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Rewiring Evaluation Approaches at the Intersection of Data Science and Evaluation

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rewiring evaluation event
These sessions will feature a combination of evaluators and data science users and practitioners to explore lessons, opportunities and challenges in rewiring evaluation.  Watch live: https://ieg.worldbank.org/event/datascience-and-evaluation These sessions will feature a combination of evaluators and data science users and practitioners to explore lessons, opportunities and challenges in rewiring evaluation.  Watch live: https://ieg.worldbank.org/event/datascience-and-evaluation

What will it take to learn fast to save lives during COVID-19 (coronavirus)?

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Medical professionals assigned to the 531st Hospital Center conduct an after-action review following the mass casualty scenario outside the operation room of the field hospital at Sierra Army Depot, California, on Oct. 28, 2019. (image credit: Spc. ShaTyra Reed/Army) Note the appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.
In an emergency room, much as in the response to a global crisis such as the coronavirus pandemic, saving lives requires teams to learn fast, to shift their thinking, and to adapt their practices in real time. It requires the application of simple, nimble practices for evaluating, learning, and reacting—not the creation of detailed planning or checklists—but processes for gathering and sharing Show MoreIn an emergency room, much as in the response to a global crisis such as the coronavirus pandemic, saving lives requires teams to learn fast, to shift their thinking, and to adapt their practices in real time. It requires the application of simple, nimble practices for evaluating, learning, and reacting—not the creation of detailed planning or checklists—but processes for gathering and sharing knowledge about what is working, what is failing, and why. Luckily, there are a suite of nimble tools, linked to a practice called Emergent Learning that can easily be adapted by teams working on the  World Bank’s crisis response. Tools like the After Action Review (AAR), first developed by the United States military to extract lessons and shift tactics between battle, can be applied at pivot points in project operational cycles. The Harvard Business Review Article, Learning in the Thick of it, describes how the army, and many fast-moving, consumer goods companies, use the tool to generate and distill raw data from the front line, and to feed this back into the implementation cycle. An AAR can be conducted anywhere, often, and is most effective when carried out at key decision points throughout an implementation cycle. It is also most effective when all team members are engaged in the process. The tool is used—and is increasingly gaining traction—amongst humanitarian agencies, beginning with the Tsunami response. IEGs 2014 evaluation, How the Bank Learns, called on the World Bank to “to become better at learning from lending”—a need all the more dire in the times of COVID-19.  The evaluation challenged the World Bank to integrate lessons from active experience—from both effective and failed efforts—into ongoing operations, even if that meant changing a course of action. This is the point of emergent learning: it promotes contestation and iteration. It encourages the organization and its operations to make learning a part of all activities, and part of everyday work, and less an isolated chore. With increasingly complex development challenges, this becomes ever more important. There has been a wide call for organizations, including the World Bank, to think differently—to integrate complexity into development practice—and to make learning an integral part of the way that they think and act. At the World Bank, Michael Woolcock makes the case for iterative and adaptive work. In his work with the British