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Public Sector Capacity Building Program (PSCAP) Support Project:
Transcript of Public Sector Capacity Building Program (PSCAP) Support Project:
Unpredictable resource flows had undermined the allocative and operational efficiency of the public sector at the federal, regional, and local levels in Ethiopia. The public service was characterized by weaknesses in the administrative and working systems, and lacked effectiveness, efficiency and ethical behavior in performance and service delivery.
Despite the decentralization, the districts enjoyed little fiscal or administrative autonomy to respond to the local needs of their constituencies.
Significant institutional weaknesses and capacity deficits were acknowledged across Ethiopia’s justice system, including in areas such as lawmaking, law execution and enforcement, the functioning of courts, and the development of the legal professional.
Capacity Building Program
PSCAP Video Documentary
Weaknesses in the vertical and horizontal independence of the judiciary resulted from lack of transparency in the selection of judges, unclear organizational structures in the courts, outdated systems and procedures, shortage of trained judges and support staff, and lack of basic infrastructure and facilities.
This overall objective will be achieved by scaling up Ethiopia's ongoing capacity building and institutional transformation efforts in six priority areas to transform public sector institutions, at all levels, into agencies that are capable of delivering services effectively and efficiently, empower citizens through public participation, and foster an environment conducive to stimulate private sector development.
To achieve these objectives, expediting implementation of the six core capacity building programs of the PSCAP is devised as the key strategy.
Increased predictability and adequacy of financial resources flows;
Greater inclusiveness and transparency of planning and prioritization processes;
Enhanced revenue performance and fiscal autonomy
Enhanced incentive environment for public servants (gender disaggregated)
Improved quality and efficiency of operations;
Improved transparency and accountability
Questions for discussion
What is your overall assessment of the PSCAP in developing the public sector efficiency, effectiveness and relevance against the indicators stated above?
The objective of the PSCAP Support Project is to improve the scale, efficiency, and responsiveness of public service delivery at the federal, regional and local level; to empower citizens to participate more effectively in shaping their own development and to promote good governance and accountability.
civil service reforms,
deepening district level decentralization,
improving urban management,
strengthening tax administration,
reinvigorating justice sector institutions,
building information, communication & technology capacity,
Inability of the revenue collecting institutions to fulfill their expected roles because they were entangled in a web of complex and outdated practices, characterized by inadequate numbers of skilled staff, and opportunities and incidences of corruption.
High urban population growth and unemployment, inadequate houses and shelter, poor sanitation, congested roads and poor social services, coupled with absence of an appropriate policy framework and urban governance
Dependence of almost all the population on the conventional and traditional information delivery systems; low coverage of the national telecommunication network; limited capacity, accessibility and high cost of Internet services; shortage of human resources in ICT both in number and qualification at operational and regulatory level; and a limited amount of data that is organized systematically for accessibility to support economic and social development.
Which of the PSCP elements have been implemented against the indicators stated above?
What specific aspects of the PSCAP have been relevant to increasing capacity within government?
What are the follow up options the FDRE has taken to sustain the capacity built already?
March 14, 2014, Sheraton Addis,
Report of a Colloquium
Mitigating risk factors:
A final rationale for the Bank involvement related to mitigating the fiduciary and implementation risks associated with IDA’s, as well as bilateral direct budget support programs designed to help the government achieve poverty reduction objectives in the Sustainable Development
The project consisted of two components
Component 2: Regional PSCAP:
This component constituted the bulk of the Program and was designed to empower regions to adapt and implement national reform and capacity building priorities envisaged under PSCAP’s six sub-programs efficiently, accountably, and sustainably.
The objective of this sub-program was to promote the development of an efficient, effective, transparent, accountable, ethical, and performance- oriented civil service through institutional reforms, systems development, and training. The subprogram had seven (7) major sub-components:
Sub-program 2—District-level decentralization:
The objective of the sub-program was to deepen the devolution of power to the lower tiers of regional government and institutionalize decision-making processes at the grassroots level. This would be achieved through the following sub-components:
Sub-program 3—Justice System reform:
This sub-program aimed to promote the rule of law as well as the efficient and effective functions of the justice system as part of Ethiopia’s broader democratization and private sector development processes under four (4) subcomponents: i) strengthening the judiciary; ii) revising and reforming laws; iii) enhancing the capacity of law enforcement organizations; and iv) strengthening legislative organizations.
Leveraging the Bank’s comparative advantage and that of other partners around a “single design solution” to PSCAP, IDA had leveraged its experience as a lead or strategic partner in supporting large scale capacity building programs in Africa had brought to bear considerable international experience in the reform areas under implementation as part of PSCAP.
Sub-program 1—Civil service reform:
refining district institutions and organizations;
training and district planning;
strengthening grassroots participation;
improving program development;
building capacity for district fiscal transfer and own revenue;
strengthening district planning and financial control;
developing and implementing minimum service standards; and
supporting districts with necessary equipment for effective service delivery.
Sub-program 4—Urban management capacity building:
This sub-program aimed to enhance the capacity of municipalities in the delivery of services, and enable urban centers to play a more effective role in social and economic development. These objectives would be achieved through the following sub-components:
formulating and/or adapting enabling policy frameworks for the improvement of urban services;
deepening the process of decentralization; and
restructuring and capacity building of urban-local governments.
Why the World Bank Support
strengthening capacity of CSRP coordinating structures;
improving governance of financial resource management;
improving governance of human resource management;
improving performance and public service delivery; v) improving accountability and transparency;
strengthening top management systems; and
building the policy and institutional governance capacity of the four (4) least developed regions.
