development NGOs from Visegrad Countries in the Financial Instruments of the EC 8
  9. 9. How many EC grants did V4 CSOs get per year in 2007 – 2010?The Involvement of Development NGOs from Visegrad Countries in the Financial Instruments of the EC 9
  10. 10. In which sectors (per OECD/DAC) did V4 CSOs get EC grants?The Involvement of Development NGOs from Visegrad Countries in the Financial Instruments of the EC 10
  11. 11. In which regions did V4 CSOs get EC grants?The Involvement of Development NGOs from Visegrad Countries in the Financial Instruments of the EC 11
  12. 12. In which regions did V4 CSOs get EC grants?
  13. 13. What are some other opportuntities in the EC financing?The Involvement of Development NGOs from Visegrad Countries in the Financial Instruments of the EC to work withother V4 entitieson contracts !13
  14. 14. How many V4 CSOs received EC funding for humanitarian aid?The Involvement of Development NGOs from Visegrad Countries in the Financial Instruments of the EC
  15. 15. In which sectors have V4 CSOs provided EC humanitarian aid?The Involvement of Development NGOs from Visegrad Countries in the Financial Instruments of the EC
  16. 16. In which regions have V4 CSOs provided EC humanitarian aid?The Involvement of Development NGOs from Visegrad Countries in the Financial Instruments of the EC VOICES!http://www.ngovoice.orgADRA Czech, PIN...16
  17. 17. Non-State Actors Local AuthoritiesMigration and asylumInvesting in peopleFood securityThe Environment and natural resourcesWhat was the application success rate in 2012?Nuclear SafetyEuropean Instrument for Democracy & Human RightsInstrument for Stability0-11%global, 0-55%local7-23% global0-10% local2%0-4%0-2%2% global,0-29% local?
  18. 18. So.... Why (not) to apply for EC funding?Why to apply• Match with own priorities• Learn from experiencedpartners, with shared vision andapproach, complementary SWOT.• Improve own systems andprocesses• Receive additional funding• Get more visibility and references• Sufficient capacities• Reasonable risks and sustainability• Reasonable success rate expected– Experienced lead agency– No similar actionWhy not to apply• Mismatch with own priorities• Lack of experience with institutionaldonors• Lack of human / financial resources– Previous turnover, co-funding...• High administrative burden• Unstable partnership– No previous cooperation– Unfair relations– Strategic changes• Risk of funding loss– non-complience (EC audits)– non-functioning partnerships• More promising alternatives18
  19. 19. How to check relevance and get ready? - key documents• EC Budget / Financial Regulations• Offical EC Communications• Country / Sector Strategy Papers, other national strategic documents• Previous projects, reports of other CSOs / actors• Annual Action Programme & Action Fiches• Annual Work Programmes• Calls (Guidelines, Applications, Results, Forecasts)• Grant Contracts, General Conditions, Annexes, Plan/Schedule/Report Templates• Guidelines/FAQs, PRAG, CONCORD Reader Europe, FDR - Financing for Development and ReliefFollow CONCORD – FDR, VOICES, national platforms!Do not wait for calls, plan ahead!19
  20. 20. EC DevCo – Who and what was successful? What is planned?Forecasts, Application Statistics!20
  21. 21. EC DevCo - Where to apply?21
  22. 22. What is expected in NSA LA Call Objective 2 on 16/9/2013?NSALot1: Global Learning projects withinformal educationLot2: Global Learning projects outside ofthe formal education systemLot3: Campaigning and AdvocacyprojectsLALot 4: Global Learning projects withinand outside of the formal educationsystem, and Campaigning and AdvocacyprojectsKey Changes (some under negotiation) ! ! !3 – 5 mil. budget per projectMin. 15 partner countries in ALL LotsUnlimited subgrantingElectronic submission via PROSPECT22
  23. 23. DevelopmentCooperation Instrument(DCI)•Proposed funding: € 14 billion•19 countries in Asia and LatinAmerica not to benefit frombilateral aid anymore•Pan African programme tosupport the Joint Africa-EUStrategyEuropean DevelopmentFund (EDF)•Proposed funding: € 34.2billion• From 6 to 7 years programme•Some countries will receiveless funds that under 10thEDF•Intra ACP share remains sameEuropeanNeighbourhoodInstrument (ENI)•Proposed funding: € 18.2billion•16 countries covered•Principle of « more for more »and mutual accountability•From 29 thematic priorities to6 objectives•Bilateral, multi-country andcross border cooperationprogrammes• Alignement to National Development Plans• 3 priority sectors for EU intervention• Multi-annual Indicative Programmes (MIPs)• Common Implementing Rules (CIR)What geographic programmes are expected after 2014?CONCORD Europe - FDR 23
