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Evaluation of the Global Peace and Security Fund

(February 2011)

(PDF Version 905 KB) *


Abbreviations, Acronyms and Symbols

AcronymDescription
ACRAlto Consejeria para la Reintegracion (High Commissioner for Reintegration)
ACSRSAfrican Centre for Strategic Research and Studies
ADMAssistant Deputy Minister
AECAssessment and Evaluation Commission
AMISAfrican Union Mission to Sudan
AMISOMAfrican Union Mission in Somalia
ANDSAfghan National Development Strategy
ANPAfghan National Police
ANPAAfghan National Participation Association
ANSFAfghan National Security Forces
APCArmoured Personnel Carrier
ARAFAccountability, Risk and Audit Framework
ARLUAnnual Reference Level Update
ASFAfrican Stand–by Force or Advocats san Frontiere
AUAfrican Union
AUSMLAfrican Union Senior Mission Leader
AWGAssessment Working Group
BCFForeign Policy and Corporate Communications Division
BICCBonn International Centre for Conversion
CAContribution Agreements
CANADEMCanadian International Reserve Roster
CBSACanada Border Services Agency
CCCCanadian Commercial Corporation
CCHSCanadian Consortium on Human Security
CFCanadian Forces
CFOChief Financial officer
CIDACanadian International Development Agency
CIVPOLCivilian Police
CLFCanadian Landmines Fund
CAD $Canadian Dollar(s)
CNRRComisión Nacional de Reparación y Reconciliación
CoECentre of Excellence
CoPsCommunities of Practice
CPAComprehensive Peace Agreement or Canada Police Arrangement
CSCCorrectional Service of Canada
CSOCivil Society Organization
CSSPCorrections System Support Program
CSTC–ACombined Security Transition Command – Afghanistan
DACDevelopment Assistance Committee (of the OECD)
DCLCabinet and Parliamentary Liaison Division
DDDeputy Director
DDRDisarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration
DECDepartmental Evaluation Committee
DFAITDepartment of Foreign Affaires and International Trade
DFIDDepartment for International Development (UK)
DFSDepartment of Field Support
DGDirector General
DMDeputy Minister
DNDDepartment of National Defence
DPATDeputy Project Accountability Team
DPRDepartmental Performance Report
EACAssessment and Evaluation Commission
ECOWASEconomic Community of Western African States
ELAPE–learning for African Peacekeepers
ELPE–learning for Peacekeepers
EMPÉcole de Maintien de la Paix
EODExplosive Ordinance Disposal
EQUITASInterdisciplinary Group for Forensic and Psych–social Assistance
ERWExplosive Remnants of War
EUEuropean Union
EUPOLEU Police Mission in Afghanistan
FFAMCFiscal and Financial Allocation and Monitoring Commission
FMAFinancial Management Advisor
FPUsFormed Police Units
FSDNSudan Task Force
FSGFragfile States Working Group
FTAGTask Force on Afghanistan
FYFiscal Year
GBPGlyn Berry Programme
GoAGovernment of Afghanistan
GoCGovernment of Canada
GoSGovernment of Sudan
GosSGovernment of south Sudan
GPOPGlobal Peace Support Operations Programme
GPPGlobal Partnership Program
GPSGlobal Peace and Security
GPSFGlobal Peace and Security Fund
HoMHead of Mission
HSPHuman Security Program
IAImpact Assessment
IAEInternational Assistance Envelope
IAMArea Management Office
ICCInternational Criminal Court
ICCLRInternational Centre for Criminal Justice Policy
ICTInternational Crime and Terrorism Division
ICTJInternational Centre for Transitional Justice
IDANon Proliferation and Disarmament Division
IFMInternational Security Branch
ILXMine Action Group
IMSInformation Management System
IOMInternational Organization for Migration
IPOBInternational Peace Operations Branch – RCMP
IPMProgram and departmental Security
IPPInternational Police Peacekeeping
IDPsInternally Displaced Persons
IRCConflict Prevention and Peacebuilding Group
IRDExecutive Office
IRGStabilization and Reconstruction Programming Division
IRHHumanitarian Affairs and Disaster Response Group
IRPPeacekeeping and Peace Operations Group
IPSTCInternational Peace Support Training Centre
ITInformation Technology
IXSProgram Services Unit
JCJustice Canada
JLHUN Human rights, Gender Equality and Humanitarian Law Section
JMSTJoint Mediation Support Team
JPLJustice and Peace Law
JUSJustice and Legal Services Division
KAFKandahar Air Field
KAIPTCKofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre
KIPSKandahar Initiative for Peace and Security
KPRTKandahar Provincial Reconstruction Team
LISLandmine Impact Survey
LOFTALaw and Order Trust Fund for Afghanistan
MAGMine Action Group
MAPP–OAEMisión de apoyo al proceso de páz – Organization of American States
MCMemorandum to Cabinet
MDSEnvironmental Policy and Sustainable Development Strategies Division
MDTFMulti–Donor Trust Fund
MHSDemocracies and War Economies Division
MIBOAS Mission of Good Offices between Colombia and Ecuador
MINUSTAHUnited Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti
MoFMinistry of Finance
MoIMinistry of the Interior
MoJMinistry of Justice
MoUMemorandum of Understanding
MREMine Risk Education
MRMMonitoring and Reporting Mechanism
MTAPMilitary Training Assessment Program
NCRRNational Commission for Reparations and Reconciliation
NGOsNon–Government Organizations
NIMNational Implementation Modality
NMACNational Mine Action Center (Sudan)
NMVNational Movement for Victims
NSDDRCNorth Sudan Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration Commission
OASOrganization of American States
ODAOfficial Development Assistance
OECDOrganisation for Economic Co–operation and Development
OGDsOther Government Departments
PACTBuilding Capacity Worldwide (PCT–NGO)
PADProject Approval Document
PATProject Accountability Team
PAYE (policy)Payables at Year End
PCOPrivy Council Office
PDMProject Management Group
PDP–NBZPeace Development Program at the Northern Border Zone of Ecuador
PLAUPublic Legal Awareness Unit
PoAProgramme of Action
POTIPeace Operations Training Institute
PAPPPan–African Police Project
PPCPearson Peacekeeping Centre
PRTProvincial Reconstruction Team
PCSProject Counselling Services
PTProject Team
PTPPolicy on Transfer Payments
QRFQuick response Fund
R&RRest & Relaxation
RBPFResults Based Planning Framework
RCARRegional Commissions for Asset Restitution
RCMPRoyal Canadian Mounted Police
Re–STARTSTART, re–organized (2008)
RMAF/RBAFResults–Based Management and Accountability Framework / Risk–Based Audit Framework
RoCKRepresentative of Canada in Kandahar
RPPReport on Plans and Priorities
SABSTART Advisory Board
SALWSmall Arms and Light Weapons
SHASuspected Hazardous Area
SIMASSudan Integrated Mine Action Service
SMARTSpecific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Timely
SMESubject Matter Expertise
SMFHFinancial Services
SMPAProgram Analysis
SOPsStandard Operating Procedures
SPASpecial Purpose Account
SPLASudan People's Liberation Army
SRSGSecretary General on Business and Human Rights
SSDCSouthern Sudan Demining Commission
SSDDRCSouth Sudan DDR Commission
SSHRCSouthern Sudan Human Rights Commission
SSPSSouthern Sudan Prisons Service
SSRSecurity System Reform
STARTStabilization Reconstruction Task Force
TBSTreasury Board Secretariat
TCCSTroop Contributing Countries
T&CsTerms and Conditions
TJTransitional Justice
UKUnited Kingdom
UNUnited Nations
UNAMIDUnited Nations African Mission in Darfur
UN–AUUnited Nations / African Union (hybrid organization in Darfur; see UNAMID)
UNDOCUnited Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
UNDPUnited Nations Development Programme
UN–DPKOUnited Nations – Department of Peacekeeping Operations
UNHCRUnited Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
UNIFEMUnited Nations Development Fund for Women
UNAMIDUnited Nations/African Union Mission in Darfur
UNITARUnited Nations Institute for Training and Research
UNITAR–POCIUnited Nations Institute for Training and Research – Peace Operations Training Institute
UNMAOUnited Nations Mine Action Office in Sudan
UNMISUnited Nations Mission in Sudan
USUnited States (of America)
UXOUnexploded Ordinance
WAPPWest African Police Program
ZIDOffice of the Inspector General – DFAIT
ZIEEvaluation Division – DFIAT

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Acknowledgemenst

The Evaluation Division (ZIE), Office of the Inspector General (ZID), of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) would like to acknowledge the contributions Dr. Amr Elleithy, Mr. Omar Alihashi, Ms. Jessica Breaugh, and Mr. Stuart Bloomfield as well as the contributions of the consultants of Goss Gilroy Inc., to the production to this report and related case studies. ZIE also wishes to thank all those individuals, particularly at missions abroad, who volunteered their time and their thoughts to support this evaluation. Finally, ZIE gratefully acknowledges the contributions of members of the Evaluation Advisory Committee who guided the evaluation throughout all its phases.


Executive Summary

Introduction

The Evaluation Division (ZIE), Office of the Inspector General (ZID) of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) is mandated by the Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS) of Canada through its Evaluation Policy to conduct evaluations of all direct program spending of the Department (including Grants and Contributions). ZIE reports quarterly to the Departmental Evaluation Committee (DEC) which is chaired by the Deputy Ministers (DM).

This evaluation of the Global Peace and Security Fund (GPSF) was undertaken in response to a requirement for the Stabilization and Reconstruction Task Force (START), which is responsible for administering the GPSF, to report to TBS on the achievements of the GPSF as a pre–condition for the renewal of Terms and Conditions (T&Cs) by the end of Fiscal Year 2009/2010.

Background

As a result of increased international discourse on the need for an integrated and coherent approach to respond to crises, the Government of Canada (GoC) launched the GPSF in April 2005 with a notional budget of Canadian (CAD) $100 million per year for a five year period (2005–2010). “The objective of the GPSF is to provide financial and programming resources to facilitate timely, effective and accountable conflict prevention, crisis response, peace operations, civilian protection, and stabilization interventions in fragile states implicating Canadian interests in line with Canadian foreign policy priorities.”

The GPSF is comprised of three sub–programs which are described below:

  • The Global Peace and Security Program (GPSP). The GPSP sub–program provides the GoC with the capacity to respond quickly and effectively to emerging international crises, and to plan and deliver coherent and effective responses with respect to conflict prevention, peace operations, and stabilization initiatives consistent with Canadian interests and values.
  • The Global Peace Support Operations Program (GPOP). In order to meet Canada's G8 Sea Island and La Francophonie summit commitments, the GPOP sub–program supports the development of global capacity for peace support operations through medium term initiatives to build local and regional capacities to respond to crises with a focus on Africa and the Americas.
  • The Glyn Berry Program for Peace and Security (GBP). The GBP sub–program supports the development of Canadian and international policies, laws and institutions that embed core human security objectives of freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law in to international peace and security efforts in countries outside the GPSF priority country envelopes.

GPSF is managed by START. Under a recently revised structure, START is today comprised of four divisions: the Peace Operations and Fragile States Policy Division, which is charged with peacekeeping, peace building and conflict prevention policy; the Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Response Division, which is charged with complex emergencies and natural disasters; the Deployment and Coordination Division; and, the Stabilization and Reconstruction Programs Division, which is charged with programming in three geographic areas (Asia, Africa and the Middle East, and Latin America), and a Thematic Programming area. START now reports to the Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM) for Programming and Departmental Security (IPM) for approval and to the ADM for International Security and Political Director (IFM) for policy direction.

Evaluation Objectives

The objectives of this evaluation of the GPSF are as follows:

  • To determine whether the GPSF continues to address a demonstrable need;
  • To determine whether the design of the GPSF remains relevant;
  • To determine whether GPSF programming is consistent with, and supportive of, GoC foreign policy priorities and Departmental strategic outcomes;
  • To determine the extent to which the results of initiatives supported by the GPSF, through its three sub–programs, have contributed to the achievement of expected program outcomes;
  • To report on progress made in implementing recommendations advanced in previous evaluations, audits and reviews of the GPSF;
  • To determine the extent to which delivery mechanisms adopted by START are efficient and economical and whether there are alternative, more efficient, and economical ways to achieving the same results; and,
  • To derive lessons learned that will assist in future programming and improve overall performance through programmatic reflection and comparative analysis of international best practice.

Evaluation Approach and Methodology

The GPSF, which incorporates multiple themes, an array of programming activities, hundreds of projects, many implementing partners and diverse theatres of operation/intervention, presents many evaluation challenges. Given the requirement to report on the achievements of the GPSF since its inception, the number of projects alone would have made it exceedingly difficult and costly to conduct a comprehensive assessment of performance of each and every initiative supported by the GPSF. As a result, the evaluation was structured to provide a representative cross section of GPSF programming, while affording good coverage to major areas of programming.

To achieve a satisfactory level of coverage across the three sub–programs, it was determined that projects selected should provide a coverage in the range of 50% to 60% of GPSF disbursements. In order to do so, it was determined that each of the sub–programs would require a different approach based on the unique characteristics of each sub–program. Thus, a country case study approach, based on select theatres of intervention (Sudan, Colombia and Afghanistan), was applied to the GPSP. GPOP focused on institutions in receipt of GPOP support, and projects selected under the GBP were grouped thematically. This approach, which involved the review of close to 130 projects, yielded coverage of approximately 69% of total disbursements between FY 2005/2006 and March 2009.

This study was conducted between May 2009 and December 2009. The study design built on the results of previous evaluations and audits of the GPSF. These include: the GPSF Capacity Check (December 2006); Formative Evaluation of Canada's Global Peace and Security Fund – Sudan (September 2007); the Internal Program Audit of the Global Peace and Security Fund (January 2008); the Formative Evaluation of the Global Peace and Security Fund (completed in February 2008); and the Summative Evaluation of the Global Peace and Security Fund – Haiti (completed in April 2009).

Lines of evidence included:

  • Document and Literature Review, which included program documentation such as central agency submissions, project reports, Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) and previous audit and evaluation reports.
  • A Review of the GPSF Database, which contains a number of fields providing descriptive information about funded projects/initiatives.
  • Key Informant Interviews, comprised of over 350 individuals.
  • Field Visits & Project Survey, including missions to Colombia (Aug 24–Sept 5, 2009), Sudan (Oct 6–30, 2009) and Afghanistan (October 11–22) and New York (Oct 19–23, 2009). Key stakeholders were interviewed in the case study countries, including: DFAIT staff; representatives of international coordination mechanisms; officers of local governments; direct and indirect beneficiaries; and, representatives of other donor governments.
  • Projects not covered during the field visits were covered using a desk review approach. This required a review of project documentation, interviews with project officers and telephone interviews with project proponents and beneficiaries.

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Key Findings

Relevance:

  • The GPSF continues to fill both a temporal (rapid response) and structural (mandate related) funding gap within the GoC, thereby enhancing the ability of the GoC to respond to international crises in a timely and comprehensive manner.
  • The GPSF aligns fully with government priorities. This is assured by the fact that all major interventions are reviewed and authorized by the government of the day, and that expenditure envelopes are authorized by TBS. The study also found that the GPSF constitutes an important instrument to advance GoC foreign policy priorities in fragile states and is also aligned with international best practices.
  • Given DFAIT's leadership on Canadian foreign policy and the mandate limitations of other government departments (OGDs), DFAIT is the logical home for both the GPSF and START. This notwithstanding, Privy Counsel Office (PCO) can perform a beneficial role in supporting whole–of–government coherence in countries of intense GoC engagement.
  • The ultimate goals of the GPSF are at times at odds with the GPSF's short to medium–term mandate (1 to 3 years). If the GPSF mandate remains short to medium–term, then it may prove difficult to sustain the level of OGD engagement required to demonstrate results as many security system reform initiatives require a long–term commitment and the support of OGDs.
  • The three sub–program design for the GPSF has undergone refinements that have strengthened programming coherence and consequently their relevance, though boundaries between the sub–programs remain porous.

Performance

Achievements:

In reporting on the overall performance of the GPSF the Evaluation Team first considered the GPSF logical model, but found that it proved an inadequate framework for reporting on results. Here GPSF achievements are summarized against the Fund's global objectives.

Objective 1:
To improve the Canadian contribution to peace and security and the safety and well–being of beneficiaries living in targeted areas.
  • Despite early challenges which frustrated START's ability to deliver on the mandate of the GPSF, funding authorities secured since 2008 have significantly empowered START to plan and program effectively in fragile state environments.
  • START has also undergone a major reorganization with the view to streamlining management processes and strengthening its policy and programming capacity which likewise will contribute to overall efficiency and effectiveness.
  • START, through the GPSF, has developed and implemented a variety of instruments designed to support whole–of–government resource mobilization. Developing the institutional capacity of OGDs to participate in and contribute to overseas missions on a systematic and predictable basis remains a work in progress.
  • START, through the GPSF, relies extensively on the expertise of organizations in the non–governmental sector. Developing a sustainable capacity of these organizations to contribute to the realization of the GPSF's mandate remains encumbered by a lack of authority to provide core funding.
Objective 2:
Bring about safer and more secure environments conducive to stabilization and long term construction.
  • In Sudan, GPSF has contributed to strengthening the peace process, peace operations in Darfur, and strengthened security sector and rule of law institutions in south Sudan.
  • In Colombia, GPSF has made an important contribution to supporting UN and OAS organizations engaged in settling border disputes. The GPSF has also made important contributions to international organizations and non–governmental organizations supporting transitional justice.
  • In Afghanistan, GPSF support to the country's police, justice, corrections and border sectors have strengthened institutional capacity and contributed to the establishment of the rule of law.
  • In Haiti, GPSF initiatives in support of the police, community security, corrections and borders has helped to restore stability and strengthened the capacity of the Haitian government to enforce the law in accordance with international norms and standards.
Objective 3:
Improve global and regional response to crisis situations
  • Primarily the responsibility GPOP, this sub–program of the GPSF has been a strong supporter of the United Nations (UN) Peacekeeping Reform Agenda with a focus on doctrinal development, training and institutional learning.
  • Contributions through GPOP have strengthened the capacity of the African Union (AU) through support to the African Standby Force (ASF), and through support to Troop Contributing Countries (TCC) in the form of training and institution capacity building initiatives targeting regional Centres of Excellence (CoE).
Objective 4:
Better protect the rights and safety of individuals and populations.
  • Primarily the responsibility of the GBP, this sub–program has made impressive gains in terms of creating policy changes, achieving consensus, and creating new or strengthening existing networks dedicated to promoting the rights and safety of individuals and populations.

Efficiency and Economy:

The evaluation noted the following:

  • The management structure has been reconfigured to strengthen accountability and to streamline management processes through ReSTART. In addition, roles and responsibilities between START and other divisions within DFAIT have been refined and clarified.
  • The early T&Cs applied to the GPSF encumbered the ability of START to engage in strategic planning. TBS authorities acquired since 2008 as well as refinements to its planning instruments have helped to address this issue.
  • Planning instruments developed and employed by START for GPOP and GBP have improved significantly over the last few years. GPSP planning instruments at the country level have also improved significantly, though there remains a lack of a strategic approach at the sector level.
  • START has developed instruments to support whole–of–government resource mobilization which have proven very effective. Developing the institutional capacity of OGDs to participate in and contribute to overseas missions on a systematic and predictable basis however remains a challenge.
  • Although START has made prudent use of non–governmental entities to support operations abroad, the effective use of this capacity is constrained by a lack of authority to provide core funding.
  • Although the GPSF has demonstrated an ability to respond rapidly, ongoing uncertainties about the interpretation and application of GPSF T&Cs as well as GoC policies have contributed to approval and disbursement delays. Further, draw–downs on the Crisis Reserve in response to various GoC decisions to augment funding to priority programming countries have depleted the reserve, thereby jeopardising START's ability to respond to sudden crises.
  • Although START has, under ReSTART, simplified and streamlined the project review and approval process, small dollar value initiatives that are time sensitive, such as those commonly supported by the GBP, continue to experience delays and high administrative costs under this new system.
  • Delegated authority to the field to review and approve project funding can, potentially, greatly enhance the responsiveness of GPSF interventions and comptrollership over investments. However, it is acknowledged that such delegation of authority would require strict limitations and would only be appropriate in theatres of significant GPSF engagement.
  • GPSF has demonstrated the capacity to leverage the resources of other donors and partners.
  • DFAIT Corporate Finance has not developed appropriate financial systems for program and financial management for the GPSF. The lack of an appropriate corporate financial and program management system has limited START's ability to plan, track and monitor GPSF financial performance as well as results achieved.
  • Human resource capacity within START has improved markedly over the years, though there is a need to strengthen access to subject matter expertise to support effective planning, performance monitoring, and comptrollership.
  • START has developed frameworks and adopted procedures to assess and mitigate risks, though risk mitigating frameworks remain incomplete. Further, there is a need to formally define roles, responsibilities and accountabilities with respect to risk management.
  • Current reporting frameworks at the programmatic level do not fully capture results and performance data. At the country level, performance and results reporting frameworks have improved, though reporting against strategic outcomes remains a challenge and uneven, particularly at the sector level.

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Conclusion and Recommendations

Despite a wide range of contextual challenges – legacy issues pertaining to the old Human Security Program (HSP), a defective Results–Based Management and Accountability Framework (RMAF), highly restrictive T&Cs, funding freezes, and moratoriums on hiring, – START has made considerable progress in establishing the requisite administrative architecture to support effective policy development and programming in fragile states. Most of the institutional deficits identified in previous evaluations and audits have been addressed, thus placing START in a solid position to deliver on the mandate of the GPSF.

Over the last five years START, through the GPSF, has supported many initiatives that have garnered international recognition for their contributions towards the advancement of peace, good governance, the rule of law and respect for human rights, thereby enhancing Canada's reputation and stature on the world stage as a leader in these areas. Notwithstanding these impressive achievements, several institutional deficits remain which require remedial attention. Recommendations to address these deficits follow:

Recommendation 1:
START should seek corporate assistance in the development of an integrated financial management system capable of supporting the administration of grants and Contributions.

In spite of on–going efforts to improve financial and information management, START continues to rely on financial and information management systems that are incomplete placing program management and corporate memory at risk. Given the continuous need for better financial and information management systems that are adaptable to programming in fragile states, DFAIT should invest in developing such systems. In the meantime, START should continue to develop its financial and information management systems.

Recommendation 2:
START should develop a Performance Measurement Strategy and revisit the GPSF logic model to enhance its ability to monitor performance and report on results. In addition, START should develop clear benchmarks for its engagements and ensure that exit conditions are incorporated into these benchmarks.

START has made significant progress in developing its performance and result reporting systems. Nevertheless, GPSF's reporting frameworks do not fully capture results and performance data and, at the country level, reporting of strategic outcomes remains uneven and incomplete. The design of the current logic model does not provide an adequate framework for reporting on the outcomes of the GPSF. START should redesign the GPSF logic model and develop a performance planning framework that facilitates reporting on results at the Fund level.

The GPSF increasingly supports initiatives that are of a long–term nature such as institutional capacity building. This begs a question about the duration of GPSF engagement and at what stage GPSF should exist or hand over activities to others (e.g., CIDA or other donors). Addressing this is particularly pertinent in countries where the crisis is protracted requiring a sustained and long term–engagement. Therefore START should develop for each intervention benchmarks for achievements of results and incorporate exit conditions in these benchmarks. In addition, START should examine the sequencing and transition of initiatives at the country level in consultation with OGDs and other international donors.

Recommendation 3:
START should develop strategies of engagement at the sector level in priority countries.

GPSF planning instruments at the country level have improved significantly over the last several years, though this evaluation remarked that strategic planning at the sector level was uneven among the countries reviewed. Programming is most effective when guided by a clear vision of what one wishes to achieve within a given sector, how programming will contribute to the realization of that vision, and the resources required to do so. The need for a strategic framework at the sector level becomes even more compelling when enlisting the support of OGDs in order to ensure programming coherence. START is in the process of strengthening its policy development and conflict analysis capacity, and these competencies could be employed to good effect in formulating sector specific strategies of significant GPSF engagement in consultation with relevant stakeholders.

Recommendations 4:
START should work with S–Branch and the Treasury Board to review the Terms and Conditions that have encumbered the implementation of some GPSF programs, particularly those in support of peace operations.

Notwithstanding the exemptions provided in the T&Cs, the evaluation has identified a number of cases where the current T&Cs have limited START's ability to make timely and responsive decisions. The review of T&Cs were found to be either silent on certain issues (e.g., the eligible levels of overhead and administrative expenditures, risks of currency fluctuations, and the processing of retroactive eligible expenditure), or limiting the flexibility of the program to make decision with the flexibility required to manage programs in fragile states and conflict areas (e.g., recipient of third party funding, making advance payment, competitive tendering, core funding etc.). Therefore, it is recommended that START, in consultation with the S–Branch and the TBS, should clarify the T&Cs and the application of GoC policies with the view to identifying ways to increase their flexibility and adaptability.