government’s Department of International Development (DFID), Ramalingam navigates the “wicked development problem”: the gap between what is trying to be achieved, and the methods being used to achieve it. Flexible, adaptable approaches were happening despite DFID’s corporate processes, not because of them. Oxfam’s Duncan Green provides hope and optimism about how change can happen. As Green puts it, quoting Milton Friedman much before the COVID crisis, "only a crisis produces real change”. Or, we can take a cue from Benedict Carey, in his book, How We Learn. Did you know that taking a test on a subject before you know anything about it improves subsequent learning? The premise seems absurd, but it reminds us that stimulating our awareness of context and refining the parameters of a problem are helpful in identifying and formulating solutions. In addition to AARs, the field of emergent learning offers four essential tools for making the approach to the current pandemic more effective: The ‘Framing Question' is built with the simple phase: “What will it take to”….[deliver healthcare to the most vulnerable COVID-19 patients?]. It creates a focus for collective learning by asking what it will take to achieve a desired outcome. It is a forward-focused, action-oriented challenge to the group to ensure alignment around an agreed premise or idea. When done well, the framing question is at once a mechanism to coalesce around a desired outcome and a means to define individual contributions. A good framing question has the ability to "train a group’s attention forward, in a collective inquiry that leads to action”. Emergent Learning Tables needed to surface and capture data, insights, formulate hypotheses and identify opportunities for further action. A way to “bring the team around the table”—the tool encourages teams to reflect by asking ‘what do we know so far?” Importantly, the process helps the team make a deliberate connection between the past and the future to ensure that previous lessons inform subsequent actions. ‘Before Action Review’ is an opportunity to discuss in detail what success will look like, and to establish intended results and identify anticipated pitfalls. The review sets the team on a learning pathway—linked to iterative, and often held, 'After Action Review' (see below). ‘After Action Review’ enables real time reflection on how the actual results compare with the intended ones. What caused the results and what will sustain or improve them? View a quick animated presentation about these 4 emergent learning tools {"preview_thumbnail":"/sites/default/files/Data/styles/video_embed_wysiwyg_preview/public/video_thumbnails/-20Ooj8KsSU.jpg?itok=lnvlacbg","video_url":"https://youtu.be/-20Ooj8KsSU","settings":{"responsive":0,"width":"850","height":"480","autoplay":0},"settings_summary":["Embedded Video (850x480)."]}   As countries and organizations like the World Bank Group move quickly to respond to the COVID-19 crisis, nimble tools are needed to shine a light on and assess what is working and what is not. Traditional monitoring and evaluation approaches—built on established theories and project baselines—are of limited use in a fast-moving and constantly changing crisis. Project teams should be encouraged and supported to reach for a wider set of emergent learning tools for enhanced contestability, and to create an environment of constant learning and where mistakes are acknowledged—and where both contribute to improving the impact of interventions. The stakes are high: during the times of COVID-19, learning fast can help protect the most vulnerable and ultimately save lives.   pictured above: Medical professionals assigned to the 531st Hospital Center conduct an after-action review following the mass casualty scenario outside the operation room of the field hospital at Sierra Army Depot, California, on Oct. 28, 2019. (image credit: Spc. ShaTyra Reed/Army) Note the appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.

