Helen Clark on Delivering as One

08 Mar 2011

Independent Evaluation of Lessons Learned from Delivering as One - Meeting of the Evaluation Management Group

Helen Clark, UNDP Administrator
New York, 7 March 2010, 3.30pm

First of all, I congratulate the members of the Evaluation Management Group on their appointment.

It is encouraging to see a group comprised of such highly qualified and independent evaluation experts from all regions, from the Delivering as One pilot countries themselves, and from the Joint Inspection Unit and the UN Evaluation Group.

Let me briefly update you on what countries have reported so far about their experience of implementing the Delivering as One initiative.

First, the Delivering as One pilot countries reported through their country-led evaluations that the Delivering as One process has been driven by national governments, and that their commitment has been critical to the pilots’ success.

The governments of the Delivering as One countries have stated unequivocally on numerous occasions that this reform of the UN development system in their country has supported enhanced national ownership and leadership of the development agenda. That, in my view, must result in greater effectiveness.

Second, the Delivering as One countries have affirmed that implementation of the One Programme is making the UN country presence more responsive to and aligned with national development priorities and processes, as called for in the Triennial Comprehensive Policy Reviews.

Third, the One Budgetary Frameworks and the One Funds are helping the UN sharpen its strategic focus and respond more flexibly to national development needs. They are helping the DaO countries improve results reporting, the predictability of our long-term funding in those countries, and our transparency and accountability.

Fourth, countries report that having the One Leader is central to the success of this reform. The enhanced role and accountability of the UN Resident Co-ordinator, and of the UN Country Team, supports a UN better able to respond to national development priorities.

Fifth, efficiency gains are being made in multiple ways by the DaO countries, - common premises, common services, reform in the area of procurement and IT as well as lesser transaction costs for governments.
Governments of the pilot countries have also noted on several occasions, most recently during the Hanoi High Level Conference in June last year, that for them there is no “going back” to the old ways of working with UN Country Teams.

It has also become abundantly clear that “No One Size Fits All”. The experiences in the individual pilot countries have been quite diverse. This finding came through in the recent country-led evaluations. It would be a misconception to think that this reform is about developing a rigid “one size fits all”. What is paramount is that the UN system needs to respond to the specific national needs and priorities in each programme country.

The country-led evaluations were an important exercise for the Delivering as One countries. The UN country teams are now responding to the findings to further improve their joint delivery of results.

Another important exercise was the holding of the intergovernmental meetings in Maputu, Kigali and Hanoi. The outcome statements from these meetings clearly demonstrated the positive experience of the Governments and UN country teams of the DaO pilot countries and voluntary adopters. We are very much looking forward to the result of the last intergovernmental meeting on Delivering as One which will take place in Montevideo, Uruguay, in November this year.

We are also looking forward to this comprehensive independent evaluation of the pilot experiences, and know that the report of the Independent Evaluation will be an important input into the comprehensive review of the UN system’s development activities (the “QCPR”) in 2012.

I can assure you that the Resident Co-ordinators and the UN Country Teams in the pilot countries, the Regional UNDG Teams, and the member organizations of the UNDG at headquarters level are ready to support the evaluation process in any way they can.