Recommendation 5:
START should seek to enhance its ability to delegate authority to field level personnel where warranted and define the risks, roles, responsibilities, and accountabilities relating thereto.

The deployment of START officers to the field have played an important role in building networks of support, gathering intelligence, problem solving, monitoring and reporting on results. All of these contribute to more effective strategic planning and lead to better informed decision making. Their roles could be further strengthened by delegating resources and decision making to the field level. This will be based on the level and specificity of each engagement and the conditions on the ground. START should determine the conditions under which this is possible and the criteria for use.

Recommendation 6:
START should review its program level and envelope level risk mitigating strategies to ensure that they fully incorporate the lessons learned from different programming environments.

Though START has begun to modify its risk mitigating strategies based on lessons learned at the envelope level, the adoption of this best practice is uneven across envelopes, and has yet to fully find expression at the sub–program and overall Fund level. Further, roles, responsibilities and accountabilities with respect to risk management are largely assumed, and not formalized. At the Fund level, risk articulations remain overly project centred with risk mitigating strategies that, at times, are at odds with the exigencies of programming in fragile state environments. Programming in fragile states is intrinsically a high risk enterprise where a low risk tolerance approach may itself risk condemning a donor to either performing a subordinate role or at worst to irrelevance.

Risk mitigation approaches can be reactive or proactive, depending on the nature of the risk identified. Proactive risk mitigation entails neutralizing the threat at source which usually involves a commitment of resources either by a single donor or in concert with other donors. That risks are often common to all actors in theatre highlights the importance of coordination as a risk mitigation strategy and with that the need to clarify the roles and responsibilities of affected stakeholders. The risks entailed in testing new partners and approaches can be mitigated by limiting the degree of financial exposure which can best be served by locally managed funds designed to support pilot projects.


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1.0 Introduction

The Evaluation Division (ZIE), Office of the Inspector General (ZID) of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) is mandated by the Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS) through its Evaluation Policy to conduct evaluations of all direct program spending of the Department (including Grants and Contributions). ZIE reports quarterly to the Departmental Evaluation Committee (DEC) which is chaired by the Deputy Ministers (DM).

This evaluation of the Global Peace and Security Fund (GPSF) was undertaken in response to a requirement for the Stabilization and Reconstruction Task Force (START), which is responsible for administering the GPSF, to report to TBS on the achievements of the GPSF as a pre–condition for the renewal of Terms and Conditions (T&Cs) by the end of Fiscal Year (FY) 2009/2010.

1.1 Background and Context

Natural disasters, civil wars and state failures have always presented humanitarian and developmental challenges to the international community. Crises of this kind also present a serious challenge to regional and global peace and security. During the last decade, the international community has increasingly recognized that responding to the challenges posed by international crises calls for an integrated and coherent approach that ensures that traditional humanitarian and developmental aid works in concert with security and political initiatives in such areas as security and justice system reform, as well as other post–conflict stabilization and reconstruction activities.(1)

The need for such a mechanism was identified by several Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries in the mid–2000s and stemmed from the recognition that states with volatile security conditions and weak governance can – in an increasingly interconnected world – jeopardize regional and global stability. To mitigate crises, conflicts, and state failures (and thus contain any possible spillovers), the GoC required a discrete set of programming options in countries of concern.(2) DFAIT's first programming response took the form of the Human Security Program (HSP), which was a first for a department which had been traditionally oriented towards policy and diplomacy. The HSP, which was allocated CAD $10 million per annum, from FY 2000/01 to FY 2004/05, was designed to support diplomatic leadership and policy advocacy, country–specific initiatives and domestic and multilateral capacity building initiatives.(3)

As a result of increased international discourse on the need for an integrated and coherent approach to respond to crises, the GoC launched the GPSF in April 2005, with a notional budget of CAD $100 million per year, for a five year period (2005 – 2010).

1.2 GPSF Objectives

Since its inception in 2005, the GPSF has evolved in terms of its stated objectives. For example, in 2005 the objectives of the GPSF were “supporting crisis operations, meeting Canada's G8 Sea Island commitments to help build global peace support capacity, and providing resources to advance Canada's human security objectives.” The GPSF's Results–Based Management and Accountability Framework and Risk–Based Audit Framework (RMAF/RBAF) of 2006 cast the objectives differently, stating that “the objective of the GPSF is to ensure timely, coordinated responses to international crises requiring effective whole–of–government action through the planning and delivery of coherent and effective conflict prevention, crisis response, civilian protection, and stabilization initiatives in fragile state situations implicating Canadian interests.” The START Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) Manual (2006) more or less echoes the objectives as framed in the GPSF RMAF/RBAF, with one additional objective: “to manage, in a whole of government context, the GPSF and its three sub–programs.”

As remarked in the Formative Evaluation of the GPSF (2008), these varied articulations of the objectives of the GPSF, though capturing the key elements of the Fund's mandate, convey slightly different perspectives on the focus of the GPSF. For example, the first articulation cited above makes no reference to whole–of–government, while whole–of–government figures prominently in the old GPSF RMAF/RBAF. The former also makes explicit reference to Canada's Human Security Agenda, while the latter does not. This presented a challenge to the evaluation of the GPSF in 2007 and to a certain extent to the instant evaluation in so far as it deprived the evaluators of a consistent set of objectives from which to assess performance.

For the purpose of this evaluation, the Evaluation Team has relied on the latest articulation of the GPSF objectives in the Accountability, Risk and Audit Framework (ARAF) of March 2009 which states that:

The objective of the GPS Fund is to provide financial and programming resources to facilitate timely, effective and accountable conflict prevention, crisis response, peace operations, civilian protection, and stabilization interventions in fragile states implicating Canadian interests in line with Canadian foreign policy priorities.

The GPSF ARAF (March, 2009) further remarks that “through its three distinct sub–programs, the GPSF enables DFAIT to:

  • Improve the Canadian contribution to peace and security and the safety and well–being of beneficiaries living in targeted areas;
  • Bring about safer and more secure environments conducive to stabilization, recovery and long–term reconstruction;
  • Improve global and regional response to crisis situations; and
  • Better protect the rights and safety of individuals & populations.”(4)

1.3 Profile of the GPSF

The GPSF is comprised of three sub–programs which are briefly described below:

  • The Global Peace and Security Program (GPSP). The GPSP provides the GoC with the capacity to respond quickly and effectively to emerging international crises, and to plan and deliver coherent and effective responses with respect to conflict prevention, peace operations, and stabilization initiatives, consistent with Canadian interests and values.
  • The Global Peace Support Operations Program (GPOP). In order to meet Canada's G8 Sea Island and La Francophonie summit commitments, this program supports the development of global capacity for peace support operations through medium term initiatives to build local and regional capacities to respond to crises with a focus on Africa and the Americas.
  • The Glyn Berry Program (GBP).(5) This program supports the development of Canadian and international policies, laws and institutions that embed core human security objectives of freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law into international peace and security efforts in countries outside the GPSF priority country envelopes.

1.4 Governance

Structures established to administer the GPSF have recently undergone some significant modification. The following describes the governance structure that was in place for the period under review for this evaluation as well as the new governance structure, commonly referred to as ReSTART, which came into effect in the fall of 2009.

1.4.1 START Governance (2006–2009)

Since its inception, the GPSF has been administered by the START Secretariat which between 2006 and 2009 was situated within the International Security Branch within DFAIT. START was headed up by a Director General (DG) who was accountable for the direction and management of the GPSF. Until 2009, The DG START reported to the ADM International Security, who in turn was accountable to the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

The Secretariat consisted of an Executive Office (IRD) that was responsible for the overall program management of the GPSF. More specifically, IRD was responsible for verifying program budgets and tracking all GPSF expenditures. It was also available to provide surge capacity and to provide general program support. IRD was supported by the following four programming groups:

  • Conflict Prevention and Peacebuilding Group (IRC): responsible for providing policy and operational leadership within START in the development of coherent, whole–of–government approaches to conflict prevention and peace–building (conflict assessment, early warning detection of potential conflicts for rapid response, mediation, transitional justice, security system reforms, rapid justice response, fragile states policy, state capacity building) in the context of fragile states and those already in crisis, as well as building a new, robust Canadian capacity to mediate conflicts within or between states. It provided ongoing early warning of conflict and crisis risk assessments for senior government officials.
  • Peacekeeping and Peace Operations Group (IRP): responsible for peace operations policy and best practices, security sector reform and engagement, and management of Canada's international police peacekeeping and corrections engagement. It was also responsible for planning and implementing Canadian engagement in integrated peace operations. It expanded and contracted as necessary, contributing to Bureau–wide Task Forces and Working Groups.
  • Mine Action Group (ILX): responsible for managing DFAIT's program to support the promotion, “universalization,” and full implementation of the Ottawa Convention banning anti–personnel landmines, and for providing guidance to the overall intergovernmental program. It was also responsible for coordinating Canada's efforts to curb the threat posed by the proliferation and misuse of small arms and light weapons.(6)
  • Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Response Group (IRH): responsible for developing, implementing, and coordinating government–wide policy on international humanitarian affairs and development of Canadian responses to humanitarian crises, in both conflict (i.e., complex emergencies) and natural disasters.
Other Divisions outside START drawing on the GPSF

Functional divisions outside START which may draw on the GPSF for programming have included: the Democracy and War Economies Division (MHS); the International Crime and Terrorism Division (ICT); the Human Rights, Gender Equality, Health and Population Division (MHH); and the UN Human Rights and Humanitarian Law Section (JLH).

START Advisory Board

The START Advisory Board (SAB) was established in September 2005 to function as a forum to bring together senior (DG level) personnel from OGDs with capacities and responsibilities relevant to conflict prevention, peace–operations, reconstruction and international crisis management. Characterized as a “foreign policy mechanism,” the SAB was charged with aligning the GoC's “geographic and thematic priorities for fragile states and [providing] coherence in the allocation of resources to programs beyond those of the GPSF.” More specifically the SAB was responsible for:

  • Establishing whole–of–government strategic policy, priority setting and directions with respect to fragile states and complex emergencies within the framework of individual departmental authorities;
  • Undertaking regular (annual or more frequent) assessments of progress towards the milestones and exit strategies defined in specific integrated country strategies along with the potential for reallocation of resources in line with the pace of events and opportunities presented by competing crises and priorities; and
  • Information exchange on program related activities to ensure activities complement each other and avoid duplication, while encouraging the formation of country task forces at the operational level as required.
Working Groups

According to the GPSF SOPs of 2006, strategic country and regional priorities for Canadian engagement in fragile states were to be established annually through an Assessment Working Group (AWG) and a Fragile States Working Group (FSG). Over the period of review, other thematic working groups were assembled on an ad hoc basis to develop thematic and/or sector strategies. Examples include the working group on Transitional Justice Policy, the Group on Canadian Mediation Capacity, and the Group on Security System Reform.

DFAIT Divisions Providing Support to START

Divisions within DFAIT that support START include country representatives of priority GPSF countries (the Country Task Forces or Steering Committees), Program Services Unit (IXS), Financial Services (SMFH), Program Analysis (SMPA), Justice Legal Services Division (JUS), Environmental Policies and Sustainable Development Strategies Division (MDS), Contracting (SPPG), Area Management Office (IAM), Foreign Policy and Corporate Communications Division (BCF), and the Cabinet and Parliamentary Liaison Division (DCL).

Other Government Departments and Agencies

Four OGDs work closely with START on the GPSF, namely: the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), the Department of National Defense (DND), the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and Correctional Services Canada (CSC). In addition to the foregoing, START also works with several other OGDs including the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) and Justice Canada (JC) on specific initiatives.

Interdepartmental Committees

In addition to the foregoing, START was, and remains today, supported by two interdepartmental committees: An ADM Committee, and a Deputy Ministers (DM) Committee. Their respective roles and responsibilities are briefly described below:

DM Committee: The DM Committee is composed of the DFAIT DM and the CIDA president and meet at least twice a year to “establish policy direction and provide policy coherence between START and CIDA activities in fragile states.” More specifically, the DM Committee is responsible for:
  • Ensuring that respective Ministers are updated on START and CIDA activities in fragile states;
  • Advising Ministers on the means of achieving and implementing GoC policies in crises, and fragile states;
  • Reporting on the results of START/CIDA activities in fragile states;
  • Reviewing audit and evaluation reports provided by the Office of the Inspector General;
  • Modifying, as required, CIDA/START Roles and Responsibilities.
ADM Committee: The ADM Committee is composed of the ADM Global Issues Branch, DFAT, and the senior Vice President of the Geographic Programs, Vice President of the Multi–lateral and Global programs, and Vice President of the Strategic Policy and Performance branches of CIDA. The ADMs of OGDs may be invited to meetings as required. The objectives of the ADM Committee are to:
  • Review the START and CIDA activities and results in crisis and fragile states to ensure policy coherence and avoid duplication in common countries and thematic areas of engagement;
  • Review, as required, the DFAIT/GPSF and CIDA Coordination and Crisis and Fragile States Framework;
  • Provide guidance to the SAB; and
  • Ensure Deputy Minister strategic direction is carried out be the SAB and within each department/agency.

START Project Review Committees

START established two review committees to assist in the management of the GPSF: the DG level Program Planning Committee (PPC) and the operational level Project Management and Development Group (PDM). These are described below:

  • Program Planning Committee (PPC) – Chaired by the START DG or Senior Director, the PPC met as required to review concept papers related to program policy and/or specific projects (usually projects valued at CAD $500,000 or more, and projects that respond to GoC commitments and projects that raise the profile of the GoC). This committee was tasked with providing overall direction in the planning of these initiatives. The Committee included relevant geographic and thematic DGs from within DFAIT and the START Directors as appropriate (relevant START program officials make presentations to the Committee). The PPC Secretariat was housed within IRD and reports directly to the START DG.
  • Project Development and Management Group (PDM) – The START Senior Director chaires this group. As a consultative body, the PDM endeavoured to meet every week to review incoming proposals, make recommendations for funding consideration, and raise technical issues on the GPSF programming at large. The main purpose of the PDM was to provide a technical review of all GPSF proposals. The PDM included representatives from each of the units within START, functional and geographic bureau, as well as contracting, legal, financial and other expertise as appropriate. The PDM Secretariat was also housed within IRD.
Delegated Authorities and Funding Instruments

The delegated authorities for GPSF were established, and still remain as follows:

  • Up to CAD $10 million – Minister of Foreign Affairs;
  • Up to CAD $5 million – ADM International Security Branch
  • Up to CAD $2 million – DG START
  • Up to CAD $500 thousand – Senior Director, START Secretariat.

In exceptional cases, these financial thresholds could be exceeded with GoC authorization. Cases in point include the African Union (AU) Mission to Sudan (AMIS) aircraft/aviation fuel program (2007/2008), the United Nations African Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) training and equipment program and for the Law and Order Trust Fund for Afghanistan (LOTFA).

In order to deliver on GPSF's mandate, the START Secretariat uses a variety of delivery instruments and implementing arrangements, including:

  • Financial contributions to eligible recipients;
  • In–kind contributions (in the form of equipment, expertise and training);
  • Third party project funding;
  • Supplements for foreign (Donor Nation) operated projects;
  • Supplements for foreign (Recipient Nation) operated projects;
  • Multilateral delivery mechanisms (i.e., multi–donor programs, including trust funds);
  • Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) with OGDs to facilitate their participation in overseas missions.

In addition, the Canadian Police Arrangement (CPA) is a signature funding arrangement that falls under the MoUs aimed at facilitating OGD participation in overseas missions. CPA is a partnership between the DFAIT, Public Safety and CIDA which enables the RCMP's International Peace Operations Branch (IPOB) to deploy personnel to countries around the world that have or are presently experiencing conflict. These individuals provide training and police–related expertise which in turn helps promote international peace and security and increases social stability.(7)

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Exhibit 1, below, illustrates the organizational structure as it existed prior to the re–organization described below.

Organizational Structure of START

Source: GPSF Accountability, Risk and Audit Framework, DFAIT 2008

1.4.2 From START to Re–START (2009–Present)

As a result of the program reviews and evaluations, in 2008 START initiated a process of re–organization called Re–START. The intention of this re–organization was to separate policy and programming functions, to strengthen aspects of program delivery, as well as to streamline project review and approval processes through the development of new divisions.

Re–START was approved in principle in November 2008. The new structure is intended to implement new business processes and produce a clearer vision of START. Re–START is based on the following core functions:

  • Policy leadership; the ability to act as a catalyst across government;
  • Operational Agility; the authority and responsibility to lead task forces; and
  • Programming excellence.

To this end, the shift to Re–START was intended to achieve the following:

  • The alignment of managerial authority, signing authority and financial accountability for programming;
  • The elimination of internal second–guessing on projects;
  • The reallocation of personnel to provide greater capacity for civilian deployment, in both direct and coordination roles;
  • The creation of new Senior Program Analyst positions, who are deployable for crisis–driven programming scoping missions;
  • The maintenance of18 deployable positions within START;
  • The creation of a new financial sub–unit designed to plug into the new Financial Management Advisor (FMA) model; and
  • The re–classification of some positions.(8)

The roles and responsibilities of the divisions under the new governance model are briefly described below:

The START Director General (IRD): IRD provides guidance and strategic direction on policy development, program management and operational control of the GPSF. The Director General of START reports to the ADM for Programming and Departmental Security (IPM) for project approval and the ADM for International Security and Political Director (IFM) for policy direction.
The Stabilization and Reconstruction Programs Division (IRG): IRG is organized along geographic (GPSF: Asia, Latin America and Europe, Africa and the Middle East) and thematic lines (GPOP, GBP including Explosive Remnants of War [ERW]). IRG provides guidance, direction and horizontal coordination for the GPSF and its envelopes.
The Peace Operations and Fragile States Policy Division (IRP): IRP develops and coordinates policy around fragile states, conflict management, integrated international peacekeeping and peacebuilding initiatives where Canadian interests are engaged.
The Coordination and Deployment Division (IRC): IRC provides strategic program and financial advice and services in managing the GPSF, directs and coordinates corporate responsibilities of the START bureau, including its accountability mechanisms and leads and manages whole–of–government expert civilian deployments.
Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Response Division (IRH): IRH is responsible for the development, implementation and coordination of Canadian policy on international humanitarian affairs, in cooperation with other government departments, and coordination of Canadian responses to international humanitarian crises caused by both natural disasters and armed conflict.(9)

The reorganization was essentially completed and put in place in November 2009. The new structure is depicted below in Exhibit 2.

Exhibit 2: Organizational Structure of Re–START

Organizational Structure of Re=START

Source: ReSTART Revised Model – Option C

Under ReSTART project review and approval is undertaken by three teams and one committee. The roles and responsibilities of these bodies are briefly described below:

Project Team (PT): The PT is composed of a Program Officer, an IRC Financial Officer, a Policy Analyst, and other OGD representatives as may be required given the nature of the project under consideration. The responsibility of the PT is to review and assess project proposals to determine whether the initiative is in line with the mandate of the GPSF, that the proponent is eligible to receive GPSF funding, and that the initiative warrants support. If answers to the foregoing are affirmative, the proposal/concept paper is sent to the Deputy Director (DD) of one or other of the four START Divisions for recommendation to proceed to the second phase of the review process.

Deputy Project Accountability Team (DPAT): The DPAT is chaired by the Director of IRG and composed of the DDs and/or Directors of the other START Divisions along with departmental Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) and the DG of START as may be required. The DPAT is responsible for reviewing projects under CAD $500K.

Project Accountability Team (PAT): The PAT is also chaired by the Director of IRG and composed of the DDs and/or Directors of the other START Divisions along with departmental SME's and the DG of START as may be required. The PAT is responsible for reviewing projects over CAD $500K.

Program Planning Committee (PPC): The PPC is composed of the DG START and the DGs of Human Rights and Democracy, International Crime and Terrorism, Legal Affairs, and the relevant geographic group. The PPC is responsible for reviewing and approving concept papers/proposals over $500K. The PPC is also responsible for approving, where warranted, emergency/quick response projects.

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1.4.3 Evolution of the GPSF Funding Authorities

Over the course of the last five years, GPSF funding authority has undergone several changes that have impacted on its performance. An account of the highlights of these changes is provided below:

  • On October 3rd, 2005,(10) the government approved, with conditions, the joint DFAIT–CIDA submission requesting “Approval of a Fund to Implement Activities under the Global Peace and Security Fund and to Establish the Stabilization and Reconstruction Task Force,” at a total cost of CAD $286.599 million for 2005–06 and 2006–07, including the request for the release of CAD $76.599 million in 2005–06 funds for expenditures on activities in Afghanistan, Haiti, Sudan (peace operations and peace building), the Middle East Peace Process, and Global Peace Operations. A further CAD $23.401 million was requested to support the renewal of the HSP. The financial and human resources to establish the START secretariat as an organizational platform for the administration of the GPSF programs was also identified.
  • On September 18th, 2006, TBS considered and approved the establishment of START, the GPSF and its Sub–programs. In so doing TBS agreed to terms and conditions for a class of contributions, to apply to all three GPSF sub–programs (GPSP, GPOP, and the HSP), subsequently renamed the Glyn Berry Program (GBP) until March 31st, 2010. The decision also authorized the unfreezing of CAD $11.162 million Vote 1 and CAD $36.034 Vote 10 funds, conditional on several reports and controls being established including an appendix detailing the division of programming responsibilities between DFAIT and CIDA, since known as Appendix I: DFAIT/CIDA Cooperation in Crisis Response and Fragile States; annual financial governance assurances by the DFAIT CFO; and, MoUs with OGDs wherever joint initiatives are pursued sourcing GPSF funds. Funding for 2007–08 was limited by this approval to the International Police Peacekeeping (IPP) Program, and initiatives in Afghanistan, Sudan, and Haiti, for 2008–09/2009–10. Vote 10 funds for initiatives outside this geographic scope were frozen pending approval and a subsequent TBS submission. The decision also confirmed START as the body responsible for managing and overseeing the use of GPSF funds.
  • On May 17th, 2007, the federal government approved CAD $219.4 million in additional funds for GPSF activities in 2007–2010. This decision effectively expanded country–based programming beyond the five extant fragile environments (Afghanistan, Sudan, Haiti, Lebanon, West Bank/Gaza) to support a range of “Conflict Prevention and Stabilization” initiatives; including an immediate crisis response capacity, or Crisis Reserve, within START (distinct from the broader “Crisis Pool”); and, extended the mandate of GPSF to advance global priorities (via GBP) and develop international operations capabilities (via GPOP).
  • On June 13th, 2007, the government approved funding and granting authority to all three sub–programs in the amount of CAD $224.4 million over three FYs (2007–2010), however conditioned the unfreezing of CAD $56.6 million in 2008–09 and CAD $67 million in 2009–10 on acceptance of a report detailing GPSF achievements, future plans, and renewed policy authority. Substantively, it was confirmed that GPSF grant and contribution authorities could only be applied in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Lebanon, West Bank/Gaza, Uganda, Colombia, Sudan, and Haiti; to peacekeeping and peace operations in Africa and Latin America and via the UN under GPOP; and, through the GBP, to strengthening the capacity of Canadian organizations, international and regional institutions, global policy development, and targeted in–country interventions. Also of note: grant authorities were raised from CAD $15 to 30 million, the annual authorities ceiling on support to the UN was raised to CAD $75 million, and support timelines to UN operations in Sudan (AMIS) were extended to the end of 2007/08.
  • On February 14th, 2008, the government approved the extension of GPSF policy and funding authority until 2012/13 at the extant level of CAD $164.715 million per year, and further, with the acceptance of GPSF results and achievements to date, unfroze 2008/09 and 2009/10 funds held in trust. Notably, at the same time, multi–year authority was given to GPSF for project–based programming. GPSF was previously limited to programming for a fiscal year at a time. GPSF also received endorsement for its engagement in fragile states other than Afghanistan, Sudan, and Haiti, within the Terms and Conditions approved on September, 18th 2006. Finally, DFAIT's continued management of the International Assistance Envelope (IAE) Crisis Pool through the START Secretariat was also endorsed.
  • On May 29th, 2008, along with the federal government approval of multi–year programming authority new funding parameters were approved for FY 2008–2009 through FY 2012–2013. Output–level results across the peace and security programming spectrum were outlined, focusing on the period under the discrete GPSF Terms and Conditions. This decision also recognized the name change from HSP to the GBP.
  • In May 2008, the critical distinction between START, the stabilization secretariat responsible from whole–of–government crisis coordination and policy leadership on key international security issues, and GPSF, the peace and security programming fund, was emphasized. This distinction is embodied throughout the updated ARAF, which has replaced the more introspective management and measurement plan for START, the bureau,(11) with clear strategies and plans to govern the next five years of the GPSF program delivery – i.e., refocused to direct and measure progress achieved through international initiatives, as opposed to internal processes.

