2010.11 Nathalie Holvoet and Liesbeth Inberg | Sector Monitoring and Evaluation Systems in the context of Changing Aid Modalities: The Case of Rwanda's Health Sector

(Part of the) Introduction

The 2005 Paris Declaration (PD) sets outs a reform agenda for donors and recipients with the aim to scale up for more effective aid. Commitments are made around five core principles, including ‗ownership‘, ‗alignment‘, ‗harmonisation‘, ‗managing for results‘ and ‗mutual accountability‘ and have been reaffirmed through the 2008 Accra Agenda for Action (AAA). Measurement of progress in the implementation of the PD/AAA is based upon 12 indicators (OECD/DAC, 2005).

The indicator for measuring progess in the ‗management for results‘ principle is the ―number of countries with transparent and monitorable performance assessment frameworks to assess progress against (a) the national development strategies and (b) sector programmes‖ (OECD/DAC, 2005: 10). The indicator is composed of three sub-components, i.e. ‗stakeholder access to information‘, ‗quality of information‘ and ‗coordinated country-level M&E‘. While commitments of donors in the area of ‗results-orientation‘ are not captured in an indicator, they promised to ―link country programming and resources to results and align them with effective partner country performance assessment frameworks, and to refrain from requesting the introduction of performance indicators that are not consistent with partners‘ national development strategies‖. Additionally, they committed themselves to ―work with partner countries to rely, as far as possible, on partner countries‘ results-oriented reporting and monitoring frameworks‖ and to ―harmonise their monitoring and reporting requirements, and, until they can rely more extensively on partner countries‘ statistical, monitoring and evaluation systems, [work] with partner countries to the maximum extent possible on joint formats for periodic reporting‖ (OECD/DAC, 2005a: 8). Moreover, donors and partner countries jointly committed to ―work together in a participatory approach to strengthen country capacities and demand for results based management‖ (OECD/DAC, 2005a: 8).

Despite these commitments, progress in the implementation of reforms in this area is slow. The last update of the Comprehensive Development Framework (CDF) report (World Bank, 2007), on which indicator 11 is based, reveals that only three out of 54 countries surveyed had result-oriented frameworks that were deemed adequate (OECD/DAC, 2008:58-59). While most countries have a number of monitoring and evaluation (M&E) activities and arrangements in place, there is often a lack of coordination between different components of a system. Donors, from their side, are reluctant to rely on systems which are only partially developed. Their reluctance to align simultaneously blocks the further elaboration and maturing of recipient systems. In order to escape this persistent chicken-and-egg-dilemma, a pragmatic two-track approach could be a possible way forward. It combines the set-up and/or strengthening of recipient M&E systems (long-term) with complementary M&E activities that fulfill the existing M&E needs in the short and middle run (see Holvoet and Renard, 2007; Holvoet and Inberg, 2009).

For a nationally owned and properly functioning performance assessment framework an appropriate organisation of a national M&E system with clear division of responsibilities between different levels and layers of government, with clearly identified information streams and accountability structures between central and line ministries, and between the local and national level, is crucial. This paper focuses on sector M&E arrangements‘ development in the context of the health Sector Wide Approach (SWAp) in Rwanda. The health sector M&E system is assessed on selected criteria of policy,

Specific attention is paid to the place of Joint (Sector) Reviews within the M&E system. The assessment mainly draws upon secondary data (e.g. documents from the government of Rwanda, literature on Rwanda and health information systems). The section on Joint Health Sector Reviews is also based upon primary data collected by one of the authors who participated in the November 2008 Joint Health Sector Review.

Download 2010.11  Nathalie Holvoet and Liesbeth Inberg | Sector Monitoring and Evaluation Systems in the context of Changing Aid Modalities: The Case of Rwanda's Health Sector

2010.10 Gemma Pinyol Puig, Nadia Molenaers and Linas Cepinskas | Nicaraguan civil society caught in the pendulum's swing? Shifting roles from service delivery to lobbying and back

