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Lessons from Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Programme & Aid Effectiveness. Productive Safety Net Programme & Aid Effectiveness – Country Ownership. June 2003: PM Meles launched the multi-stakeholder New Coalition for Food Security; 

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productive safety net programme aid effectiveness country ownership
Productive Safety Net Programme & Aid Effectiveness – Country Ownership
  • June 2003: PM Meles launched the multi-stakeholder New Coalition for Food Security; 
  • 2003-2005: The PSNP shifted from “project” approaches of individual donors to a programmatic aid modality:
    • donors finance a common programme,
    • Government systems used to increase ownership,
    • aid fragmentation & inefficiency reduced.
  • November 2011: the PSNP is a core Government programme using Government systems and personnel with coordinated donor support. It uses:
    • Government Public Financial Management system
    • Government Sector Ministries’ systems

CHALLENGES:

Since 2003, there has been a political shift towards ‘growth & transformation’ of the country’s economy. This change in development emphasis over time is related to the country’s evolving political approach. Without ensuring sustained political commitment to a programme, country ‘ownership’ challenges will emerge

productive safety net programme aid effectiveness alignment
Productive Safety Net Programme & Aid Effectiveness - Alignment
  • PSNP is a government programme which is fully aligned with government policy and strategy
  • It has one objective, one strategic planning & results framework, one accountability mechanism, one M&E system.
  • Aligned donor resources to the PSNP through:
    • the use of a World Bank- administered Multi-Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) and pooled Government accounts.;
    • Another MDTF ensures harmonized technical advice & inputs to Government (Donor Co-ord Team)

CHALLENGES:

Systemic constraints mean that not all government systems are able to deliver the PSNP to the required level of performance – and this compromises results

Balancing an ‘ideal’ response to the use and development of government systems while still delivering the PSNP to protect the poorest in Ethiopia is a challenge

slide4

Productive Safety Net Programme & Aid Effectiveness - Harmonisation

  • The PSNP is a model for donor harmonisation and features a high degree of coordinated action between its 10 donors.
  • Two main factors can explain this evolution of donor relations:
    • The need to work together. PSNP is a radical departure from previous approaches to addressing food insecurity in Ethiopia through the emergency relief system, which was not working adequately and another approach was urgently needed
    • The introduction of coordination mechanisms to bring donors together more effectively
  • The level of organisation achieved by donors coordinating their actions, reduces government transaction costs considerably compared with alternatives

CHALLENGES:

Building and maintaining a suitable level of harmonisation is critical to success - but takes time and the more donors there are to harmonise the longer it takes.

slide5

Productive Safety Net Programme & Aid Effectiveness – Managing for Results

  • The PSNP has an elaborate system for managing for results: the routine government system supplemented by some specific additional measures.
  • The design for PSNP was entirely based around a log frame development process shared between Government & donors:
    • Outcome/impact level data are investigated through regular impact surveys
    • Activity/output level data are investigated through Regional Information centres
  • Three key joint programme oversight mechanisms:
    • The Rapid Response Team mechanism to allow a field-based reality check on specific issues that are felt to need investigation
    • The Joint Review and Implementation Support mission is a 6-monthly review looking at Activity-to-Outcome level progress.
    • The Joint Strategic Oversight Committee is the higher level decision-making body in which Ministers and donors make binding agreements on strategic issues

CHALLENGES:

How to ensure that an M&E system which is based on a sample and covers very diversified livelihood patters provides a complete overview of performance

How to ensure that issues without strong political interest from Government, but strong interest from donors, are also managed effectively.

productive safety net programme aid effectiveness mutual accountability
Productive Safety Net Programme & Aid Effectiveness – Mutual Accountability
  • Mutual accountability in the PSNP is a work in progress.
  • What is the mutual understanding of a “partnership” when viewed in the political context:
    • equal partnership?
    • Junior and senior partners?
  • The response to this situation from both donors and government has been pragmatic, and has followed a strategy of incremental change.

CHALLENGES:

How to ensure that political agendas do not lead to a lack of clear evidence-based discussion and a lack of transparency on conveying government thinking to its donor partners.

lessons from the psnp for aid effectiveness 1
Lessons from the PSNP for aid effectiveness (1)
  • Maximum programme effectiveness for the PSNP is achieved by departing in places from a strict interpretation of the Paris Principles:
    • This implies a trade-off between shorter-term programme effectiveness and aid effectiveness.
    • The effect of this trade-off on longer-term development effectiveness has not been studied.
lessons from the psnp for aid effectiveness 2
Lessons from the PSNP for aid effectiveness (2)
  • A number of specific lessons may enhance programme and system effectiveness & efficiency:
    • The extent of government ownership can change over time and also may be variable across Government systems
    • A pragmatic approach to alignment goes beyond alignment to system improvement
    • Dedicated donor coordination support leads to effective engagement with government
    • The scale and nature of the PSNP is only possible through a harmonised approach
    • Government transaction costs have been significantly lower due to donor harmonisation
    • A single strategic planning and M&E framework has brought more focus to agreed priorities and approaches
    • The improved data specifically required by donors has meant better decisions are made
    • An incremental approach and ongoing donor engagement with government has helped experience-based learning and the identification of opportunities for improvement
    • Joint oversight mechanisms help decision-making for planning and implementation
    • Mutual accountability requires a shared understanding and expectation of the nature of the partnership between government and donors