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Presentation to LACRO staff on devolution evaluation - October 2009

Tricia Wind

on 5 April 2016

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Transcript of Devolution

Devolution definition 7 principles key findings: ... relative to other donors plan early
build capacity
collaborate & partner
develop a transition strategy
assure continuity
build good governance and management frameworks
demonstrate return on investment and secure funding Sample of devolution experiences:
Micronutrient Initiatives (MI)
Trade and Industrial Policy Secretariat (TIPS)
Secretariat for Industrial Support for Economic Research in Africa (SISERA)
International Model Forest Network Secretariat (IMFNS)
International Network for Bamboo and Rattan (INBAR)
African Economic Research Consortium (AERC) IDRC's experience... Secretariats: created as a way to incubate innovative research ideas funded by multiple donors.

Since 1992, about 15 have been devolved, closed, or became part of IDRC programming.

IDRC continues to devolve initiatives:
Telecentre.org and CCAA are current examples. the evaluation Primary users: Vice Presidents of PPB and CSRM

Primary uses: review past experiences of devolution - process and results - to come up with principles to guide future devolution practice. Evaluators: Jim Armstrong and Alexa Khan of The Governance Network

Implemented between February and June, 2009
document review, case study selection, interviews,
survey, findings validation

external donors and research users were not interviewed
limited response rate to the survey
some documents were hard to locate
limited time-frame "Devolution involves the passing of substantive and managerial control of an activity housed within the Centre to an external agency" (CSPF 2005-2010) because:

The Centre "incubated" the activity until it could find an appropriate home;
part of institution building in the South; or
because the activity outgrew IDRC. Very little comparable literature on other experiences.

Exit, transition, phase out, phase over General understanding of what devolution is, but
difference of opinion of whether it's a core value
or a tactic. Clear change in strategic directions that came with new leadership and changing economic conditions.

But sometimes not clear where did individual decisions come from. Success depends on many external factors:
a capable host;
the collective will of donors;
availability and predictability of funding. The breadth of IDRC that is involved in devolution:
PPB, IRIMS, Finance, HR, ITMD, GAD, OSGC, Evaluation, Communication;
Senior managers up to the President policy and practice effectiveness of devolution processes Successes: AERC, TIPS, MI and IMFNS
experience, skill and leadership of EDs
communication with staff, donors and partners
clarity and speed of decision-making
direct involvement of senior leaders Not as good: Bellanet and SISERA
indecisive leadership
poor communication Attention to people issues and change management are critical for devolution "done right". devolution results Success post devolution: AERC, MI, INBAR and IMFN.
Criteria: stability and growth of their programming.

Some questions about TIPS and Bellanet Stability and core funding:
Levels of transition funding and core grants to devolved entities vary significantly.

Lack of criteria and performance indicators to guide decisions about whether to provide, and when to stop, core funding. Emphasis on early planning, sustainability strategies, and
thinking through ethical issues of phasing something over. Multiple aspects of a devolution process requires contributions across IDRC. People need to be on the same page regarding values and direction, and bring their complementary skills and perspectives to the devolution process.
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