Abstract

Until the end of the 1990s, Nicaragua was marked with social conflict and internal political struggles. From 2000 until 2006 Nicaragua experienced a relatively democratic period, in which the country drafted Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSPs) with participation of the civil society. In this period, the openness of the political system and the participatory dimension of the PRSPs helped to strengthen civil society and increase policy influencing. As a result a shift took place away from service delivery and towards more lobbying and advocacy. The election of Ortega in 2006 (Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN)) as president introduced the shrinking of this democratic space. From that moment onwards, donors encountered difficulties in dealing with the participation conditionality. At the same time, civil society organizations (CSOs) found it difficult to counterbalance the increasing undemocratic tendencies despite their efforts to organize mobilizations. This paper argues that the NAA, which pushes civil society into the watchdog role, is rather troublesome in contexts which are politically closing down. Imposing the single role of watchdog on civil society is ineffective. The NAA should not be treated as a rigid blueprint but, rather, as a guideline for policy implementation dependent on the actual situation in the country of concern.

Download 2010.10  Gemma Pinyol Puig, Nadia Molenaers and Linas Cepinskas | Nicaraguan civil society caught in the pendulum's swing? Shifting roles from service delivery to lobbying and back

2010.09 Omwa Samuel Samson | Community-Based Initiatives in Enhancing OVC Service Delivery: Prospects and Challenges in Post Conflict North Central Uganda

Abstract

This study seeks to greatly contribute to understanding of OVC community care. Using mainly ethnographic qualitative evidence from Ngai Sub County, in Oyam district, northern Uganda, it addresses the challenges and complexities that many a ingenious community OVC care institutions are grappling with in providing an array of care and support services to the OVCs. It argues that an appropriate informed synergistic response in tandem with local aspirations has the potential to greatly stem the impact of the orphaning crisis in north central Uganda. The analysis of the findings provides vital information and prospects regarding the de-institutionalisation of OVC support and response services in the country.

Download 2010.09  Omwa Samuel Samson | Community-Based Initiatives in Enhancing OVC Service Delivery: Prospects and Challenges in Post Conflict North Central Uganda

2010.08 Wim Marivoet | Poverty Lines as Context Deflators in the DRC. A methodology to account for contextual differences

Abstract 

In this paper we present a specific methodology to make spatial well-being and poverty assessments based on expenditure data to some extent sensitive to contextual aspects other than price differentials. The rationale behind this method coincides with the view expressed by the advocates of human development pointing to the irrelevance of (real) income levels for well-being measurement compared to an analysis of people‟s ability to deploy this purchasing power in a very specific time and setting. Yet, in order to operationalize this principle, we opted to employ the ordinary technique of deflating nominal incomes, but in such a way that genuine comparability over different geographical entities comes within reach. Of course, the extent to which our methodology is able to achieve this goal, largely depend on the exact content and construction of the underlying deflators used.

Given our research agenda to analyze the distribution of poverty and well-being in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), we decided to construct 56 regional poverty lines whose pair wise ratios in turn were used as a set of context deflators. The challenge of this exercise essentially boiled down to reconciling the two seemingly discordant –but highly appreciated– poverty line characteristics of „specificity‟ and „consistency‟: i.e. how to give due attention to the myriad of local living conditions while still ensuring sufficient comparability. Although this theoretical discordance has been settled some time ago, methodological problems to align both features still remain cumbersome in practice. Therefore, the main contribution of this paper needs to be understood in addressing these methodological issues within the framework of a household and expenditure survey.
As a natural starting point to deal with these issues, we screened the validity of the major criticisms raised against the Food Energy Intake (FEI) method. Indeed, this context-sensitive methodology for setting poverty lines is often condemned for generating inconsistent results, but –after closer scrutiny– not for every reason put forward in the literature. On the basis of these insights, we started to mould our own specific poverty line methodology in which we tried to accommodate the remaining pieces of critique. This resulted in a three-step FEI-like procedure where the anchoring device to ensure consistency between all 56 localities, was built upon the basic human functionings of being adequately nourished and sheltered. Finally, we applied this procedure to our data in order to discern the impact of our own methodology vis-à-vis other internally and externally computed approaches.

Download 2010.08  Wim Marivoet | Poverty Lines as Context Deflators in the DRC. A methodology to account for contextual differences

2010.07 Filip Reyntjens | A Fake Inquiry on a Major Event. Analysis of the Mutsinzi report on the 6th April 1994 attack on the Rwandan President's aeroplane

Abstract 

The report of the Mutsinzi commission attempts to show that President Habyarimana‟s airplane was not downed by the RPF, as the French investigating judge Bruguière concluded but by Hutu radicals who were close to the main victim of the attack. The report raises a number of serious questions. The Mutsinzi committee claims to be impartial, but all the commissioners are members of the RPF, which means that it is both judge and party. This is made abundantly clear from the beginning of the report and is subsequently confirmed throughout the body of the report, which treats as solid evidence testimonies showing the complicity of Hutu extremists, but systematically disregards the evidence pointing towards the RPF.

