Desk study and desk analysis Civil Society for Accountable Governance 2005-2009

Om publikasjonen

  • Utgitt: 2010
  • Serie: --
  • Type: Gjennomganger fra organisasjoner
  • Utført av: Nordic Consulting Group
  • Bestilt av: Norwegian Church Aid
  • Land:
  • Tema: Sivilt samfunn
  • Antall sider: --
  • Serienummer: --
  • ISBN: --
  • ISSN: --
  • Organisasjon: Norwegian Church Aid
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Civil Society for Accountable Governance was one of NCA five thematic priorities for the period 2005-2009.

Purpose/ Objective:
Desk Study:
The desk study looked at NCA’s Accountable Governance portfolio from 2005-9 and addressed the following: Categorised all the implemented projects and programs according to six categories given. Maped all projects to make an overview of work undertaken and resources spent (financial vise).

The desk analysis:
The desk analysis looked at selected projects in NCA’s Accountable Governance portfolio during the time in question and address the following tasks:
1) Analyzed the results and achievements on outcome level (for the period 2005-2009) of six projects (one project per each of the six categories).
Special focus given to the NCA’s three key Indicators of Achievements as set out in the GSP 2005-2009 Participation, Equity and where relevant Protection.
2) Gave input on challenges and recommendations for improvement of NCA reporting on results at outcome level in the area of Civil Society for Accountable Governance.

Desk Study:
NCA made a list of categories, and the consultants operationalised the categories practically when classifying 632 projects and programs from the GSP period 2005 – 2009. The statistics and the analysis of this study depended on the classification of projects in the six categories. As well as on what projects had been placed within the priority area of AG in the reporting systems (PHS and Maconomy). Collectinged data statistics from NCA’s accounting reporting systems (PHS and Maconomy)

Desk analysis:
In-depth desk study of six selected projects. Each of the projects was classified according to the priority areas of the CSAG thematic area: a) Community Development, b) Local Government, c) Economic Justice, d) Legal Framework, e) Gender and f) Capacity-building. The selection of the six projects was conducted by NCA.

The main tool for collecting data on the outcomes of the projects was desk studies of available documentation from NCA as well as external sources available on internet. For some of the projects, the consultant interviewed key persons involved in the projects; either by email, phone or direct interactions.

Key Findings:
Desk Study:
When working with Civil Society for Accountable Governance, the largest category where NCA supports its partners is addressing local government for ensuring people’s access to improved basic services (category 2). During the last five years (2005-9), NCA has channelled 165 million NOK to this area. The second largest is capacity-building of NCA and partners (around 119 million NOK), followed by community development, gender, economic justice and legal framework.

There has been a great increase in funding for the CSAG thematic area; whereas in 2005, NCA channelled 38 million NOK to this area, in 2009, the total funding over five years had increased to 160 million. It should be noted however that this sharp increase is partly due to changes in NCA’s accounting system. Whereas for example, in 2005 NCA did not charge the costs of NCA regional offices (in Nairobi and Laos) and regional representation (Kigali, Khartoum and Addis Ababa for example) to this thematic area, this was done in 2008 and 2009. Despite the changes in the accounting system (from PHS to Maconomy), there is nevertheless a substantial increase in NCA’s investments in this thematic area.

Desk analysis:
- NCA’s focus on Civil Society for Accountable Governance is encompassing many elements and broad terms.
- The broadness of CSAG seems to have led confusion as to what to report on.
- Gender analysis is mainly limited to gender-disaggregated data, i.e. number of males and females attending the specific activities.
-A gap noticed in the reporting is that other development partners’ interventions are not described, and thus the reader is left wondering how much of the change can be ascribed to other partners, and how much to NCA. Linked to this, a key finding with regards to NCA reporting format and style is that NCA’s contribution to obtaining results and outcomes is not clearly communicated in the reviewed projects
- This gap seems to be linked to a weakness in NCA partnership approach; there are no existing guidelines for how to work with partners in themes like; promoting internal democratic governance, strengthening their ability to mobilize communities, for FBOs to take on larger social, political and economic responsibilities etc. NCA’s understanding of organizational development has included mainly financial management and administrative issues, not ‘soft components’ like community mobilization, processes of holding leaders accountable to their constituency etc, or in other words, how can NCA accompany their partners more effectively.
-The result indicators of participation and equity are found to be very useful for reflecting on the equal access of beneficiaries/rights-holders to the services provided by NCA’s partners although there is a risk of overlap between the two.

Desk Study
- In order to get a more thorough assessment of the impact of NCA’s Accountable Governance, it will be useful for NCA to conduct field studies in selected countries as this desk study is based solely on written report.
- A challenge related to this desk study is the reporting format that NCA is utilizing. Lack of uniformity in reporting on CSAG from one country office to another lead to difficulties in mainstreaming the findings into clear-cut categories. On the other hand, it is a highly valuable exercise if NCA is able to utilize the lessons learnt from this study and thus change the reporting formats and requirements.
- As this desk study outlines trends according to what categories are worked on in the regions, It is advisable to consider if there is a real need for this focus in the specific region that is not the case for another region. This mapping might then be useful as a means to gain an overview of the work conducted and make recommendations for necessary changes if applicable.
- If CSAG as a thematic area will continue in the next strategy period (form 2010), NCA is advised to work more on clarifying and defining the different methods of work (the HOW of theories of change) in order to make them more functional.

Desk Analysis:
- NCA is advised to clarify and simplify the reporting formats for the thematic area of civil society for accountable governance;
- NCA’s partnership approach need to be further developed and refined
- Documentation of governance practices (not only good, but also the weak ones) need to be developed and shared with donors
- Trying to learn from Ethiopia and the risk analysis there. The critical question is which channels and tools should - NCA utilize for promoting good governance in Ethiopia? NCA need to enhance the focus on learning – and that NCA is a learning organization. There is a tendency in NCA to consider evaluations and reviews as tools for initiating or ending projects, not for actually drawing lessons from these studies.
- Building the advocacy capacity of core partners (churches and FBOs) is greatly needed and would require a separate strategy and working modalities.

Comments from Norwegian Church Aid (if any):
These two report was followed up with an internal learning review to:

Aanalyze how NCA and partners have worked in the area of civil society for accountable governance, with particular emphasis on how NCA and partners have contributed to strengthening citizen (Alt: rights holders) engagement in formal democratic institutions and improving accountability mechanisms of the state, as primary duty bearer.

Summarize lessons learned and give concrete recommendations for further development of NCAs work on accountable governance as a strategy for change in NCAs Global Strategy, 2011-2015.

Recommendations from the two reports and the internal review will guide NCA work on Building Civil Society in the plan period 2011-2015.

Publisert 22.12.2011
Sist oppdatert 16.02.2015