Tuesday, March 1, 2011

United Kingdom's DFID blasts UNDP and Helen Clark for lack of tangible reforms and a politicized Executive Board - its continuing funding UNCERTAIN

UNDP’s mandate covers poverty reduction and achieving the MDGs, democratic governance, crisis prevention and recovery, environment and sustainable development as well as cross cutting themes such as women’s empowerment and capacity building. It spends over $5 billion a year (receiving $1.1 billion in core and $3.9 billion in non-core funding) through 5 regional and 166 country offices.


Contribution to UK development objectives

+UNDP is central to the delivery the MDGs. It has a direct programmatic role on a number of MDGs.
+UNDP’s mandate and operations are aligned with DFID’s strategic priorities, most critically in governance and security and delivery of the MDGs.
+There is strong leadership and there are good incentive mechanisms on gender, but strengthened delivery depends on continued effort and building skills across the organisation.
_Evidence gathered at country level was highly critical of UNDP’s ability to deliver results. Its delivery can be undermined by staffing issues and bureaucratic processes.
_Its performance in fragile states is mixed. It has reasonable training and a range of guidance and analytical tools but struggles to fill posts.
_There is no evidence that the Climate Strategy was directly guiding resource allocation decisions

Organisational strengths

+UNDP has a strong array of partnerships across the UN system, with member states and with donors. It is uniquely placed to support partner governments and incorporate beneficiary voice.
+ UNDP has a clear and transparent resource allocation system. Its financial systems allow longer term commitments.
+UNDP has good disclosure practices. It is committed to IATI and has good member state accountability.
_UNDP’s partnership with the World Bank needs to be more effective, particularly in fragile and crisis-affected countries.
_UNDP’s near universal mandate means its technical resources are spread very thinly. The Board does not provide strategic direction. HR management is weak. It has a weak results chain.
_There is limited evidence of active senior management consideration of cost control. Country evidence points to mixed progress on demonstrating cost-efficiency.

Capacity for positive change

+UNDP’s leadership has articulated a commitment to reform and there is past evidence of some progress on reform.
_The Executive Board is politicised and there is a lack of consensus on the key areas for reform. It is not clear that current plans for change will deliver the required depth and breadth of reform.

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