INTERATIONAL SOCIETY FOR POVERTY ELIMINATION ECONOMIC ALLIANCE GROUP
Briefing # 5: How to Implement AAAA and SDG Sustainable Solutions?
Global Call to World Leaders, Representatives of 193 UN Member States, 9 Major Groups, other CSOs’ and other Stakeholders.
By Lanre Rotimi and Peter Orawgu. 30 August 2015
The SDG is set to be endorsed at the 70th UN General Assembly, UNGA in September 2015. Yet the latest outcome document, “Transforming our World: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”, that will be adopted, despite significant improvement in language and text, did not answer AAAA (Addis Ababa Action Agenda) and SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) How questions.
It appears the relevant authorities have resolved that the flaws and failures in the AAAA and SDG Processes should be addressed, hence the Six Interactive Dialogue Sessions during the UN Sustainable Development Summit, UNSDS, New York, 25 – 27 September 2015 will focus on answer to outstanding (even at this eleventh hour) AAAA and SDG What and How questions. This is commendable and underlines the willingness of relevant authorities to respond to calls for urgent need to correct all flaws and failures in the Finance for Development, FfD and Post 2015 Development Agenda Processes before final endorsement of SDG by 70th UNGA.
It will be recalled that a First and Final Draft UN Secretary General’s Synthesis Report was released on 4 December 2014 with translation to 6 UN Official language copies released on 31 December 2014.
ISPE / EAG drew the attention of relevant authorities to the need to answer all Synthesis Report How questions before the copies in 6 UN Official languages were released, even if release date had to be extended by 2 weeks to 15 January 2015. This suggestion was ignored on the excuse that comments and edits would be taken even after the release of copies in 6 UN Official languages.
We are not aware if comments / edits were submitted, but the World is aware that 9 months after, Synthesis Report Recommendations were not implemented and so issues that could have been easily resolved or need not have come up at all during the FfD and Post 2015 Processes, have become reoccurring decimals up till now; leading to the endorsement of flawed AAAA in July 2015 by the 69th UNGA and the expected endorsement of flawed SDG in September by the 70th UNGA. This is regrettable.
The 69th UNGA has scheduled meetings for 1 September and 15 September 2015 to prepare ground for endorsement of SDG by 70th UNGA during the 25 – 27 September 2015 United Nations Sustainable Development Summit, UNSDS.
The Big Question is: if in over one year of intense negotiations, AAAA and SDG How questions were not answered or considered, what is the probability that in just 3 days of intense negotiations during the 2015 UNSDS, correct answer will be found to this all important AAAA and SDG How question and in ways that help achieve increasing convergence between AAAA and SDG Vision Intention and Reality, on schedule dates, in each of the 193 UN Member States? The 1 and 15 September 2015 69th UNGA meetings need to clearly answer this Big Question in the Common Interest and Common Future of Global Citizens, particularly the over 2 Billion Poor Worldwide.
If enough Individuals, Institutions and Governments who feel strongly that "negotiators would extend the negotiations rather than rushing to agree on the issues that will really matter for people in our world, only to make avoidable mistakes because of this rush" actually raised their Voices, and mobilize Global Collective Action to Persuade and if necessary Pressure co-Facilitators, 193 Member States and other concerned Stakeholders to DO the Needful, to produce a revised and reinvigorated AAAA and SDG that is Masterplan with ACTION providing real solutions to real problems facing real people; to replace the current AAAA and SDG that is Vision and Words without ACTION not providing real solutions to real problems facing real people; there is no reason why the 70th UNGA cannot wait till November or December 2015 to adopt revised AAAA and revised SDG that has filled identified gaps and linked identified disconnect in current AAAA and SDG. And there is precedent - Synthesis Report was to be released on 17 September 2014 at 69th UNGA but the release was delayed until 4 December 2014.
In Briefings #1, #2 #3 and #4, we focused on need to answer HOW Questions now, in the FfD and Post 2015 Processes. Let us consider How to Implement revised AAAA and revised SDG Sustainable Solutions whose Design and Delivery is based on sound answer to revised AAAA and revised SDG What and How questions in ways that help achieve increasing convergence between revised AAAA and revised SDG Vision Intention and Reality in each of the 193 UN Member States:
UNSDS Six Interactive Dialogue Sessions
Interactive Dialogue 1 – Ending Poverty and Hunger
The Introduction says “MDG Goal 1 – Eradicate extreme Poverty and Hunger. Globally the Poverty Target was achieved 5 years ahead of schedule in 2000”. The fact that Poverty is worse in 2015 than in 2000, in many African Countries and many Developed Countries suggest strongly that the Data underlining this Scorecard is at best Not Credible. This underlines need for Data Revolution that delivers revised AAAA and revised SDG Credible Data on timely basis in each of the 193 UN Member Countries.
Quite apart from the fundamental issue of Scorecard Data Credibility, is another fundamental issue of Scorecard Benchmark. To claim that Poverty Target has been met Globally when several Developed and Developing Countries are recording incidence of increasing Poverty is Denial or Deception. It is like saying that Ebola has been eradicated Worldwide but still present in remote corners of a few Countries. The revised AAAA and revised SDG should not allow this type of Scorecard.
Interactive Dialogue 2 – Tackling Inequalities, Empowering Women and Girls etc
The Introduction says that “Focusing only on national and global averages and aggregates makes it easier to miss uneven progress and even growing inequalities at the subnational or community level – including between women and men and girls and boys, or among specific ethnic, age, income, minority or other social and population groups. In many cases, the most remote, marginalized and vulnerable people in the world are the most difficult to reach. This is why the new SDG agenda is underpinned by a strong commitment to reduce inequalities within and between countries, to eliminate all forms of discrimination and to review disaggregated data to ‘reach the furthest behind first’. This is why the new Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development makes a pledge that “no one will be left behind”.