1.4.4 Overview of GPSF Expenditures

As of March 2009, the GPSF had committed approximately CAD $347.3 million in support of over 600 projects in over 70 countries. Exhibit 3 below provides a breakdown of these commitments by sub–program.

Exhibit 3 – Global Peace and Security Fund Programming
Program NameTotal ProjectsTotal Commitments ($)
Global Peace and Security Program 226$284,154,152
Glyn Berry Program for Peace and Security 317$40,430,981
Global Peace Support Operations Program 59$22,799,553
Total601$347,345,186

Source: DFAIT Internal Information, as of March 2, 2009

With CAD $284 million in funds, the GPSP is the largest of the three sub–programs in terms of dollar value. GBP is the second largest with over CAD $40 million, and GPOP is third with almost CAD $23 million in funds.(12)

Exhibit 4 below outlines GPSF expenditures by major country of intervention. It also outlines the number of projects that have been funded in the various countries of interest. As well, the Exhibit highlights the funds that have gone to global initiatives.

Exhibit 4 – Number of Projects for the 10 Leading Areas by Number of Projects and Commitment Levels
Country/RegionProject TotalsCommitted Total ($)
Global187$27,605,573
Sudan47$108,227,453
Afghanistan44$45,230,408
Colombia42$14,859,494
Latin America/Caribbean30$3,925,680
Africa27$16,669,906
Uganda25$13,609,576
Haiti23$33,591,932
Canada10$1,817,157
Sierra Leone10$3,613,411
Congo (DRC)9$1,301,946
African Union 8$1,075,867
Indonesia8$1,604,180
Lebanon8$9,220,831
West Bank & Gaza8$4,323,096
Totals486$286,676,510

Source: DFAIT Internal Information, as of March 2, 2009

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1.5 Overview of Financial Resources

Exhibit 5 below describes the actual and projected expenditures for GPSF after Strategic Review.(13)

Exhibit 5 – GPSF Financial Expenditures (2008/9 –2012/13)
Expenditure2008/9
($ millions)
2009/10
($ millions)
2010/11
($ millions)
2011/12
($ millions)
2012/13
($ millions)
Vote 1 – Operations/START20.120.120.220.220.2
Vote 5 – Capital/START0.080.080.080.080.08
TOTAL20.120.120.320.320.3
 
Vote 1 – Expenditures
GPSF
Afghanistan (14)3.13.13.1  
Sudan0.60.60.60.60.6
Haiti1.01.01.01.01.0
Fragile States1.51.51.51.51.5
Global Peace Operations (GPOP)0.40.40.40.40.4
Glyn Berry Program0.40.40.40.40.4
IPP23.923.923.923.923.9
TOTAL30.930.930.927.830.9
 
Vote 10 Gs & Cs
GPSF
Afghanistan44.644.644.6  
Sudan26.916.916.916.916.9
Haiti14.014.014.014.014.0
Fragile States13.213.213.213.213.2
Crisis Reserve5.215.221.921.921.9
GPOP7.67.67.67.67.6
GBP4.64.64.64.64.6
TOTAL96.196.196.196.196.1
 
GPSF–TOTAL126.0126.0126.0126.0126.0
START + GPSF166.1166.1166.1121.5121.5

Source: DFAIT Internal Information, as of March 2, 2009

As is evident in the Table above and the previous discussion, the GPSF is targeted at Canadian policy priorities such as Afghanistan, Sudan and Haiti. Much of the GPSF has been approved through specific submissions to TBS attached to GoC announcements of support to specific initiatives. This leaves CAD $13.2 million for support to fragile states (including Colombia and Uganda, and other countries) that are outside of the GoC highest priority areas as well as the Crisis Reserve, which is available to respond to new emerging priorities. According to DFAIT internal documentation, the Crisis Reserve was to be maintained at approximately $15 million from 2009/10. However, START advised that demands on the Crisis Reserve has depleted it substantially, with less that CAD $4 million remaining for the balance of the approval period. Any unused funds from the Crisis Reserve were to be redistributed to other GPSF sub–programs.

1.6 Evaluation Objectives and Scope

The objectives of the Summative Evaluation of the GPSF are as follows:

  • To determine whether the GPSF continues to address a demonstrable need, specifically to ascertain whether the GPSF fills a “funding gap” within the GoC needed to effectively respond to emerging and protracted international conflicts and crises;
  • To determine whether the design of the GPSF remains relevant, and the extent to which the activities of the GPSF's three sub–programs complement each other and present a coherent approach to conflict prevention, civilian protection, peace building and post conflict stabilization;
  • To determine whether GPSF programming is consistent with, and supportive of, GoC foreign policy priorities and Departmental strategic outcomes, and the extent to which GPSF's contributions have advanced these priorities and outcomes;
  • To determine the extent to which the results of initiatives supported by the GPSF, through its three sub–programs, have contributed to the achievement of expected program outcomes;
  • To report on progress made in implementing recommendations advanced in previous evaluations, audits and reviews of the GPSF;
  • To determine the extent to which delivery mechanisms adopted by START are efficient and economical and whether there are alternative, more efficient, and economical ways to achieving the same results; and,
  • To derive lessons learned that will assist in future programming and improve overall performance through programmatic reflection and comparative analysis of international best practice.

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2.0 Evaluation Methodology

2.1 Evaluation approach

The GPSF, which incorporates multiple themes, an array of programming activities, hundreds of projects, many implementing partners and diverse theatres of operation/intervention, presents many evaluation challenges. Given the requirement to report on the achievements of the GPSF since its inception, the number of projects alone would have made it exceedingly difficult and costly to conduct a comprehensive assessment of performance of each and every initiative supported by the GPSF. As a result, the evaluation was structured to provide a representative cross section of GPSF programming, while affording good coverage to major areas of programming.

To achieve a satisfactory level of coverage across the three sub–programs, it was determined that projects selected should provide a coverage in the range of 50% to 60% of GPSF expenditures. In order to do so, it was determined that each of the sub–programs would require a different approach based on the unique characteristics of each sub–program. Thus, a case study approach, based on select theatres of intervention, was applied to the GPSP. GPOP focused on institutions in receipt of GPOP support, and projects selected under the GBP were grouped thematically. The overall results from this approach for each of the sub–programs are briefly summarized below:

GPSP: For the GPSP, the Evaluation Team concentrated on three theatres of programming: Afghanistan (with a focus on policing, corrections, justice and borders), Sudan (with a focus on support to the AMIS and UNAMID initially as well as rule of law programming in south Sudan), and Colombia (with a focus on projects in support of transitional justice, victim's rights, and the peace process). The projects selected for review under these three country case studies (90 in total) account for roughly 74% of total GPSP disbursements over the last three years. Moreover, when the projects reviewed in the summative evaluation of GPSP programming in Haiti are added (approximately CAD $27.3 million in disbursements), overall coverage for this sub–program rises to over 85% of total disbursements.
GPOP: For the GPOP, which includes institutional capacity building in its mandate, the focus is on key institutions in receipt of GPOP support, namely the AU and the UN family of organizations (e.g., UN–DPKO and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research [UNITAR]). The suite of projects examined under GPOP (22 in total) accounts for roughly 65% of total GPOP disbursements to date, thus also providing excellent coverage for this sub–program.
GBP: For the GBP, the suite of projects selected touch on a variety of thematic envelopes including, but not restricted to, human rights, accountability, democratic transitions and rule of law. The suite of projects examined (19 in total) accounts for roughly 33% of total GBP disbursements to date. This level of coverage does not meet the target set of 50% coverage, but nonetheless represents a healthy portion of GBP investments over the last three years. It was determined, given that the GBP has funded over 300 projects in the last three years, most in the CAD $20 thousand to CAD $50 thousand range, that 50% coverage of this sub–program would produce a prohibitively large number of projects to review.

Collectively this approach engenders an examination of 129 projects across the three sub–programs providing coverage of around 69% of total GPSF expenditures to date. Exhibit 6 provides the breakdown of projects coverage.

Exhibit 6 – Breakdown of Project Coverage by Sub–Program
Global Peace and Security Fund Cases for Summative Evaluation
ProgramTotal Coverage for Selected ProjectsTotal Sub–Program Disbursed Funds% Coverage# of Projects
GPSF$189,780,981$255,168,90774.30%91
GPOP$9,641,411$14,736,24864.99%22
GBP$12,231,456$36,824,15133.70%19
Total$211,653,848$306,729,30669.00%129

2.2 Past Evaluations and Audits

This evaluation builds on the results of previous evaluations and audits of the GPSF which include:

  • GPSF Capacity Check (2006);
  • Formative Evaluation of Canada's Global Peace and Security Fund – Sudan (September 2007);
  • Formative Evaluation of the Global Peace and Security Fund (February 2008);
  • Internal Program Audit of the Global Peace and Security Fund (January 2008).
  • Summative Evaluation of the Global Peace and Security Fund – Haiti (April 2009).

Some of the key findings of past evaluations and audits are as follows.

The Internal Program Audit found that:

  • START had made significant efforts to develop appropriate systems and procedures but gaps still remain.
  • GPSF had an appropriate management control framework in place given that it was in its second year of operations.
  • The START Secretariat operated in a matrix structure and though recognized that there was certain advantages in operating in this way, the audit indicated that there is overlap and at the Director level there was no clear accountability for the three sub–programs.

The audit also observed that:

  • The most pressing human resource management issue facing START was its capacity to attract and maintain staff. The perception in DFAIT that program/project management is not a mainstream activity was seen to hamper the recruitment and retention of staff. Also, officers in START were expected to perform both a policy function and deliver programs and projects; activities which require different skill sets.
  • Longer term strategic planning was also reported to be hampered by the lack of a multi–year funding authority. As a result no overall multi–year strategy for a whole–of–government approach to integrate conflict prevention, crisis response and stabilization initiatives with respect to fragile states had been developed. Consequently, it was not possible for START to monitor, measure progress and report on the achievement of results against an approved strategy.
  • Finally the audit pointed out that there was no Corporate Integrated Project and Financial management System in DFAIT for the management of grant and contribution programs. In an attempt to address the absence of a Corporate System, START had developed a stand alone MicroSoft Access database. At the time of the audit, the system was still a work–in–progress: data entry was incomplete; the quality of the data was inconsistent; and there was limited reporting capacity. There was also considerable duplication of effort.

The Formative Evaluation of the GPSF (February 2008), repeated many of the same findings. More specifically, it reported that:

  • The START Advisory Board was not operating effectively.
  • Though ultimate accountability at the branch level was considered clear, it was noted that at the program and sub–program levels, and to a lesser extent at the envelope and project levels, accountabilities were not clear.
  • Key program design elements from the RMAF and RBAF had not been elaborated on in any document that describes how the GPSF would be implemented. At the time there was no overall multi–year strategy for implementing the GPSF, thus making it difficult for START to monitor, measure progress and report on results against an approved strategy. The lack of a detailed strategic implementation plan had contributed to various ambiguities about GPSF's design and implementation.
  • At the envelope level, the short programming time–frames accorded by GPSF funding authorities and the T&Cs had limited the ability of START to engage in strategic planning for GPSF investments in a traditional sense, though START had found innovative solutions to overcome this.
  • The three sub–programs housed under GPSF resulted from a mix of inherited and new programs, leading to some thematic overlaps between the three sub–programs. It was noted that the three sub–programs did not have the structural and accountability characteristics of true programs and did not represent functional units of management for GPSF programming. Rather, the envelopes (i.e., countries and themes) had emerged as the practical and de facto units of program management under GPSF.

The evaluation also observed that:

  • START systems to manage risk varied in appropriateness and utilization;
  • GPSF continued to be hampered by unresolved human resource issues; including the securing of staff with appropriate expertise; and
  • Weaknesses in the financial management systems identified in the Capacity Check, such as the use of at least three sets of books (Access Data Base, Financial Officer's spread sheets, and Division spread sheets), continued to pose a risk to the effective financial management of START and consequently the GPSF. IXS, in cooperation with Corporate Services was then taking steps to address this issue.

An important aspect of this evaluation is to report on progress made regarding management issues that have been identified in prior audits and evaluations. Progress is tracked by the IXS Division on a quarterly basis.

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2.3 Lines of Evidence

Document and Literature Review

A document review was conducted and comprised a major component of the evaluation. The document review included program documentation such as central agency submissions, project reports, MoUs and previous audit and evaluation reports.

The GPSF database was reviewed and used to the extent possible to address questions of efficiency and economy. This database contains a number of fields providing descriptive information about funded projects/initiatives.

The Evaluation Team also reviewed an extensive number of published articles, papers and guidelines prepared by academics, government, international organization and non–governmental organizations (NGOs) in order to gain a sound understanding of the current thinking, trends, standards and practices.

Key Informant Interviews

In excess of 350 key informant interviews were conducted both in–person and by telephone. Interviews were conducted with staff from relevant units at DFAIT (including START), representatives from OGD partners, beneficiary organizations, and representatives from various UN departments.

Field Visits & Project Survey

Field missions were conducted in Colombia (Aug 24–Sept 5, 2009), Kenya, Ethiopia and Sudan (Oct 6–30, 2009), Afghanistan (October 11–22, 2009), and New York (Oct 19–23, 2009). Key stakeholders were interviewed in the case study countries, including: DFAIT staff; representatives of international coordination mechanisms; officers of local governments; direct and indirect beneficiaries; and, representatives of other donor governments.

Projects not covered during the field visits were covered using a desk review approach. This required a review of project documentation, interviews with project officers and telephone interviews with project proponents and beneficiaries.

2.4 Limitations

There were a number of important limitations to this study which are listed below:

  • A large proportion of projects funded by the GPSF are implemented within fragile states. Due to security concerns and the impassability to some areas, it was impossible for evaluation team members to visit all project sites. In these cases, the evaluation had to rely on secondary data.
  • Continued modifications to the strategic objectives of the GPSF and its sub–programs, in particular the GBP, along with alterations in its strategic outcomes constituted a challenge to the evaluation in so far as it deprived the Evaluation Team of a consistent framework against which to assess performance and results.
  • The results of some GPSF interventions are long–term in nature and may take many years to generate results. In this context it is difficult to measure the results of projects that have only been implemented in recent years.
  • Further to this, the efforts of START are not isolated from the contributions of other countries. Many initiatives are funded in collaboration with other donor countries. This makes it difficult to attribute the results to GPSF specifically, or assess overall results until country–level outcomes are demonstrated.
  • START's database, which at the time of the evaluation remained a work in progress, often contained incomplete and inconsistent data which had to be manually reconciled, thereby frustrating the efficacy of data collection.
  • The review of the GBP did not include field visits. Thus, the evaluation of this sub–program was a desk review only, comprising document reviews, files reviews, and key informant interviews. Therefore the views and perspectives of stakeholders were based on telephone interviews and could not be verified in the field.
  • Lastly, this evaluation was conducted while DFAIT was undergoing a re–organization of START. As a result some of the organizational changes which are meant to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the management of GPSF could not be assessed at this early point in the reorganization.

2.5 Report Structure

The following sections of this report address the evaluation issues of relevance and performance, the latter of which is comprised of two sub–issues: achievement of outcomes and efficiency and economy. Following a brief summary of the overall achievements of the GPSF against its declared objectives, the major achievements of each of the three sub–programs are examined. Reporting on the achievements of the GPSP is done in reference to the three country case studies, namely Sudan, Colombia and Afghanistan. The evaluation issue of efficiency and economy follows which presents an assessment of overall corporate performance.


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3.0 Relevance

3.1 Continued Need for the Program and Appropriateness of Design

Finding 1:
The original rationale for the creation of GPSF continues to be valid. Prior to the GPSF, funding sources within DFAIT and those within OGDs were insufficient to support fragile state engagement.

At the outset, the GPSF was created "to fill a funding gap within the (GoC) by providing dedicated resources for activities that are necessary for a timely response with respect to countries at risk of crisis, but which are not properly the responsibility of the Department of National Defence and are outside the core purposes of Canada's Official Development Assistance Program primarily administered by CIDA."(15)

Prior to GPSF there were limited funding sources available for fragile state programming. The Crisis Pool within the International Assistance Envelope (IAE), with its multi–minister governance structure, proved a slow and cumbersome instrument for crisis response, and in any event was never designed to support conflict prevention or post conflict stabilization initiatives of the kind undertaken by the GPSF.(16)

Within DFAIT, the pre–existing HSP was limited in size (CAD $15 million annual budget), had restrictive terms and conditions, and was never designed for operational response to crises. Resources available through the Canadian Landmine Fund (CLF) to support GoC commitments under the Ottawa Convention(17) was scheduled to sunset in 2009 with a direction to relevant departments (DFAIT, CIDA and DND) to draw funding from internal departmental sources to continue support for mine action.

Although CIDA could draw on several funding sources, notably the Peacebuilding Fund and resources available through the Office of Democratic Governance, to support fragile state engagement, CIDA possessed limited capacity to support security system reform in fragile states unless it was consistent with CIDA's mandate or a special submission was made to the government for funding.(18) DND, for its part, though possessed of significant resources, is restricted to peace operations and peacekeeping missions.

In short, the GPSF was, and remains today, the only fund that provides a significant amount of resources expressly dedicated to crisis response, conflict prevention, peace–building, and post conflict stabilization within the GoC. It continues to fill both a temporal (rapid response) and structural (mandate related) funding gap within the GoC, thereby enhancing the ability of the GoC to respond to international crises in a timely and coherent manner.

Finding 2:
The three sub–program design for the GPSF has undergone refinements that have strengthened programming coherence and consequently relevance, though there is still room for improvement.

The Formative Evaluation of the GPSF (2008) reported that:

…the distinction between the sub–programs, in terms of which sub–program and intervention would be funded, was found to be permeable. In some instances, the driver of the fit appeared to be financial magnitude rather than a thematic fit. In other instances, the character of the recipient (multi–lateral verses bi–lateral) appeared to be the determining factor. In still other cases, the focus of support (policy development verses institutional development) provided the rationale for assigning a project under one sub–program as against another. While this flexibility does have certain advantages, it is inconsistent with standard program logic and raises questions about the functional utility of the three sub–program design.(19)

Since then, the mandates of the three sub–programs and the criteria for accessing funds related thereto have undergone refinements such that each sub–program now more clearly fills a programming niche within the overall GPSF framework. GPOP, always the most coherent of the three sub–programs, continues to focus on regional and international capacity building (both in operational capacity and in policy and doctrinal development) to support peace operations.

The GBP, inheriting a plurality of programming themes from the HSP, which often overlapped with those under the other two sub–programs, now more clearly focuses on support for the development of international policy, norms, research and or special initiatives at the global level – activities that would not normally be undertaken by the other two sub–programs but which may complement the activities commonly supported by GPOP and the GPSP.

Despite the foregoing, the GBP still maintains, as evidenced by its latest thematic planning frameworks, a geo–specific foot print, which is to say that it continues to support initiatives within countries. Indeed, the thematic planning frameworks for the GBP expressly remark on the importance of aligning programming with host government priorities and or populations as may be appropriate. As such, the boundary separating the GBP and the GPSP remains, to a certain extent, porous, with both sub–programs able to support similar initiatives.(20)

Given the newly defined mandate of the GBP it follows that programming should focus on developing the capacity of Canadian, regional and international organizations and institutions to undertake research and policy development, norm building, and advocacy in line with its thematic priorities. While acknowledging the appropriateness of some country specific programming, this should be the exception rather than the norm lest the distinction between the GBP and the GPSP be rendered meaningless.

Turning to the GPSP, this sub–program still offers the broadest base to support programming, though with a clear geographic/country focus. That the GPSP can be used to support research, policy development, peacebuilding, peace operations, and post–conflict reconstruction initiatives should not be surprising given the wide range of situations to be found in fragile states which call on these varied types of interventions. This said, the GPSP has, and continues to a certain extent today, to be used as a funding source of convenience when the financial ceilings of the other two sub–programs prohibit or render problematic their support for a given initiative.(21)

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3.2 Alignment with Government Priorities and International Practice

Finding 3:
The GPSF has demonstrated its value as an instrument for whole–of–government resource mobilization.

Consistent with GoC policy with respect to horizontal initiatives as well as with international practice on fragile state engagement, the GPSF was designed to function as an instrument for whole–of–government resource mobilization. The evaluation found based on a review of the country case studies, file reviews and interviews with OGDs, that the GPSF is perceived as a valuable instrument in support of OGD participation in fragile states implicating Canadian interests.

START has developed and put in place a number of arrangements to engage with OGDs in international crisis situations.(22) The need for GPSF funds rests on the fact that most of the departments, aside from CIDA, DND, and DFAIT, do not have an international mandate, or funding authorities that permit them to deploy resources or spend departmental or agency funds outside of Canada. Therefore OGDs are generally reliant on GPSF to resource their involvement in crisis response situations. As well, as is described later in the study, some OGDs lack internal organizational structures to select, train and deploy staff. As a result they are dependent on the START secretariat for leadership and technical assistance.

Finding 4:
The GPSF constitutes an important instrument to advance GoC foreign policy priorities in fragile states.

A review of documentation indicated that the GPSF aligns well with GoC overall foreign policy priorities. GPSF is one of the few funding instruments with significant funding availability to operationally support Canadian foreign policy objectives in fragile states. The evaluation confirmed that the GPSF has supported both geographic (Americas, Afghanistan, Sudan, etc.) and thematic (human rights, rule of law, good governance, democracy, etc.) priorities. Examples follow:

  • GPOP supports the GoC G8 Sea Island Commitment. As a result the GoC was able to meet its Sea Island commitments targeted at building capacity in the AU for peacekeeping assignments in Africa. This has been a stated priority of the GoC. Where GPOP funds have been insufficient, additional funding from GPSP has been used to supplement them.
  • This evaluation, as well as past evaluations, affirms the role that the GPSP performs in facilitating the whole–of–government approach to security system reform in countries such as Sudan, Haiti, and Afghanistan. Without the GPSF this type of engagement of OGDs would not have been possible, as most OGDs do not have a mandate or the base funding to engage internationally in crisis response or development.
  • GPSP has also supported the promotion of human rights in all of the 7 priority countries by mainstreaming human rights in its programming. Although CIDA has also played a role in this area, GPSP supplements CIDA programming in countries that are not Official Development Assistance (ODA) eligible, or where CIDA has limited funds. As CIDA shifts more and more towards specific priority countries, there will be additional countries where GPSP is the only instrument available to support the promotion of human rights.
  • Within GPSF, GBP has a special role to play in supporting the development of international norms and policies globally. GBP continues to support the development of international norms, and the promotion of human rights and democracy.
Finding 5:
The GPSF, in design and in practice, is aligned with international norms with respect to fragile state engagement.

The evaluation found that the GPSF is well aligned with international best practices in fragile states. The OECD has developed ten (10) principles that donor countries should follow when working in fragile states. The three country case studies confirmed that in general terms GPSF programming is consistent with these principles.

Although elaborated on in greater detail elsewhere in this report, observations with respect to each of the ten principles are briefly examined below:

  1. Take context as the starting point: In the past START had insufficient capacity to conduct conflict analysis and strategic planning. This deficit is being remedied by the Re–START organizational redesign which parses out policy analysis and program management functions with the view to strengthening both.
  2. Do no harm: Decisions impact on parties to the conflict in different ways. GPSF programming demonstrates sensitivity to this principle however there is a need to formally identify the potential ramifications of interventions on different stakeholders. Better sectoral and stakeholder analysis at the thematic and project level may be required.
  3. Focus on state–building as the central objective: GPSF is highly focused on international as well as national institutional capacity building and development.
  4. Prioritize prevention: This can be seen in projects such as border relations in Colombia, community security in Sudan, Peace Operations capacity building with the AU, and migration management in Haiti.
  5. Recognize links between political, security and development objectives: START has made impressive progress in developing the institutional architecture to support the links between diplomacy, security system reform and development though there is still room for improvement.
  6. Promote non–discrimination as a basis for inclusive and stable societies: GPSF has been at the forefront in supporting initiatives designed to promote inclusion as evidenced by, but not limited to, its support to Sudanese women's groups in Darfur, groups fighting for indigenous rights and the rights of Afro–Colombians, and victims of paramilitaries in Colombia.
  7. Align with local priorities in different ways and different contexts: All three country case studies, to varying degrees, demonstrate alignment with local priorities and contexts. In Sudan for example, and notwithstanding the uncertain commitment of the parties to the peace process, programming has focused on supporting an overall peace process and the priorities of marginalized groups. In Colombia and Afghanistan, programming is clearly consistent with and supportive of host government priorities.
  8. Agree on practical coordination mechanisms between international actors: START has taken a leadership role in supporting coordinating mechanisms for international engagement e.g., Friends of UNAMID, the Afghanistan Sync Board, Borders Working Group in Haiti, and various UN and Multilateral Basket Funds in Colombia.
  9. Act fast…but stay engaged long enough to give success a chance: The GPSF was designed to serve as a rapid response tool with a short to medium–term time horizon (1 to 3 years). Some areas of support, however, require longer term intervention to ensure success and sustainability. So far there has not been a clear policy as to how GPSF will adjust to security system reform initiatives where a longer–term intervention is required.
  10. Avoid pockets of exclusion: GPSF programming has targeted vulnerable groups such as children, women, and the indigenous populations (Sudan and Colombia).
Finding 6:
Post conflict stabilization and reconstruction often require long–term commitments that are, in certain instances, at odds with the GPSF's short to medium–term mandate. The short–term nature of the mandate may lead to unsustainable interventions if there is no mechanism for ensuring longer–term support.