5 Lessons from Economic and Social Crises to Inform the COVID-19 Response

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5 Lessons from Economic and Social Crises to Inform the COVID-19 Response
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Tres lecciones aprendidas de las anteriores crisis de salud pública que pueden informar la respuesta mundial a la COVID-19 (coronavirus)

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James Cooper, Sunday Bondo y Patrick Lappaya trabajan juntos para tomar una muestra con un hisopo y ayudar a determinar la causa de muerte de una mujer en el Hospital C.H. Rennie de la ciudad de Kakata, en Liberia, el 10 de marzo de 2016. Crédito: Banco Mundial
En la medida en que se extiende la emergencia de salud pública provocada por el nuevo coronavirus, aumenta el interés en torno a las posibles soluciones que la comunidad internacional puede ofrecer para apoyar la respuesta de los países. Al hacer un análisis de los informes de evaluación publicados por el Grupo de Evaluación Independiente (IEG, por sus siglas en inglés), sobre la respuesta del Show MoreEn la medida en que se extiende la emergencia de salud pública provocada por el nuevo coronavirus, aumenta el interés en torno a las posibles soluciones que la comunidad internacional puede ofrecer para apoyar la respuesta de los países. Al hacer un análisis de los informes de evaluación publicados por el Grupo de Evaluación Independiente (IEG, por sus siglas en inglés), sobre la respuesta del Grupo del Banco Mundial a las anteriores crisis de salud pública, identificamos tres lecciones sobre lo que ha funcionado en el pasado y áreas que requieren un enfoque especial para abordar la crisis actual con eficacia. RESPONDIENDO A LA CRISIS CON RAPIDEZ: Es fundamental disponer de mecanismos financieros flexibles para proporcionar apoyo oportuno y fondos adicionales para abordar los impactos de la crisis. En 2011, la Asociación Internacional de Fomento (AIF), el fondo del Banco Mundial para los países más pobres del mundo, creó el Servicio de Respuesta ante las Crisis para brindar apoyo oportuno a países prestatarios que enfrentan crisis severas derivadas de desastres naturales, choques económicos y emergencias de salud pública. Una evaluación realizada en 2019 (PDF, en inglés) reveló que aproximadamente la mitad de las operaciones del Servicio de Respuesta ante las Crisis hicieron uso de financiamiento adicional para realizar ampliaciones rápidas a los proyectos que ya estaban en marcha. Como ejemplo, en 2017 se amplió una asignación a la República de Yemen para hacer frente a uno de los peores brotes de cólera del mundo que se expandía en el contexto de un conflicto armado. En respuesta a la pandemia de COVID-19, el Banco Mundial estableció un mecanismo de desembolso rápido para abordar las necesidades económicas y sanitarias inmediatas de los países. La adaptación de las operaciones existentes y la reacción rápida a la nueva información pueden ayudar a reducir el tiempo dedicado al diseño de proyectos y a mejorar los resultados. En la respuesta del Banco Mundial a la gripe aviar se utilizaron modelos de proyectos amplios, que enumeraban diversas opciones que los Gobiernos podían elegir para afrontar la crisis. Esto contribuyó a disminuir el tiempo dedicado al diseño y a la aprobación de cada proyecto. La primera fase de la respuesta a la COVID-19 se organiza conforme a un enfoque flexible y programático de varias etapas que permitirá aprovechar las operaciones existentes y habilitará el aprendizaje continuo sobre los impactos de la pandemia para así adaptar la asistencia a los países. La experiencia reciente sugiere que las coaliciones contribuyen a mitigar los riesgos relacionados con la preparación de proyectos en forma rápida. La necesidad de preparar proyectos con rapidez puede afectar su calidad. mostraron que el asociarse con instituciones de las Naciones Unidas puede mitigar este riesgo debido al conocimiento especializado de estas y su capacidad para implementar proyectos de manera rápida y exitosa. Las operaciones relacionadas con la COVID-19 se están preparando en menos de una semana, un cronograma que no tiene precedentes en la historia del Banco Mundial. La cooperación internacional y la creación de coaliciones entre países pueden mejorar los resultados y ayudar a abordar las necesidades a largo plazo. La respuesta del Grupo del Banco Mundial al ébola se coordinó