Tax systems reform
The sub-program aimed to develop a modern tax administration that would increase tax revenues, ensure equity and fairness, and encourage private sector investment and development. These objectives would be achieved through the following sub-components:
tax policy and legislation;
taxpayers identification number;
value added tax;
operational program, systems and procedures;
organization and tax payers’ education; and
Information and communication technologies (ICTs):
The objective of this sub-program was to harness ICTs for the development of human resources, democratization, service delivery, and good governance. These objectives were expected to be realized through the following sub-components:
developing human resources for e-government;
using ICT for public service delivery and good governance;
developing applications for sectors; and
enabling communities to become centers of indigenous knowledge and content through community-based information systems and services.
Project Preparation, Design and Quality at Entry
Quality at entry:
Quality Enhancement Review (QER) was conducted and the project’s quality at entry was satisfactory. Soundness of the background and risk analysis, lessons from other operations, coupled with high level of government commitment and stakeholder participation contributed to the effectiveness of the project’s design.
A rich body of analytical work in the Bank’s country program underpinned support for PSCAP. These included a series of annual Public Expenditure Reviews; the 1999 Regionalization Study; the 2000 review of the Civil Service Reform Program (CSRP); a 2001 Rapid Assessment of Municipalities; and the 2001 district Studies series. The Bank and several other donors jointly supported the preparation of the 2003 Country Financial Accountability Assessment, and the 2003 Country Procurement Assessment Report along with action plans.
Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Design, Implementation and Utilization
The Project Appraisal Document (PAD)included a logframe and the project also had a detailed monitoring and evaluation framework prepared in a participatory manner. Furthermore, the project uniquely put in place a mandatory independent survey instrument known as the District and City Benchmarking Survey to establish a wider information base and benchmark for monitoring changes in institutional capacity, financial autonomy, service delivery, and accountability of rural and urban local governments over time by integrating supply and demand side components.
The team anticipated the risks that the project would face, and the overall risk of the project was candidly rated as High in the PAD.
Given historical hierarchical social norm & relatively new order that promotes federalism; there is insufficient expressed demands from citizens for improved public sector performance, weak capacity to carry out core financial, procurement, program management, M&E functions as well as constraints in absorptive capacity by emerging regions were rightly rated as high risk in the PAD.
Invest time and effort in alignment and securing political support:
Enforcing “minimum mandatory activities” in framework type projects: Given Ethiopia’s uneven capacity among regions, the development and enforcement of prioritizing the basic capacity building in HR, Finance, and working systems as “minimum mandatory activities” enabled the regions to utilize the transfers responsibly and get the results across implementing agencies regardless of initial capacity.
Context matters - customizing reform according to context: This has been particularly relevant in the four developing regions, where capacity constraints have meant that reform needs to be approached in a different way from the more developed regions.
Realism of Supervision Budgets:
The Bank’s supervision budgets for this large and complex project were not sufficient. The team had to look for other donors support in the first two years to ensure quality implementation support is provided to the client.
Engage more with support to sub-national governments where the bulk of service delivery takes place:
The ‘learning by doing’ approach was a pragmatic approach to reforms: The project had employed an approach to reform where activities had been sequenced, and where things were tried out locally to see what worked best before being scaled up. Sequencing reforms so that the more institutionally advanced regions undergo certain activities in advance of other regions has been successful, as have arrangements where the developing regions ‘twin’ with their more developed neighbors
Innovative use of streamlining client satisfaction surveys in operations help to provide feedback to influence behaviors in institutions:
Complex design, multiple sectors and implementing agencies as well as multiple donors make implementation support and monitoring very challenging. While this approach have worked well in Ethiopia, it is not certain it will work elsewhere, especially without strong political leadership.
Streamlining the district and City Benchmarking Survey has been instrumental in helping to assess the effectiveness of reform, particularly at decentralized level, as part of gauging the ‘demand’ side customer satisfaction.
PSCAP has been made up of a complex array of reforms across different sectors, fused together into a holistic and integrated approach. It would have been difficult for the World Bank to maintain its engagement without significant alignment of the project to the government’s own strategic plan, thus securing high level political support, ownership and commitment from the Government of Ethiopia. Much energy was invested at project design, and in the early days of the project, to understand the government’s vision and thereby secure a high degree of alignment, and in continuing to secure political commitment to the program.
One of PSCAP’s major characteristics was the support given directly to regions and their governments. Federal government is normally reluctant to allow direct donor-regional government relations, and thus PSCAP has not been typical. Agreement for the Bank and other donors to do business in this way was secured after a great deal of negotiation, but it has paid dividends. Regions have, under the program, been able to adapt national reform policies to meet their own priorities. Reform has been sequenced differently in different regions to reflect context. The program has thus been able to support the decentralization process much more effectively.
Component 1: Federal PSCAP:
This component supported federal level activities across each of the six sub-programs described below, including those capacity building activities for which there were scale and network economies, and those activities that required national level prototyping.
Public sector reform as a window into the state building agenda:
Much of the core activities supported by PSCAP, in particular the rolling out of the decentralization agenda, are central to the government’s own vision of state building. Through its involvement, the Bank has learnt much about the dynamics of power, politics and government’s own vision for Ethiopia as a developmental state. This knowledge has been useful to the Bank in terms of informing its other engagements across the portfolio, and also in terms of its overall approach, which is now much better grounded in understanding of the context. There is a strong case for continued engagement in the public sector reform agenda, even if that is in provision of knowledge services as a partner to the government.
Costantinos Berhutesfa Costantinos, PhD
Professor of Public Policy, School of Graduate Studies, College of Business & Economics, AAU
Capacity Development Success Stories
Civil Service Reform in full swing and continuous revitalization of the Sector;
Zero backlog in court cases;
Devolution of decision making to districts;
Urban management systems in full swing;
Tax management has improved much....
However, capacity development is a continuous process and hence, it cannot be a one time program. We need your thoughts on this!