Evaluation of the GEF Civil Society Organizations (CSO)
Evaluation of the GEF Civil Society Organizations (CSO) Network Ms. Anna Viggh Senior Evaluation Officer 22 September 2015 Introduction GEF IEO has begun consultations to inform the Evaluation of the GEF CSO Network. Todays presentation includes a brief overview of: CSO Network History Purpose of the CSO Network Membership and Structure Evaluation Objectives Proposed Methods/Tools Identified Limitations Knowledge Management & Communication Plans Management of the Evaluation Time Frame Approach Paper was circulated with the GEF Partnership and is currently being finalized. Final will be posted on IEO website. Page 2 The GEF CSO Network
History From its inception, the Pilot Phase, CSOs are acknowledged as critical stakeholders in the GEF. Formalized and systematic consultations became a part of the restructured GEF, including mention in the Instrument of the importance of CSO participation (Para 5) and ability to act as executors (Para 28). GEF restructuring resulted in a process of accreditation by the GEFSEC and semi-annual consultations amongst the Network and with Council, which are in still in place today. Any accredited NGO was thus automatically a member of a GEF NGO Network. Council replaced the accreditation with a membership system (2009) to be operated by the Network itself in a similar manner with member CSOs eligible to attend Consultations and Council/Assembly meetings Page 3 The GEF CSO Network Purpose Members of the Network are focused on influencing Council proceedings and facilitating participation of NGOs in the Council, NGO Consultations and Program implementation.
The Network has developed a Vision, Mission and Objectives (v.2014): Vision: A dynamic civil society influencing policies and actions at all levels to safeguard the global environment and promote sustainable development. Mission: To strengthen civil society partnership with GEF by enhancing participation, contributing to policy and stimulating action. Objective 1: To enhance the role of civil society in safeguarding the global environment Objective 2: To strengthen GEF Program implementation through enhanced partnership with civil society Objective 3: To strengthen the GEF NGO Network Capacity Page 4 The GEF CSO Network Membership The Network membership is currently comprised of 466 member CSOs. Of these: 189 are in the Africa Region representing 37 countries; 113 in Asia and the Pacific representing 32 countries; 79 in Europe representing 27 countries; and, 85 in the Americas representing 24 countries CSO Network Membership Americas; 85; 18.24%
Europe; 79; 16.95% Africa; 189; 40.56% Asia; 113; 24.25% Page 5 The GEF CSO Network Structure and Governance The structure of the Network has come about as a result of self-regulating initiatives, Management Outreach Strategy Governance GEF-Related Conventions Coordination Committee North America Central Focal Point Mesoamerica Caribbean North East 16 Regional South Asia
Focal Points America West Asia Northern South East Eastern Africa Asia Pacific Europe Central Africa South Asia Western Africa East Europe and Africa Southern Central Asia Africa 3 Indigenous Peoples Americas Representatives Asia and Pacific Africa Page 6 GEF CSO Network Evaluation (2005) Independent Review of the GEF NGO Network was presented to GEF Council in October 2005.