We fully endorse this point. It underlines point made in Interactive Dialogue 1 – first the Data used to calculate the Global MDG Scorecard is not likely to be credible and second, disaggregating MDG Data at Regional, Sub-regional, National and Sub-national levels gives clearer and more correct Scorecard. Again this underlines need for Reforms that help to fully implement each revised AAAA and revised SDG Action Agenda Item in a way that is integrated to the full implementation of all UN Secretary General’s Data Revolution Report Recommendations in each of the 193 UN Member States and with effective monitoring and evaluation of this implementation within effective and efficient Country Led Monitoring and Evaluation Systems.
Interactive Dialogue 3 – Fostering Sustainable Economic Growth etc
Our World today is too rich to be poor and too poor to be rich. There is more than enough for over 7 Billion Peoples Needs but not enough for over 7 Billion Peoples Greed. The SDGs’ must Design and Deliver a truly Transformative Agenda that help achieve each of the SDG Goals and Targets as domesticated in each of the 193 UN Member States and must help achieve shift from Globalization as Force for Evil to Globalization as Force for Good. If Village to Global Stakeholders are to JOINTLY achieve revised AAAA and revised SDG Vision Ambitions then to unlock needed Trillions of Dollars; all issues of Mistrust within and between Stakeholders that are within and between Countries must be effectively and efficiently addressed.
Interactive Dialogue 4 – Protecting our Planet and Combating Climate Change
The Introduction says that “Humanity’s central challenge for the 21st century is to develop economic, social and governance systems capable of ending hunger and poverty, achieving sustainable levels of production and consumption while living in harmony with our natural environment. In this regard, the new 2030 Agenda recognizes that climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time and its adverse impacts undermine the ability of all countries to achieve sustainable development.1 The environment is one of the primary determinants of individual and community health, and exposure to physical, chemical and biological risk factors in the environment can harm human health in various ways. Compounded by climate change, the pressures on terrestrial and marine ecosystems and resources are major threats to the Earth’s biological life support systems, human well-being and human development. In addition, disasters pose a significant challenge for sustainable development. The annual losses from natural disasters now average US$250 billion to US$300 billion. Mortality and economic loss associated with extensive risks in low and middle-income countries are rising, driven by increasing exposure to hazards, high levels of inequality, rapid urban development and environmental degradation. Sustainable and equitable management of natural resources is indispensable”.
We fully endorse this point. The SDG Design and Delivery must find a way to address fundamental issues of Natural Hazards, Unnatural Hazards (Man Made), Natural Disasters and Unnatural Disasters. We must find a way to live in better harmony with Nature. We must find a way to address damage done to our fragile Planet by past and present generations so that this generation can pass on a more environmentally sustainable Planet to future generations. It is in our enlightened self interest to do this.
Interactive Dialogue 5 – Building Effective, Accountable and Inclusive Institutions
The Introduction says that “Effective, accountable and inclusive institutions are essential to achieving the SDGs. Thus the new 2030 Agenda recognizes the need to build peaceful, just and inclusive societies that provide equal access to justice and that are based on respect for human rights (including the right to development), on effective rule of law and good governance at all levels and on transparent, effective and accountable institutions.1 Institutions –formal and informal – determine how decisions are made, how resources are allocated, how well markets function, how natural resources are governed, how conflicts are managed and how violence and crime are prevented and addressed”.
We fully endorse this point. Its operationalization in practice calls for “Changing Attitude and Behaviour” on the part of Individuals, Institutions and Governments in each of the 193 UN Member States.
Interactive Dialogue 6 – A Strengthened Global Partnership etc
The Introduction says that “Both the 2030 agenda for sustainable development that will be adopted at this Summit and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda adopted in July 2015 underline the utmost importance of mobilizing the means to implement the Agenda through a revitalised Global Partnership for Sustainable Development, bearing in mind that the Agenda is global in nature and universally applicable to all countries while respecting different national circumstances”.
We call for caution on this point. That the authorities have designed UNSDS 2015 to help answer several revised AAAA and SDG What and How questions in each of the Six Interactive Dialogues, is admission that there are flaws and failures in current AAAA and SDG that need to be addressed so that they will not be putting the cart before the horse thus endorsing AAAA and SDG that is each Vision and Words without ACTION.
Endorsing SDG at this UNSDS should ONLY be considered if satisfactory answers to all the What and How questions set out for discussion, acceptable to all 193 Member States can be found. To force endorsement of SDG where many of the What and How questions remain contentious, is to start building the SDG Superstructure on Shaky Foundation. Allowed to occur in reality the ultimate consequences for Citizens in both Developed and Developing Countries could be catastrophic.
The answer to all the What and How questions that UNSDS Delegates participating in the Six Interactive Dialogue Sessions seek to collectively find is beyond the Competences of these Delegates. They cannot effectively speak for over 7 Billion People without fully involving them. The Delegates are Agents. The People in each Community in each Local Government in each of the 193 UN Member States are the Principals. The Agents cannot ACT without the full CONSENT of the Principals. Can all required Consent of each Community in each of 193 UN Member States be obtained by each Agent from his / her Principal in the 3 Days of UNSDS Negotiations? Certainly Not. This underlines need for Operation Reach 7 Billion in 7 Days to start from first reaching 7 Billion to participate meaningfully in answer to revised AAAA and SDG How questions.