con una coalición que ayudó a organizar el desarrollo de capacidad que requerían los países de África occidental para prevenir y controlar la propagación de la enfermedad. Después del ébola, se crearon los Centros para el Control y la Prevención de Enfermedades de África (CDC, por sus siglas en inglés) como una red regional para fortalecer las instituciones de salud pública del continente y responder a las amenazas y brotes de enfermedades. CONTROLANDO LA PROPAGACIÓN: El seguimiento en tiempo real de las comunicaciones y los programas de concienciación pública es esencial para garantizar su eficacia. No se puede dar por sentado que las campañas de comunicación de higiene y control dirigidas a segmentos clave de la población están funcionando. confirmó que la evaluación del impacto de las comunicaciones y de los programas de concienciación publica es fundamental para entender su alcance sobre el comportamiento de la población. La evidencia recogida en los ejercicios de monitoreo puede informar cualquier rectificación necesaria a las estrategias de comunicación. La movilización y la coordinación de la sociedad civil y los grupos de base son esenciales para el seguimiento eficaz de la enfermedad y la identificación de casos en los países. Durante la gripe aviar, los débiles vínculos entre el Gobierno y las organizaciones de base en algunos países debilitaron la comunicación y la habilidad de las autoridades para poder monitorear el avance de la enfermedad. Esta falta de acceso oportuno y confiable a la información a nivel comunitario afectó la eficacia de las inversiones en las plataformas formales de seguimiento y control de enfermedades. En el caso del ébola, la movilización de grupos de la sociedad civil fue esencial para difundir información sobre la enfermedad y rastrear los contactos de las personas infectadas, siendo los teléfonos celulares una herramienta clave. Las inversiones en tecnología y equipos deben equilibrarse con el desarrollo de capacidad de los trabajadores de salud y la expansión del conocimiento para apoyar los diagnósticos de laboratorio. La capacitación técnica de los trabajadores sanitarios y los sistemas para el intercambio de conocimientos e información pueden representar la manera más importante y rápida para crear capacidad de laboratorio y ampliar las pruebas de detección de enfermedades. Las mejoras a las instalaciones físicas y equipos médicos han demostrado ser más complejas, costosas y lentas. IMPLEMENTANDO UNA RESPUESTA SOSTENIBLE A LARGO PLAZO: La mayoría de las operaciones del Banco Mundial en respuesta a la COVID-19 irán más allá de la emergencia inmediata, creando oportunidades para proyectos que también ayuden a los países a abordar la reducción de riesgos a largo plazo. Una logística eficiente será fundamental tanto para la actual crisis de salud pública como para las futuras. Si se llegara a disponer de una vacuna o un antiviral eficaz para el coronavirus, sería importante comprarlos para que se destinen a los trabajadores de salud u otras personas vulnerables, pero las consideraciones logísticas son clave. La experiencia con la gripe aviar muestra la importancia de la gestión logística de estos suministros para garantizar el uso adecuado de recursos limitados y acceder a las personas mas vulnerables. Los medicamentos antivirales tienen una vida útil limitada y, en el caso de la gripe aviar, las grandes reservas de medicamentos que se habían comprado no se llegaron a usar incluso durante los brotes. El Grupo del Banco Mundial y sus asociados pueden ayudar a fortalecer los planes y marcos de preparación en los países con sistemas de salud más débiles. La preparación del sistema de salud es la primera línea de defensa. Esta fue una de las recomendaciones principales de la evaluación del IEG sobre el apoyo del Grupo del Banco Mundial a los servicios de salud (reporte en inglés). Disponer de una mejor dotación de personal en los servicios de salud, equipos de protección, diagnósticos de laboratorio, gestión clínica, sistemas de vigilancia y mecanismos de trazabilidad rápida de contactos puede permitir a los países organizar respuestas más eficaces.     Fotografía: James Cooper, Sunday Bondo y Patrick Lappaya trabajan juntos para tomar una muestra con un hisopo y ayudar a determinar la causa de muerte de una mujer en el Hospital C.H. Rennie de la ciudad de Kakata, en Liberia, el 10 de marzo de 2016. Crédito: Banco Mundial