  24. 24. CSO-LA instrumentDCI• Regions: all thirdcountries• Proposed budget: € 2billion• Complementarity togeographic funding BUTwill not subsitutegraduated countriesGlobal Public Good &ChallengesDCI• Regions: all thirdcountries• Proposed budget:€ 6.3billion• Scope: humandevelopment, environment, energy, food security &agriculture, migration• EC will not launch a CfPper sector anymore• EC wants policy allianceswith partner countries tomake sustainable changesin a holistic mannerEIDHR• Regions: all thirdcountries• Proposed budget: € 1.6billion• Facility for human rights insituation of crisis(Emergency situations)• Early warning(new), temporaryrelocation & legal support• Networking, coordination,capacity building &support to national HRinstitutesCONCORD Europe - FDRWhat thematic programmes are expected after 2014?24
  25. 25. Decided! . . . How to assess the project relevance?ProgrammingIdentificationFormulationFinancingImplementationEvaluation25
  26. 26. Stakeholder Analysis 26
  27. 27. Stakeholder Analysis MatrixExample: River Pollution 27
  28. 28. Stakeholder Analysis – Power / Interest / AttitudeInfluence/PowerKEEP SATISFIED INFLUENCE & ENGAGEKEEP INFORMEDMONITORInterestIndustry XHouseholdsFischermenExample: River PollutionAttitude28
  29. 29. Problem TreeExample: River Pollution 29
  30. 30. How to formulate the project proposal?ProgrammingIdentificationFormulationFinancingImplementationEvaluation30
  31. 31. Objective TreeExample: River Pollution 31
  32. 32. Strategy selection and logframe developmentExample: River Pollution 32
  33. 33. Why, when and how to use logical framework (logframe)? Analysis and Objective Setting• Analysis of causes and effects / prioritisation• Shows relevance to policies / context• Checks risks and accountability for results• Establishes measurement systém and data collectionImplementation• Provides framework for Results Oriented monitoringEvaluation• Provides framework for evaluation as per OECD/DAC criteria33
  34. 34. How to develop the logical framework (logframe)? 34
  35. 35. How to write objectives?Example: River Pollution 35
  36. 36. Quantitative - SMARTERSpecific / Simple (to understand, collect)MeasurableAttainable/Available at cceptable costsRelevant to project / stakeholdersTime-boundEvaluate/EngagingReevaluate/RecordableUse both quantitative and qualitative indicators - SPICEDSubjectiveParticipatoryInterpreted and communicableCross-checked and comparedEmpoweringDiverse / disaggregated (by gender)Compare using trends (increase), thresholds (min. 30%), targets (strategy by 12/Y1)Min. 30 % of teachers include fairtrade intheir standard curriculum within 1 year oftraining completion.Reasons why teachers have (not)implemented fairtrade in their standardcurriculum (by school, experience...).36
  37. 37. Keep data collection simple and triangulate sources / methods!Example: River Pollution papers - examples of indicators and data collection methods per sector! Impact Builder (interactive) UNICEF, WHO, ILO... 37
  38. 38. Example of a logical framework (logframe)Example: River Pollution
  39. 39. Objectives and logical framework – issues and tips observed:• Logical frameworks too complicated, too many objectives / indicators• Too ambitious and/or too vague objectives• Indicators difficult to measure / data not collected or difficult to collect• Logframe not used for internal monitoring / evaluation and decisionmakingSome more tips:• Numbering Objectives (1,2), Results (1.1., 1.2., ...), Activities(1.1.1., 1.1.2.)• Check source of verification – how will data be collected, bywhom, when/how regularly?39
  40. 40. Risks Analysis inlogframe40
  41. 41. How to set-up and develop consortium and project management• Lead agency should be experienced in the ECmanagement, financially strong, with similar approach andvision• Some partners should be experts in the subject• Check references of partners• The project should have a wide impact (e.g. NSALA Obj 2 –min. 15 countries, 3-5 mil. EUR budget)• Coordination needs time, mainly at the beginning• Clear role devision per activity/result, adequate resources• Know your rights and responsibilities even as partners, do notrely on the lead agency (EC conditions, templates, PRAG... e.g.request the full application incl. budget and all reports)• Actively engage in project and financial management toprevent any crises41