Moving forward, what is required is another round of more effective Global Consultations that Actually Learn Lessons from flaws and failures in the Global Consultations leading to production of Synthesis Report first and final Draft; that is a revised and reinvigorated Global Consultation that Actually CONNECT each Community in each Local Government in each of 193 UN Member States with UN Headquarters New York, effectively and efficiently.
This is not as Difficult as it seems, if there is genuine determination on the part of UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon and UN Family Organization, including World Bank Group and IMF Executives and Staff to effectively deploy UN DaO (Delivery as One) to help DRIVE effective and efficient Global Consultations that would lead to negotiating and establishing all necessary arrangements for answering all revised AAAA and revised SDG What and Why Questions in ways that ensure all revised AAAA and revised SDG Action Agenda Items in each of the 17 / 21 Goals are achieved on schedule thus ensuring that increasing convergence between revised AAAA and revised SDG Vision Intention and Reality is achieved and seen to be achieved in each Community in each Local Government in each of 193 UN Member States by 2030.
Mr. Moon should CHAMPION this reinvigorated and reinforced Global Consultation to match his August 2015 Nigeria Visit; Words with ACTION and to also leave revised AAAA and SDG that is Vision and Words with ACTION as part of his Lasting Legacies. Will Mr Moon fail Chibok Girls and their Families? Will Mr Moon fail the over 2 Billion Poor Worldwide?
Believe it. What Gets Measured Gets Done. It is Possible to Get all Countries lagging behind to meet MDGs’ Goals and Targets within the next 3 years; and accelerate to make up for lost time so as to achieve SDG by 2030. It is easier to get all Countries that have met MDG to press forward to meet SDG by 2030. It is possible for Developed Countries who were not part of executing MDG but are part of executing SDG to meet SDG by 2030 – if all Stakeholders adopt Common Measures of Success Framework.
There is more than enough Resources – Influence, Science, Technology, Innovation, Manpower, Funding, Spiritual, Land and Water for each of the 193 UN Members States and remaining Non UN Member States in our World today, to meet all 17 / 21 SDGs’ (Once need to add specific Goals of Corruption, Conflict, Data and Religion and unbundling Goal 16 to focus on Governance Goal only is recognized as Key to effectively answering all What and Why questions), if there is genuine DESIRE on the part of Powerful and Weak Nations; Large and Small Countries to JOINTLY Operationalize in Practice all the Ps in the SDG.
The future of our fragile Planet greatly depends on Design and Delivery of revised AAAA and revised SDG to be successful on sustainable basis. In today’s interconnected Global Village, what happens or does not happen in the weakest or smallest Countries / Nations can have very grievous / adverse effect on what happens in the largest or most Powerful Countries / Nations. Therefore each of the 193 UN Member States must answer all What and How questions in ways that promote and protect the UN Family Organization as Effective and Efficient Platforms for Global Collective Action for Political Stability; Economic Stability; Financial Stability; Peace and Security and Fighting Corruption. Anything less and we could have Global Recession that make that of 1930’ Child’s Play which is bad or World War 3 which is worse.
From “Development Evaluation Learning” to “Development Implementation Doing”
1. Development Cooperation Policies, Programmes and Projects (3Ps) in 193 UN Member States, whether co-financed by International Development Co-operation Organizations/Departments/Agencies or not, should always support poor people in Developed / Developing Countries to improve their standard of living. They should, employing a somewhat more technical language, always (that is without exception!) serve to create Sustainable Benefits for their Target Groups (SBTG).
2. SBTG should thus be the Objective all of the 3Ps Actors (Political Leaders, Organizations involved, the Target Groups themselves, Planners, Implementers, Monitors and Evaluators, as well as all other supportive stakeholders in international institutions; developing and developed countries alike) should unite to realize.
3. Development Evaluation, it has been said, is for (a) Accountability and (b) for Learning. That is true as far as it goes. But there is a third element missing without which (a) and (b) above will be entirely useless: (c) Improved 3Ps effectiveness. That goes without saying? Alas! It doesn’t! There is a Gulf between Learning and Doing. Why?
4. Evaluations of Development Interventions (the 3Ps) are One-Off Affaires: They concern, in general, a concrete case among the 3Ps: a given Development Policy, Program or Project. Widening this case-by-case perspective, they can also pertain to countries, regions, themes, sectors or instruments. But they are always restricted to the specific development intervention(s) or topic(s) under review. They serve to improve, each time, that specific development effort and they are conceived and timed accordingly. What they fail to do, by their very nature, is to serve the accumulation of Development Evaluation Learning: in each specific instance, the evaluation may have served to improve the effectiveness of the case under review, after which that learning tends to be forgotten again.
5. As a consequence, the Terms of Reference for each specific P (for its Identification, its Planning, its Implementation/Monitoring and for all of its Evaluations) tend to be conceived “ab ovo”: each time again, from scratch. And even if some of the actors mentioned in point 2 above may fall back on previous experience or remember a case similar to the one they are dealing with, their work cannot possibly profit from the accumulated Evaluation Learning that has been and continues to be produced by Development Evaluators around the world. And how could this be otherwise, as Lesson Forgetting follows “pari passu” Lesson Learning, thus preventing Lesson Learning Accumulation and its use in Operational Development Work Practice to occur in the first place? Such accumulation/use simply isn’t part of the system in the past and present.