What do past crises tell us about coping with the economic shocks of COVID-19 (coronavirus)?

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What do past crises tell us about coping with the economic shocks of COVID-19 (coronavirus)?
The ways in which international organizations help countries respond may define not only the future trajectory of the pandemic, but also the duration of the current economic crisis and the direction of the world’s eventual recovery. IEG has studied the responses to past crises and identifies five lessons to help both countries and the World Bank Group address Show MoreThe ways in which international organizations help countries respond may define not only the future trajectory of the pandemic, but also the duration of the current economic crisis and the direction of the world’s eventual recovery. IEG has studied the responses to past crises and identifies five lessons to help both countries and the World Bank Group address the social and economic impacts of the coronavirus.   Governments the world over face a familiar, if more urgent, issue similar to past crises: how to “flatten the curve” of economic and social decline and “steepen” the curve of subsequent economic recovery when government budgets, the private sector, and households are all under stress at the same time. Developing countries face these challenges with far fewer resources and more vulnerable populations.   Five lessons  For the World Bank Group to be effective in supporting client countries cope with the social and economic crises caused by the pandemic, IEG’s crisis-related evaluations suggest that it needs to pay attention to five lessons from the past:  1. Speed and flexibility. The speed of response is of essence in these situations, as is Bank Group flexibility to adjust its programs, resources, and portfolios to support clients’ most urgent needs.  With the COVID-19 crisis unfolding much faster than the global financial crisis of 2008, this cannot be overemphasized. In fact, it appears that the Bank Group has learned this lesson: over 90 countries benefited from Bank Group support by May 1, 2020, with additional country support programs underway, barely two months after the outbreak intensified around the world. Development Policy Financing(DPF), which provides fast-disbursing budget support to client countries,  is typically the World Bank’s workhorse instrument in responding to crises because it is flexible in terms of policy focus and adaptability to different situations (e.g., standalone, programmatic, and DPF with deferred-drawdown option), and large amounts of cash can be transferred to client governments very quickly. So, it is not surprising that the Bank Group has quickly scaled up DPF support to client countries, along with other support modalities. 2. Criticality. In a crisis, there is no time to address the full range of complex reform issues that may be needed in normal times. Instead it is important to focus on the most critical issues. In this crisis, that is likely to include Bank Group interventions focused on urgent priorities with short-term impact: support for public health; budget support for social safety nets; and budgetary and financial sector support for economic recovery. This is also likely to include intensive policy dialogue and assistance to help governments shift their budgetary priorities in response to crisis needs. 3. Foresight It is not just about money. While it is critical to provide financial support and relief in the short term, it is also important to think beyond the immediate needs to recovery for the long term. That often requires focusing on select, critical policy and institutional reforms that can begin to be implemented during the crisis and extended in the recovery period to help “build back better” systems and strengthen crisis preparedness for the future. And because we now know that the world will have changed after the crisis in important ways, including how people interact, travel, work, and engage in a myriad of collective endeavors, it is important to think outside the box now on how future preparedness might look like and how it might need to differ from the past for greater effectiveness. Some countries may need to rethink their development strategies in view of these tectonic changes in the internal and external economic and social environment. 4. Focus on people – especially those in poverty. During economic crises, it is often necessary to focus on businesses and banks who are at the forefront of the economic impact, but the fact is that all crises are human crises. The COVID-19 crisis began as a public health crisis. So, focusing interventions to maximize their positive impact on the poor and vulnerable is imperative. Indeed, early Bank Group response providing urgent financing to client countries in the first two months of the crisis was concentrated on many of the poorest countries.  Given the dire warnings of hunger,  food insecurity and a rise in extreme poverty in the most vulnerable client countries, the Bank Group should be at the forefront of the fight to preserve past gains on poverty reduction and human development while working to rebuild social protection and economic systems after the crisis for more rapid recovery. 5. Coordination. The Bank Group is most effective in crises when it also coordinates effectively with its development partners. This helps the World Bank leverage its knowledge, global footprint, policy dialogue, and financial firepower with development partners on the urgent and immediate goal of helping countries cushion the impact and better prepare for recovery.  It also requires sound monitoring and evaluation based on evidence to ensure transparency and accountability. This is a clear and consistent lesson from past crises. It relates not only to collaboration with the International Monetary Fund and other multilateral agencies, but also with major donor countries, the Group of G-7 and G-20 countries (G-20), and regional development banks. On May 1, 2020, a new debt relief initiative for the poorest countries was announced.  If the World Bank Group heeds these lessons and acts in a concerted fashion, with speed, criticality, foresight, focus on people and poverty, and coordination with partners, it will be in a strong position to help its client countries deal with and ultimately overcome the COVID-19 crisis.  For more on IEG’s resources on the COVID-19 crisis and past crises, see our Lessons Library.  View the related infographic

3 lessons from past public health crises for the global response to COVID-19 (coronavirus)