  42. 42. How to find partners42
  43. 43. Activity schedule with tasks and responsibilities43
  44. 44. Critical Path – What can cause delays?START ENDPublic SurveyManualVolunteers´TrainingTrain the TrainerWorkshopCampaignResult 1Result 2Result/ ActivityYear 1MonthsYear 2MonthsYear 3Months1.1. Campaigning1.1.1 Public Survey1.1.2. Training1.1.3. Campaign1.2. Teachers´Capacity Building1.2.1. Manual1.2.2. TTT Workshop1.2.3. Workshops for StudentsWorkshops forstudents 3 paths44
  45. 45. Prepare budget per activity and partnerChapter/ Budget itemNo. ofactivityPartner Unit UnitrateNo ofunitsTotal1. HR1.2. Coordinator• Do not use lump sumps!• Check that activities are backed with sufficient resources• Check who is responsible for which activity and its budget• Check overheads (all 7%?, only lead agency?, otherwise?)• Check co-financing (all per budget split?, jointproposals?, what if one does not manage?• Check resource schedule –What if activities are delayed?What if EC delays payment? Can you self-finance it? Can yourlead agency pre-finance you? – include it in your MoU 45
  46. 46. Plan for sustainability!RisksSustainability• Financial /Economic• Institutional• Policy /Political• Environmental• Technical• Social• ....46
  47. 47. Plan for sustainability!Issues observed:• Projects are often unsustainable – relying on subsequent funding. Thereis hardly any co-funding by target groups, no planned handover,sustainable communication/mechanisms etc.• Budget and staff reduction affects continuation.• Sustainability may be undermined by other, more urgent causes.Some tips:• Set up the sustainability plan from the beginning! (and adjust it on theway)• Involve stakeholders in decision making from the very beginning toincrease their ownership (e.g. set-up mechanisms within existingstructures, that are more likely to sustain after funding ceases)• Involve target groups/beneficiaries financially and/or nonfinancially (co-funding of wells, contribution of land / workforce...)• Use diverse resources and in-kind contributions, e.g. volunteers47
  48. 48. Evaluation terminology48
  49. 49. Evaluation terminologyRelevance – the project meets demonstrated, high priority needs– Selection of the geographical area / topics / target groups... is in line with thestakeholder analysis and (their) needs and as well as with the priorities of the ECand the partner country.– The project is complementary to any existing initiatives (for example, it bringsa missing element, or a new approach etc.).– Use the same terms as in the call!Feasibility – expected efficiency, effectiveness and impact of the project prior to the startof implementation seems high, project will provide sustainable benefits to target groups– The proposed activities are likely to produce the expected results, the results arelikely to produce the effects / impacts (reach the objectives)– Alternative approaches/activities have been considered and the proposed projectdesign seems to be most efficient (taking into account time, funds, other resources)and effectiveCoherence – the project design reflects the problem analysis, stakeholders, external factors– For high priority needs there are adequate results/activities– Key stakeholders are involved adequately in key result areas/activities– Assumptions and risks match the above– Budget reflects the activities, number of outputs planned etc.49
  50. 50. What does participation mean?50
  51. 51. EC Evaluation Criteria51
  52. 52. Evaluation of an EC concept note
  53. 53. Evaluation of a full EC application
  54. 54. Evaluation of a full EC application
  55. 55. Evaluation of a full EC application
  56. 56. Got the funds?ProgrammingIdentificationFormulationFinancingImplementationEvaluation56
  57. 57. What is the difference between monitoring, evaluation, audit?Evaluation• Assessment of project efficiency, effectiveness, impact, relevance andsustainability for the purpose of learning and accountability to stakeholdersMonitoring• Ongoing analysis of project progress towards achieving planned results withthe purpose of improving management decision makingAudit• Assessment of (i) the legality and regularity of project expenditure andincome i.e. compliance with laws and regulations and with applicablecontractual rules and criteria; (ii) whether project funds have been usedefficiently and economically i.e. in accordance with sound financialmanagement;; and (iii) whether project funds have been used effectively i.e.for purposes intended.• Primarily a financial and financial management focus, with the focus ofeffectiveness being on project results.57