Conclusions: Model of NGO engagement at that time (both regional and country-level) was ineffective Network lacked a long term vision GEFSEC and Council had no long-term strategy for engaging the Network Insufficient Resources and a need for capacity building were major obstacles Secretariat, Council, Agencies and NGO community have a vested interest to re-energize the Network Recommendations: Increase the networks accountability and effectiveness by strengthening the networks management, increasing accountability in the application of the networks Guidelines, re-focusing the accreditation process, and strengthening outreach to NGOs;
Establishing an active partnership between the NGO Network and the GEF Secretariat and Council; and Providing support, financial and otherwise, to build the networks capacity. Page 7 Evaluation Objectives Building on the 2005 review, this evaluation will answer the following key questions: 1. To what extent is the CSO Network meeting its intended goals and strategic objectives and adding value to the GEF Partnership and its membership? 2. How are Network features contributing to the effective and efficient functioning of the Network? 3. What are the implications for the next phase of the development and evolution of the CSO network? Page 8 Literature Review The increase in number and influence of CSO networks worldwide post the 1990s have allowed for their activities to be the subject of greater scrutiny. There is a growing body of literature on network formation, development, capacity building and evaluation. Evaluators have begun to develop frameworks for understanding networks using a mix of methods and tools: Pre-Evaluation Phase entailed beginnings of review of the literature on networks and their evaluation. Page 9 Key Questions (1) Possible Approaches
- (Online) Self-Assessment - Interviews and Focus - Network Documents Groups/Focused meetings - Data / Results from Surveys, with key stakeholders Interviews, and other primary - Cost / Level of Effort sources (e.g. workshops) Overview Assessment - Social Network Analysis Connectivity Network Objectives as set by the CSO Network: ii. To enhance the role of civil society in safeguarding the global environment iii. To strengthen global environmental policy development through enhanced partnership between Civil Society and the GEF iv. To Strengthen the GEF NGO Network Capacity Information Sources What GEF-relevant information (knowledge products, presentations,
reports, etc.) is flowing through the Network to its membership and other stakeholders? Credibility Network Objectives as set by the GEF Council: i. Preparing for and reporting on the GEF Council meetings and NGO Consultations to the wider CSO community at the national, regional & international levels Example Evaluation Questions Are the Networks objectives still relevant? To what extent has the Network aligned with GEF goals on gender mainstreaming - Council and GEF SEC and indigenous peoples inclusion? Documents Has the CSO Network contributed to - Network Documents shaping the GEF agenda (getting new - Non-GEF CSO Networks issues on the GEF agenda, policies incorporated by the Council)? Capacity Is the CSO Network meeting its intended goals and strategic
objectives and adding value to the GEF partnership and its members? Network Elements How are Network members adding value - Interviews and Focus to one anothers work, i.e. achieving more - Data / Results from Surveys, Groups/Focused meetings together than they could alone? Interviews, and other primary with key stakeholders Are there clear signals of development of sources - Surveys CSO/member capacity? - (Online) Self-Assessment Progress towards Results Key Evaluation Questions Are there clear signals of influence on GEF policy and program implementation? Can a case be made as to Network contribution? Has the Network membership monitored the implementation of GEF portfolios and policies at the country level? - Council and GEF SEC Documents - Network Documents
- Document review - Interviews and Focus Groups/Focused meetings with key stakeholders - Surveys - (Online) Self-Assessment - Comparative analysis with other networks - Document review - Interviews and Focus Groups with key stakeholders - Surveys - (Online) Self-Assessment Page 10 Key Questions (2) Information Sources Possible Approaches - Network Documents - Data / Results from Surveys, Interviews, and other primary sources (e.g. workshops) - (Online) Self-Assessment - Interviews and Focus Groups/Focused meetings with key stakeholders - Cost / Level of Effort Overview Assessment - Social Network Analysis
Connectivity Example Evaluation Questions How effective and efficient are the connections the network makes? Are all members contributing, individually or through joint efforts, to network goals? Membership How are the CSO Networks features (governance, structure, membership, connectivity, etc.) contributing to its ability to meet its objectives Network Elements Who participates in the Network and why? Are womens, indigenous peoples and youth organizations represented? - Council and GEF SEC Has the Network assembled member organizations with Documents the capacities needed to meet Network goals (experience, - Network Documents skills, and connections)? - Data / Results from Is the process for Network membership transparent, Surveys, Interviews, effective, and efficient? Has it changed over time? Focused meetings with What is the geographic distribution of membership in