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James Cooper, Sunday Bondo and Patrick Lappaya work together closely to take a sample swab to help determine the death of a women at C.H. Rennie Hospital in Kakata, Margibi County in Liberia on March 10, 2016. Image Credit World Bank
As the public health emergency of the novel coronavirus spreads globally, there is growing interest in how the international community can support countries’ responses to COVID-19 (coronavirus). By analyzing information from recent IEG evaluations of the World Bank Group’s response to public health crises, we identified three lesson areas that shed light on what works and where attention is Show MoreAs the public health emergency of the novel coronavirus spreads globally, there is growing interest in how the international community can support countries’ responses to COVID-19 (coronavirus). By analyzing information from recent IEG evaluations of the World Bank Group’s response to public health crises, we identified three lesson areas that shed light on what works and where attention is needed to deliver both an immediate and a long-term response to the current crisis. MOUNTING A RAPID RESPONSE: Flexible financial response mechanisms are critical for providing timely support and additional funds to address the impacts of a crisis. In 2011, the International Development Association, the World Bank fund for the world’s poorest countries, created a Crisis Response Window (CRW) to deliver timely support to eligible countries faced with severe crises stemming from natural disasters, economic shocks, and public health emergencies. A 2019 evaluation revealed that about half of CRW operations used the additional financing to rapidly scale up operations that were already underway, such as a 2017 allocation to the Republic of Yemen to cope with one of the world’s worst cholera outbreaks amid continuous conflict. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Bank has established a Fast-Track COVID-19 Facility to address immediate health and economic needs in countries.   Adapting existing operations and reacting quickly to new information can contribute to reducing project design time and to enhancing performance. The World Bank’s Avian Influenza response made use of broad project templates, which listed a wide array of options for governments to tackle the crisis. This contributed to reducing time spent on project design and approval The first phase of the COVID-19 response is organized under a flexible Multiphase Program Approach which will allow for the leveraging of existing operations and ongoing learning about the impacts of the pandemic and adapting the support to countries. Recent experience suggests that partnerships contribute to mitigating risks related to rapid project preparation.  While this can pose challenges to ensuring project quality, evaluations of CRW operations for crises showed that partnering with UN institutions can  mitigate this risk because of the specialized knowledge they bring, and their capacity to implement projects quickly and successfully. COVID-19 operations are being prepared in less than one week, which is unprecedented in the Bank's history. Cooperation and coalition building among countries can strengthen response performance and address longer-term needs. The Bank Group’s response to Ebola was coordinated with a coalition that helped organize the deployment of the necessary knowledge and skills across West African countries to prevent and control the spread of the disease. After Ebola, the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was set up as a regional network to strengthen the continent’s public health institutions and response to disease threats and outbreaks.       Enlarge and download infographic CONTROLLING THE SPREAD: Real-time monitoring of communications and public awareness programs is important to ensure their effectiveness. It cannot be taken for granted that communications campaigns aimed at key segments of the population on hygiene and control are working. Experience from the Avian Influenza suggests that assessing the impact of communications and public awareness programs on behavior is important, to understand what might be needed to achieve the desired changes. The evidence gathered can inform any necessary course corrections in the communications strategies. Mobilization and coordination of civil society and grassroots groups is essential for effective disease monitoring, and case identification in countries. In the case of Avian influenza, weak networks between government and grassroots organizations in some countries meant that important information on cases was not reported for disease monitoring. This lack of timely and trusted access to community level information reduced the effectiveness of investments in the formal disease monitoring and surveillance platforms in some countries. In the case of Ebola, the mobilization of civil society groups was essential to communicate information on the disease and to trace contacts, with cellular phones a key tool. Investments in technology and equipment need to be balanced with capacity building of health workers and knowledge to support laboratory diagnostics. Technical training of health workers and systems for knowledge sharing and communication may be the most important and rapid way to build laboratory capacity and scale-up disease testing. Facility and equipment upgrades have proven to be more complex, expensive, and time consuming than initially projected. IMPLEMENTING A SUSTAINABLE LONG-TERM RESPONSE: Most World Bank operations in response to COVID-19 will go beyond the immediate emergency, creating opportunities for projects that also help countries address long-term risk reduction. Effective logistics will be critical for both the current and future public health crises. If a vaccine or efficacious antivirus for coronavirus becomes available, purchasing it for use by health workers or other vulnerable persons could be valuable, but logistics issues are key. The Avian influenza experience show the importance of logistics management of these supplies to ensure value added use of scarce funds, and access to vulnerable persons. Antiviral drugs have a limited shelf-life and in the case of Avian influenza large stockpiles of purchases drugs went unused even during outbreaks. The WBG and its partners can help strengthen preparedness plans and frameworks in countries with weaker health systems. Preparedness of the health system is the first line of defense. This was a main recommendation of IEG’s evaluation on World Bank Group Support to Health Services. Better staffed health services, protective equipment, laboratory diagnostics, clinical management, surveillance systems, and rapid contact tracing skills can all allow countries to mount more effective responses.   pictured above: James Cooper, Sunday Bondo and Patrick Lappaya work together closely to take a sample swab to help determine the death of a women at C.H. Rennie Hospital in Kakata, Margibi County in Liberia on March 10, 2016. photo credit: World Bank

