Evaluation of Triangular Institutional Cooperation Project (TCP)

About the publication

  • Published: 2005
  • Series: --
  • Type: NGO reviews
  • Carried out by: N. Rajasekaran
  • Commissioned by: Norwegian Development Fund
  • Country:
  • Theme: Primary industry (agriculture fishing forestry)
  • Pages: --
  • Serial number: --
  • ISBN: --
  • ISSN: --
  • Organization: Norwegian Development Fund
  • Local partner: Ethiopia (REST and MU), India (IRMA and SWDF) and Norway (DF and NORAGRIC)
  • Project number: GLO-02/465-16
NB! The publication is ONLY available online and can not be ordered on paper.


Akin to the UN's policy initiative of triangular cooperation between South-South-North for technical cooperation as a complement to development, NORAD brought together one NGO and one support institution from India, Ethiopia and Norway to promote effectiveness in the utilization of development aid, natural resources and capacity building in developing countries. The Triangular Project has brought together relevant institutions for South-South collaboration in management of natural resources in semi-arid areas of Ethiopia and India, in order to see if there was an untapped potential for experience sharing and for strengthening capabilities within natural resource management between the continents.

The overall objectives of the project seek:
• To promote South-South co-operation of NGOs in management of natural resources and improvement of rural livelihoods in semi-arid areas through experience sharing and joint project activities.
• To develop capabilities in support of project activities and to make successful NGO efforts in natural resource management and South-South co-operation more widely known.
• To promote and facilitate the flow of knowledge and information among all partners in the collaboration.


Assess if and how the NGOs have been/will be able to use the knowledge, solutions, pilots and skills from the Triangular Project in their work with their beneficiaries.


Since the project activities are not completed still, the impact would be visible after few years only. The evaluation is based on both reviewing the documents, field visits and discussions with all the stakeholders. The internal evaluations done by the organizations and the synthesis report of all the evaluations are rich materials for the external evaluation.

Key findings

- Perceptible progress in capacity building could be noticed in the partner organizations. The participants of trainings and exposure visits were exposed to different cultures and different perspectives on development. They were also able to distinguish why one policy worked in one place in a similarly endowed region while it was not so in another region.
- Networking and group formation among the partners led to notable understanding and mutual respect for different cultures and knowledge. Even the partners began to approach the other South partners to provide technical and management training outside the purview of the TCP.
- Organization of the project has been around a Steering Committee. Though the SC has the mandate to run the project, it has been reduced to a level of annual planning and stock taking structure in the project. DF played an effective role in coordinating the partners and activities though SC was expected to play the role. Administration of the project also shows that there was no full time member or team for the project
- Details of the activities carried out during the second phase indicate that the role of support institutions has been reduced significantly.
- Gender sensitivity was very feeble whether it is in the selection of participants or forming core team. At present DF and SWDF have women core team leaders. Nevertheless, the activities undertaken at the field level are meant for women and the majority of the beneficiaries of the activities implemented through the project are women such as in milk cooperatives, alternative energy sources and post harvest technologies.
- Quite substantial research and documentation has been done through the project. A data base was created on NRM and post harvest technologies.
- Cost benefit of the project shows that little more rationalization could have been possible in the expenditure on capacity building and manual preparation. All the partners have surplus budget at the end of the project period.
- Spin off effects transcend the boundaries of the project area and objectives. The spill over effect of solar energy and capacity building has crossed the physical boundaries of the project. The alternative energy source installed in Tukul village in Tigray has put the people in the village on the top of the development map. Similarly, the benefits of capacity building spill over to other organizations and development communities in the region as a whole, as the staff who had exposure visits to India were in high demand in the development sector. The intangible benefits of these have multiplier effects.


- Steering Committee should be made a permanent body even in the event of withdrawal of the donor in order to continue the discussion among the partners with the formation of a consolidated fund.
- Establishment of more grassroots institutions in the development constituencies is an exceedingly essential component for the sustainability of the initiatives.
- The triangular cooperation could be extended to other equally critical areas like education and health, for these sectors complement the effectiveness of the NRM initiatives and post harvest technologies.
- Gender sensitivity could be created among staff in the partner organizations and administration of the project. More women members should be included in responsible positions in the team to gain a gender perspective.
- Infrastructural development should be scaled up substantially to create markets for the value added agricultural products.
- The research outputs generated in the form of manuals and the data base should be utilized for future publications and wider impact of the project so that others need not invest in this again.

Comments from the organisation

Any evaluation is produced within a very limited framework with regards to the composition of the evaluation team, its time available, its access to information and how it analyses the information received. Furthermore, any social reality can be analysed and presented in many different ways, among which an evaluation represents only one. Hence while this evaluation report may be useful as a tool for general learning, it has limited value as a source of information about the particular projects and partners in question. We urge any reader to consult the partners involved or Development Fund before applying this information in a way that may affect the partners and the project.

Published 23.01.2009
Last updated 16.02.2015