key stakeholders and relation to GEF operations? other primary sources What have been the trends in membership? Structure Key Evaluation Questions Has the Network and GEF Partnership adjusted to meet changing GEF needs and priorities? What infrastructure is in place for Network coordination and communications? Are these coordination and communication structures efficient and effective? Are lessons from similar networks (Adaptation Fund, GCF, CIF, etc.) used to inform the workings of the GEF CSO Network? - Membership Databases - Council and GEF SEC Documents - Network Documents - Document review Social Network Analysis Surveys Meta-Evaluations Comparison to other Networks - Visual Timeline (infographic Representation)
- (Online) Self-Assessment - Social Network Analysis - Visual Timeline (infographic Representation) - Document review Page 11 Key Questions (3) Information Sources Possible Approaches Governance Are the Networks governance rules applied in a transparent manner? Is there a transparent conflict resolution process? Do Network members actively participate in Network elections? Do decision-making processes encourage members to contribute and collaborate? How dependent is the Network on a small number of individuals? (male/female disaggregated) Do governance structures take into consideration gender mainstreaming? - Council and GEF SEC Documents - Network Documents - Data / Results from Surveys, Interviews, and other primary sources
- Document review - Interviews and Focus Groups/Focused meetings with key stakeholders - Surveys - (Online) Self-Assessment - Meta-Evaluations - Comparative analysis with other networks Resources How are the CSO Networks features (governance, structure, membership, connectivity, etc.) contributing to its ability to meet its objectives Network Elements What is the level of financial and technical resources provided to the Network? Has the Network secured needed material resources? Is the Network adapting its business plan over time? How has the GEF partnership [GEF SEC, Agencies, OFPs, IEO, etc] supported the work of the CSO network? - Network Documents
- Data / Results from Surveys, Interviews, and other primary sources - Document review - Interviews and Focus Groups with key stakeholders Does the Network have the needed capacities to advance members skills & Network goals? - Data / Results from Surveys, Interviews, and other primary sources - Network Documents - Interviews and Focus Groups/Focused meetings with key stakeholders - Surveys - (Online) Self-Assessment Page 12 Capacity Key Evaluation Questions Example Evaluation Questions Possible Approaches
Decisions on methods and tools will be made on the basis of issues identified. Evaluation activities will involve: Further document review Comparative analysis with other networks Meta-evaluation Select individual interviews with key stakeholders Focus group meetings with key stakeholders Survey (CSO Network members/non-members/GEFSEC/Agencies) Self-Assessment (Coordination Committee) Page 13 Additional Stakeholder Involvement Reference Group: Includes representatives from the GEF Secretariat, GEF Agencies, the CSO Network, and SGP. The Reference Group will: Share comment on the Approach Paper and drafts of the Report; identify & establish contact with individuals for interviews/focus groups and identify & facilitate access to information. 10 individuals Expert Peer Review Group: Consists of relevant evaluation specialists from GEF Agency Evaluation Office and the broader evaluation community. 3 individuals.
Page 14 Limitations Networks are inherently complex and dynamic systems which makes them difficult to evaluate. Main limitations of this evaluation will be: Access to entirety of CSO Network (over 460 members, different regions/access/languages) Access to older and archived documents of the CSO Network Relatively short timeframe Page 15 Knowledge Management & Communications The CSO Network Evaluation will add to the growing body of literature on network evaluations and thus will be of broad interest to the evaluation community. The IEO will disseminate information gathered at various points in the course of the evaluation with stakeholders. Information sharing could take place through various platforms such as: Online stakeholder groups Webinars Published knowledge products Page 16 Management of the Evaluation The evaluation will be task managed by Ms. Baljit Wadhwa, Senior Evaluation Officer, leading a team comprising of GEF IEO staff and consultants. Consultants are contracted to undertake specific elements which include peer review and analysis of data on the CSO membership, connectivity and network health though self assessments and/or social network analysis, etc.
Page 17 Time Frame Phase Evaluation Phase Time Frame 1 Pre-evaluation desk review, upstream consultations & Approach Paper End of June 2015 2 Further desk review; identification of data gaps; further methods selection; survey instrument July August 2015 3 Application of appropriate methods/tools for additional data gathering and analysis Peer Review & Reference Group Consultation September 2015 January 2016 September 2015 4
Triangulation, verification, gap analysis and preparation of Evaluation Report Draft Evaluation shared and discussed with Reference Group/ and stakeholders and edits finalized January - April 15, 2016 5 Final Evaluation shared with GEF Council Evaluation Conclusions & Recommendation presented at GEF Council meeting Knowledge products and dissemination activities May 2016 June 2016 May - September 2016 Page 18 Questions and Feedback We are looking for feedback on: Survey Questions Key Questions Your Experience with the GEF CSO Network Page 19 Thank you [email protected] www.gefieo.org
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