6. The “Master Assessment Framework” (“MAF”), complete with its Data-Base (still to be developed!), is the tool designed to make such “accumulation/use” an integral part of the system. It is a tool in the making, still to be reviewed and improved systematically by professional wisdom around the world. It is attached in its present form.
7. We therefore invite International Institutions/Government Entities/Governing Councils/Executive Boards concerned etc..., as part of Building Sustainable Solutions to AAAA and SDG from Village to Global levels in each of the 193 UN Member States to (a) have a critical look at the substance of the MAF, improve it further and, if they have confidence in its creative potential, to (b) devise the ways and means to introduce it into their “internal” as well as “external” Development Work Practice worldwide.
UNGA Solutions Summit
The UNGA Solutions Summit was initially scheduled as a side event during UNSDS 2015. It is not clear at this time whether this important side event will still hold. Whether it holds during UNSDS 2015 or not there is need to redesign the UNGA Solutions Summit Process, if it is to help achieve increasing convergence between its Vision Intention and Reality that is Integral part of work towards achieving revised AAAA and revised SDG Vision Intention and Reality in each of the 193 UN Member States.
The intention of UNGA Solutions Summit 2015 as expressed on its website is:-
1. To make visible, and lift-up exceptional innovators -- technologists, engineers, scientists, and others -- who are developing solutions that address one or more of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals and
2. To catalyze a grassroots effort, where communities scout and convene resources around solution-makers. And intended its Expected Outcome:-
A group of 17-20 global innovators will be invited to give a well-rehearsed ‘lightning talk’ outlining their breakthrough efforts to a juxtaposed audience of senior policymakers who have the means to pave solid regulatory foundations, investors who care deeply about long-term change and impact, and industry leaders who are able to deploy quickly and at scale. The physical gathering will serve as a catalyst for a longer-term, locally-led and globally-supported effort to activate the world’s most forward thinking technologists, scientists, & engineers and to convene the resources and talent to apply their work in addressing the Sustainable Development Goals.
The type and quality of responses being submitted do not outline breakthrough efforts, are unlikely to attract the interest of senior policymakers and or Investors and industry leaders and do not demonstrate potential to develop quickly and at scale.
The UNGA Solutions Summit 2015 is not a Charity Event. It is Serious Business. Therefore key issues such as:-
1. Design of Application Form for Innovators / Creators to allow for uniform Development Analysis, Economic Viability Analysis, Financial Viability Analysis, Risk Assessment, Financial Monitoring Assessment etc thus giving each Applicant equal opportunity for selection of Best Projects / Enterprises.
2. Definition of the 4th Category of Creators - “Others” to include all Innovative Thinkers, Creative Designers, Development Change Champions and Anti Poverty Campaigners on State Actors and Non State Actors sides in each of the 193 UN Member States. That is clarification to ensure that “Others” should be a gateway to include anyone who could demonstrate he / she is an Innovator / Creator and has something of value to offer to help enrich revised AAAA and revised SDG Implementation Processes within specific Action Agenda Item in a specific location – sub-national, national, sub-regional, regional or global; that is “others” should include Innovators / Creators from Traditional backgrounds on Non Science side - Artists, Actors / Actresses, Musicians, Designers, Filmmakers, Painters, Sculptors, other Artistic Professionals as well as Innovators / Creators from Fields conventional wisdom wouldn't typically label "Creative" - such as Business, Education, Geodesign, Risk Management, Policy Reform, Development Evaluation / Public Evaluation etc, that is, anyone who takes a creative approach to his / her work - solving problems, thinking up new ways of doing things and new ideas and making them happen - that transforms whatever he / she is doing into Creative Enterprise. Therefore revised AAAA and revised SDG Sustainable Solutions in each Action Agenda Item in each of the 17 / 21 SDGs’ should be about identifying, empowering, promoting and protecting Creative Enterprise in each Community in each Local Government in each of the 193 UN Member States to help design and deliver sustainable solutions to revised AAAA and SDG.
3. Design of Judges Application Form to allow for selection of Judges with the Competences to help select the Best Applicants in each Category.
4. Design of Platforms for effective Interactions between Innovators / Creators and relevant Stakeholders within Network Partnership for Sustainable Solutions:-
a) Inter-governmental and Inter-ministerial Policymakers Network
b) Angel Investors Network
c) Creative Enterprise Promoters Network
d) Multidisciplinary Consultants Network
e) Service Providers Network
f) Anti Poverty Campaigners Network
g) Development Change Champions Network
h) Network of Networks (a) – (g)
5. Other relevant Matters.
should be speedily addressed. The UNGA Solutions Summit is a Seed that has been planted and needs to be nurtured. Our fear is that flaws and failures in Design and Delivery, may stunt growth which is bad or kill the plant which is worse. It is not helpful to see this as another Grant Finance Program for 17 - 20 Beneficiaries. It is helpful to see this as a Business Development Finance Program to promote and protect Innovation and Entrepreneurship within each Action Agenda Item in revised AAAA and revised SDG.
It is not helpful to get the UNGA Solutions Summit Wrong through acts of omission or commission knowingly or unknowingly committed. To avoid this urgent Action Steps need to be taken to better align responses to the website stated Intention and Outcome and Help is available, if the Team ask.
Should relevant authorities genuinely desire to help achieve increasing convergence between UNGA Solutions Summit 2015 Intention and Reality, there is urgent need to review priorities, direction, sequence and pace in the UNGA Solutions Summit Design and Delivery Processes for Improving Revised AAAA and SDG Sustainable Solutions through finding practical answers Solutions Summit that help find answer to all What and How questions that the Interactive Dialogue Sessions have been scheduled to address.