While the committee claims to have interviewed hundreds of witnesses, the validity of their testimonies must be considered with caution. Of those identified, many are members of the former government army FAR; all of them were interviewed while convicted or detained, or fearing arrest, in full awareness of what those in power expected them to say, and of the price to be paid if they did not. Their testimonies are thus of doubtful quality. The committee uses certain documents, for instance from Belgian judicial files, in a selective and sometimes dishonest way. Numerous examples in the report show that the method used by the committee raises serious doubts. The committee generally proceeds by first presenting unsubstantiated hypotheses or even downright untruths as facts; the accumulation of these "facts" is then used to establish the "truth". The conclusion the committee reaches is not credibly based on the information emanating from the enquiry, and the fraudulent way in which the report was made rather reinforces the suspicion that the RPF committed the attack.
There are now two radically opposed versions of the truth as to who is responsible for the downing of the presidential plane: one is in the findings of the Bruguière inquiry, the other in the Mutsinzi report. Both point fingers at suspects, albeit different ones, and both indicate that a crime has been committed. The natural way of dealing with such findings is to conduct a contradictory debate in a court of law. However, it would seem that both Rwanda and France, in their attempt to improve relations, are intent on sacrificing justice on the altar of political expediency. The Rwandan people deserve better.

Download 2010.07 Filip Reyntjens | A Fake Inquiry on a Major Event. Analysis of the Mutsinzi report on the 6th April 1994 attack on the Rwandan President's aeroplane

2010.06 Geovanna Benedictis, Germán Calfat, and Karina Jara | Assessing the Impact of Remittances on Child Education in Ecuador: The role of educational supply constraints

Abstract

We analyse the links between remittances and child education in Ecuador with special emphasis on the influences in supply conditions at the regional level. Our results point out to the favourable role of remittances on education, suggesting at the same time, the importance of an efficient basic infrastructure in the educational system, as a key element in fostering positive outcomes. The positive effect of remittances on child education is better understood within the context of public policies designed to improve and equalize educational supply conditions among the population.

Download 2010.06 Geovanna Benedictis, Germán Calfat, and Karina Jara | Assessing the Impact of Remittances on Child Education in Ecuador: The role of educational supply constraints

2010.05 G. Calfat, R. G. Flôres, A.Rivas, and M.Granato | Policy making in asymmetric regional integrations: a methodology for allocating cohesion fund resources

Abstract

We propose a combination of region- and product-identification procedures in order to map the potential of economic activities in areas with poor infrastructure in an asymmetric regional integration. After identifying spatial units with relative backwardness in terms of infrastructure, we detect the most competitive exports, estimate gravity models for each of them and perform simulations for an improvement of 20% in the value of the infrastructure index. In a final step, we identify goods/provinces where investment in infrastructure should be directed to. A thorough and data intensive application is made to the case of the Fondo de Convergencia Estructural del MERCOSUR (FOCEM), the recently created cohesion fund of one of the most asymmetric integration projects. Our main conclusion is that FOCEM resources, under the global objective of enhancing structural convergence among the members, should be totally directed to Paraguay instead of being dispersed among all backward regions in the bloc.

Download 2010.05 G. Calfat, R. G. Flôres, A.Rivas, and M.Granato | Policy making in asymmetric regional integrations: a methodology for allocating cohesion fund resources

2010.04 Bert Ingelaere | VIVRE A NOUVEAU ENSEMBLE Les attentes envers la justice transitionnelle au Burundi vues par le bas

Résumé

Chaque société qui a vécu un conflit ou une répression violente a besoin d'affronter le passé, d'une façon ou d'une autre. La redevabilité était l'objectif qui a dominé la période qui a suivi la Seconde Guerre mondiale. Les procès de Nuremberg en sont un exemple. Des commissions de la vérité ont suivi, en Afrique du Sud, mais déjà auparavant dans plusieurs pays d'Amérique latine. Récemment, l'attention a davantage été attirée par des mécanismes de justice et de réconciliation dits « traditionnels ».2 Les négociations entre le gouvernement ougandais et la Lord's Resistance Army sont exemplaires de cette tendance mondiale. Une proposition a été formulée visant à utiliser le rituel du Mato Oput lors de la période qui a suivi le conflit. Cependant, l'amnistie collective, un oubli collectif, a souvent aussi été une stratégie pour affronter un passé violent.