Although the duration of GPSF engagement in any particular country is ultimately a political decision, the default position for the GPSF is that its engagements are short to medium–term, meaning 1 to 3 years. This said, the nature of the GPSF interventions are increasingly devoted to strengthening the security sector, which generally involves capacity building support to a country's judicial, corrections and law enforcement institutions. These interventions take time. Moreover, the GPSF is also mandated to develop Canadian capacity to respond to crises, which includes OGDs and the NGO sector, which similarly requires longer–term commitments.

This raises the question whether the mandate should be changed to better recognize the need for longer–term engagements. If DFAIT adopts a long–term mandate for GPSF, then the GPSF may come to be characterized as more developmental in orientation which may increasingly intrude on CIDA's mandate. The longer–term nature of interventions also raises issues, alluded to in Findings 1 and 3, relating to OGDs that currently rely on the GPSF to support their contributions to reconstruction efforts in fragile states – efforts that require a long–term commitment of resources.

If the GPSF mandate remains short to medium–term, then it may prove difficult to sustain the level of OGD engagement required to demonstrate results as many security system reform programs require the interventions of OGDs. While short–term stabilization objectives and longer–term reconstruction objectives are by no means mutually exclusive, and indeed can be accommodated within the existing conceptual framework of the GPSF, it is important to recognize that technical requirements with respect to planning, project management, and performance monitoring and results reporting, are very different depending on whether an intervention is characterized as short–term stabilization or long–term reconstruction.

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3.3 Alignment with Federal Roles and Responsibilities

Finding 7:
Given the mandates of OGDs, the logical home for the GPSF rests in DFAIT.

The GPSF was created to not just fill a funding gap, but an "institutional gap" as well. Prior to the creation of the GPSF, and START, Canada's approach to conflict and peace policy and programming was fragmented between different GoC departments and agencies. Mechanisms in support of crisis management were formed on an ad hoc basis and in response to a particular event which did not allow for pre–crisis analysis or prevention. The absence of a standing capacity to monitor crisis situations, plan and rapidly deliver integrated policy and programming responses thereto, and to draw upon and coordinate the collective contributions of government, was acknowledged by the GoC as an institutional deficit that required remedial attention. START, and the GPSF, was the GoC's answer to that deficit.

That the GPSF and START were placed within DFAIT as opposed to some other government department or entity is not surprising. As alluded to in Finding 1, DFAIT is the only federal government department with the legislative authority to effectively respond to and manage crises, both immediate and protracted, globally. Interviews with GoC stakeholders confirmed that DFAIT is not only alone in having the requisite mandate to respond to the challenges posed by fragile states, but that policy leadership with respect to fragile state engagement resides within DFAIT.

This leadership is manifest in the roles performed by IRH with respect to complex emergencies and natural disasters, the roles performed by the various geographic desks and task forces which have been created to coordinate major interventions in fragile states supported by the government of the day, and now, under ReSTART, the roles performed by divisions charged with crisis monitoring, fragile state policy development, expert deployments, and programming excellence.

Notwithstanding the above, GoC stakeholders interviewed for this evaluation conveyed the opinion that in high priority countries involving many OGDs (e.g., Afghanistan), there are benefits to having PCO engagement in order to facilitate policy and programming coherence. As a supra–departmental body, the PCO engenders the authority to marshal the resources of OGDs in a way that is beyond the authority of any particular government department, including DFAIT.

The aforementioned observation was echoed in the inter–department report Sustaining Canada's Engagement in Acutely Fragile States and Conflict Affected Situations (hereinafter, Sustaining Canada's Engagement) wherein a graduated approach to governance, based on the nature and intensity of the engagement, was proposed. Under this approach, three governance models were put forward: 1) the "Integrated" option with PCO assuming leadership for high priority countries involving significant OGD participation; 2) the "Cohesive" option with DFAIT assuming the lead – the departmental task force model – for engagements involving close coordination of departmental efforts and some joint management of resources; and 3) the "Aligned" option with DFAIT again assuming the lead for countries of light level engagement requiring loose coordination.(23)

While mindful that extra–departmental oversight brings with it additional complexities and administrative burdens, the graduated approach proffered in Sustaining Canada's Engagement appears to make sense and is supported by this evaluation.


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4.0 Achievements

4.1 GPSF Overall Achievements

In reporting on the overall performance of the GPSF, the Evaluation Team examined the logic model with its associated outputs and outcomes. The logic model, however, was determined not to provide a good framework from which to assess GPSF performance. The Evaluation Team has, instead, endeavored to summarize the overall achievements of the GPSF in reference to the objectives of the GPSF. A summary of the achievements of each of the sub–programs and country case studies follow this section.

Objective 1:
To improve the Canadian contribution to peace and security and the safety and well–being of beneficiaries living in targeted areas.

The GPSF was designed to develop Canadian capacity to respond to international crises and contribute to peace and security initiatives in countries implicating Canadian interests. For a department that had, prior to 2005, little experience in programming, developing the capacity within DFAIT to do so was a priority for the new managers of START. As remarked in previous evaluations and audits, progress in developing this in–house capacity to deliver on the mandate of the GPSF was frustrated by highly restrictive T&Cs, a moratorium on hiring, and a requirement to obtain GoC approval for all new spending initiatives for countries outside those declared as priority countries by the government of the day.

Since 2008 START has succeeded in securing much of the funding authority it requires to deliver on its mandate, with some exceptions discussed later in this report. In the last two years considerable progress has been made in hiring, training and retaining personnel with the skills needed to plan and manage projects in fragile states. START has also, in response to the recommendations of past evaluations and audits, undertaken a major reorganization with the view to streamlining management processes and strengthening its policy and programming capacity. These recent initiatives stand to improve DFAIT's ability to contribute to “peace and security and the safety and well being of beneficiaries living in targeted areas.”

The GPSF was also mandated to develop the capacity of OGDs and organizations within the non–governmental sector to participate in and contribute to stabilization missions abroad. Regarding OGDs, START has, through the GPSF, instituted a variety of instruments designed to mobilize the resources of OGDs. Examples include the CPA involving the RCMP, a MoU with DND covering Afghanistan, and a MoU with the Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC) for procurement and contracting services. While project specific arrangements with OGDs are sub–optimal as instruments to develop institutional capacity, these arrangements have facilitated the deployment of hundreds of civilian experts in conflict affected areas across the globe.

As regards the NGO sector, all the sub–programs of the GPSF have relied extensively on expertise residing in this sector to support research, policy development and programming in fragile states. Capitalizing on these competencies have, however, been frustrated by an inability of START to provide core funding to certain key partners. Given the important role that these NGOs perform in supporting the realization of the GPSF's mandate, and the fact that core funding to non–governmental organizations is not without precedent in the GoC, such an authority for the GPSF within specified boundaries would not be unreasonable.

In sum, the GPSF has successfully contributed to Canadian government priorities for improving security and safety in fragile states. The range of interventions supported by GPSF includes support to international policy development and international norms; support to peacekeeping capacity development, and support to security sector reform and security sector capacity building.

Objective 2:
Bring about safer and more secure environments conducive to stabilization, recovery and long term reconstruction.

In each of the targeted areas, GPSF has made significant contributions to this objective. Examples follow:

  • In Sudan GPSP support to AMIS and the United Nations/African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) has contributed to a reduction in violence in Darfur. GPSP support to the Darfur Peace Process has also produced results, allowing for a greater level of coordination and coherence of efforts in mediation as well as effective engagement with government, rebel groups and civil society. GPSP investments in support of Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR), mine action, and security system reform in south Sudan has similarly contributed to the demobilization and disarmament of thousands of combatants, the clearing of mines and unexploded ordinance in 15 different communities, and the strengthening of south Sudan's police, justice and corrections institutions have all contributed to a safer more secure environment for the peoples of south Sudan.
  • In Colombia, GPSF START was one of the first donors to provide critical support to the Justice for Peace Law (JPL) and Rights of Victims processes, establishing the institutional architecture to support DDR, assistance to victims of the conflict and reparations for the losses they have suffered, with a particular focus on marginalized groups, such as women, children, indigenous peoples and Afro–Colombians. The GPSF has also invested resources in support of civil society initiatives that have accompanied national processes on a geographic and sectoral basis. GPSF investments along the border with Ecuador have also helped mitigate inter–community and cross border violence along that frontier.
  • In Afghanistan, the GPSF investments in support of the police, justice, corrections and border sectors have all, to different degrees, contributed to institutional reform and capacity building that are critical to strengthening the effectiveness of these institutions and hence their ability to restore some semblance of the rule of law in the country. While the security situation in Kandahar province remains fragile, progress has been noted.
  • In Haiti, the summative evaluation of GPSF programming in that country (2009) reported that significant progress had been achieved in restoring order to the streets of Port au Prince through GPSF support to the Haitian National Police (HNP) and locally managed community security initiatives. The evaluation also reported that the GPSF had performed a catalytic role in attracting donor support for both the prison and border sectors.
Objective 3:
Improve global and regional response to crisis situations.

Primarily the responsibility GPOP, this sub–program of the GPSF has been a strong supporter of the UN Peacekeeping Reform Agenda with a focus on doctrinal development, training and institutional capacity development and learning. Contributions through GPOP have strengthened the capacity of the AU through support to the ASF, and through support to TCCs in the form of training and institution capacity building initiatives targeting regional CoE.

Objective 4:
Better protect the rights and safety of individuals and populations.

With the security of the individual as its central focal point, the GBP has made contributions, on a smaller scale, to protecting the rights and safety of individuals and populations.

GBP projects made impressive gains in terms of creating policy changes, achieving consensus, creating new or strengthened networks and structures, and acting as a valuable tool of Canadian diplomacy. Taking into account the small dollar amounts of most of these projects relative to the impacts demonstrated, some of the results achieved are considerable.

The GBP, as part of GPSF, continues to fill a "funding gap" in the GoC in the activities and thematic areas in which it supports. The program gives Canada credibility when funds are directed, even in small amounts, to back–up publicly articulated Canadian foreign policy objectives.

GBP projects have contributed to capacity building in the regions in which the recipient organizations work, and the majority of projects reviewed had impacts which are perceptibly sustainable.

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4.2 Achievements of the Global Peace Operations Program

Background

In 2005, the GoC approved the establishment of the GPOP to meet Canada's 2004 G8 Sea Island Summit commitment to develop global capacity to conduct effective peace operations through the provision of assistance to build sustainable and effective regional and international capacity to respond to crises in failed or fragile states, particularly in Africa. This G8 initiative has been re–affirmed and given further definition by the Prime Minister and his G8 colleagues at the 2006 St. Petersburg and 2007 Heiligendamm Summits.

Canada strongly endorses the UN peacekeeping reform agenda and the leadership role which the United Nations Department of Peacekeeping Operations (UN–DPKO) and the Department of Field Support (DFS) play in international peace operations as well as in the support to regional organizations. In March 2008, Cabinet approved the GPOP programming on a multi–year basis at a level of CAD $8 million per year for the next 5 FYs within the GPSF as Canada's contribution to the G8 global peace operations initiative. In June 2007, The G8 Research Group in its global report prior to the 2007 G8 Summit rated Canada as one of only three G8 partners to be fully compliant in meeting its St. Petersburg commitments for African capacity building for peace operations.

Canada has a significant stake in UN and regionally–based peace operations through its contribution of troops, police and other civilians, as well as through Canada's substantial assessed and voluntary financial contributions. Examples of Canada's investments in this regard include the contribution of police and peace building to the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), and troops and in–kind contributions to UN and AU operations in Sudan.

Three strategic outcomes were identified for the GPOP program:

  • Enhanced Capacity of the AU, UN and other International Organizations to plan, manage, and conduct effective peace operations. GPOP's objective here is to raise the UN, AU and other international organizations' ability to plan and conduct peace operations and provide leadership to regional organizations in the development of their capacities to conduct peacekeeping and peace operations including areas such as policy, doctrine, and procedures.
  • Enhanced Capacity of Organizations and states to contribute to peace operations, with a focus on Africa and Latin America. A main focus of the Pan–African efforts is on the development of civilian police peacekeeping capacity. GPOP builds on current Canadian capacity–building activities in Francophone and West African countries and assists the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and West African States in the development of its Standby Force in areas such as that of training capacity for military and civilian police. Another GPOP objective is to enhance the capacity of other organizations, states and regions to contribute to peace operations of priority to the Government of Canada (for example, building capacity of Latin American countries to participate in MINUSTAH, a priority Canadian UN peace operation), or in response to specific bilateral or multilateral priorities.
  • Enhanced Capacity of the UN and other Organizations and states to contribute to policy development for peace operations. GPOP's objective in this case is to build the capacity of organizations to discuss, develop, and incorporate effective policies for the conduct of integrated, multidimensional peace operations. Another GPOP objective is to build the capacity of international and regional organizations involved in peace support operations to develop and incorporate effective security system reform (SSR) policies into their integrated peace support frameworks. Capacity building on SSR policies lies within the purview of START/IRP and IRC, distinct from the longer term developmental role of CIDA.

Findings

The following summarizes the key findings from the case study on GPOP.

Finding 8:
GPSF support to the Centers of Excellence in Ghana and Mali is strengthening the capacity of these institutions to effectively contribute to peace missions in Africa.

GPOP support to African CoEs has supported the development of Africa's peacekeeping training capacity. The training capacity developed at these centres helps peacekeepers acquire the knowledge, skills, and tools needed to participate in complex operations. This is all the more significant because the AU will be under pressure to take on a greater role in peace operations in the future. The AU is currently contributing to the hybrid peace operations in Darfur– UNAMID and is also conducting peacekeeping missions in Somalia. But while demand continues to be high for AU peacekeepers in African missions, especially in francophone countries, there is a lack of trained personnel to participate in these missions.

GPOP projects are helping to strengthen the institutional capacity of the three CoEs in West Africa. These include the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) in Ghana; the Ecole de Maintien de la Paix (EMP) Alioune Blondin Beye in Mali; and the African Centre for Strategic Research and Studies (ACSRS) in Nigeria. These institutions are the main training facilities for the ECOWAS but also support training of military personnel from other parts of the AU.

Each centre has a different niche. The centre in Ghana specializes in training at the operational level, Mali at the tactical level, and Nigeria at the strategic level. The institution in Mali is significant because it specializes in providing training support to Francophone troops. The GPOP projects at the CoE are also part of a transition from previously CIDA funded projects to the KAIPTC in Ghana and EMP in Mali building on the achievements of these earlier interventions while helping to establish Canada's niche in peace and security operations in Africa.

The schools support the delivery of courses with a focus on human resource capacity building. Among these is the African Union Senior Mission Leader (AUSML) course which supports senior mission leaders by providing them with the training necessary to lead complex and integrated peace missions. As a result of the enhanced capacity of trainees who go through these institutions civilian, police, and military within AU and UN peace operations are more effective. Trainees leave these schools with an enhanced knowledge of modern multidisciplinary peace operations, thus increasing their ability and those of the forces in which they serve to contribute effectively to peace operations in Africa or elsewhere in the world.

The GPSF support also helps the CoE develop increased independence from donors. The centres are expanding their activities through the design of their own courses, through the increase in civilian participants and through the renting of their facilities to outside agencies thus demonstrating a movement towards reduced dependence on donors.

Finding 9:
Although the AU's capacity to absorb technical and financial support remains weak it is beginning to show improvement. This is in part as a result of the Canadian contribution to the development of its peace and security architecture, which is helping the organization strengthen its capacity for peace operations throughout the continent.

Another important area of GPOP support focuses on supporting the ASF. The AU, with the support of the G8 and other partners is developing its capacity to prevent and mitigate armed conflict on the African continent. The AU's stated objective is to have developed the ASF operational capacity so that it is capable of deploying a brigade–sized operation in a traditional peacekeeping mission by 2010. The AU is in the process of conducting a series of regionally based training exercises, courses, conferences and other events to develop the ASF concept for peace support operations.

The AU Commission currently lacks the capacity to conduct integrated planning and its emphasis is placed primarily on the military component. GPOP support is significant because the AU needs to build its capacity across the board from training of peacekeeping troops to planning, administration and procurement. The activities of the various projects assist the AU in achieving a multidimensional strategic level management capability.

The AU also currently lacks the experience, capacity and necessary structures to effectively undertake peace support operations. By supporting the AU with implementation of the ASF, GPOP is meeting one of its key strategic outcomes: namely, that organizations and states have the capacity to contribute to peace operations.

GPOP support to the AU aims at assisting the organization build its peace and security architecture, of which the ASF is a key component, as well as the command, control and management systems necessary to plan and execute AU peace operations missions. This assistance is supporting the development of the organization's ability to plan and conduct peace operations and provide leadership to regional organizations in the development of their capacities in areas such as policy, doctrine, and procedures.

The ASF initiative is an important undertaking and will be a test of the organization's ability to organize and manage peace operations on the continent. However, to realize that goal in the short and medium term it needs the continued support of donors such as Canada. In this regard GPOP programming is playing a leading role in assisting the organization realize its vision for the ASF and enhance its overall peace and security capacity. This support is also relevant and in line with Canadian contributions to the global effort to bring about the stability and security that is fundamental to social, economic, and political progress in countries in crisis, and to prevent and resolve violent conflict in the world.

Finding 10:
GPOP assistance to the UN peacekeeping reform agenda is producing tangible results by helping the organization implement some of its key initiatives. This also underlines the Canadian tradition of being a strong backer of the UN multilateral system in maintaining international peace and security.

In 2005, the Under Secretary General for peacekeeping operations established an agenda to strengthen the capacity of UN peacekeeping over the next five years in order to improve its institutional ability to respond to increasing demands. This agenda known as Peace Operations 2010 defines five areas of reform: partnerships, doctrine, people, organization, and resources. GPOP activities in this area are aimed at assisting DPKO, DFS and other organizations reinforce the UN's leadership role in peacekeeping and supporting the implementation of the UN Peacekeeping Reform 2010 agenda and subsequent UN peacekeeping reform initiatives.

GPOP programming focuses on training, senior mission leadership development and the sharing of lessons learned. It also aims to advance the overall reform agenda by increasing the UN's capacity to identify and develop policy in key areas identified by the UN Special Committee on Peacekeeping Operations (C34), to build capacity to carry out functions effectively, and to strengthen the operational culture and capacity of peacekeeping to the highest professional standards.

One of the GPOP projects aimed at assisting in this initiative is the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations Support Project which was headed by the UNDPKO. The objective of the project was to produce a report to support the identification, development and dissemination of UN training, doctrine, and lessons learned related to the effective implementation of UN Peace operations. The findings of this report are meant to guide the UN plan of action to meet the Peace Operations 2010 reform objectives. It also helps the organization and member states strengthen their policy development capacity for peace operations which is one of the GPOP envelope's strategic outcomes.

Additionally, the goal of the UN peacekeeping agenda includes improving cooperation between the UN and regional actors, such as the AU, in the area of peace operations. The organization is engaged in a ten year capacity building plan to support the AU. Understandably, the need for better cooperation and coordination between the two organizations is significant especially when considering hybrid missions such as UNAMID. GPOP's UN–AU Ten Year Capacity Building Programme: Towards a Broader Understanding of AU–UN Cooperation project supports this effort. The goal of this project is to situate the UN–AU ten year capacity building plan within the broader strategic context of the evolving UN–AU cooperation and to explore policy options for a more structured approach of enhancing cooperation between the two organizations at the strategic and operational level.

One of the strategic outcomes of GPOP is to enhance the capacity of the UN and other organizations and states to contribute to policy development for peace operations. Because Canada is currently not a large provider of peacekeeping troops to UN missions, GPOP support to UN peacekeeping reform initiatives helps Canada maintain its reputation as a strong supporter of the UN system.

Finding 11:
While programming in support of distance learning is reaching a large number of trainees who would otherwise only get similar training at a national or regional military school, there is the potential for overlap with some of the e–learning courses provided by different organizations.

One of the areas of GPOP support is in distance learning. Various courses provided by the UNITAR, Peace Operations Training Institute (POTI) and the DFS Senior Mission Administration and Resource Training (SMART) Program are among those supported by GPOP. The courses provide civilian and military personnel with online training aimed at improving their knowledge and expertise in peace operations. Assistance in the area of distance training for peacekeepers reaches a vast number of trainees in a relatively cost efficient manner.

Distance learning is needed more than ever before. Regional training facilities cannot meet the demand for the number of personnel that have to be trained to take part in peace missions. Instead, peacekeeping troops can have the benefit of receiving the same training without having to attend a regional training centre.

The goal of the E–Learning for Peacekeepers (ELP) program is to strengthen African, Latin American and Caribbean military and police capacities regarding peacekeeping and participation in peace support operations in Africa and in other UN Missions. This is done by providing free access to courses on peace operations, adding new courses to the previous curriculum, and by promoting ELP through peace operations missions and training centres to increase enrolment levels. In 2008 there were about 79,000 enrolments from Africa and 6,000 from the Latin American and Caribbean regions.

One issue of concern is that in the past the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) and the Peace Operations Training Institute (POTI) have collaborated on the GPOP funded e–learning courses for peacekeepers. However, the two organizations have in recent years parted ways and while POTI continues to provide the ELP, UNITAR has developed its own distance learning programme, the Peacekeeping Training Programme (PTP) which also provides online training to peacekeepers. So, while there is a need for distance learning programs for peacekeepers, there is a potential for overlap in this case as both organizations essentially target the same audience.

GPOP funding for the DFS SMART program has also been important in helping the organization develop an online component to its training. SMART is the UN's recruitment tool for senior managers and the organization has recently begun developing the E–Learning component of the programme. SMART objectives are to teach and qualify staff to maintain a pre–subscribed level of competence in administrative support functions, facilitate managerial responsibilities and highlight accountability for decision–making. It aims to encourage managers to think strategically through critical analysis and to translate intuitive judgement and tacit knowledge into pragmatic skills.

Overall, support for distance learning and training programs is relevant to the strategic goals of GPOP and the GoC. The training is critical to providing peacekeeping personnel the necessary tools and expertise to better carry out their tasks in peace support missions. It helps trainees acquire knowledge that in some cases would not be available at the field or in the various regional training centres. Distance learning for peacekeepers provides troops from poorer nations the opportunity to have free online training that their governments may not be able to afford. Often distance courses are the only exposure that they have to such training. It is also a relatively inexpensive way of disseminating UN standards, procedures and best practices for peacekeeping missions quickly. As long as there are peacekeeping missions, this type of learning will be a relevant and necessary complement to training already available at military institutions. Canadian support here is both important and necessary.

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4.3 Achievements of the Glyn Berry Program

Background

The GBP emerged out of the HSP which was created in June 2000 to support Canada's human security agenda and to advance Canada's foreign policy objectives. The Human Security agenda was meant to strengthen the ability of Canada and the global community to respond to threats to human security and to support peaceful governance. Key aspects of the agenda included the international treaty to ban anti–personnel landmines, advocacy against the use of child soldiers, and the implementation of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

The HSP was allocated CAD $10 million per annum, beginning in FY 2000/2001 and ending in FY 2004/05. It was designed to support diplomatic leadership and policy advocacy, country–specific initiatives and domestic and multilateral capacity–building initiatives. The overall objective of the program was to “enhance people's safety and freedom from violent and non violent threats to their rights, safety or lives.”

The HSP was meant to serve as a key platform for engaging Canadian academics and civil society in dialogue and for increasing their capacity to effectively address human security issues. In addition, the HSP was used as a mechanism for Canadian missions abroad to further Canada's human security strategy and priorities in a country or region, and/or to enhance Canada's visibility. This was particularly true in countries or regions where the CIDA bilateral programs were non–existent or almost non–existent and where human insecurity was an issue. The HSP was intended to provide Canada with leverage and credibility by strategically allocating funds against policy priorities. In addition, it was intended to promote policy coherence and horizontal policy development among government departments with shared foreign policy issue interests.(24)

In 2006, the HSP was “renamed and refocused,” and folded into the GPSF at a level of CAD $15 million per year. In 2008, the GBP annual budget was reduced from CAD $15 million to CAD $5 million. In the opinion of START staff, maintaining the GBP within the GPSF was important as GBP permits proactive funding by the GoC of international policy development and advocacy, which were always important aspects of the GPSF and moreover complement the more operational focus of the other sub–programs. In the opinion of some external to government interviews, a reduction in the GBP budget has reduced DFAIT's ability to provide leadership in and promote development of international policy norms.