International Development Cooperation Scorecard
ISPE / EAG Study finding on first 50 years of Development Cooperation 1960 - 2009, coincide with EC Study finding with the following Scorecard:-
Policy, Program, Project Evaluation
1/3 Good; 1/3 Flawed and 1/3 Failed
Policy, Program, Project Implementation
1/3 Good; 1/3 Flawed and 1/3 Failed
Regretfully because Lessons have not been Learnt, in the first 6 years of the second 50 years of Development Cooperation 2010 - 2059, the Scorecard is the same. Thus although Synthesis Report called for CHANGE in December 2014, there is no difference in 2015 Scorecard and there is likely to be no difference in 2030 Scorecard after SDG end or 2059 after second 50 years of Development Cooperation unless Village to Global Stakeholders Jointly agree to face new direction and adopt new priorities.
Should Village to Global Stakeholders accept Transformation Change through addressing all fundamental issues we consistently raise; a new Scorecard can be recorded in 2030 and 2059:-
Policy, Program, Project Evaluation
90% Good; 5% Flawed and 5% Failed
Policy, Program, Project Implementation
90% Good; 5% Flawed and 5% Failed
The work towards achieving this new scorecard could start from Reviewing Design and Delivery of UNGA Solutions Summit and the 2 Track Approach to endorsing AAAA and SDG that we have suggested.
Two Track Approach to Endorsing AAAA and SDG
We have consistently raised serious issues of serious business that deserve serious attention of relevant UN and 193 Member States authorities with responsibility for AAAA and SDG in this and earlier Policy Briefings.
It is clear that there are flaws and failures in the AAAA and SDG Processes. Evidence is UNSDS Interactive Dialogue structured to answer What and How questions that ought to have been asked and answered before AAAA was endorsed in July 2015 by 69th UNGA and should be answered before SDG is endorsed in September or before the end of 2015 by 70th UNGA.
The Big Questions are:-
1. Can fundamental issues we consistently raise be wished away and can all necessary arrangements we call for be left to happen on its own? Certainly Not, if there is no Denial or Deception; that is if we face Reality.
2. Should SDG be endorsed if answer to UNSDS Interactive Dialogue What and How questions agreeable to all 193 and that is capable of supporting Village to Global Stakeholders in the Joint work towards achieving increasing convergence between AAAA and SDG Vision Intention and Reality cannot be found in the 3 Days: 25 – 27 September 2015? Again Certainly Not, if Stakeholders are Serious.
We accept that these fundamental issues we consistently raise are especially difficult but not impossible to solve. We accept that the UN System is guided by Rules. But can these Rules not be amended where necessary to give a UN System fit for the 21st Century? Is UN System Fit for the 21st Century not one of the Deliverables in AAAA and SDG Vision? – Second How Question in Interactive Dialogue Session 3.
A review meeting has been scheduled for 1 September 2015 and on 15 September 2015 69th UNGA will give final consideration to the SDG and recommend its adoption to 70th UNGA. 70th UNGA will endorse SDG with its flaws and failures on 25 September 2015. Is it not in Global Interest to adopt a Two Track Approach towards endorsing SDG:-
Track 1 - The ongoing Process to endorse SDG as is by 25 September 2015
Track 2 - A new Process to correct all flaws and failures in current AAAA and SDG that will merge with Track 1 by November or December 2015 when 70th UNGA endorse revised AAAA and revised SDG that is Vision and Words with ACTION.
Our view is that whatever has been gained in the short term under current Win - Lose arrangement, that produced the endorsed AAAA and the to be endorsed SDG that is Vision and Words without Action; could be significantly or totally lost in the long term when consequences of the flaws and failures manifest in the implementation phase of the endorsed AAAA and endorsed SDG in 2016 and beyond.
It is pertinent to note that refusing ordered change, make disordered change inevitable. There is still time to choose ordered change to produce revised AAAA and SDG that effectively answer all Interactive Dialogue Session What and How questions under Win - Win arrangement producing revised AAAA and SDG that are Vision and Words with ACTION.
The probability is high that negotiations that will produce lasting agreement cannot be completed in 3 Days of UNSDS 2015. Time, Money and Effort Invested to arrive at answer to What and How questions acceptable to all 193 Member States and that produce revised AAAA and revised SDG that are Vision and Words with ACTION is Investment that will deliver Value for Money and Fitness for Purpose, regardless of whether such agreement is reached in November or December 2015.
Answer to revised AAAA and revised SDG What and How Questions agreeable to all 193 Member States is what is required to find lasting, successful and sustainable solutions to real and complex World problems of Injustice, Hunger, Poverty, Inequality, Corruption, Terrorism, Unemployment, Underemployment, Unemployability etc on the ground from Village to Global levels in each of the 193 UN Member States. To rush an agreement in the 3 Days of negotiations is to put the entire noble and worthy AAAA and SDG Vision in jeopardy.
The UNSDS is fresh opportunity to answer revised AAAA and SDG What and How questions. Stakeholders need to accept reality that robust answers to these questions acceptable to all 193 Member States cannot be found in 3 Days. UN and 193 Member States have left undone what they should have done over 9 months ago. To force any agreement acceptable to Powerful Countries within the 3 Days of UNSDS 2015, is to risk squandering the Bright Prospects of achieving revised AAAA and revised SDG Vision Ambitions. If this is allowed, the ultimate consequences for Citizens in both Developed and Developing Countries could be catastrophic.