  58. 58. How to develop a planning, monitoring and evaluation system? Clarify project scope – stakeholders, institutional capacity,logframe and resources2. Understand the nature of organizational relationships,management arrangements and capacity constraints3. Determine the information needs of project implementers andother key stakeholders (Who? What? When? Link to logframe?)4. Review existing information collection systems and procedures5. As appropriate, develop and document monitoring systemguidelines and formats6. Provide training and resources to support systems developmentand implementation58
  59. 59. Why to have a proper planning, monitoring and evaluation system?• Timely identification of successes and problems during projectimplementation• Informed and timely decision making by project managers to supportimplementation• Accountability for the resources used and results achieved• Stakeholder awareness and participation• The evaluation of project achievements and audit of activities and financesTips:• Keep the users of information clearly in mind (who needs what information?)• Build on local information systems and sources - costs and sustainability ofnew systems!• Collect only the minimum amount of information required – keep it simpleand practical, more information is not better information!• Triangulate sources/ stakeholders, methods• Use Inception reports when team differs from the proposal writters, or whentime passed by between identification and grants approval... Inception reportis done usually 3 months after project start, revises original project proposal -updates logframe, sets annual action plan and monitoring plan59
  60. 60. What is the difference between monitoring, evaluation, audit?60Documentsuccess stories!
  61. 61. Use logframe to prepare Monitoring PlansYear 1Indicator / CountryCZ PL SK Total Note15.000 copies of publicationsdistributed (5.000 each)90% 110% 100% 100% Achieved120 teachers trained (40 each) 45 40 35 120 AchievedMin. 50% of teachers implement thenew tools within 6 months60% 40% 30% 40% Notachieved• Use indicators from the logframe• Split by year and partner• Use plan vs. actual, % or trends over time• Develop adequate sources of verification• Distribution lists• Attendance sheets with contacts!• On-line feedback forms after 6 months (combined withsupervision of teachers)• Media monitoring, public surveys...61
  62. 62. Monitoring Visit Checklist 62
  63. 63. Monitoring Progress Report (Narrative) 63
  64. 64. Monitoring – Other toolsShops at Forms at Geolocation at www.googlemaps.com64
  65. 65. Regular reviews with partners 65
  66. 66. EC Results Oriented Monitoring1. Relevance and quality of design1.1 What is the relevance of this project?• Are the general objectives and the specific objective coherent with the policies of theGovernment partner and do they support them?• Do these objectives support the development and cooperation European strategies fromthe specific sector (considering in particular the Country Strategy Document(DEP)/National Indicative Plan (PIN); the Paris Declaration; the Aid Efficacy EuropeanAgenda)? ?• Is the project still responding to the needs of the target groups?1.2 In the current design, is the intervention logic still valid?• Is there a logic framework or a similar tool? Which is its current quality? (Does it clearlyreflect how the activities will lead to achieving the results and the impact?). Why not?• Are the general objectives, the specific objective and the results clear and logical and dothey clearly lead to the identified needs?• Is it possible to achieve the speciic objective in the projects framework?• Are there adequate and clear objectively measurable indicators? Are those SMART:Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and illimited in Time?• Are the planned activities, products and direct effects suitable for achieving the specificobjective ?• Are the risks and hypothesis valid? Is there any disposition for risks management?• Is it part of the sustainability design, in other words, is there an exit or transfer strategy?B66