As stated in program documentation, the GBP supports the development of Canadian and international policies, laws and institutions needed to prevent and resolve crises and to promote and protect human rights. This program allows Canada to embed and exercise the core principles of its foreign policy – freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law – in international peace and security efforts. Program objectives are advanced through diplomatic leadership and advocacy; strengthening of multilateral mechanisms; Canadian capacity building; and targeted regional initiatives, particularly in fragile or failing states outside the GPSF priority countries.(25)

Between 2006 and 2008, the GBP was guided by five themes, namely: Democratic Transitions, Rule of Law and Accountability, Human Rights and Protection of Civilians, Conflict Prevention, and Public Safety. As of the fall of 2008, the programming themes were condensed into three areas: Human Rights, International Accountability and the Rule of Law, and Democracy.

Despite several changes to the program over time, the ideas it seeks to advance and the conceptual basis on which the program was established have largely remained unchanged from its days as the HSP.

Findings

The following summarizes the key findings from the case study on the GBP.

Finding 12:
GBP projects have contributed to long–term, sustainable capacity–building in the regions and organizational structures supported.

The evaluation found that the majority of the GBP projects reviewed have contributed notably to long–term capacity building in the regions and structures in which they work and that the impacts are likely to be sustained.

Evidence of sustainability of these projects is supported by the following:

  • First, a number of the projects supported the establishment of networks and other structures which should continue into the foreseeable future, with or without the GBP funding.
  • Second, many of the projects either included a training component, or provided funding to organizations that conduct training in direct support of achieving the project outcomes. The training provided will help to develop the knowledge, skills and capacity of the beneficiary organizations to plan, and manage their activities, including raising funds from other donors. Some examples of projects that the evaluation team believes have delivered positive outcomes and that should be sustainable are described below:
    • In response to the Saffron Revolution, journalists in Burma were trained in professional standards of reporting, especially with regards to election monitoring.
    • Training workshops were organized with members of the judiciary and prosecutors in the Andean region to cover technical matters regarding the ICC.
    • Subsequent to workshops on how to improve or prevent laws that unduly restrict the activities of NGOs, beneficiary Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) were able to negotiate with governments to delay or prevent the passing of further laws.
Finding 13:
GBP has contributed to promoting policy change and to advancing new international normative agendas; however its ability to do this has declined somewhat owing to the reduced funding available.

Almost all of the projects reviewed achieved their expected outputs and outcomes. Some projects achieved outcomes beyond what was expected, and made impressive gains in terms of supporting and promoting policy changes, achieving consensus, and acting as a valuable tool of Canadian diplomacy. In some cases, projects were also used as a creative means of advancing Canada's interests diplomatically. Some key achievements in this area include:

  • GBP funded a study on the Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism (MRM), which recommended the addition of sexual assault of children as a trigger for launching the MRM within a country. Subsequent to this report, Security Council Resolution 1882 was passed. It states that the MRM annual report will now list parties that engage in rape or other sexual violence against children in conflict situations, thus expanding the triggers for the mechanism as recommended in the report.
  • One project was successful in reducing intra–UN tensions on the issue of SSR, and simultaneously achieved consensus on a definition of SSR that is aligned with a Canadian vision of the concept.
  • A workshop held in the Caribbean addressed the impact of gun violence on the region, with a view to developing a sub–regional instrument to implement the UN Programme of Action (PoA) on Small Arms.
  • One project utilized an arm's length organization to advance Canada's interests regarding the International Criminal Court (ICC) in China in a way that DFAIT itself would not be able to do as a government department.
Finding 14:
GBP funded projects have succeeded in achieving consensus among stakeholders on highly contentious issues, thus advancing Canada's foreign policy objectives abroad.

Some of the projects reviewed either achieved more than expected, or achieved the targeted results more quickly than originally planned. Overall, the results achieved by these projects greatly exceeded expectations. One of the ways these projects added value was by obtaining international consensus among stakeholders on highly contentious issues. This was achieved through broad consultation and collaboration. Examples include:

  • The work of the Special Representative to the Secretary General (SRSG) on Business and Human Rights achieved a high degree of consensus among divergent stakeholders on the role of states in the human rights dimensions of business activities.
  • In Colombia, agreement was reached on codes of conduct and indicators for conflict sensitive business practices, with four multi–national companies agreeing to pilot the indicators.
Finding 15:
GBP funding has led to the creation of new or strengthened networks and structures.

Some GBP projects involved building information sharing networks that not only achieved their objectives, but provided value–added in that they also became useful sources of information to DFAIT in unexpected ways. Examples of this include:

  • In the Andean region, a project to monitor, assess and report on the state of democracy was tasked with creating a series of country reports. The network of researchers created was also able to develop a number of “flash reports” to give DFAIT on–the–ground intelligence with respect to unexpected democratic events (such as the constitutional referendum in Ecuador).
  • One recipient organization which was responding to an increase in laws restricting the activities of NGOs was informed of the development of similar laws in another country. The recipient organization then informed DFAIT, and the GoC was able to negotiate with the country's foreign ministry to delay the passing of this law.
Finding 16:
The GBP is a valuable tool for Canadian foreign policy, as it has mobilized support for the priorities of the GoC.

Support from GBP programming, even in small dollar amounts, has raised the profile of funded organizations and helped to mobilize the political support of other donors.

Despite the successes described above, interviews with recipients suggested there are two critical factors that must be in place if results achieved through these projects are to be maintained. The first of these is political commitment; some key informants mentioned that the significance of support of Canada for a particular issue was as important, if not more important, than the funding provided. These respondents highlighted the necessity of continued Canadian support in order to continue advancing their policy agendas. Secondly, sustainability of funding was also identified as necessary to continue the work begun through these projects, whether that be from GBP, another source with the GoC, or from an alternate donor altogether.

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4.4 Achievements of the Global Peace and Security Program

Background

The intent of the GPSP is to plan and deliver timely, coherent responses to peace and security challenges of failed and fragile states, including conflict prevention, crisis response and stabilization initiatives.

Projects funded by the GPSP are focussed on conflict prevention, short–term stabilization, and peace building efforts in specific countries. In any given situation, there are likely to be multiple areas requiring parallel rapid responses to build conditions for post–conflict stabilization and recovery.

The Evaluation Team examined several approaches to reporting on achievements of the GPSP, including results reporting based on the logic model described in the 2009 ARAF. According to the logic model, GPSP immediate outcomes aim to increase the capacity of state, multilateral and civil society organizations to:

  • Deliver on their respective mandates in accordance with international best practices, norms and standards;
  • Establish conditions for safe and secure environments;
  • Respond to (plan, manage and deliver) peace and security challenges; and
  • Contribute to peace and security operations and policies (includes peacekeeping, best practices and international standards)

Considering these outcome articulations, the Evaluation Team concluded that the logic model does not provide a satisfactory basis for reporting on GPSP performance as it is too broad in scope resulting in overlap with the results outlined for GPOP and GBP. Accordingly, the Evaluation Team relied on the strategic outcomes of specific countries of interventions as the framework for reporting on achievements. These include Sudan, Colombia and Afghanistan.

4.4.1 Case Study – SUDAN

Context

The GPSF is an important element in Canada's engagement strategy in Sudan, amounting to commitments in excess of CAD $180 million since 2006 – over a third of Canada's total commitment of resources to the country during the period.

GPSF programming in Sudan is premised on the GoC's “all of Sudan” policy which recognizes that none of Sudan's varied conflicts can be resolved in isolation and that they can best be addressed within the context of national unity. This approach is consistent with and supportive of the principles of the North–South Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) which is widely accepted by members of the international community as the key to restoring peace and stability in the country, including Darfur.

A review of the GPSF Concept Papers for Sudan from FY 07/08 to 09/10, which constitutes START's premier country level planning document, reveals a consistent focus on three broad programming areas, namely: support for CPA implementation; support to security system reform and rule of law institutions in South Sudan; and support to the Darfur peace process. The grouping of projects within these broad themes has changed over the years.

For example, in 2007/08 GPSF programming was broken down into five programming areas, namely: Support to the CPA; Stabilization and Security Sector Reform, with a focus on DDR in the East; Strengthening Rule of Law in the South of Sudan; Peace Operations; and Advancing the Darfur Peace Process. In 08/09, GPSF programming was organized under three programming domains: Strengthening Capacity of Justice, Security and CPA related Institutions; Strengthening Community Security; and the Darfur Peace process.

In FY 09/10 programming was again reordered under four programming domains: Community Security; Support to CPA Implementation; Darfur Peace Process; and Governance, with a focus on security sector reform. In the new multi–year strategy for GPSF programming in Sudan programming is yet again reconfigured under the following headings: Community Security, CPA Implementation, Security Sector and Rule of Law; Environmental Governance; and the Darfur Peace Process.

Following from the new whole of government plan in Sudan, which was approved in December 2009, the new multi–year strategy for GPSF programming in Sudan programming will focus on the following six areas: effectiveness of UN peacekeeping missions in Sudan; a productive peace process in Darfur; GosS, civil society and communities better able to address community level security concerns; reduced loss of life amongst conflict–affected populations, key CPA provisions implemented; and North Sudan, South Sudan and the Transitional Areas better able to address post–referenda arrangements.

While it is not uncommon, particularly in a dynamic programming environment, to make adjustments to programming frameworks, the constant reshuffling of programming activities under different articulations of strategic outcomes presented a challenge for the evaluation.

Findings

The following summarizes the key findings from the case study on GPSF programming in Sudan.

Finding 17:
GPSP programming in support of the Darfur Mediation Process is relevant, although disbursements have been slow and results are difficult to measure.

Canada's deep concerns for human rights and humanitarian situations have guided its engagement in Sudan. The people of Sudan have suffered from major human rights violations, poor governance, several ethnic and religious armed conflicts and unequal distribution of resources. Also, a large number of Sudanese are displaced because of armed conflicts and endure the threats of land mines and other remnants of war. Canadian efforts are also devoted to supporting peace efforts in neighbouring states such as Kenya and Chad where instability has a destabilizing effect on Sudan as well.

Overall GPSF involvement in Sudan is consistent with Canada's core values of foreign policy priorities of freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law. Given that the conflict and the fragility in one part of the country may have major destabilizing effects on other parts, the GPSF adopted an all–of–Sudan approach; projects support the implementation of peace agreements and promote peace, stability and reconstruction in the East (DDR), the south of Sudan (peace building and reconstruction), and in the Darfur region (peace keeping and diplomacy).

Darfur, one of the most visible and unresolved humanitarian crises in our time, has been a constant concern for the GoC. Despite the signing of a peace agreement in 2006, acts of violence continue and millions are still displaced. Some of the displaced have crossed the border into Chad causing instability and friction on the Sudan–Chad border. In addition, international peace keepers working for UNAMID are still being targeted by attacks by various rebel groups.

In recognition of the severity of the situation, GPSP has contributed approximately CAD $3 million to the Multi–Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) in the support of the African Union – United Nations Joint Mediation Support Team (JMST) for Darfur (2008–10). Funds were allocated in the form of a block grant to be used to fund capacity building workshops on conflict resolution with rebel groups who commit to the peace talks.

Since 2008, the fund was used to provide technical assistance and to support the special envoy for the first phase of peace talks. The slow progress in the mediation process has been attributed to political volatility, the highly fractured rebel groups, and the constantly changing dynamics of the situation. A plurality of regional donors (the government of Qatar, Libya, the Arab League, etc) who have provided alternative sources of funding have contributed to slow spending of funds allocated by donors including Canada.

The pressure exerted by several external actors seems to have brought the key players to the mediation table.(26) However, the fact that the JMST does not have a plan to follow should be worrisome, not only for Canada, but also for other major donors such as the European Union (EU) and the United Kingdom's (UK) Department for International Development (DFID).(27) The JMST indicated, however, that they are receiving an increasing number of requests for training and financial support from civil society organizations, which presents an opportunity to disburse donors' contributions. In any case, GPSF needs to consider the opportunity cost of not spending the allocated fund and whether the political importance of being involved in the mediation process will take precedence over the effectiveness and efficiency of the fund. In other words, what is the level of risk that the GPSF is willing to take in such situations?(28)

In support of the Darfur peace process, the GPSF has also provided support to Care Canada to undertake a capacity building project for women in Darfur. Care Canada was one among a number of international organizations expelled from Darfur in 2009 and the project has since been terminated. Early results underlined the importance of increasing the capacity of women's organizations to contribute to the peace process. The recent Doha (November 09) meeting has included a number of Darfuri women organizations. GPSF should continue to seek new local partners to undertake such activities focusing on issues such as reconciliation, voluntary return of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), land disputes, etc.

GPSF support to the Darfur process has been important in providing Canada with a place at the table. However, the Evaluation Team noted that attribution of the results of Canadian support is difficult as there are other donor countries involved in supporting the peace process.

Finding 18:
GPSP has demonstrated programming leadership in the areas of community security, prison reform, and federalism.

Since its inception, the GPSP has supported several initiatives directly related to increasing access to justice, strengthening rule of law institutions, and governance.

In 2006–07, GPSP supported the United Nations Development Program's (UNDP) Foundational Support to the Southern Sudan Prison Service (SSPS), Institutional support to the Judiciary of Southern Sudan. The overall objective of the program was to assist the process of prison reform in Southern Sudan by building leadership capacity within the SSPS. The project focussed on developing information management capacity; ensuring a qualified human resources and leadership element; preventing unlawful detention and reduction of imprisoned remand prisoners; developing a comprehensive legislative and policy framework; and improving prison conditions and prisoner health.

As of December 2008, GPSF had provided approximately CAD $3.79 million to the UNDOC (the project was implemented with expert assistance from the International Centre for Criminal Justice Policy (ICCLR). GPSP also contributed about CAD $1.1 million for a second phase of the project in close collaboration with the US Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs. In total, over 900 officials have been trained including over 120 women. One particular achievement was the development of linkage committees that bring experts from judiciary, police and prisons together to discuss areas of shared interest.(29)

Given that prison staff are ex–Sudan Peoples Liberation Army (SPLA) combatants with no experience with prison administration and management of prisoners, the project has made a significant contribution; with long term impact, to the ability of SPSS to effectively manage its prison system. Remarks from prison officials interviewed in Sudan confirmed the value of the training and counselling received and its contribution to strengthening the capacity of South Sudan's prison services. The project has further supported the development of alternatives to imprisonment. In terms of alternative imprisonment, the UNDOC is creating a case review mechanism geared towards female prisoners who have never been to court and have never been convicted of a crime.

The project has also supported the development of alternatives to imprisonment with the participation of all levels of government. More specifically, in partnership with UNDOC, GPSF contributed to the creation of a case review mechanism geared towards female prisoners who have never been to court and have never been convicted of a crime. Key informants indicated that the training and support provided through GPSF funding was critical and has contributed to improving the management and conditions in prisons. Support to prison services is a key component of the rule of law that is often over looked by donors and as a result is a good niche for Canadian assistance.

GPSP has also supported a number of projects aimed at enhancing community security. GPSP funding is focused on fostering local and state solutions, supporting community based groups and increasing the capacity of the government and traditional authorities to resolve conflicts peacefully. It is also focused on empowering civil society to use innovative approaches to conflict mediation and community security and arms control and encouraging traditional/customary authorities to approach conflict resolution in a manner that acknowledges the rights of vulnerable groups and addresses inter–tribal reconciliation. For example, funding to PACT Sudan aims at enhancing community stability and co–existence between communities (based on reducing competition over natural resources. This is achieved through providing specialized training and building the capacity of local NGOs.

Another project where GPSP has made a significant contribution is in supporting the Southern Sudan Human Rights Commission (SSHRC). DFAIT was one of two donors (with the UK) that took the risk of supporting the Commission before legislation was passed establishing it as a senior body within the Government of South Sudan (GOSS). Canadian funding was used to provide office equipment, conduct training, and deploy a legal expert. The support helped to raise the status of the Commission and to contribute to: the creating of systems and procedures; and, the formulation of stronger enabling legislation for the SSHRC. GPSP is also supporting the establishment of a documentation centre and the capacity building of NGOs in this area.

GPSP support to governance initiatives are aimed at presenting a viable solution for the sharing of resources. To this end, the project provides training, workshops designed to advocate for and share knowledge about fiscal federalism. While some argued that this is an important intervention and Canada has a lot to offer in the area of inter–governmental relations, others expressed some reservations underlining that the idea of federalism is still perceived in the North as a divisive issue and that it is difficult to get it on the political agenda. The views are different in the South where it is perceived as a promising basis for political dialogue and inter–governmental relations between the South and the North.

The assessment of GPSP projects in Sudan revealed that they have contributed to creating an enabling environment for the stability and lasting peace. They are generally strategic in that they focus on areas that address vital issues for the future of Sudan. Because they are designed and intended to support an international coordinated efforts, attributing achievements to specific Canadian interventions is problematic.

Finding 19:
GPSF support was critical in sustaining the operational capacity of AMIS during its mandate and the GPSF support of UNAMID through TCCs will likely generate benefits long after UNAMID's mandate has run its course.

One of the major achievements of the GoC in Sudan was its contribution to AMIS and, since 2008, to the hybrid AU–UN mission (UNAMID).(30) Since 2004–05, the GoC has allocated up to $186.4 million in GPSF funding to provide training, equipment and doctrinal development to African troops and police as one of the contributing countries to UNAMID.(31) Canada's contribution supported the efforts of the international community to protect civilians and to address the conflict in Darfur. Also, it demonstrates Canada's commitment to the mandate of UNAMID thereby enhancing Canada's leadership role as a co–chair of Friends of UNAMID Working Group.(32)

The AU has faced major challenges in building its capacity, while managing an active peacekeeping mission. Major challenges included: the lack of capacity to execute peace operations; a lack of financial and material resources; underdeveloped processes and procedures for procurement; financial management and troop recruitment for peace operations; and a lack of effective coordination between the AU and regional organizations.

In support of AMIS, Canada provided armoured personnel carriers, helicopters, and fixed–wing aircrafts. This hardware support was complemented by the deployment of 17 personnel to train and build capacity of the AU mission staff. In addition, African TCCs did not have the experience, capacity and resources to provide troops and equipment. Despite all these challenges, Canadian engagement has been instrumental in getting the mission off the ground and contributing to creating conditions for stability. That said, the operational effectiveness of the mission does not depend solely on the provision of equipment but requires the political support of all of the parties in Sudan and the right enabling conditions.(33)

To augment the capacity of AMIS, the Security Council authorized the establishment of an AU–UN hybrid mission in 2007.(34) The AU–UN cooperation in peace operations was the first of its kind and key informants have indicated that the transition was not smooth.(35) The challenges faced by the hybrid mission were attributed to: the lack of political will on the part of the GoS; the need to work within two different organizational cultures and institutional frameworks; the lack of capacity and resources in African countries to equip and deploy troops; and the lack of adequate infrastructure to maintain operations and support troops. In addition, some argued that the peace in Darfur is illusive and therefore the mission has to deal with low intensity conflict and a growing need for humanitarian assistance, which it is not equipped to deal with.

In support of UNAMID, GPSF allocated up to CAD $40 million (FY08/09) to provide Armoured Personnel Carriers (APCs), equipment and training to enable three African countries (Senegal, Uganda and Burkina Faso) to deploy police and military personnel and equipment to UNAMID.(36) Of this amount, CAD $4 million was allocated towards capacity building of police, logistics, and gender–based violence training. Approximately CAD $30 million was used for; the outfitting of Formed Police Units (FPUs), logistics procedures development and a currency fluctuation contingency reserve fund. Part of this funding has also provided training vehicles and other equipment for training to countries such as Ghana, South Africa and Kenya.

Another key GPSF contribution to UNAMID is in the area of capacity building. Through the implementation of the UNAMID Peace support Training Program, GPSF contributed to enhancing the experience of personnel deployed to UNAMID. The training conducted by Pearson Peace Centre (PPC) in Nairobi was deemed successful by participants and has provided good value for money.(37) It also demonstrated the value of working with PPC as an instrument of Canadian foreign policy.

In general, UNAMID continues to face critical challenges relating to the deployment of troops; a lack of helicopters (particularly needed for tactical airlift), and a lack of specialized equipment (e.g., aerial reconnaissance aircrafts, logistics and transport units). The mission has limited logistical capacity and lacks the capacity to monitor the UN arms embargo established to prevent arms from reaching rebel groups.

In addition, UNAMID is currently not equipped to restore the necessary security conditions for the state provision of humanitarian assistance and to facilitate full humanitarian access throughout Darfur. This has proven difficult because of the continuing violence, lack of capacity and the unpredictability of the deployable human and other resources.(38) However, Sudan has a strong government that is aware of the importance of asserting its sovereignty – therefore there is a need to continuously negotiate the deployment of troops and mobilization of resources with the GoS.

Finding 20:
GPSP programming in support of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement implementation and monitoring, support for federalism and DDR is making modest progress.

The CPA is the cornerstone of the resolution of the conflict between the north and the south and its implementation is therefore a sine qua non for long–term peace and stability in Sudan. Continuous international support for the implementation and monitoring of the agreement is necessary. Since the signing of the CPA, the GoC, through CIDA, has made significant contributions by providing support to the World Bank MDTF for early recovery activities; becoming a partner in the Joint Donor Office in Juba; funding large–scale humanitarian assistance; and, through the GPSF, supporting peace building and conflict prevention activities to strengthen rule of law institutions in the south.

Through GPSP, Canada has provided resources to fund a position in the Assessment and Evaluation Commission (AEC), which is tasked with monitoring the implementation of the CPA. The Canadian Political Officer is responsible for the power sharing file; the largest and perhaps the most sensitive. Interviews with stakeholders underlined their satisfaction with Canada's role and contribution. Given the critical contribution of the position to the AEC, the position was extended to the end of the AEC's mandate in 2011.(39)

The GPSP contribution to the CPA is also evidenced in its support to the Forum of Federations' governance initiative, which is a capacity–building and awareness–raising initiative targeted at the four stakeholders groups: government, civil society, academics and the media on the issue of federalism.(40) The purpose of this initiative is to strengthen the Sudanese capacity to reform and develop institutions in line with the implementation of the CPA: a highly ambitious objective given the limited time frame for the CPA implementation.

The Forum of Federations was able to implement a number of activities including workshops, deployment of experts on wealth sharing, consultation meetings, civil society roundtables; development of publications and resource materials and organizing training courses on models of fiscal federalism. Additional workshops and knowledge dissemination activities are planned as part of a second phase. In addition, some training activities are will be scaled up and offered to State–level ministries.

Nevertheless, the implementation of the project has faced a number of challenges and delays related to: the capacity of local partners and the dearth of international organizations involved in this area in Sudan; the lack of financial and administrative support in the field; lack of knowledge of Sudanese institutions and partners; and the uncertainty of the Sudanese political landscape. In addition, the delay in registering the Forum as an NGO in Sudan has impeded work with civil society and media representatives.

Progress, however, has been noted. There are a growing number of key players/individuals that have a better understanding of the concept of federalism particularly amongst Fiscal and Financial Allocation and Monitoring Commission (FFAMC) members and civil society organizations. More information and publications in Arabic are now available about alternative forms of federalism that can be used as prospective models for Sudan.

Notionally, this is an important project that presents federalism as a viable model for co–existence between north and south, as well as a solution to managing Sudan's diversity. However, the debate about federalism in Sudan is an old one and, to a certain extent, is still perceived in the North as a divisive issue. A key challenge is a lack of political will. Controversial demands by the GosS as well as Darfur (e.g., for peace dividends, an end to their marginalization, sharing of national resources, halting the trend to Islamization) cannot be easily addressed. The issue of federalism has not yet found its way into the discourse of the main political parties and the GoS. The situation is different in the south where the GosS welcomes the idea of federalism and sees it as a basis for political dialogue and future basis for inter–governmental relations.

Given that this project is about changing the political and governance culture in Sudan, it is of a longer term nature. It is also addressing different but complementary areas (fiscal decentralization, inter–governmental relations and general awareness), involving a wide array of stakeholders.

As part of the overall implementation process of peace agreements in Sudan, all sides have committed to a transparent and effective DDR process that supports the transition of ex–combatants to a productive civilian life.(41) GPSF support to DDR has focused both on formal DDR and community based voluntary civilian disarmament with an emphasis on information gathering and training.