The practical answers to revised AAAA and revised SDG What and How questions that the Six Interactive Dialogue Sessions are scheduled to address should include full implementation with effective monitoring and evaluation of the implementation of all recommendations / provisions / Action Agenda Items in:-
1. UN Secretary General’s Synthesis Report 2014
2. UN Secretary General’s Data Revolution Report 2014
3. Revised AAAA 2015 that is Vision and Words with ACTION
4. Revised SDG 2015 that is Vision and Words with ACTION
And in ways that are aligned and harmonized with the full implementation with effective monitoring and evaluation of the implementation of all recommendations / provisions / Action Agenda Items in:-
1. Each Regional Development Plan in each Region in our World today
2. Each Sub-regional Development Plan in each Sub-region in our World today
3. Each National Development Plan in each of the 193 UN Member States
4. Each Sub-national Development Plan in each of the 193 UN Member States
Our Suggestion: UN Executives and Staff can help 193 Member States; CSOs’ and other Stakeholders make the Right Choice if UNDESA, FfD Office, ECOSOC Office, EOSG and OPGA accept to jointly nudge all remaining Stakeholders to address all issues raised in this Policy Briefing and earlier Policy Briefings and on time. The Time to raise Voices is NOW. Delay is Dangerous.
God Bless UN.
God Bless our World.
International Society for Poverty Elimination /
Economic Alliance Group,
Akure – Nigeria,
“Master Assessment Framework”
MAF is for Researchers, Planners, Statisticians, Implementers, Monitors, Evaluators and Assessors. Work on the Evaluation side – Monitors, Evaluators and Assessors has been done. Work on Implementation side – Implementers and Planning side – Researchers, Planners and Statisticians would be done as part of MAF testing.
MAF is a Master Toolbox – Single Agenda Implementation Framework (SAIF). MAF consists of a set of Interlinked, Interconnected and Interdependent Frameworks within 3PCM (Policy, Program, Project Cycle Management) Approach. MAF is the 4th Instrument / Tool in 3PCM. The Instruments in SAIF are:-
1. Standard Budget Framework, SBF
2. Standard Changing Attitude and Behavior at Scale Framework, SCABS
3. Standard Commissioning Framework, SCmF
4. Standard Competencies Framework, SCpF
5. Standard Knowledge and Communications Framework, SKCF
6. Standard Lessons Learning Framework, SLLF
7. Standard Marketing Communications Framework, SMCF
8. Standard Measures of Success Framework, SMSF
Work on SBF, SCABS, SCmF, SCpF, SKCF, SLLF, SMCF and SMSF would also be done as part of MAF Testing.
This MAF is built upon 3PCM Benefits Focused Approach to Trade / Development; Monitoring, Evaluation and Assessment; Service Delivery / Performance Management; Elections and Democracy; Diplomacy; Defense / Security; Procurement; Human Rights in all its Ramifications – Political, Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, HR-PESCR; Environment / Climate Change; Management; Governance; Corruption, Capacity Building; Competencies Assessment / Testing and Hunger and Poverty etc
This MAF assumes a Community of Practice (COP) whose members are Professionals genuinely committed to deploying the Art and Science of Practice of a known Approach, such as 3PCM in their daily work. The COP will have responsibility for Professional Regulation and Control, Professional Ethics and Sanctions Enforcement, Continuing Professional Education and related matters. For Professionals on both Service Users and Service Providers sides adopting MAF built upon 3PCM Approach, the COP is MPCOP-PE&ES (Multidisciplinary Professionals Community of Practice on Poverty Elimination and Environmental Sustainability) with Several Professional Societies: Trade / Development; Monitoring, Evaluation and Assessment; Service Delivery / Performance Management; HR-PESCR, Management etc. When fully operational MPCOP-PE&ES would be present in 8 Regions Worldwide – US, Canada and Western Europe; West and central Africa, Eastern and Southern Africa, North Africa and Middle East; Latin America and Caribbean; South Asia, East Asia and Pacific; Central and Eastern Europe and CIS and speak 6 Official Languages – Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish.
MAF is generic. It could be adapted to suit the unique and specific needs of any Developed Country; Developing Country or International Institution.
Preamble (extract from Paris Declaration, 2005):
“We reaffirm the commitments made at Rome to harmonize and align aid delivery. We are encouraged that many donors and partner countries are making aid effectiveness a high priority, and we reaffirm our commitment to accelerate progress in implementation, especially in the following areas:
i. Strengthening partner countries’ national development strategies and associated operational frameworks (e.g. planning, budget and performance assessment frameworks);
ii. Increasing alignment of aid with partner countries’ priorities, systems and procedures and helping to strengthen their capacities;
iii. Enhancing donors’ and partner countries’ respective accountability to their citizens and parliaments for their development policies, strategies and performance;
iv. Eliminating duplication of efforts and rationalizing donor activities to make them as cost-effective as possible.
v. Reforming and simplifying donor policies and procedures to encourage collaborative behavior and progressive alignment with partner countries’ priorities, systems and procedures…
Indicator 11: Results-oriented frameworks – Number of countries with transparent and monitorable performance assessment frameworks to assess progress against (a) the national development strategies and (b) sector programs.”
PART A: Introduction
1. The “Paris Declaration” (PD) underlines the need for the establishment, by developing countries, of “Assessment Frameworks” (AFs) designed to guide and structure their involvement in International Development Cooperation. However, the PD does not define the nature of such AFs, a fact that must be considered a serious gap. The present proposal is designed to contribute to fill in this gap.