  67. 67. EC Results Oriented Monitoring B1.3 Do all the actors sufficiently support the current design?• Have the key actors been involved in the designing process?• Have the coordination, management and financing schemes been clearly defined? Dothey foment the institutional strengthening and the local appropriation?• Do the projects partners clearly understand the sustainability strategy (transfer strategyto the partners)?• Do the projects partner clearly understand the general objectives (OG) and the specificobjective (OE)?• Are the chronogramme and/or the activities realistic in accordance to the actorscapacities?• If appropriate, how was the projects design adapted for improving its relevance? From acontractual point of view, was it reflected in a simple and direct manner?1.4 Are the transversal aspects in the current design adequately considered?• Have the key transversal question, such as environment, gender, human rights andgovernance, donors coordination or others, been adequately integrated to the projectsdesign?67
  68. 68. EC Results Oriented Monitoring B2. Effectiveness2.1 How are the availability and use of the media and inputs managed?• Up to which point the inputs are put to disposal/supplied in time for the execution of theactivities between all the parties involved?• Up to which point are the inputs provided/supplied at the cost expected (or lower thanexpected) to the parties involved?• Is there a regular assessment of the inputs for encouraging a cost-effective execution ofthe activities? Who carries out the assessment?• Are the project’s resources managed in a transparent and responsible manner?• Are the contractual procedures clearly understood? Do they facilitate the project’sexecution?2.2 How is the activities execution managed?• Is the logic framework or any similar tool used as a management instrument? If not,why?• Is there an activity and resources calendar (or work plan)? Is it used for managing theproject or any other relevant agent?• Up to which point are the activities executed in accordance with what was planned? Incase of delays, could they be corrected?• Are there any committed or spent funds in accordance with the execution calendar? Ifnot, why?68
  69. 69. EC Results Oriented Monitoring B• How are the project’s activities assessed? If necessary are there any correctivemeasures?• If necessary, how flexible is the project for being adapted to the changing needs?• If necessary, how is the project coordinated with other similar interventions forfomenting synergies and avoid duplications?2.3 How are the products being achieved?• Have the products been handed in on time and in a logical sequence?• To this day, what is the quality of the products?• Is it possible for the products achieved to contribute to the expected results?• Are they properly reflected in the IOV/goals?2.4 How is the partners’ contribution and involvement?• Do the inter-institutional structures, for example the assessment committees orassessment systems, allow an efficient execution of the project?• Were all the partners capable of realising the financial and/or human resourcescontributions?• Is there good communication between the managers of the country partner, theDelegation of the European Commission and the project’s management?69
  70. 70. EC Results Oriented Monitoring B3. Efficiency until Now3.1 How does the project achieve the expected results?• Until now, have the expected results been achieved?• Are the IOV/specific object goals appropriate? Are they being compared?• What is the quality of the results/services available?• Have all the target groups, until now, had access and used the available results?• Are there any factors that prevent the target groups from having access to theresults/services?3.2 Until now, in accordance with the execution, what is the probability of achieving thespecific objective?• In which way has the project been adapted or can be adapted to the changing externalconditions (risks and hypotheses) for ensuring benefits to the target groups?• In case of unexpected negative effects on the target groups or if there is a possibility thatthey could occur in the project, to what point were appropriate steps taken by projectmanagement?• How do the unexpected positive effects contribute to the results generated/servicesavailable?70