To complement the DDR efforts, GPSP has funded several initiatives to enhance community security, reduction in small arms and light weapons and addressing mine action challenges. These include the Human Security Baseline Assessment implemented by the Small Arms Survey (SAS), training in SALW issues and approaches for south Sudan supported by the Bonn International Centre for Conversion (BICC); and the support to the community security and Arms Control Program of the UNDP DDR Unit, which focuses on gender sensitive, community driven approaches to security and arms control through civilian policing and voluntary disarmament.

GPSF support to DDR in eastern Sudan has also made a significant contribution to disarmament and demobilization. The first phase (CAD $1 million – about 70% of UNDP funding for the Eastern Sudan DDR) was implemented in partnership with the North Sudan Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration Commission (NSDDRC) and other UN agencies and succeeded in collecting approximately 750 small arms and demobilized 1,700 ex–combatants from the Eastern Front.(42) The second phase of the project is expected to demobilize more than 2,200 ex–combatants (of which some 1,500 have been demobilized so far).

The work performed by the SAS and the BICC provided baseline data and an assessment of the scale and distribution of SALW. In addition, it has provided focussed training programs to key players in Southern Sudan and at the state level on various topics such as arms control and child soldiers.

The UNDP DDR program in the south is progressing slowly and is well behind schedule. The South Sudan DDR Commission (SSDDRC) is facing a number of challenges regarding record management, its lack of know–how and expertise and a lack of financial resources and equipment. There are also some concerns related to the governance of the national DDR Coordination Council created by a presidential decree,(43) the verification process and the maintenance of inventory, the coordination with UN–DPKO and the capacity of SPLA for registration and enumeration. Key challenges in the DDR process in the south have slowed progress towards increasing security and conflict prevention through collecting small arms and the disarmament of heavily armed communities in southern Sudan.

A recent assessment of the DDR process in Sudan highlighted weaknesses related to: the DDR pre–registration process, the absence of a national DDR strategy, weak monitoring and verification mechanisms, and a lack of understanding of the DDR objectives. To strengthen the capacity of southern SSDDRC the GPSF is providing audit and financial monitoring services, transportation, communication and basic office equipment. This is complemented by the deployment of technical experts to strengthen implementation by the NSDDRC.

Key Informants remarked that there are also weaknesses with the UN administration, particularly in staffing and procurement. It was also stressed that the success of the process depends to a great extent on the will of politicians and local communities as well as the effective participation of civil society.(44) Voluntary disarmament and demobilization would not take hold and succeed until the fundamental reasons for arms possession are addressed and this means providing security and establishing effective mechanisms for conflict resolution.

Finding 21:
Support to mine action in Sudan is contributing to community security and is establishing the conditions for social and economic development.

In support of the CPA and to ensure that peace dividends reach the population, Canada, through the GPSF, has invested about $1.9 million on land mine actions. Of this contribution, CAD $291,000 was allocated to the development of Mine Action Capacity in Southern Sudan and the development of an Impact Assessment (IA) toolkit in 2007. The project addresses two high priority needs: the clearance of landmines/explosive remnants of war, and the delivering of mine risk education (MRE) activities in the localities of Magwi and Loa in Southern Sudan.

These two areas are priorities not only because of the extent of mines and Unexploded Ordinance (UXO), but also because UNHCR is focusing repatriation in these areas. Working with the Southern Sudan De–mining Commission (SSDC) and the Sudan Integrated Mine Action Service (SIMAS) – the only Sudanese NGO accredited by the UN – the project has made significant progress delivering MRE to approximately 6,000 men, women and children in about 26 communities and work is underway to complete approximately 60 Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) clearance tasks in about 15 communities. In addition, GPSF contributed CAD $320,000 for the first phase of the cluster munitions clearance project in South Kordofan and progress is on track to clear identified sites.

Another GPSF funded project involved the development of a threat demarcation tool that is currently being used. The tool for prioritizing and demarcating high risk/high impact areas was developed with the objective of focusing on areas of the highest risk to civilian populations with the highest potential impact for livelihood sustainable use.

With funding from GPSF, the Mine Action Group (MAG) is implementing a project that focuses on threat definition, demarcating sections of Suspected Hazardous Areas (SHAs) which need to be cleared. These areas were defined through a MAG–led Landmine Impact Survey (LIS) and were categorized based on their levels of risk. The goal, using innovative threat definition criteria developed by MAG, is to reduce the size of the highly risky areas, to carefully define areas which can be targeted more efficiently for clearance. So far the project has achieved significant results. For example, 56% of areas demarcated as High and Medium SHAs in Central and Western Equatoria have been surveyed and a large size of land has been released back to communities.

Despite the success in achieving specific project objectives, the overall impact of GPSF in the area of mine action is hampered by a number of factors. These include the lack of central coordination and national ownership (one single central body to coordinate mine actions with), the lack of cooperation between the United Nation Mine Action Office (UNMAO) and SSDC and the National Mince Action Centre (NMAC) and the short–term nature of START interventions.

It is also reported that there has been challenges coordinating the efforts of UNMAO, which is responsible for mine clearance, and the UNDP, which is responsible for institutional capacity building. It is further worth noting that even after UNMIS identified in 2007 the lack of capacity of these bodies as a principle weakness, limited progress has been made in this area. Other factors impeding progress include the large and difficult terrain, the lack of information on placed mines, the weather, difficulties in moving populations and on–going security challenges.

Finding 22:
The location of the START representative in East Africa to deal with Sudan is currently not optimal.

START's representative position in the region is important. To maximize the utility and the potential of START's representative, a Nairobi or Addis Ababa location, where all international organizations and major donors are located, would be preferable to the current Uganda location, as GPSF programming in Uganda is very limited with no new initiatives currently being planned. Other factors are:

  • The location of the START representative should be determined in close collaboration with OGDs;
  • The volatility of the political situation in Sudan (Darfur, Juba and Eastern Sudan) deserves dedicated resources to monitor the situation and the progress of GPSF projects; and
  • START's representative plays a key role in monitoring and reporting as well as maintaining contacts with the network of donors, and other key players in the region and provides intelligence in support of strategic planning and project design.

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4.4.2 Case Study – Colombia

Context

Colombia, though rich in resources and culture, has throughout much of its history suffered from high levels of poverty and extreme inequality. Roughly 50% of the population live below the poverty line and approximately 3% of the population control 70% of the arable land. These problems of inequality and exclusion have contributed to chronic social and political instability in the country. Colombia has one of the longest standing guerrilla insurgencies in the Americas. Decades of violent internal conflict combined with drug–trafficking have undermined security, respect for human rights, weakened governance and produced millions of victims. Colombia has the largest population of displaced persons in the Americas, estimated to be around 3 million persons.

The GoC Strategy for the Americas seeks to reinforce Canadian democratic, economic and security engagement on the continent. Canada has had an extensive involvement with Colombia under the guidance of the America's three pillars strategy of prosperity, security and democratic governance. Since 1972, CIDA has disbursed over CAD $355 million in development assistance to Colombia. Canadian bilateral aid targets long–term development of the country by focusing largely on democratic governance, with a particular emphasis on child protection and attention to IDPs.

Since 2005, the GPSF has committed a total of CAD $15 million to Colombia. It was envisioned that Colombia would represent a country where “a significant impact for a modest level of funding” could be achieved. Complementing existing CIDA backed initiatives GPSF programming in Colombia supports the development of human rights, accountability and justice mechanisms as means to strengthen truth, justice and reconciliation processes integral to sustainable peace.

Key strategic factors behind the GPSP in Colombia include:

  • Support to the peace efforts in Colombia to advance Canada's objectives for enhanced security in the Andean region and the wider hemisphere. It also supports Canadian policy priorities of consolidating democratic gains and strengthening freedom, human rights, governance and rule of law in the Americas, and in Columbia in particular.
  • The GoC is committed to an increased multilateral engagement with Colombia, specifically through Canadian support to the Organization of America States (OAS). The OAS is the primary regional body and a key mechanism for strengthening democracy as well as supporting the peace verification process in Colombia.
  • The GoC has also focused on supporting peace and stability across the border between Ecuador and Colombia. These efforts are supported through two avenues: 1) contributions to the Mission of Good Offices in Colombia and Ecuador implemented by OAS (MIB/OEA) following the breakdown of diplomatic relations between Ecuador and Colombia in March 2008; and 2) support for the UN "Peace and Development Program in the Northern Border Zone of Ecuador" (PDP–NBZ), representing a "territorial approach to preventive deployment and conflict prevention for the UN system in a complex border area."

More specifically, and in line with the objectives and priorities of Canada's Americas strategy, the bulk of GPSF programming in Colombia has focused on three thematic areas.

  • Justice for Peace: The intent of this thematic area is to support the capacity of the Colombian justice system to address the legacy of the conflict. The process of holding perpetrators of atrocities and major human rights abuses to account has been deemed central to Colombia's ability to break the cycle of violence, consolidate improvement in security, combat impunity and to make the DDR process sustainable in the long term. GPSF support to this theme is directed to government entities charged with carrying out transitional justice programs and initiatives and non governmental organizations seeking to monitor and ensure the full application of available transition justice mechanisms. While engaging with several multilateral partnerships, GPSF focus on Justice for Peace also includes programs that are targeted towards justice for women, research on patterns of paramilitary activities, and the land rights claims of victims. As well support is provided to the Office for Reintegration and Transitional Justice (TJ) initiatives.
  • Rights of Victims: Decades of conflict in Colombia have resulted in thousands of fatalities and many more thousands of missing persons. GPSF programming seeks to assist in the location and identification of missing persons (including exhumation of missing persons) and to support reparations and reconciliation of victims of Colombia's civil strife. These measures are considered to be a crucial component in the process of healing and national reconciliation. Also crucial to the peace process is the need to establish redress mechanisms for the millions of displaced and dispossessed persons afflicted by the conflict. To this end, the GPSF has focused support to three institutions: the National Commission for Reparations and Reconciliation (NCRR), the National Movement for Victims (NMV) and Interdisciplinary Group for Forensic Work and Psycho–social Assistance (EQUITAS).
  • Security and Stability: This thematic area seeks to mitigate the growth of armed groups, and perpetuation of internal conflict occurring in the country stemming from its multitude of internally displaced persons and large population of landmine victims. To this end, the GPSF has focused on supporting the OAS led Mission to Support the Peace Process in Colombia (MAPP) which is charged with monitoring the public order and verifying the implementation of the peace process in Colombia's national territory, as well as political relations between Colombia and Ecuador (MIB).The GPSF also seeks to address the impact of the conflict on civilian populations through support to demining and the decommissioning of SALW.
Findings

The following summarizes the key findings from the case study on GPSF Programming in Colombia.

Finding 23:
GPSF programming in support of the Colombian justice system has increased the capacity of the institutions and achieved reasonable progress.

The GPSP early investment in support of the implementation of the Justice and Peace Law (JPL) processes has played a crucial role in setting up the institutional architecture governing the implementation of the law. The GPSP has invested in the inter–institutional process necessary to develop information systems supporting the incomplete national registry of victims under the leadership of the Fiscalia (Office of the Attorney General). Following are some of the achievements of GPSF:

  • GPSP support to the Attorney General and Ombudsman offices has contributed to improved victim outreach through the development and dissemination of information and communication materials and training workshops throughout the country. This has strengthened the capacities of lawyers and psychologists who provide legal and psychosocial assistance to victims.
  • Early initiatives of the National Commission for Reparations and Reconciliation (NCRR) supported by GPSF provided credibility to the “representatives of victims.” It has also supported the implementation of the first regional Commissions for Asset Restitution (RCAR) in Medellin and Sincelejo which have enhanced NCRR's capacity and credibility for the implementation of its reparation policies and programs. Also it helped representatives of victims to bring to NCRR the perspectives of civil society in regard to the themes and responsibilities of the Commission.
  • GPSF Support for civil society groups and local NGO's has enhanced their capacity to participate in the implementation of transitional justice through the development and dissemination of information and the production of a documentary related to exhumation process and increased the awareness of gender sensitive and child sensitive approaches for peace.

However, it was found that the achievements are highly dependant on the technical and financial assistance provided by international organizations. Given that the need far exceeds the capacity of recipient organizations, it is likely that they will continue to need such a support in the short to medium term.

Finding 24:
GPSF support to the “UN Basket Fund” and umbrella projects is innovative and, if effective, would strengthen the capacity of the institutions involved in the Colombian justice system. It can also foster the development of more integrated and comprehensive policies among Colombian institutions and agencies.

GPSF contributes to two UNDP administered multi–donors basket funds as well as other umbrella projects such as the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) Gender Justice for Women Victims of Sexual Violence. Funding available from two multi–donor “basket funds” will greatly facilitate the development of an integrated, comprehensive inter–institutional policy stance among Colombian institutions, agencies and civil society organizations.

GPSP investments in the Justice Fund (in conjunction with other donors) have positioned the Procuradoria (Inspector General's Office) to define a public policy on the theme of forced disappearances and human remains in public cemeteries. GPSP supported the Defensoria (Ombudsman's Office) which hired a number of lawyers to represent victims.

The Strategy and Programmatic Committees set up for the implementation of these Funds provided fora in which Colombian institutions, donors, the UN and other stakeholders, such as the Organization of American States (OAS), can discuss issues of common interest. The structure creates a unique space for dialogue and exchanges that feeds the work of the Inter–Institutional Committee for Justice and Peace. Although policy dialogue on very sensitive issues like reparations remains difficult, the "umbrella" project led by UNIFEM aims at inviting major civilian actors to come to agreements on such issues.

It was found that the expert knowledge and logistical capacities of the organizations have resulted in improving project results. In addition, through the mechanisms of consultative thematic tables, various institutions were able to develop common policies and operational guidelines and to align funding to immediate priorities.

Directing support to UNDP administered basket funds and umbrella projects are likely to become the main approach and interlocutor for major international donors in Colombia. However, it risks minimizing direct relationship with civil society organizations.

Finding 25:
GPSF support for the Mission to Support the Peace Process in Colombia (MAPP/OAS) is contributing to progress in the implementation of the Justice and Peace Law.

By continuing to monitor and report on the progress of the DDR process in Colombia, the MAPP office has had an impact on national institutions and agencies of the JPL. The MAPP is one of the primary monitors of the evolution of local and regional political and security developments. Its international nature allows Colombian state institutions to re–enter areas where the rule of law had been abandoned and to facilitate the implementation of the Justice and Peace Law processes.

Early GPSF funding allowed the Mission to hire technical staff and cover operational and overhead costs. Also, through GPSF funding, the Mission was able to implement a number of training programs and conduct public awareness and outreach campaigns. Later GPSF funding allowed the establishment of the MAPP–OAS office in Pasto reflecting a more regional focus for GPSF interventions.

The presence of the regional office has allowed better access to victims in conflict affected areas and enabled local government and non–governmental organizations (NGOs) to support the peace process. Most of the MAPP–OAS teams have gained the respect of local actors in the course of their local work and deployments. As international and neutral observers of the local and regional scene they are in a position to negotiate and facilitate travel and logistical support of the national actors in charge of the implementation of the JPL.

Finding 26:
GPSF investments in support of protection mechanisms and processes for the rights of victims have produced results.

GPSF has provided support to both emerging state institutions charged with implementing the JPL and to local associations and NGOs such as Project Counselling Service (PSC), the Iniciativa de Mujeres para la Paz (IMP), International Centre for Transitional Justice (ICTJ) and Advocats san Fronieres (ASF), involved in the provision of legal, judicial and psycho–social assistance to victims, displaced populations, women, children abused or affected by the conflict.

The support provided to these organizations has encouraged them to develop their mandate on a longer–term basis, take the lead on initiatives within their communities and increased their capacity to support the direct representation of victims in judicial processes. NGOs were able to perform the role of "watch dogs" around sensitive national issues such as the Administrative or Integral Reparations, land issues and return of IDPs.

GPSF funding to PSC have strengthened the capacity of victims and their communities in five departments in Colombia. This included providing legal assistance to 2,500 victims, capacity building to 1,000 victims and their families and the development and implementation of a framework for the protection and security of victims.

GPSF contributed to the organization of a National Convention regarding IDPs which increased awareness of the issues facing them and let the Constitutional Court to request that records of hearings be introduced in the process. In addition, through GPSF investments, supported organizations were able to:

  • Coordinate their efforts to ensure greater access to victims to transitional justice mechanisms and working with victims' representatives on legal issues;
  • Develop a map of all land and properties captured or seized illegally as the result of conflict;
  • Develop a network of 248 women organizations from 54 municipalities to present their cause and to be accompanied through the judicial system;
  • Provide honorariums and increased the financial autonomy of victims representatives; and
  • Support the national verification process and raise the awareness of the conditions of IDPs.

GPSF support helped Colombian organizations to reach out to victims. However, the ability to act on these rights is challenged with a lack of capacity on the part of civil society and national institutions and with the continued security threats particularly in the rural and remote areas. Another challenge is the lack of mechanism to provide legal and judicial reprise for victims while they wait for formal mechanisms which could affect the credibility of the institutions themselves.

Finding 27:
The Peace Development Program at the Northern Border of Ecuador (PDP–NBZ) has performed an important role in mitigating the risk of cross border conflict.

The UNDP Peace Development Program has provided a multifaceted, coordinated approach in the Peace and Development Programme in the Northern Border Zone of Ecuador (PDP–NBZ). Usually in efforts to build bi–national level cooperation, the impetus comes from the national level. But with the support of GPSF (GPSF 07–097), the NBZ was able to contribute by working at various local levels attempting to capitalize on the systems and infrastructure that existed before March 2008.

Through GPSP funding, groundwork has been laid to allow for better conflict prevention and humanitarian approaches and has strengthened the organizational capacities of civil society groups and authorities at the local and national levels throughout the border areas. In addition, promotion of bi–national dialogue around concrete developmental, environmental and socio–economic initiatives in the NBZ provides focused programming for conflict prevention in this border region.

Many initiatives (environmental, gender, integration of refugees, IDP conflict prevention and protection), have presented ideal small scale programs that can be supported by international donors. Supporting the Quick Response Fund (QRF) not only helps border communities to implement projects that build peace through community dialogue and consensus, it also is an example of how the GPSF, a fund for quick response to conflict, has been able to support the abilities for international agencies to implement 'quick response' mechanisms on an international institutional level.

In the area of preventative development, GPSF grants have funded the development of new strategies and methodologies for the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) Community–Based Protection and Integration, the beginning stage of the implementation of small arms and light weapons projects and the application of a 'quick response' fund to address contention in the Ecuadorian province of Sucumbios, where the cross border dynamic has directly resulted in overt conflict.

GPSF's investments on both sides of the border allows Canada to closely monitor the situation and respond quickly to issues that may arise ( these may include, renewed conflict, infiltration, increase of refugees, silent and rampant violence in Ecuador leading to further IDPs, land, environmental, natural resources conflicts, etc). The integrated "trans–border" approach developed by GPSF keeps a genuine focus on both national as well as trans–national issues.

The hiring of consultants to aid in the drafting and development of assessments, methodologies, position papers, as well as their constant field presence, has not only strengthened local organisations and women's groups, but may also lead to greater ownership on the part of local civil society for future projects and initiatives.

Several lessons learned have been gleaned from this project, primarily due to its novel approach to security and development, including the mainstreaming of conflict prevention, new approaches and methodologies (e.g., 'do no harm' and gender–based perspectives). The importance of program and funding flexibility was underscored given the nature of the environment that programs were operating in.

Finding 28:
The OAS Mission of Good Offices (MIB) has been less successful in achieving its intended outcomes, though support should continue due to the highly sensitive nature of the diplomatic relationship between Colombia and Ecuador.

The MIB/OAS mandate was to deploy a “bi–dimensional, interrelated and complementary strategy” relying, on the one hand, on an “operational prevention dimension” based on mechanisms that allow the rebuilding of trust between the governments of Colombia and Ecuador and, on the other hand, a “structural prevention dimension” based on the establishment or strengthening of cooperation mechanisms. The diplomatic nature of the MIB, and sensitivities associated therewith, impacts on the kind and amount of information disseminated to donors, as on the ability of donors to report on results.

A key challenge facing the MIB has been the uncertain commitment of both parties to the process. Indeed, dialogue between the two countries appears to have been mired in a disagreement on responsibility for the problems in the border zone. In January 2009, a verification mission, led by a personal representative of the OAS Secretary General, visited Colombia. A second mission was conducted in February 2009. Most of the activities undertaken during the verification mission were meetings that brought together officials from the two countries. The mission also met with NGOs, academics and retired military personnel and diplomats in Bogotá and Pasto (February 2009) and Quito, Ecuador (March 2009). Though host government officials were present at these sessions, representatives from across the border did not attend meetings outside their own countries – as such, the meetings did not facilitate direct dialogue between the two governments.

The observations of the verification mission found expression in a report that was submitted to the Secretary General in April 2009. This report not only summarized the results of meetings and visits carried out, but also proffered recommendations to strengthen trust and cross–border cooperation between the two countries. The Secretary General presented this report to both governments that same month and proposed the arrangement of a meeting with government authorities of Colombia and Ecuador at a time deemed convenient to both to review the conclusions and recommendations of the report with the view to normalizing relations between the two countries.

Additional meetings involving high ranking officials between Colombia and Ecuador have also taken place. Two regional conferences (September 2008 and February 2009) were held in order "to elaborate a public policy agenda for integration and cooperation in programs directed to social and economic development in the border region of Ecuador and Colombia." The impact of the MIB on Colombia and Ecuador, however, remains unclear. Further, it seems to be a subject of general ignorance about its expected achievements, modus operandi and political developments. At the field level, there was a lack of knowledge and information about MIB in general and any follow up initiatives put in place after the Verification Commission had been deployed in January 2009. Interlocutors interviewed for the evaluation were unable to provide any information about the Verification Commission or the substance of its report.

It was further noted that because of the lack interest on the part of the Colombian government, the opening of a MIB–OEA Bogotá office was not needed, which raises questions about the MIB budget and the range of activities envisaged for the project. This said, the MIB is and important initiative whose momentum should be maintained by conducting consultations and visits at the highest levels to promote dialogue.

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4.4.3 Case Study – Afghanistan

Context

Helping Afghanistan build a stable, democratic and self–sufficient society is a declared priority of the GoC. In 2002 Canada contributed 850 Canadian Forces (CF) personnel to Operation Enduring Freedom and currently maintains a contingent of CF personnel in the order of 2,750 as part of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF). In August 2005 Canada assumed responsibility for maintaining security in the province of Kandahar, including the multi–disciplinary Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) which brings together military, civilian, political, and development experts to help the Afghan government extend its authority and provide services to its citizens.(45)

Following the Tokyo Conference on Afghanistan Reconstruction, in January 2002, Afghanistan had become the single largest recipient of Canada bilateral aid. Canada's current commitment of CAD $1.9 billion until 2011 for development and reconstruction puts Canada among the top five donors in the country. Canada's bilateral assistance to Afghanistan is designed to support the implementation of the Afghanistan Compact, which was launched in January 2006, and the Afghan National Development Strategy (ANDS), which was finalized in 2008.

Canada's engagement strategy in Afghanistan is premised on the concept that no single government entity has either the requisite legislative authority or competence to address the challenges of restoring stability to a fragile state, thus calling on the combined and coordinated efforts of a plurality of state actors in a "whole of government" effort. Historically, the principal GoC actors in Afghanistan have included DFAIT, DND, the RCMP, CIDA, and CSC, though OGDs, such as the Department of Justice and the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA), are expected to join in this effort.

In the interest of supporting coordination and greater policy coherence among Canada's varied actors in Afghanistan, in 2006 the GoC created a new Task Force on Afghanistan (FTAG) under the authority of the Minister of DFAIT. FTAG is responsible for policy direction, policy coherence and coordination of programming in Afghanistan, the Embassy in Kabul, the Kandahar Air Field (KAF) and the Kandahar Provincial Reconstruction Team (KPRT).(46) Following the submission to Parliament of a report from an Independent Panel on Canada's future role in Afghanistan, the GoC established a "Cabinet Committee on Afghanistan," housed in the Office of the Prime Minister, as well as an Afghanistan Task Force within the PCO.

On March 13, 2008, the House of Commons supported a Motion calling for an increased emphasis on those areas which would enable transition from a military to a development and diplomatic emphasis by 2011. To this end, in May 2008 the GoC approved CAD $857 million for three years (FY 2008–2009 and FY 2010–2011) for programming in Afghanistan (CIDA – CAD $633 million and DFAIT – CAD $224 million).

On June 10, 2008 the GoC published Canada's Engagement in Afghanistan – Setting a Course to 2011. This document identified six priorities and three signature projects that the GoC would implement in Afghanistan between 2008 and 2011 to bring measurable improvement to the lives of Afghans, and in particular to residents of Kandahar province.