2. Traditionally, an “Assessment”, in International Development Cooperation, is the analysis of a Development Intervention (Policy, Program or Project) Proposal. It is designed to judge the quality of that proposal in terms of its completeness and its justification. In judging the proposal, donor priorities and procedures have sometimes weighed too heavily in negotiations between partners, negotiations which should lead to a version of the proposal mutually acceptable. The present draft of a “Master Assessment Framework” (MAF) is designed to be acceptable to ALL actors concerned and to facilitate such negotiations in an atmosphere of mutual respect among equal partners.
3. The MAF agreed among all partners and used to guide and structure the establishment of any proposal for any development intervention within any developing country, could go a long way to render the above mentioned negotiations superfluous or, at least, to seriously limit their length and importance. The probability of rapidly arriving at an agreement between the partners will, indeed, be greatly enhanced if the partners have arrived, prior to the establishment of a country specific “Assessment Framework” or “National Assessment Framework” (NAF), as advocated by the Paris Declaration, at a common understanding of the nature of any Assessment Framework (AF). Such understanding can thus be greatly facilitated by the establishment, in common agreement among ALL partners involved in International Development Cooperation, of such “Master Assessment Framework” (MAF) incorporating the essential features of any AF. What can be said about those “essential features”?
4. First of all, there is one common aspect ALL development interventions worthy of that name have to present, without any exception: they should improve the living conditions of the people at whom they are directed on successful and sustainable basis. In other words and employing a somewhat more technical language: In a democratic setting (regardless of the form of government – capitalist, socialist or communist), all public development interventions: Policies, Programs and Projects, are / should be designed to realize sustainable benefits for their target groups. The design of all Public Development Interventions, ODA co-financed or not, must be conceived on the basis of this principle. All of the MAF design elements considered below, have to serve this objective.
5. The MAF will serve as the basis for the establishment of all National Assessment Frameworks (NAFs). The NAFs, in turn, can be adapted (i. e. subdivided or “categorized”) to suit more closely any regional/sector/theme specifics. Ultimately, thus, the MAF/NAFs will guide the establishment of the Terms of Reference (ToR) that structure all of the standard documents established along the 3P Cycle, for Planning as well as for Evaluation, of any specific Development Intervention: Policy, Program or Project (“3P”) anywhere. Each of these Interventions will thus (a) conserve its unique individuality while (b) incorporating the common wisdom as enshrined in the MAF/NAFs. The above mentioned standard documents will comprise: “3P Idea” documents, pre-feasibility studies, feasibility studies, implementation and monitoring reports, evaluation reports and assessment reports. If thus applied in operational practice, the MAF will help development partners to assess the extent to which development interventions have contributed to poverty alleviation, wealth creation, reduction of inequalities, capacity building, governance, all of which will culminate in sustainable benefits for target groups.
6. If applied according to points 4. And 5 above, the MAF will also be extremely useful in coping with some of the great challenges facing the International Development Community today: It will facilitate the review of progress made by development partners in:
(a) achieving the “Sustainable Development Goals” (MDGs);
(b) achieving the “Addis Ababa Action Agenda” (AAAA);
(c) respecting commitments undertaken according to the “Paris Declaration” (PD) and the “Accra Agenda for Action” (AAA), as well as other international / national development cooperation commitments.
7. The fact that, thus, planning, implementation, evaluation and assessment should be conceived along the same lines of reasoning will not be obvious without justification. Evaluators often give the impression that they want to stay aloof from action, thus keeping their independence, and conceiving “ad hoc” and for each 3P anew, their own terms of reference for their evaluations. This stance ignores a vital fact: Evaluators, like planners, should agree to promote, together and above anything else, the creation of conditions leading to the realization of sustainable benefits for the target groups of development interventions. What else could be the purpose of evaluations? Other than that there’s none: “Benefit focused Planning” should thus be echoed by ”Benefits focused Implementation” and “Benefit focused Evaluation”.
8. The ToR for each 3P, as traced by the MAF/NAFs and then their progressive adaptations to sectors/themes/regions/countries down to the last specific concrete, unique project, should thus be identical for planners and for implementers and evaluators. There is just ONE fundamental difference between the application of these identical ToR by planning on the one hand and implementation / evaluation on the other: Planning is affirmative and looks forward, while Evaluation is inquisitive and looks backwards, and Implementation is constructive and looks at the moment. Planning is intention driven and considers future possibilities/probabilities, while evaluation looks exclusively at existing facts and Implementation is action driven and looks at getting results. But the questions asked in the three cases are on the same subject, point by point, as contained in the common ToR. Please notice that Planners, when trying to avoid the errors they committed “last time”, are engaged in “evaluation”, while evaluators, when making recommendations for future development interventions, are engaged in “planning”, and implementers in seeking to get tasks done are engaged in both “planning” and “evaluation” and so they should be: Planners’, Implementers’ and Evaluators’ minds and imaginations are ever free to travel between the realms of past and future. It is only these two realms that are never allowed to touch, forever divided, as they are, by the fleeting NOW.
9. Some evaluators may be scandalized by and violently opposed to such parallel structuring of the ToR, fearing for what they cherish most of all: their independence. Don’t despair, dear colleagues! Note that the MAF and ALL its “derivatives”, down to the last specific ToR for the smallest “Project” in country C, province P, will obligatorily contain one point that can never be “adapted away”, and that is the point: “Other Aspects”. That will give you the possibility to argue your case: you can say that the idea of identical ToR for planning and evaluation is all nonsense, and WHY. You can invent, under that point, your own ToR and restart the entire evaluation exercise accordingly. There’s ONLY ONE thing that is NOT permitted by the MAF: ignoring the ToR planners have used: You MUST use them, “inter alia”, as well! If you do and if planners have made a serious effort to apply MAF inspired ToR, then chances are that you will find them sufficient. If not, there’s always (remember!) the point: “Other Aspects”...
