institutional arrangements for prs monitoring: lessons from experience

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Institutional Arrangements for PRS Monitoring: Lessons from Experience. Markus Goldstein Poverty Reduction Group From Bedi, Coudouel, Cox, Goldstein and Thornton (2006) “Beyond the Numbers: Understanding the Institutions for Monitoring Poverty Reduction Strategies” World Bank. Content. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


  • Institutional Arrangements for PRS Monitoring: Lessons from ExperienceMarkus GoldsteinPoverty Reduction Group

    From Bedi, Coudouel, Cox, Goldstein and Thornton (2006) Beyond the Numbers: Understanding the Institutions for Monitoring Poverty Reduction Strategies World Bank

  • Content

    Expectations and realitiesOrganizing monitoring activitiesMaking use of PRS monitoring Organizing participation

  • 1. Expectations (and realities)Objectives of a poverty monitoring systemSupports decision-makingSupports accountability to the publicPromotes evidence-based dialogueSupports reporting to donors for their own accountabilityFunctions of the PRS-MSPoverty monitoringPRS implementation monitoringExpenditure tracking Focus on entire results-chain, linking the various elements

  • 1. Expectations (and realities)PRS-MS mainly has institutional functions: Coordinating actors (not duplicating)Developing set of indicators and targetsBuilding capacity where deficientOrganizing information flowsCompiling dataLinking elements of results-chain Organizing analysis and evaluationGenerating reportsDisseminating findingsOrganizing participation of civil society

  • 1. (Expectations and) realities Modest achievements: Few have established functioning links between monitoring and decision-making

    Common obstacles: Practical issues with data collection, especially administrative routine dataDifficulties in coordination, duplication, redundancies turf battlesNo incentives to participate (and relinquish space)Formal plans are not translated into actual practice

  • 1. (Expectations and) realitiesCommon obstacles (cont.): Shortcomings in PRSs themselvesLack operational detailsLack of costingLack of prioritizationInadequate indicators and targets Deficit in evaluation and analysisLimited budget planning and PEM systemsWeak demand (interest?) from decision-makersDonor requirements typically not aligned

  • 2. Organizing monitoring activitiesUsually, formal plans exist but not implementedProblem may be in process of designOften narrow: some stocktaking, short consultations, design (consultant?)no stakeholder analysis, no real participationDetails of system not worked out roles, responsibilities, standards, modalities for cooperation Limited buy-in from actorsLimited accountability or complianceSystems are consensual in nature, function only if participants find it useful and legitimate w/o common purpose, formal obligations dont workNeed more organic design, common commitment

  • 2. Organizing monitoring activitiesCommon building blocksSteering Committee: political support and oversightCoordination Unit or Secretariat: convening meetings, managing processes, compiling data, drafting reportsInter-agency committees and working groups: promote dialogue, inclusive membership, debate resultsNational Statistics Institute: key data producer, plus normative and technical-assistance roleLine ministries: liaison point (M&E Unit or individual)

    Key issues are relationships and modalities

  • 2. Organizing monitoring activities Lessons/considerations: Leadership CoordinationLiaison with line ministriesRole of national statistical agenciesInvolving local governments

  • 2.1. LeadershipChoice of institutional lead is criticalShould be close to center of government/budget processRange of locations: Ministry of Finance (Mali, Niger, Uganda) close to budgetMinistry of Planning (Malawi, Mauritania) better analysis Office of the (vice-)President (Tanzania) greater authorityLeadership more effective if in a single agency, rather than an inter-agency committeeA champion is important but danger that system becomes tied to a personalityIn any case, leadership may need to change over time, need for flexibility

  • 2.2. Coordination the greatest challenge Typically series of inter-agency committees (13 in Mali) but: Committee system often over-elaborateRun out of steamIncentives work against coordinationOften lack concrete recommendations Technical secretariats typically suffer from high turnover and limited resources and skills Avoid burdensome structures, build working relationships Effective secretariat is key to organize dialogue, work through the issues, assist its members Process, advocacy, political leadership are critical Donors can: Limit parallel demands which create wrong incentivesSupport the system by providing incentives