Download 2010.04  Bert Ingelaere | VIVRE A NOUVEAU ENSEMBLE Les attentes envers la justice transitionnelle au Burundi vues par le bas

2010.03 Theodore Trefon, Thomas Hendriks, Noël Kabuyaya, Balthazar Ngoy | L'économie politique de la filière du charbon de bois à Kinshasa et à Lubumbashi

Abstract 

Charcoal use in urban Congo expanded significantly in the early 1990s. While recourse to charcoal (makala) as cooking fuel existed during the early independence period, most urban households had access to electricity for domestic use. Population, pressure, poorly maintained infrastructures and state crisis combined to force people to rely on makala for their daily cooking needs. Trade networks developed to make the link between makala producers and consumers. This can be considered as a popular response to state failure and is the subject of this working paper. Our research followed the trade network that includes charcoal producers, transporters, middlemen, wholesalers and retailers and a host of other peripheral supporting actors who claim to „live miraculously‟ from the network. The main conclusion of the research is that this informal trade network thrives, despite hassles from state agents, because it provides a vital service to Congo's urban poor.

Résumé 

Si pendant les années 60, le charbon de bois est apparu comme une ressource énergétique d‟appoint parmi les populations urbaines du Congo nouvellement indépendant, le non investissement systématique dans le réseau électrique et la crise généralisée de l‟ Etat ont fait que la consommation du charbon de bois s‟est accrue de façon exponentielle à partir des années 90. Avec cette croissance de la consommation, des filières complexes d‟approvisionnement en charbon de bois se sont développées de façon spontanée et garantissent actuellement la survie énergétique et alimentaire des ménages urbains dans la République Démocratique du Congo. Dans la présente étude, cette « réponse populaire » vis-à-vis d‟un Etat dit « en faillite » a été analysée en décrivant de manière détaillée tous les acteurs de ces filières et leurs activités, leurs stratégies et leurs interactions. En effet, les charbonniers, les transporteurs, les grossistes et les détaillantes – assistés d‟une multitude de petits acteurs comme des rabatteurs, des (dé)chargeurs, des dépositaires, des crieurs, des porteurs ou des « mamans manoeuvres » – constituent une série d‟acteurs qui réalisent chaque jour ce que quelques-uns d‟entre eux qualifient de « miracle journalier » des villes congolaises où l‟« on vit mystérieusement ». Ce rapport présente les résultats de la première étude réalisée dans cette filière en RDC et démontre comment, malgré la quasi-absence de tout appui étatique et hors de portée de la plupart des projets et programmes de développement, les activités de débrouille des uns et les stratégies d‟accumulation des autres se combinent dans une seule chaîne commerciale devenue indispensable pour la survie élémentaire des villes postcoloniales congolaises.

Download 2010.03  Theodore Trefon, Thomas Hendriks, Noël Kabuyaya, Balthazar Ngoy | L'économie politique de la filière du charbon de bois à Kinshasa et à Lubumbashi

2010.02 Johan Bastiaensen, Peter Marchetti | Microfinanzas Rurales y Cadenas de Valor Agropecuarias

Résumé

En las últimas décadas, las microfinanzas se han convertido en una industria consolidada en maduros mercados urbanos, así como en los mercados de pequeñas ciudades rurales. Sin embargo el alcance en las profundas zonas rurales sigue siendo débil y el desarrollo de las microfinanzas agrícolas siguen siendo en gran medida un «desafío de frontera» (CGAP, 2006: ix). No obstante, más de dos tercios de los pobres del mundo viven en zonas rurales y la mayoría de ellos - a pesar de una importante diversificación de la economía rural - aún dependen en gran medida de la actividad agropecuaria. Por esta razón, muchos economistas han identificado acertadamente que el crecimiento de la producción agropecuaria y el fortalecimiento de la participación de los pequeños agricultores son dimensiones claves de una estrategia para reducir la (extrema) pobreza (World Bank, 2008). Obviamente, la falta de penetración en las áreas rurales profundas y el poco alcance agrícola para pequeños productores en particular, constituye un problema trascendental para una industria que pretende desempeñar un papel crucial en la lucha mundial contra la pobreza.