10.Evaluators may find that the ToR used by planners are insufficient, erroneous or, worst of all, virtually absent. Then they will have to reconstruct what they think might have been planners’ ToR and judge them in the light of the MAF/NAF.
11.Evaluators may also find that the Objective of the development intervention, even if it is expressed in terms of the realization of sustainable benefits for the intervention’s target group (that’s a condition sine qua non, remember!), are not convincing. Then they will propose a different objective (still expressed in terms of sustainable benefits for the target group). This case will be rare, though. In general one can expect that the objective of a development intervention, if conceived by planners within a democratic setting (that’s an important point contained in the MAF), will also be acceptable to evaluators.
12.Summing up, the advantages of the parallel structuring of ToR for (forward-looking) “Benefit focused Planning”, (current action) “Benefits focused Implementation” and (backward-looking) “Benefit focused Evaluation”, in the light of the MAF, appear convincing: This “amalgamated system” will:
(a) make planners, implementers and evaluators of all partners agree and concentrate on the ONE topic that matters in the end: the realization of sustainable benefits for the target groups of development interventions; this being the way, impact should be expressed;
(b) make evaluation “Learning” and “Operational Feed-back” (that remain two important but unresolved problems today) part of an integrated system and therefore, as the term implies, “systematic”, that’s to say automatic;
(c) accumulate lessons from experience while simultaneously encouraging the necessary attention to the specifics of each individual development policy, program and project;
(d) keep lessons learned “up to date”, as new insights contributed by evaluations will be routinely incorporated into the MAF/NAF system which will thus acquire and maintain its “dynamic nature”;
(e) allow the development of a detailed “Data Base”, containing ample comments on each important aspect presented in the MAF/NAFs, at the disposal of planners and evaluators, of implementers and monitors, of target groups and other stakeholders and the interested public (with its parliamentary representatives) in general: the volume of such data bank may turn out to be considerable, as the MAF is adapted to country/regional/sector/thematic NAFs and as these are used as the basis for specific policies, programs and projects;
(f) be easy to use (in spite of the considerable volume of the “Data Base”) as the most important elements will always appear “up-front” in a highly concentrated form on a minimum of pages, thus allowing all actors to descend just to the level of information detail they need to make sure they don’t miss any element, as taught by experience, that they consider important for the specific “P” of the 3P they are involved with;
(g) in that way, quite naturally, simplify the exchange of information, experience and lessons learned among all actors concerned and spread a “common development language” among stakeholders everywhere. Such common language might evolve, eventually, into a true “Communication Strategy” pursued by actors/stakeholders concerned as they learn together and act accordingly.
PART B: Master Assessment Framework (Evaluation side)
2.1. Government/sectoral and Donor policies, coherence and complementarity, Democracy and Human Rights, Good governance
2.2. Features of the sector(s) in the given country (or international) context
2.3. Problems and opportunities to be addressed (Relevance)
2.4. Beneficiaries and the other stakeholders (interests, role in the intervention)
2.5. Other related interventions, cooperation/harmonization with other donors/actors, past best practice
2.6. Documents and data available
2.7. Project/program/policy history, including (a) the process of its advocacy and preparation, (b) application of 3PCM and (c) evaluation lessons learned/applied
3. Intervention (intended and unintended results): Logic Model and Theory of Change (including indicators)
3.1.Objectives/Goals: Realization of sustainable benefits for target groups; contributions to these benefits on the (a) Project, (b) Program and (c) Policy levels (Impact)
3.2.Intervention Outcome/Purpose: Introduction of necessary conditions contributing to the realization of sustainable benefits for target groups (e.g. improved governance, better access to basic services, new knowledge and skills applied, changed attitudes and behavior) (Effectiveness)
3.3. Outputs - tangible and intangible results needed for achieving the purpose of the intervention: capital goods, products, knowledge (e.g. infrastructure, equipment installed, new capacities and skills acquired) (Efficiency)
3.4.Inputs and activities (Economy)
3.5. Flexibility mechanisms allowing the Intervention’s periodic adaption
3.6. Alternative solutions
4.1.Assumptions at different intervention levels
4.2. Risks and risk management
5.1. Physical and non physical means
5.2. Organization: roles and responsibilities, systems, procedures/alignment, transparency, ethics
5.4. Cost estimate and cost-effectiveness (including non-monetary costs), financing plan
5.5. Special conditions: accompanying measures taken by Government and/or other development actors, reliability and predictability of funding, mutual accountability
6. Quality and Feasibility Factors ensuring Viability/Sustainability
6.1. Economic and financial viability
6.2. Policy support
6.3. Appropriate technology and “soft” implementation techniques
6.4. Environmental aspects
6.5 Socio-cultural aspects (including intercultural dialogue): gender issues, inclusion/participation, empowerment, ownership
6.6. Institutional and management capacity, strengthening and use of local structures (public, voluntary and private), cross-sector cooperation among actors involved, decentralization of responsibilities: subsidiarity
7. Monitoring and Evaluation
8.1. Monitoring and reporting system, milestones
8.2. Reviews/evaluations (lessons learned and recommendations)
9. Other Aspects
10. Conclusions and proposals