Periodic independent evaluations of UNCDF’s operational activities are one of the cornerstones of UNCDF’s learning strategy. They enable UNCDF to gain an objective assessment of what it does.
The European Commission recently conducted a results-oriented monitoring mission to evaluate the Liberia Decentralisation and Local Development project (LDLD), a project jointly funded by UNCDF, UNDP and the European Commission.
The Liberia Decentralisation and Local Development project is working in 15 counties to strengthen the capacity of local governments to plan and implement development projects that benefit their local communities. It features the setting up of a capital investment and local development fund, to support Liberia's efforts in reversing historic tendencies within its centralized system of administration.
The EC Results-Oriented Monitoring Report found the UNCDF/UNDP programme well integrated into existing local systems, in line with national strategies and ‘very relevant to the needs of post-conflict Liberia and its people.’
The project was found efficiently implemented and has proved to be highly effective’, helping with drafting of decentralization policy, approved by government and parliament. Furthermore, the report found that the greater responsibility at local level is likely to lead to more effective development planning at local levels, in line with people’s needs and that ‘LDLD will, it is expected, result in more democratic and accountable government with improved capacities at all tiers.’
While highlighting the project's strengths, the EC report also pointed out some areas for improvement for LDLD to fully attain the objectives. These include concerns regarding the limited numbers of project staff, which may be a limiting factor given project’s ambitious agenda ; the government capacity at all levels which remains weak; as well the need for a continuous donor support given Government’s lack of financial and technical capacity.
As part of its results-based management culture, UNCDF is committed to addressing the challenges that were highlighted by the report.