  • 2.3. Liaison with line ministriesMost PRS-MS are second-tier systems: rely on routine data from line ministries Usually a liaison person in ministry, but often w/o the authority, time or incentives to play that role effectivelyQuality of sectoral data often an issue Project/donor-specific reporting often take precedencePromote monitoring within line ministries (for their own management purposes)Change incentives (+capacity)Choose liaison persons with higher profileRequirements from PRS-MS aligned with sectoral information systemsDonors align their reporting requirements

  • 2.4. Role of statistical agenciesOften most institutionally advanced element of PRS-MSBut issues: 1: PRS-MS arrangements sometimes duplicate existing statistical structures (master plan). Potential rivalry between statistical system and PRS-MS. Limited links between central agency and line ministries Ensure complementarity with existing systems and plans

    2: Role of agency in setting standards, technical assistance, capacity building often not fully played. Often survey and administrative data not compatible. Funding mechanism to leave space for this role. Donors to move away from supporting activities, towards supporting plans

    3: Existing data typically not fully utilized outside the central agency More dissemination, more training/statistical literacy

  • 2.5. Involving local governments Communication within a sector often an issueIncentives differ with degree of decentralizationLimited capacity (and numerous reporting obligations)No best practice examples

    Limit indicators to reduce burden (make it easier to comply) Central quality control mechanisms Support and capacity-building Provide feedback to local level Build on local civil society (?) Encourage local accountability (dissemination) Options: decentralized monitoring (e.g. Uganda, link to grant mechanism) central monitoring of local governments (when capacity too low)

  • 3. Making use of PRS monitoring In addition to organizing data supply, PRS-MS must build demand Establish linkages with entry points in decision-making processes: BudgetMTEFPlanning Review/update PRSParliamentary sessionsPublic dialogueDonor strategies and operationsProcesses outside the PRS-MS, but should guide activities: Analysis and evaluationOutputs and disseminationLinking PRS monitoring and budgetRole of parliament

  • 3.1. Analysis and evaluationAnalysis key to effective use of dataArea of great deficitLack of capacityLack of incentives (weak accountability)Focus on APR production, w/o much analytical contentOften dedicated analytical unit (e.g.Tanzania, Uganda)Work when close to governmentWork when focused only on analysis Issue of funding and sustainabilityNeed greater capacity (and incentives) in sectoral agencies Option: joint work with donors (e.g. PERs)

  • 3.2. Outputs and disseminationInformation must be disseminated to have an impactWithin governments: pushing information back to central agencieslocal and regional governments service providersOutside governments: ParliamentMedia and general public Donors, etc.Often not accessible Main focus is often donorsEnsure right format/content for users, including publicEnsure right timing for key momentsDissemination strategy

  • 3.3. Linking with budget/planningMost likely incentive for evidence-based policy-making In practice, often weak linkExperience to date: requirement in rules for budget preparation (usually in countries with MTEF Uganda, Tanzania)Challenge function around budget preparationAbility to sanction often limitedCareful: Results can take time or can be due to exogenous factorslinking funds to ability to monitor or to ability to deliver? incentives to mis-report? Incentives to under-commit? Difficult to operationalize, depends on maturity of MTEF and PEM system Donors should strengthen the budget process, rather than bypass it (wrong incentives)

  • 3.4. Links with parliamentRelatively low participation in PRS process in most countriesMissed opportunity for oversight function Low capacity of committees for analysis Low resources Capacity building, economic literacy, committees

  • 4. Organizing participationBelongs to both the supply and demand sideA means to strengthen the PRS-MS (producer)A means to increase accountability (user)

    Experience varies greatlyIssues of capacity and representativity Forms of participationCarrying out monitoring activities (including action-oriented) Participating in PRS-MS structures Analyzing and providing policy advice Disseminating informationTypically participation not very formalized

  • Further lessons from experiencesWe asked staff in PRS units or national statistics agencies (with responsibility for poverty monitoring): What are the main barriers you see to getting data effectively used in your country

  • Main issues from Sub-Saharan AfricaPolitical will/leadership (29%)Capacity building, local & central (19%)Coordination @ central level (13%)Coordination between central and local levels (13%)M&E link to budget (10%)M&E budget (9%)Legislation/regulation (4%)Engagement w/civil society (2%)

  • Issues faced in the BalkansLack of capacity within statistics agency (22%)Coordination between central and local levels (18%)Coordination at central level (17%)Political will/leadership (9%)Inadequate bud

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