These six priorities are:

  • Enable the Afghan National Security Forces [ANSF] in Kandahar to sustain a more secure environment and promote law and order;
  • Strengthen Afghan institutional capacity to deliver core services and promote economic growth, enhancing the confidence of Kandaharis in their government;
  • Provide humanitarian assistance for vulnerable populations, including refugees, returnees and internally displaced persons;
  • Enhance Pakistan–Afghanistan bilateral dialogue and cross border security;
  • Help advance Afghanistan's capacity for democratic governance by contributing to effective, accountable public institutions and electoral processes; and
  • Facilitate Afghan–led efforts towards political reconciliation.

The GPSF Envelope Concept Paper for Afghanistan (2008–2009) retains the five priorities articulated in the Concept Paper of 2007–2008, but elaborates on these through six "strategic outcomes" which are as follows:

  • Increase capacity of the Afghan National Police (ANP) to promote law and order in key districts of Kandahar Province.
  • Increase capacity of and access to the justice system in key districts, with a focus on Kandahar.
  • Increased capacity of the corrections system to help bring prisons and detention centres closer to international standards and, inter alia, ensure the appropriate treatment of prisoners and detainees, with a focus on Kandahar.
  • Strengthen border management and dialogue between Pakistan and Afghanistan.
  • Strengthen planning, programming and resourcing capacities among key national institutions.
Findings

The following summarizes the key findings from the case study on GPSF Programming in Afghanistan.

Finding 29:
GPSF has demonstrated programming leadership in three of the four sectors examined in the case study.

The evaluation found that GPSF has exhibited programming leadership in three of the four sectors of intervention examined in the case study, notably police, corrections and borders.

In the policing sector, GPSF supported expert deployments to the Afghan Ministry of the Interior (MOI), which is responsible for policing in the country, that are making important contributions to institutional reform including assisting in the development of a Code of Ethics for police conduct and the establishment of an Anti–Corruption Unit within the Prosecutors Office (MOI) to investigate allegations of police wrong–doing. In a country where the reputation of the police has been tarnished by reports of endemic corruption and abuse of authority, these interventions, spearheaded by Canada, stand to have an important impact on restoring public confidence in the police.

Canada has also taken the lead in police reform in Kandahar, evidenced by development of a police reform strategy for the province which has been officially approved by the Minister of the MOI.(47) Canadian police officers deployed to the province, with support from the GPSF, have taken the lead in curriculum development and training with a civilian policing orientation.(48) The GPSF has also demonstrated leadership in the institution of a literacy program for police officers in Kandahar – an initiative that has garnered much attention and applause from both Afghan national and international stakeholders. Finally, Canadian Civilian Police (CIVPOL) officers deployed to Kandahar were, at the time of writing, the only CIVPOL officers regularly mentoring ANP officers on mounted and dismounted patrols.

In the corrections sector, the GPSF has taken the lead in supporting the rehabilitation of Kandahar's premier correction facility – Sarpoza Prison. Despite several insurgent attacks on the facility, one which led to significant loss of life and damage to property, the facility is on track to becoming a model prison within the country, fully compliant with international building standards. Support to the physical infrastructure of the facility is supplemented by the provision of equipment which contributes to operational effectiveness. Canadian corrections officers deployed to Kandahar, again with GPSF support, have taken the lead in correction officer training and mentoring. In the area of training, modifications to the training curricula undertaken by Canadian corrections officers deployed to the province has led to changes to the national training curricula. Finally, it warrants mention that it was a result of Canadian lobbying at the Steering Committee of the Law and Order Trust Fund for Afghanistan (LOTFA) that led to the inclusion of corrections officers among those entitled to salary support under that fund, an initiative that has contributed to the stabilization of the corrections workforce in Kandahar.(49)

Although GPSF support to the borders sector can be characterized as light, Canadian leadership in launching the Dubai Process, which brought together senior officials from the governments of Afghanistan and Pakistan to discuss opportunities for cooperation relating to customs, counter–narcotics, migrations, law enforcement, and socio–economic development, constitutes a major achievement considering the history of suspicion and acrimony that has distinguished bilateral relations between the governments of these two countries. The Dubai Process has proven to be durable, surviving several diplomatic shocks which could have easily derailed the initiative.

Finding 30:
The GPSF has demonstrated modest success in achieving intermediate outcomes within the four sectors examined in the case study.

The following describes some of the key achievements of the GPSF program in Afghanistan.

Police Sector
  • GPSF support to the ANP in the form of training and mentoring has contributed, and continues to contribute, to a more robust capacity to provide policing services to the citizens of Kandahar in a manner consistent with Canadian and international policing standards. At the time of writing, roughly 35% of the provincial Tashkil had received training and approximately 18% of ANP police units were reported to be capable of conducting basic law and order operations independently.
  • Services provided by Canadian advisors cum mentors, deployed indirectly through the CPA or directly through the GPSF, are beginning to demonstrate their value in advancing police reform in Afghanistan, evidenced by development of a police reform strategy for Kandahar, the establishment of Code of Ethics for police and the establishment of a Anti–Corruption Unit within the MoI.
  • Salary support via LOTFA to the ANP at this juncture is indispensable to the international effort to bring law and order to Afghanistan. Therefore the GPSF is contributing to a gradual improvement in law and order – an intermediate to long term desired outcome of the Canadian program. At the time of writing, close to 90% of police officers entitled to salary support were reported to be receiving their salary.
Justice Sector
  • GPSF support to the Public Legal Awareness Unit of the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has resulted in the development of training materials for public legal awareness, covering such areas as: introduction to legal institutions, women's rights, violations of women's rights, women's social problems, child rights, violation of child rights, procedures for resolving land disputes, the rights of displaced persons and returnees.
  • GPSF support to the rehabilitation of justice infrastructure, including the provision of equipment, is laying the foundation for a functioning justice system in Kandahar city though the sustainability of these investments will depend on operational support furnished by the GoA.
  • GPSF support to enhancing the professionalism of justice sector personnel through training and mentoring has been largely ad hoc, particularly at the provincial level, however recent efforts at the national level including training provided to personnel within the Translation and Publication Unit within the Supreme Court and MoJ's Legislative Drafting Unit are contributing to institutional reform and improved professionalism of staff.
Prison Sector
  • Training and mentoring services provided to corrections officers and staff at Sarpoza prison by CSC deployments has contributed to an enhanced level of professionalism and improved their operational effectiveness. At the time of writing, virtually all the corrections officers at Sarpoza Prison had received basic training and 50% had received advanced training.
  • GPSF assistance has led to a vastly improved facility in Sarpoza Prison. Although Sarpoza Prison remains a work in progress, an important outcome of the GPSF support is that the prison is on track to becoming a model facility within the country, fully compliant with both national and international standards.
Borders Sector
  • GPSF support to the Dubai Process has led to the development of an action plan which clearly defines priorities with respect to customs, counter–narcotics, migration, law enforcement, and social and economic development for border communities, but also steps to be taken by the parties to achieve declared objectives and timelines for doing so.
Finding 31:
START's decision to devolve programming and funding authority to the field has greatly enhanced the GPSF ability to respond to emerging stabilization needs in a timely fashion.

In the unique and highly volatile programming environment that is Afghanistan, having personnel on the ground with the authority to identify, design, fund and monitor initiatives has generated significant dividends for GPSF. For example, urgent repairs to facilities and equipment following insurgent attacks, such as what occurred at Sarpoza Prison and the Dand District Centre, could not have happened were it not for the personnel in the field able to access funds to respond to such emergencies. GPSF personnel noted that the delegation of authority to the field must be matched with availability of funds and also the deployment of staff with suitable programming experience for this delegation to work effectively.

Finding 32:
START has, through the GPSF, contributed to enhanced inter–departmental and donor coordination.

START, through its officers and deployments in the field, participates in virtually all of the bodies charged with both GoC interdepartmental as well as donor coordination. Beyond simple participation, START has, in many instances, actively promoted donor coordination. For example, START can claim in Kandahar and in particular through the KPRT, to have made a very tangible and durable contribution towards donor coordination. START was instrumental in establishing the SyncBoard at the KPRT which now includes not just Canadian OGDs, but representation from various departments in the U.S. government engaged in Kandahar. The SyncBoard has proven very effective in minimizing the risk of duplication of effort, particularly with respect to police infrastructure projects, and is opening up new opportunities for intra–donor cooperation which bodes well for future programming in Kandahar.

Other mechanisms that have been in place to ensure Canadian interdepartmental coordination and policy coherence include FTAG which also performs an extra departmental coordinating function, bringing together relevant GoC stakeholders in forums referred to as Communities of Practice (COPs) that are loosely organized around the GoC priorities. The COPs, which convene regularly, provide GoC stakeholders with a forum to obtain updates on developments on the ground, share information of common interest, review and comment on new initiatives, and assemble progress data for the quarterly benchmark reports.

At the KPRT, several new initiatives have been launched to support whole of government coherence and coordination, including: the creation of a KPRT Executive Committee that is co–chaired by DND and DFAIT and which is charged with providing guidance on priorities; the establishment of an Integrated Planning Team to support combined military/civilian operations (Stabilization Teams);(50) and the setting up of a Synchronization Board to review project proposals advanced by stakeholders represented at the KPRT. These mechanisms collectively facilitate programming coherence and coordination.


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5.0 Efficiency and Economy

5.1 Governance

Finding 33:
The management structure for the GPSF has been reconfigured under ReSTART to clarify and strengthen accountability.

The Formative Evaluation of the GPSF (2008) reported that at the GPSF program and sub–program levels, and to a lesser extent at the envelope and project levels, accountabilities were not clear. Many interlocutors at that time characterized START as a 'shared accountability model', though it was noted that for the most part accountability arrangements were assumed rather than formalized within START.

As a result of the program reviews and evaluations, START initiated in 2008 the process of re–organization called Re–START. The intention of this re–organization is to separate policy and programming functions, to strengthen aspects of program delivery, as well as to streamline project review and approval processes, and clarify accountability through the institution of four divisions.

Re–START was approved in principle in November 2008. The new structure is intended to implement new business processes and produce a clearer vision of START. As of the time of writing, this reorganization was essentially complete and implementation began in November 2009. Under the new organizational structure, one DD is charged with programming in a specific region who in turn reports to the Director of the Stabilization and Reconstruction Programs Division (IRG), thereby simplifying and strengthening accountability for programming in country.

Accountability for policy, and notwithstanding ReSTART, remains shared. Although the Peace Operations and Fragile States Policy Division (IRP) has nominal responsibility for fragile state policy development, IRG, which is charged with programming within specific theatres of intervention, also envisages for itself a policy development role. How this division of labour and related accountabilities with respect to policy development actually plays out remains to be seen.

Finding 34:
The interdepartmental committees and the SAB have yet to fully fulfil their declared mandates.

The DM and ADM committees were established essentially to support policy and programming coherence between START and CIDA and to avoid duplication in common countries and thematic areas of engagement while ostensibly also performing an advisory role.(51) Both committees are reported to have not convened with the frequency stipulated in their respective terms of references. Nor is there much evidence, apart from endorsing the report Sustaining Canada's Engagement, of either committees providing policy, operational direction or advice to START or CIDA. As regards policy and programming coherence, this is in practice, as discussed later in this report, given effect through other bodies at other levels of governance.

While there is a need for senior management involvement to support fragile state engagement, which affirms the relevance of a committee at the DM or ADM levels, it is important to recognise the growing contributions of GoC departments and agencies, other than DFAIT and CIDA, in Canada's engagements in fragile states thereby requiring a body that is more inclusive of OGDs.

As regards the SAB, its mandate was, and remains today, to:

  • establish a whole–of–government strategic policy, priority–setting and direction with respect to failed and fragile states and complex emergencies within the framework of individual departmental authorities;
  • undertaking regular (i.e., annual or more frequent) assessments of progress toward the milestones and exit strategies defined in specific integrated country strategies, along with the potential for reallocation of resources in line with the pace of events and opportunities presented by competing crises and priorities; and
  • provide information exchange on program–related activities to ensure complementarities and avoid duplication, while encouraging the formation of country task forces at the operational level as required.

The Formative Evaluation of the GPSF (2008) remarked that the SAB had, at that time, performed few of the roles mentioned above. Since then, the SAB has had its Terms of Reference revised, the key elements of which are as follows:

  • To ensure policy coherence between departments with international mandates concerned with crisis and fragile states;
  • To endorse strategic policy objectives for whole–of–government response and engagement in crisis and fragile states including the review and approval of GPSF Country Strategic Planning Frameworks;
  • To provide a forum for structured consultations on priority setting including the review of the Fragile States Prioritization Exercise recommendations, policy development, strategic outcomes, planning, information exchange and sharing of lessons learned and best practices;
  • To assess progress and results achieved in crisis and fragile states by CIDA, START and partners receiving GPSF resources;
  • To assess overlap of activities and raise these (if any) with Interdepartmental ADM Committee; and
  • To issue semi–annual reports to the Interdepartmental ADM Committee on START policy advocacy and coordination activities and START/CIDA activities in crisis and fragile states, and those of its partners that it funds.

Although the SAB is reported to meet more frequently than it did before and OGD representatives on the Board confirmed that meetings are now more structured, the Evaluation Team found little evidence that the SAB, apart from providing a forum for information sharing, was fulfilling the activities documented in its revised Terms of Reference. Indeed, OGD representatives consulted for this evaluation conveyed a certain measure of frustration with respect to their input in strategic decision–making on the use of the GPSF, often remarking that decisions are made and presented before the Board as a fait accompli with an invitation to Board members to merely comment.

This frustration likely stems from a misapprehension regarding the role of Board members in the consultation process as well as a failure to appreciate that DFAIT, as the custodian of the GPSF, is ultimately accountable for its use in any given theatre of intervention. This said there is obviously a great deal of room for improvement if the SAB is to fulfill its declared mandate.

Finding 35:
Roles and responsibilities between START and other divisions within DFAIT have been refined and clarified.

The Formative Evaluation of the GPSF (2008) noted that the roles and responsibilities between START and its other departmental partners were unclear and recommended that DFAIT, in association with relevant stakeholders, should document the division of responsibilities between START and the Bilateral Relations Branch/Country Task Forces; the other GPSF governance bodies; and the functional divisions drawing on the GPSF.

In response to the foregoing, START commissioned an organizational review of START and its roles and responsibilities vis–à–vis other Divisions within DFAIT entitled START: A Review of Organization and Mandate (hereinafter, the Sussex Circle Report) which was completed in February 2009. The study corroborated the observations of the Formative Evaluation, remarking that there was a “long standing dynamic tension between the geographic and function branches and the ongoing argument as to who should lead on which files.”

This evaluation found that while there were sometimes tensions between geographic desks (especially associated with the task forces) and START in the past, this has largely dissipated with geographic desks more willing to accept START's programming leadership role. This evaluation also confirms that specific roles and responsibilities of START versus the geographics have been clarified and formally documented.

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5.2 Planning

Finding 36:
The early Terms and Conditions applied to the GPSF encumbered the ability of START to engage in strategic planning. Authorities acquired since 2008 have helped to address this issue.

Since the inception of the GPSF in 2005, its application has been closely controlled by government (in terms of authorizing countries for major interventions), and by TBS, in terms of the operating T&Cs. As remarked in the Formative Evaluation (2008) early T&Cs applied to the GPSF constrained the ability of START to entertain multi–year investments that are necessary for institutional capacity building initiatives. Furthermore, delays in TBS approvals resulted in reduced windows for programming (often as little as six months to design, approve and implement projects) which concentrated spending in the last two quarters of the fiscal year. Such narrow implementation windows severely undermined the capacity of START to engage in strategic planning.

It was not until 2008, almost three years into the life of the GPSF, that funds held in trust by TBS were unfrozen. This TBS Letter of Decision also granted multi–year authority to GPSF's project–based programming, heretofore limited to single FYs, and established new funding parameters for FY 2008–2009 through FY 2012–2013. These new authorities have significantly expanded the space for START to develop its planning capacity.

Finding 37:
Planning instruments developed and employed by START for GPOP, GBP, and the GPSP have improved significantly over the last few years, though there is a lack of a strategic approach at the sector level.

GPSF planning procedures are documented in its SOPs. Planning frameworks are somewhat different for each of the sub–programs.

GPOP is a sub–program with both a directive and responsive capacity. As remarked in the case studies the sub–program concept papers, the sub–program's primary planning instrument, has undergone significant modifications in both form and content, culminating in the adoption of a new multi–year framework. These modifications reflect the lessons learned (both strategic and operational) from each successive year of programming, adjustments to align programming with GoC priorities, including gender and environmental considerations, the impact and opportunities presented by changes to the GPSF's enabling authorities and the interpretation and application of TB policies, as well as an earnest commitment to adhere to risk and results based management principles.

Planning for the GBP has in the past, and remains today, thematic in orientation. Changes to the thematic concept papers and now thematic multi–year frameworks also reflect lessons learned from the past (again both operational and strategic), adjustments in programming to align with GoC priorities, the impact and opportunities presented by changes to the GPSF's enabling authorities (notably multi–year funding authority), and a concerted effort to apply risk and results based management principles to programming. Another innovation in the new multi–year planning framework is the adoption of benchmarks to measure progress towards the achievement of declared objectives.

Whereas GPOP organizes its planning primarily around institutions and the GBP around themes, the GPSP conducts its planning within the framework of country strategies. As remarked in the country case studies, these strategies, formally called country concept papers, have evolved significantly over the years in both form and content. From what were once documents made up of an inventory of projects organized loosely around a set of vaguely defined goals, the multi–year country strategies of today approximate bone fide and robust strategic planning instruments.

Innovations in the country concept papers, now called multi–year strategic frameworks, include an articulation of strategic outcomes relating to declared priorities, a description of partners (Canadian and other) involved in program delivery, a section on lessons learned, a section on resource implications, and the inclusion of a risk and results–based management framework. One gap observed by the Evaluation Team in these frameworks was the absence of any discussion of the interface between GPSP programming and that of GPOP and GBP programming which, though not specifically country focused, may nonetheless impact on overall performance and the achievement of country level objectives.

Another recent innovation that is finding its way in the country level multi–year frameworks is the adoption of benchmarks. Benchmarks were first employed in the context of Afghanistan, and although those benchmarks could benefit from some design modifications – see Afghan case study – they are a very useful tool that supports effective planning, performance monitoring, and results reporting. Benchmarks also, by setting clear and measurable targets tied to outcomes, provide a framework for eventual disengagement – in other words an exit strategy. The use of benchmarks is a best practice and their recent adoption in other countries, notably Colombia, is a measure of the maturity of START's country level planning instruments.

Notwithstanding the above, the Evaluation Team observed that strategic planning at the sector level within select theatres of intervention, notably Afghanistan and Sudan, was weak.(52) As remarked in the Afghan case study, programming in the police, justice and border sectors have, to varying degrees, been frustrated by the absence of clear strategies of engagement for each. In the area of policing, for example, only recently has a strategy been developed for police reform in Kandahar.(53) In the area of justice reform, the self reported scattered and ad hoc nature of programming in this sector led to the development of a justice sector strategy, again only in the last few months.(54) While a strategy for the corrections sector is arguably unnecessary, given that programming is primarily focused on one institution in Kandahar, START has yet to develop a strategy of engagement for borders, though the Action Plan developed out of the Dubai Process approximates a strategy.(55)

In Sudan the Evaluation Team found that an important weakness in the current country strategy was the lack of a multi–year sectoral strategy that identifies key players, objectives and comparative advantages in a particular sector, the links among various departmental programs, and an exit strategy. The Sudan case study reported that the sectoral strategy should be based on common analyses (by all OGDs as well as DFAIT, working in the country) and should include an agreed upon sector–specific logic model and performance measurement and accountability plan. This document should clarify the cause–effect relationship between various interventions and the contribution of various programs to Canada's objectives. Having this strategy would facilitate synergies and synthesis of various activities and outputs. In addition, it would help in identifying key gaps in programming areas and the role of each department in supporting Canadian responses as well as ensure a comprehensive reporting.

Finding 38:
START capacity to plan and respond to emerging crises has in the past been sub–optimal: a deficit though that is currently being addressed by ReSTART.

As remarked in the Formative Evaluation of the GPSF (2008), START's institutional capacity to respond to natural disasters was robust then, and this evaluation confirms that this capacity remains robust today, though there are issues around the Crisis Reserve whose coffers are reported to have been depleted significantly – see section on resource mobilization. The Formative Evaluation of the GPSF (2008), however, also remarked that START's institutional capacity to plan for and respond to emerging crises was weak for a variety of reasons, one being insufficient in–house capacity to conduct environmental scanning and another being the absence of structures and procedures in place to coordinate the collection and analysis of intelligence to support policy decisions and planning for fragile state engagements.

START recognized these institutional deficits and, with ReSTART, has taken measures to address them. The creation of a cadre of staff dedicated to research and policy development within IRP is intended, among other things, to strengthen START's capacity to perform targeted analysis of crises.(56) In aid thereof, the report Sustaining Canada's Engagement remarked on the need for START to adopt a structured analytic tool akin to the “Assessing State Stability” instrument developed by PCO in conjunction with its US, UK and Australian counterparts. The report Sustaining Canada's Engagement further remarked on the need to capitalize on the intelligence and unique competencies of OGDs in this process in order to support efficient and effective planning.(57)

The Formative Evaluation of the GPSF (2008) also remarked on the need to develop SOPs for whole–of–government assessment missions to support strategic planning for prospective country engagements. The report Sustaining Canada's Engagement likewise remarks on the need for a structured approach to assessment missions, but goes on to entertain the prospect of including the expertise and competencies of personnel in the NGO and private sectors on such missions. Drawing on the competencies of the NGO and private sectors for assessment missions, however, would require a roster or network of pre–cleared personnel which currently does not exist.

Finding 39:
A strong field presence supports effective planning.

The evaluations undertaken in Haiti, Sudan, Colombia and Afghanistan found that deployments of regional officers had contributed to more effective strategic planning. This is to be expected, because having a strong presence on the ground in fragile states provides an important mechanism for keeping abreast of the fast changing situation, as well as for coordination with the local government and other donors. The report Sustaining Canada's Engagement states that:

Working with implementing partners to make any necessary course corrections requires competent, empowered and significant field–based Government of Canada capacity: in many ways, headquarters is too far away and will often not have enough information to intervene effectively. Managers in the field must be empowered to act since the Government cannot operate effectively unless adjustments are made in shorter cycles.(58)

As reported in the Afghan case study, the decision to empower personnel on the ground with the authority to identify, design, fund and monitor initiatives has generated significant dividends for START. It is acknowledged that such a deployment of START personnel may not be feasible in all theatres of intervention, but where deployment of adequate personnel and logistics support can be justified, it can significantly contribute to more informed and better decision making.

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5.3 Resource Mobilization

Finding 40:
START has developed instruments to support whole–of–government resource mobilization that have proven effective, though institution capacity building remains a challenge.

START, through the GPSF, has had to develop instruments to ensure that OGD resources can be mobilized as needed. Examples include the CPA, the MoU with DND covering Afghanistan, a MoU with the CCC covering material and service procurements for overseas GPSF projects, and project specific MoUs with OGDs. These instruments have undergone periodic review and have been updated to improve their effectiveness. The CPA in particular, which has been funded specifically under the GPSF, has been particularly effective in ensuring a standing source of funds for CIVPOL deployments. The CCC MoU has also proven to be very effective.

Afghanistan provides a good example of the application of a range of instruments to support resource mobilization.

  • The CPA was developed to effect whole–of–government resource mobilization to support Canadian peace missions abroad. Under this arrangement the GPSF covers the incremental costs of deploying CIVPOL officers in select theatres of operation. Although originally designed to facilitate the deployment of Canadian CIVPOLs to U.N. backed peacekeeping missions, it has been relied on extensively to facilitate the deployment of Canadian CIVPOLs in support of Canada's mission in Afghanistan. The CPA is subject to regular reviews and, over the years, has undergone some refinements in order to enhance its effectiveness.(59)
  • START also entered into an arrangement with DND in 2007 that provides a framework for close cooperation between DND and DFAIT and which moreover facilitates the disbursement of funds to the former for services rendered to the latter. The arrangement has worked extremely well for START. Indeed, without the cooperation and support of DND capacities in such areas as engineering, logistics, contracts, and financial and material management, to say nothing of the force protection offered to civilians working in the field, START could not have hoped to have accomplished what it has managed to accomplish to date in Kandahar. Though the current MoU with DND is specific to Afghanistan, a similar arrangement could be applied in other theatres of intense GoC engagement.(60)
  • START also forged a MoU in 2007 with the CCC, a federal Crown corporation with expertise in procurement and contracting. The CCC has over the years become a major partner in the implementation of many GPSF initiatives across the globe and, as discussed in this case study, a significant implementing partner in Afghanistan. Like other arrangements START has with Canadian partners, the MoU with the CCC has undergone regular review, resulting in refinements to the document. Discussions with representatives from START and the CCC confirmed a high degree of satisfaction with the arrangement now in place, though the latter conveyed to the Evaluation Team a need for greater flexibility in the issuance of advanced payments and the need for more lead time in the issuance of Task Requests.