  71. 71. EC Results Oriented Monitoring B4. Impact prospects4.1 What is the project’s direct impact perspective on the general objective?• Which impacts, if any, are already obvious?• Which impacts seem probable?• Are they the current IOV/realistic goals? What is the probability of achieving them?• Are there any external factors that could put at risk the project’s direct impact?4.2 How has the project or will it have any positive and/or negative impacts, whetherenvironmental, social, cultural, gender or economic?• Has there been/will there be any positive unexpected impacts on the planned targetgroups or other project’s non target communities? How has it affected the impact?• Has the project taken any measures in time for mitigating the unexpected negativeimpacts? What was the result?• Is there any coherence, complementarity and coordination between the donors? Doesthis have any indirect impact over the project?Check Results Oriented Monitoring Website of the EC
  72. 72. EC Results Oriented Monitoring B5. Potential sustainability5.1 Financial and economic viability• If the services have to be institutionally supported is it possible that the funds should bereleased? If this is the case, by whom?• Once the project finished, are the services/results accessible to the target groups?• If the economic factors change can the benefits be maintained (ex. raw materials prices,exchange rate, etc.)?• Are the beneficiaries or relevant authorities/institutions capable of guaranteeing themaintenance or substitution of technologies/services introduced by the project?• Is there any economic/financial exit strategy? If this the case, what are the probabilitiesthat it will be carried out?5.2 What is the project’s appropriation level by some of the targets groups? Will thiscontinue after the end of the external support?• How much is the project inserted in the local structures?• How have the target groups and possibly other relevant groups of interest or actors beeninvolved in the planning and the execution process?• How actively are the relevant target groups involved in the decision taking regarding theorientation and execution of the project?• "How probable is the use of the relevant results by the target groups?"• Do the target group got any plan for giving continuity to the benefits? If this is the case,will they possibly achieve them?72
  73. 73. EC Results Oriented Monitoring B5.3 What is the level of political support to the project? What is the level of interactionbetween the project and the political level?• What support have the relevant national, sectorial and budget policies given?• Did the policy and priority changes affect the project? How is the project adapting to thechanges regarding the long-term support needs?• Is there a possibility for a political or private sector to continue once the project isfinished?5.4 How is the project contributing to the institutional and management capacity?• To which point is the project inserted in the institutional structures that will probablysurvive beyond the project’s life?• Are the project’s partners trained in technical, financial and management terms forcontinuing with the benefits/services of the project?• Will there be an adequate level of appropriate and qualified human resources availablefor continuing with the project’s benefits?• Are the relations with the new or the existing institutions good? Are there any plans togiving continuity to some or all of the project’s activities?73
  74. 74. Wait.... are we actually making a difference?ProgrammingIdentificationFormulationFinancingImplementationEvaluation74
  75. 75. Plan external evaluation well aheadTermsofReference–Objectives,scope,stakeholders,questions,budget,schedule,outputs,use.Desk studyInterviewsSurveysFocus groupsCase studiesPreliminaryfindings&conclusionsFinaldebriefingof all partnersCommunication with the Project PartnersDraft evaluationreportcommented byall partnersFinalevaluationreportInceptionphase1-3 monthsFieldresearch1-3 monthsReportingphase1-2 monthsInitialbriefingandinceptionEvaluatorSelection75
  76. 76. How to measure learning outcomes? 76
  77. 77. Links• EC - Non-state actors and local authorities in development• Forecasted NSALA calls• NSALA Eligibility 24)Check relevant calls and action fiches• CONCORD Europe• PRAG• EPDET – European Program for Development Evaluation• RISC: How do we know it is working? (for measuring learning outcomes / attitudinalchange of students)77
  78. 78. Good luck!Inka Píbilováinka@evaluace.com78