3 lesson areas from past public health crises for the global response to COVID-19 (coronavirus)

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Myanmar CLR Review FY15-19

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This review of the World Bank Group’s (WBG) Completion and Learning Review (CLR) covers the period of the Country Partnership Framework (CPF), FY15-FY17, and updated in the Performance and Learning Review (PLR) dated June 2, 2017, which extended the CPF period by two years to FY19. This CPF followed the end-2012 Interim Strategy Note (ISN) that resumed WBG operations after a hiatus of about 25 Show MoreThis review of the World Bank Group’s (WBG) Completion and Learning Review (CLR) covers the period of the Country Partnership Framework (CPF), FY15-FY17, and updated in the Performance and Learning Review (PLR) dated June 2, 2017, which extended the CPF period by two years to FY19. This CPF followed the end-2012 Interim Strategy Note (ISN) that resumed WBG operations after a hiatus of about 25 years. To support the Government’s development efforts, the WBG implemented a major expansion of its activities (a seven-fold increase in the Bank’s portfolio), possibly beyond what the country could absorb. Nevertheless, this support contributed to good progress on farming productivity; on access to electricity, telecommunications, health, education, and finance; and on the business climate. IEG agrees with the lessons drawn by the CLR. These are reformulated and summarized as follows: (i) In an environment of constrained implementation capacity, projects with diverse objectives and multiple implementing agencies may become unwieldy and lead to delays in project implementation. (ii) A results framework that excludes the program’s cross-cutting issues will impede assessment of success in addressing these issues. (iii) Use of country systems, support of key reform champions, and joint analytical work are among the factors that build trust with counterparts and stakeholders. (iv) Access to and coordination of trust fund resources will encourage effective implementation and collaboration across development partners. (v) Good and timely data is critical for evidence-based policy dialogue and timely response to country developments. (vi) A “one WBG” approach is critical to leverage WBG instruments toward specific objectives such as access to electricity. Seventh, more careful attention to indicators, including their sources, baselines, targets and time frames will facilitate program monitoring. (vii) A “disconnect’ between written implementation rules and actual practices in Myanmar, e.g., on procurement, may cause implementation delays. IEG adds the following lesson: Joint Implementation Plans (JIPs5) can improve the effectiveness of the “one WBG” approach noted by the CLR lessons. WBG CPFs normally intend collaboration across the Bank, IFC, and MIGA, but more often than not, CPFs do not spell out how such collaboration is to happen. Myanmar’s CPF JIP to improve access to electricity helped ensure that joint work would materialize. IEG rates the CPF development outcome as Moderately Satisfactory and WBG performance as Good.

A global effort is needed to ensure all countries are ready to combat COVID-19 (coronavirus) with evidence

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A global effort is needed to ensure all countries are ready to combat COVID-19 (coronavirus) with evidence
Every government needs robust monitoring and evaluation (M&E) systems now more than ever to design effective policies.Every government needs robust monitoring and evaluation (M&E) systems now more than ever to design effective policies.

Making Choices about Evaluation Design in times of COVID-19: A Decision Tree

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Making Choices about Evaluation Design in times of COVID-19: A Decision Tree
Making Choices about Evaluation Design in times of COVID-19: A Decision Tree (enlarge & download as a PDF) Making Choices about Evaluation Design in times of COVID-19: A Decision Tree (enlarge & download as a PDF)