Download 2010.02 Johan Bastiaensen, Peter Marchetti | Microfinanzas Rurales y Cadenas de Valor Agropecuarias

2010.01 Filip Reyntjens | Analyse du rapport Mutsinzi sur l'attentat du 6 avril 1994 contre l'avion présidentiel rwandais

Abstract

The report of the Mutsinzi commission attempts to show that President Habyarimana's airplane was not downed by the RPF, as the French investigating judge Bruguière tried to demonstrate, but by Hutu radicals who were close to the main victim of the attack. The report raises a number of serious questions. The committee claims to be independent, but all the commissioners are members of the RPF, which means that it is both judge and party. This is made abundantly clear throughout the report, which treats as solid evidence testimonies showing the complicity of Hutu extremists, but  shows total disregard for the evidence pointing in the other direction. While the committee claims to have interviewed hundreds of witnesses, the validity of their testimonies raises serious doubts. Of those identified, dozens are members of the former government army FAR, all of them interviewed under extreme pressure, in full awareness of what they were expected to say, and of the price to be paid if they did not. As this analysis shows, the committee generally proceeds by first presenting unsubstantiated hypotheses or even downright untruths as facts; the accumulation of these "facts" then allows to establish the  "truth". There are now two radically opposed  versions of the truth as to who is responsible for the shooting down of the presidential plane: one is inscribed in the findings of the Bruguière inquiry, the other in the Mutsinzi report. They both point fingers at suspects, albeit different ones, and they both indicate that a crime has been committed. The natural way of dealing with such findings is to conduct a contradictory debate before a court of law. However, it would seem that both Rwanda and France, in their attempt to improve their relations, are intent on sacrificing justice on the altar of political expediency. The Rwandan people deserves better than such a cynical outcome.

Résumé

Le rapport de la commission Mutsinzi a pour objet de démontrer que l'avion du président Habyarimana n'a pas été abattu par le FPR, comme l'a conclu l'instruction du juge français Bruguière, mais par des radicaux hutu proches de la principale victime. Le rapport soulève nombre de questions importantes. Le comité Mutsinzi se targue de son impartialité mais tous les commissaires sont membres du FPR, ce qui le rend juge et partie. Ceci est très clair dès les premières pages et se confirme à travers l'ensemble du rapport, puisque l'enquête ne va que dans une seule direction, celle des extrémistes hutu, alors que les données mettant en cause le FPR sont systématiquement ignorées. Le comité dit avoir interrogé des centaines de témoins, mais la crédibilité de leurs déclarations est sujette à caution. Parmi ceux identifiés, des dizaines sont des membres de l'ancienne armée gouvernementale FAR ; entendus dans un contexte de crainte d'arrestation ou pire et sachant très bien ce que ceux au pouvoir voulaient leur entendre dire, leurs témoignages ne sont guère probants. De nombreux exemples dans le rapport montrent que la méthode employée par le comité n'est pas sans soulever de sérieuses réserves: celui-ci présente d'abord des hypothèses non prouvées voire même des contrevérités comme des faits, et l'accumulation de ces « faits » permet ensuite de dégager la « vérité ». La conclusion à laquelle aboutit le comité ne trouve pas de fondement crédible dans les données qui se dégagent de l'enquête. Nous sommes dès lors aujourd'hui confrontés à deux « vérités » sur l'attentat : celle issue de l'instruction Bruguière et celle du rapport Mutsinzi. Les deux indiquent des suspects, même s'ils sont différents, et constatent qu'un crime a été commis. La façon naturelle pour aborder un problème pareil est de mener un débat contradictoire devant une juridiction pénale. Il semble cependant que tant le Rwanda que la France, souhaitant normaliser leurs relations, soient entrainés à sacrifier l'exigence de  justice à  l'opportunisme politique. Le peuple rwandais mérite mieux.


Download 2010.01 Filip Reyntjens | Analyse du rapport Mutsinzi sur l'attentat du 6 avril 1994 contre l'avion présidentiel rwandais