The purpose of the consultancy is to obtain concrete recommendations for the development of ADC cooperation strategy reviews. This way, a bridge between the present assignment and the later development of the guidelines shall be ensured.
The main objectives of the consultancy are:
1. To provide an overview of other other bilateral and multilateral development actors’ tools and guidelines on CPE/R and RPE/R and lessons learned from their implementation;
2. To assess
a.) strengths and weaknesses of previous ADC cooperation strategy evaluations in terms of (i) process and (ii) methodological approaches;
b.) common challenges faced - and mitigation measures taken when conducting ADC cooperation strategy evaluations/reviews;
3. On basis of the assessments outlined above,
a.) To propose a draft structure for the new guidelines on CPE/R and RPE/R;
b.) To extrapolate concrete recommendations regarding content of the new guidelines on CPE/R and RPE/R.
As intended users of the new guidelines, three groups can be identified:
(i) The evaluation units at FMEIA and ADA, as those are responsible for the management and quality assurance of CPE/R and RPE/R (5 persons);
(ii) independent evaluators commissioned with evaluations of cooperation strategies (around 5-10);
(iii) ADC staff at head-quarters and in coordination offices involved in the management of programme and project portfolios, as the guidelines shall clarify their involvement in the evaluation/review process (around 20).
To establish an evidence-base for the development of new guidelines for CPE/R and RPE/R, a stocktaking exercise will be carried out (i) to review available tools and guidelines for CPE/R and RPE/R from other bilateral and multilateral development actors along with good practices and lessons learned from their implementation; (ii) to assess the strengths and weaknesses pertaining to the planning, implementation and use of recent ADC cooperation strategy evaluations, as well as (iii) to identify common challenges and mitigation measures while conducting these evaluations.
The consultancy will be largely desk-based. It will consist of literature review of (i) ADC and other institution’s guidelines on CPE/R and RPE/R; (ii) documents related to the institutional setup and the processes of commissioning and implementing strategic evaluations in ADC; (iii) main docu-ments related to the five most recent ADC Strategic Evaluations/Reviews of Cooperation Strate-gies (including One-Pager on the evaluation’s scope, ToR, cost estimations, stakeholder mapping, portfolio analysis, kick-off and preliminary findings presentations, inception reports and final re-ports and feedback matrixes on reports, After-Action Review Documents as well as management response documents).
In addition, the consultant(s) is/are expected to gather qualitative information through interviews and focus groups with the evaluation units in both, ADA and FMEIA, with relevant staff in country offices and country and region advisors at ADA and FMEIA and other relevant stakeholders.
One trip by the consultant(s) to Vienna is foreseen to enable direct data collection and interaction with stakeholders.
The Evaluation Policy of the Austrian development cooperation (2019) uses the term “Cooperation Strategy Evaluations” to describe Country/Regional Portfolio Evaluations/Reviews and defines them as evaluations of the entirety of development interventions taken by one or several donors or development organisations in a partner country and/or partner region and the underlying development cooperation strategy. These can also be conducted in a ‘review’ format (FMEIA 2019:6). Recent examples of Evaluations/Reviews of ADC Cooperation Strategies include the Strategic Mid-Term Evaluation of ADC’s Albania Country Strategy 2015-2020 (2020), the Strategic Evaluation of Austrian Development Cooperation's Engagement in Mozambique 1992-2018 (2020), the Mid-Term Review of the Armenia and Georgia Country Strategies 2012-2020 (2018), the Mid-Term Review of the Kosovo Country Strategy 2013-2020 (2018) and the Strategic Evaluation of the ADC Country Strategy for Bhutan 2015-2018 (2017). Along with other strategic evaluations in ADC, Country/Regional Portfolio Evaluations/Reviews (CPE/R and RPE/R) are managed by the ADA Executive Unit Evaluation and Statistics and the FMEIA Division VII.4.
ADC has published Guidelines for Country and Regional Strategy Evaluations & Reviews of the Austrian Development Cooperation in 2016. These Guidelines, while useful at the time also in terms of providing a timeline for implementation of CPE/R and RPE/R, provide little guidance on methodological aspects and certain elements (e.g. criteria) are now covered in the ADC Evaluation Policy. Some aspects of the guidelines are outdated (e.g. now there are six instead of five OECD DAC criteria), while others are no longer being implemented in practice (e.g. prescribing of evaluation questions). Furthermore, valuable experiences have been gathered from conducting ADC Coun-try/Regional Portfolio Evaluations/Reviews over recent years. These developments call for the revision and update of the guidelines on the basis of the learnings and experiences as well as of state-of-the-art guidelines from other bilateral and multilateral development actors. To establish an evidence-base for the development of new guidelines for CPE/R and RPE/R, a stocktaking exercise will be carried out