Departments that do not have international mandates (including operational and administrative funding) are often in need of the GPSF to support their participation in fragile state engagements. Given the GPSF's significant involvement in SSR, which encompasses police, justice and corrections, the expertise of Canada's police, justice and corrections institutions can be expected to be called upon wherever the GPSF is supporting SSR. While CPA currently supports a standing capacity within the RCMP to deploy police officers on overseas missions, there is no equivalent in place to support a standing capacity within other OGDs and agencies to participate on such missions.

Developing and sustaining such a capacity is frustrated by several factors. The overhead cost of supporting civilian deployments overseas is high, particularly in conflict zones such as Afghanistan.(61) Absent A–Base funding for overseas deployments, which is the case for OGDs without an international mandate, OGDs rely on funds made available through the GPSF to support their overseas operations on a project specific basis but there are financial limitations on how much money can be allocated for overhead on any given project. This has been a particular problem for CSC which must maintain a cadre of staff at headquarters to support corrections officers deployed overseas. Moreover, because funds available through the GPSF to support OGD overseas deployments are drawn from Vote 1 (operational budget), which is subject to limitations set by TBS, this makes START's overhead costs appear inordinately high.

The report Sustaining Canada's Engagement acknowledges this issue stating that: “there is a need to ensure that departments with primarily domestic mandates can participate fully when required” and recommends the development of “provisions to facilitate the international engagement of primarily domestic departments with specific provisions for financing, through formal interagency agreements and/or by activating departmental mandates by changes to Program Activity Architectures (PAA), spelling out their international activities.”(62) This evaluation supports this recommendation.

Finding 41:
Although START has made prudent use of non–governmental entities, capitalizing on these competencies remain frustrated by several factors.

One of the ultimate goals of the GPSF is to “improve Canadian contributions to peace and security” and this includes not only developing and tapping the resources and competencies of OGDs, but also the resources and competencies in the NGO sector. The GBP relies extensively on partners in the NGO sector to deliver on its mandate. GPOP and the GPSP have also relied extensively on the services of several Canadian quasi–governmental organizations (e.g., CCC) and NGOs (e.g., PPC and CANADEM) to support GPSF projects. These organizations bring to START capacities beyond those within DFAIT and indeed many OGDs. They have also demonstrated an ability to deliver on certain initiatives with a high degree of efficiency and economy.

Capitalizing on the strengths of its NGO partners, however, has been encumbered by the inability of START to provide core funding to some key partners.(63) For example, despite a positive assessment of the contribution of the Canadian Consortium on Human Security (CCHS) to advancing Canadian research capacity on human security issues and which moreover recommended continued GPSF support to the CCHS, its funding was terminated for lack of authority to provide core funding. The lack of core funding authority has also frustrated the sustained development of the capacity of other key partners like the PPC and CANADEM, both of which are subject to annual expenditure caps that can only be exceeded by Ministerial approval.

Given the important role that these NGOs perform in supporting the realization of the GPSF's mandate, and the fact that the provision of core funding to NGOs is not without precedent in the GoC, such an authority for the GPSF within specified boundaries would not be unreasonable.(64)

Finding 42:
In the past START did not have the requisite infrastructure in place to effectively support civilian deployments, though ReSTART is addressing this deficit.

As remarked earlier in this report, civilian deployments have played and will continue to play a major role in START's engagement strategies in fragile states. The preceding findings note that START has made considerable progress in developing and instituting mechanisms to support civilian deployments, both from within and outside government, for overseas missions, though the goal of having a standing capacity of civilian experts across government and the non–governmental sector specifically trained to work in fragile state environments remains out of reach.

Cognizant of the critical role civilian deployments perform in fragile states, and the remaining institutional challenges to capitalizing on their expertise, including pre–deployment training, START created a new division under ReSTART specifically dedicated to supporting and managing whole–of–government expert civilian deployments. Though too early in implementation to report on the performance of this Division, its creation is a positive and welcome development.

Finding 43:
Although the GPSF has demonstrated an ability to respond rapidly compared to other GoC funding instruments, challenges remain in mobilizing resources at a speed commensurate with need.

Compared to other GoC funding instruments, the GPSF has demonstrated its value as a rapid response tool, particularly in response to immediate crises. This said START's ability to respond to new and emerging crises is placed in jeopardy by constant demands on the Crisis Reserve, whose coffers have been significantly depleted. If the Crisis Reserve, currently pegged at CAD $15 million per annum at the time of writing, is used to support initiatives aligned with its intended purpose, then draw–downs on the Reserve are to be expected. However, the Evaluation Team was advised that funds available in the Reserve have been used to finance initiatives in support of shifting GoC priorities which, though important, may not strictly qualify as crises of the kind originally envisaged for the Reserve. If true, then there is a need to tighten the criteria for accessing the Reserve.

Past evaluations of the GPSF, and confirmed in this evaluation, remarked on delays in the project approval and disbursement processes. For example, GBP project proponents reported that due to a gap between when the collaboration with recipient organizations begins and when funds are actually made available, many projects must be completed within significantly shortened timeframes. Since recipient organizations are generally not allowed to backdate expenses prior to Contribution Agreement (CA) signing, this often shortened what would have been a 12 month project into fewer than 6 months in which to complete all activities and spend all funds allotted.

Beneficiaries of GPSP funding also noted delays in funding approvals and disbursements. For example in Sudan, some project proponents reported experiencing long delays in the approval process and disbursement of resources. The UNDP governance and rule of law project in the south of Sudan is a case in point. This project experienced two years of delay in the approval process.

The UNDP officers interviewed remarked that START was concerned with the high level of overhead. START staff referred to: the lack of a CA template with the UN;(65) and a lack of clarity from UNDP in terms of what elements of the project needed to be updated as well as getting project documents from the UNDP (proposal, RBPF and budget). This took several months until it reached an impasse. The GPSF representative in the field played a significant role in resolving the impasse.(66)

Another project that experienced delay was the Pearson Peacekeeping Centre (PPC) UNAMID training. START staff indicated that the delay was the result of; the limit of authority level to sign a CA with PPC; delay in reaching a decision with the S–Branch and the necessity to seek authorization using the Minister's extraordinary authority to spend above the limit. From the PPC perspective, while understanding the situation, this resulted in a delay in implementation, the need to deliver training materials in a compressed timeframe, possibly incurring higher contracting cost for needed local services (renting facilities, IT support, catering, etc).

Similarly, in Colombia many NGO partners reported delays in terms of negotiation, approval and signature requirements. However, a more significant concern of partners was the disbursement process. While the processing of payments is outside of START's control, delays between the signing of the CA and the moment the funds are deposited in the bank have on occasion created serious cash management problems for partners. In 2008, START developed a policy on cash management to address this issue, though its elements have yet to be formally acknowledged in the GPSF's T&Cs.

Delays in project approval and disbursement can occur for a variety of reasons, some avoidable and some not. The GPSF Formative Evaluation (2008) remarked that the project screening system then in effect, composed of the PDM and PPC, was cumbersome and unnecessarily prolonged project review and approval by encouraging repeat returns to committee on matters which ought to have been addressed prior to submission. It should be noted that many of the examples of delays cited above date back to that time, and to a time when the GPSF did not possess some of the funding authorities it now enjoys.

Under ReSTART the entire project review system has been overhauled with the view to streamlining processes and expediting decision making. Again, it is too early to remark on the performance of this new system, but the system in design does, in the view of the Evaluation Team, appear to address many of the concerns raised in previous evaluations and audits. How to expedite the project approval for GBP projects, which generally have a low dollar value and are implemented within narrow time frames, however, remains a challenge. Addressing this challenge may call for an abridged project approval mechanism.

Finding 44:
Where circumstances warrant, delegated authority to field level staff to review and approve project funding can greatly enhance the responsiveness of GPSF interventions.

As alluded to in Finding 40, and reported in all of the countries examined for this evaluation, including Haiti, a strong field presence supports efficient and effective project planning which can reduce the time required to process funding applications. In many instances project proposals from local proponents are held up or returned for reason of having not been filled out properly. Having a START representative in the field to assist proponents in filling out their proposals can significantly mitigate this risk.

Response times can further be shortened where START field representatives are authorized, within limits, to approve small–scale initiatives. Although CIDA has used such locally managed funds for years, START first experimented with this approach in Afghanistan through institution of the Kandahar Initiative for Peace and Security (KIPS), a fund designed to support small–scale projects with a notional budget of CAD $1 million per annum.

There are merits to having a locally managed fund. Time required to review and approve project proposals is significantly reduced as well as the time required to respond to urgent funding requests. Access to a locally managed fund may also support innovation by allowing personnel close to the ground to pilot different projects and test different partners which might otherwise not be supported for reason of the risks associated with the unknown, risks which would be mitigated by the small size of the investments.

Clearly greater decentralization of program authorities and delivery would not be appropriate everywhere and would require better financial control mechanisms and management accountabilities, as well as the capacity to monitor progress and verify results achieved, but in countries involving a high level of GoC engagement, it is an option that ought to be given serious consideration.

Finding 45:
GPSF has demonstrated the capacity to leverage the resources of other donors and partners.

Leveraging the support of other donors and partners is an important outcome of the GPSF. In terms of financial leverage, GBP recipients indicated that there is good potential for leveraging financial resources, though the evidence gleaned from the file review was checkered. With the exception of the projects in the Transitional Justice thematic area, GBP provided the majority of the project funds for all of the projects reviewed. In 8 projects, the GBP contribution comprised between 60% and 80% of the project's total funds. In 7 of the reviewed projects, GBP contributed between 80% and 100% of the total costs. However, it must be noted that these projects were sometimes funding a set of activities that fall within a recipient organization's broader initiatives.

In terms of political leveraging, recipient interviews confirmed that the GBP has been much more successful in providing credibility to the funded organizations than in expanding their access to financial resources. Some organizations stated that GBP funds had helped them to launch new projects which increased their profile and reputation, thereby enhancing their ability to solicit support from other donors. Lastly, a few organizations maintained that since the support provided was on behalf of Canada, it helped to mobilize the resources and political commitments of other countries.

GPOP also leverages Canadian financial resources, as well as influence. Canadian capacity building for peace operations efforts is receiving international recognition. The UN has acknowledged Canada's important niche role in African police peacekeeping capacity building. As well, the G8 Research Group rated Canada as one of only three G8 countries which has been fully compliant in meeting its St. Petersburg Summit commitments. It also acknowledged that Canada contributed constructively and actively to the development of the G8 Summit African Peace and Security agenda. GPOP programming has also put Canada in a leading role in fostering Latin American–Canadian cooperation for peace operations based on the Haiti experience which led to a commitment by MINUSTAH stakeholders, including the Government of Haiti, to enhance inter–disciplinary mission coordination.

As a result of this reputation, partners like Australia, New Zealand, Britain and Norway are increasingly supportive and look to collaborate on Canadian initiatives especially in the area of police training support. Canada started working with PPC on the West African Police Program (WAPP) in 2005 which later continued as the Pan–African Police Project in West and Central Africa. This has led to other countries becoming more involved in providing support to police peacekeeping in Africa, such as Germany which in 2008 started to fund the PPC to conduct a similar program as the PAPP in Southern and Eastern Africa. Germany is also cooperating with Canada on assistance to a Senegalese FPU in UNAMID. Others include Sweden which has joined Canada at the UN to raise the profile of corrections in peace missions.

Furthermore, following upon Canada's contributions, there are several new donor countries that are now regularly contributing to the Kofi Annan Center in Ghana and the IPSTC in Kenya. GPOP has also funded several AU Senior Mission Leader Courses in cooperation with the UN–AU Peace Support Team. Such funding has allowed the UN to encourage other donors to make similar contributions, once Canada had made a firm commitment. In addition, when Canada started supporting the ELP in 2006 it was providing approximately 73% of the funding but as a result of the engagement of other donors with the program it currently provides about 56%.

Another area where Canada has been a trendsetter is in its support to the DPKO. In 2006/07 only Canada and the UK were providing voluntary contributions to the organization. Currently there are a number of donors such as Norway and Germany which are doing the same. Canada was also a leader in supporting the Friends of UNAMID. Overall, GPOP programming has allowed Canada to be a leader on various issues related to peacekeeping capacity development and international partners acknowledge this and are making their own contributions as a result.

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5.4 Project Management and Value for Money

Finding 46:
The lack of clarity of some GPSF Terms and Conditions as well as uncertainties regarding the interpretation and application GoC policies have adversely impacted on project implementation and as a consequence value for money.

As remarked earlier in this report, past GPSF T&Cs limited START's ability to implement projects in a timely and cost effective manner. With the revised set of T&Cs authorized in 2008, GPSF was permitted greater flexibility in the application of the TBS Policy on Transfer Payments (PTP). Examples follow:

  • GPSF was provided with exemptions with respect to the conflict of interest and post–employment code guidelines;
  • GPSF was also provided with an exemption with respect to the requirement that Transfer payments not be paid to recipients in advance of the requirement;
  • GPSF was granted exemptions with regards to the TBS Cash Management Policy;
  • GPSF was also exempted from the need to calculate and deduct imputed interest (particularly applies to UN agencies);
  • Exemptions have been provided for the Minister's right to conduct an audit on a contribution agreement;
  • Finally, exemptions were provided for indemnification to the crown.

In spite of the exemptions provided above, interlocutors at DFAIT raised a number of issues with respect to the current T&Cs. These include the following:

  • Although the existing T&Cs include overhead and administrative charges as eligible expenditures, the thresholds that the program can tolerate are not defined and vary between recipients. Arguably there is a need to define and formalize acceptable parameters;
  • Although START has instituted an internal approval process regarding retroactive eligible expenditures, the current T&Cs are silent on this issue.
  • The existing T&Cs are silent on the issue of currency fluctuations and its potential impact on committed funds. This risk is currently addressed as a “contingency” within agreements. Arguably there is a need for a more formal and consistent approach to dealing with the risk of exchange rate fluctuations;
  • The existing T&Cs include the lease and rental of vehicles, equipment, and maintenance services as eligible expenditures, but not the purchase thereof, which on occasion, especially where their deployment is for an extended period of time, would prove a more economical option.
  • The existing T&Cs do not differentiate between recipients (multi–lateral, inter–governmental, regional and international non–governmental) thereby leading to speculation which among them are allowed to use their own rules and regulations and those which must follow TBS guidelines;(67) and
  • Ceilings on grants under the current T&Cs are inconsistent with contributions, which at times encouraged the choice of one mechanism over another based on convenience rather than principle.

In addition to the issues cited above, there are several other issues relating to the T&Cs and the interpretation and application of GoC policies which warrant a more fulsome discussion for reason of their impact on performance. These are as follows:

Receipt of money from a Third Party: Specified purpose accounts (SPA) is a broad classification of accounts established in the accounts of Canada to record money received for special purposes, and which must be held generally in separate accounts. SPAs are addressed by Treasury Board Policy on Specified Purpose Accounts (Oct 1, 2009). GPSF has in some cases established an SPA account in order to facilitate the purchase of equipment or services by other countries in areas where Canada is either well established, or has special expertise. At present DFAIT lacks the ability to accept funds from 3rd parties in United States (US) dollars, in its specified purpose accounts (SPAs), which are required for that purpose.

An example of the negative consequences of this policy was the receipt of US $2.5 million from the Dutch government for which Canada was to procure equipment for UNAMID. Although project staff indicated that there was a need to create a US dollar account to avoid excessive currency exchange charges, this could not be done due to DFIAT regulations, and the contribution was converted to CAD dollars and then back to US dollars resulting in an exchange rate loss of CAD $80,000.00. START volunteered to absorb the said loss rather than reduce the Dutch contribution by an equivalent amount.

PAYE Policy: The treatment of Payables at Year End (PAYE) accounts has created problems for both START and its partners. The difficulty stems from problem of ensuring timely receipt of invoices from suppliers engaged in delivery of goods and services in fragile states.

The challenge recipient institutions face in theatre to advise START in a timely fashion that an amount may not be spent limits START's ability to reallocate resources to other uses and avoid lapsing funds. Whether these lapsed amounts are the results of savings achieved during implementation, deficient financial tracking systems, or an inability to spend, poses a major challenge. Most of these cases can be solved by creating a payable–at–year's–end (PAYE). However, when the recipient organization cannot spend the fund even after a PAYE is created, START will lapse the money. The case of PPC under–spending by approximately CAD $450,000 is an example. START and the TBS should explore options to use resources put aside as PAYE for use in other GPSF activities – either with the same recipient or with others.

In addition, interviewees in START and in the case study countries indicated that the rigid deadlines associated with PAYE contributes to rushed spending and disbursement at fiscal year end (documented cases were seen in all the country case studies) and disrupt project implementation often forcing partners to cease work or cash manage until funds are released in the new fiscal year.

Competitive Tendering: GPSF T&Cs for Vote 10 contributions require that goods and services be obtained pursuant to a transparent and open competitive tendering process. While this is, and ought to be, the default position, START has on occasion been called upon to respond to urgent requests to supply goods and services which could not be satisfied through an open competitive tendering process.

Although START is not bound in all instances to adhere to this principle, and is authorized to entertain alternatives to open competitive tendering, including direct purchase, financial thresholds pertaining to these other options remain insufficient and or unclear.(68) The same observation applies to Vote 1, “sole source,” limits. As an exception rather than a norm, reliance on the direct purchase and or sole source options should be strictly controlled.

Core Funding: As remarked in Finding 41, the GPSF T&Cs do not allow for the provision of core funding. Given that the GPSF is mandated to develop Canadian capacity to respond to crises and the challenges of fragile state engagement writ large, thereby including within its scope the capacity of the non–governmental sector, some limited authority to provide core funding to select institutions is arguably warranted.

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5.5 Coordination and Coherence

Finding 47:
Mechanism in place to support intra–departmental and extra – departmental coordination work well, though operational coordination remains a challenge in the field.

The report Sustaining Canada's Engagement remarks that “the most successful approaches to coordination [are those which have a] voluntary or opt–in orientation and which create incentives for departments, especially those with primary domestic mandates, to work together on shared objectives.”(69) The GPSF, which is available to OGDs, is DFAIT's primary incentive instrument to rally OGD support for GoC objectives in fragile states implicating Canadian interests. As remarked earlier in this report with respect to resource mobilization, the funding arrangements that have been developed and instituted to facilitate OGD participation in overseas missions have worked very well, while acknowledging that there is still room for improvement.

In terms of policy and programming coordination, a variety of mechanisms have emerged to give effect to this, including the DM and ADM committees, the SAB, the country task forces, interdepartmental working groups, and the project review and approval process.

The ADM Committee, for its part, largely performs the role of guardian of the MoU between DFAIT and CIDA which defines each department's roles and responsibilities in shared theatres of intervention. The MoU allocates these responsibilities on both temporal (first responder) and sectoral (security system reform verses social and economic development) lines. In practice the roles of the two government bodies in specific sectors have been interchangeable and negotiated, depending on which department is best positioned to respond to the exigencies of any given situation. For example, in Haiti CIDA has assumed the lead in justice reform efforts, whereas in Afghanistan START has taken the lead in justice reform. While this improvised approach has merit, it still leaves open the risk of GPSF investments, particularly those relating to institutional capacity development of rule of law institutions, being orphaned following the expiration of the GPSF's temporal mandate. Moreover, it does little to foster institutional memory.

As remarked earlier in this report, the SAB, and despite some improvements, still struggles to perform the roles accorded to it by its ambitious mandate. This said the reorganization of START under ReSTART should reinvigorate the SAB by providing it with additional material to deliberate.

The country task forces (Sudan, Afghanistan, and Haiti) all perform an important role in ensuring policy and programming coherence among participating OGDs. The case studies for Sudan and Afghanistan, as well as the evaluation of GPSF programming in Haiti (2008), affirm that the task forces relating to each are performing well, facilitating the sharing of information, developing common priorities and collaborative approaches to challenges and problem solving.(70)

The AWG and FSG are intra and inter–departmental in composition, thereby allowing relevant stakeholders to have input in the identification of prospective countries for GPSF intervention as well as input in the design of strategies for engagement. Sector and thematic working groups that have emerged (e.g., the Communities of Practice or COPs for Afghanistan and the Security Sector Reform and Governance Working Groups for Haiti) which function as forums within which stakeholders can obtain updates on developments on the ground, share information of common interest, and review and comment on new initiatives. This said the Evaluation Team found little evidence of these sector or thematic working groups developing common strategies of engagement.(71)

Policy and programming coherence is further supported by the project screening processes that have been instituted by START which require proponents of project proposals to demonstrate alignment with GoC, departmental, GPSF, sub–program and country and sector specific policies and priorities. Proponents of project proposals are further required to demonstrate that all relevant stakeholders (departmental, extra–departmental and international) have been consulted to ensure their respective support for the initiative. As remarked at the outset of this report, both departmental and extra departmental stakeholders are invited to participate in the PT, DPAT, PAT and PPC as required.

The Evaluation Team, however, observed that operational coordination at the field level is mixed. Afghanistan presents the best example of local level coordination. In Kabul, the HoM, as Canada's senior representative in the country, is charged with promoting GoC priorities and objectives. Giving effect to these priorities and objectives requires the coordinated efforts of OGDs represented at mission which is facilitated and supported by regular meetings chaired by the HoM. In Kandahar, the RoCK is expressly mandated to support the implementation of Canada's priorities and objectives in that province and does so by providing leadership and guidance to Canada's diplomats, development officers, police and corrections officials, all of whom work in partnership with the DND.

As mentioned earlier in this report, several new initiatives have been launched to support whole of government coherence and coordination in Kandahar, including: the creation of a KPRT Executive Committee that is co–chaired by DND and DFAIT; the establishment of an Integrated Planning Team to support combined military/civilian operations (Stabilization Teams) and the setting up of a SynchBoard to review project proposals advanced by stakeholders represented at the KPRT. These mechanisms collectively facilitate programming coherence and coordination. This said the Afghan case study remarked on the need to formally document and clarify the roles and responsibilities GoC personnel in theatre vis–a–vis each other.

The Sudan case study indicated that although coordination works well at the headquarters level, where information sharing, coordination of activities and support take place, coordination in country is limited with little interaction between various departmental programs (e.g., CIDA and START). The Evaluation Team was informed that interactions between programs are based on individual initiatives and professional relations between staff. A similar observation was made in the evaluation of GPSF programming in Haiti (2008).

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5.6 Financial and Information Records Management

Finding 48:
DFAIT Corporate Finance has not developed appropriate financial systems for program and financial management for the GPSF. The lack of an appropriate corporate financial and program management system has limited START's ability to plan, track and monitor GPSF financial performance as well as results achieved.

Past evaluations and audits of the GPSF highlighted inadequate financial and performance management systems for GPSF. At the time of the Formative Evaluation (2008), it was also thought that the lack of a corporate financial management system suitable for the management of a grants and contributions program such as GPSF would mean that there would not be timely accurate financial data that meets the needs of managers, thereby posing a risk to DFAIT.

Because the corporate finance branch did not have the resources to modify the corporate financial system to provide all of the information required by START for management purposes, START had to develop its own financial tracking system using a Microsoft Access database.

The need for the GPSF to have its own program management system, and to transcribe data from departmental IMS, means that program information is still maintained in a separate stand–alone system. This means additional transaction costs are incurred and that there is increased risk of errors/loss of data integrity due to the 'manual transfer' of data. While examining the database, the Evaluation Team found frequent gaps in information as well as evidence of double entries thereby inflating the financial data.

The risks are exacerbated by unclear policies regarding the use of this database. In addition, the database is only available in Ottawa. This leaves the Missions abroad with the same problem, of inadequate project financial data, and the need to retain parallel systems to supplement data from the corporate financial system.

5.7 Human Resource Management

Finding 49:
High staff turnover resulted in a loss of expertise and has had a disruptive impact on project planning, implementation and monitoring, though the retention of staff is reported to have improved.

Challenges in hiring and retaining staff within START were identified as issues in both the Formative Evaluation of the GPSF (2008) and the Internal Program Audit (2008). Interlocutors at that time noted that the turnover and lack of experience of personnel increased the risk of GPSF projects not following the T&Cs for the GPSF. OGDs and partners also noted that the lack of experience of START personnel sometimes delayed projects as project officers were not adequately conversant with what were considered to be acceptable standards for project design.

Many of these difficulties could be directly traced to the moratorium on hiring during much of the start–up phase of START, the heavy reliance on the Foreign Service Officer (FSO) cadre of staff whose training, initially, did not include project management, and the highly restrictive T&Cs applying to the GPSF at that time which prevented START from making commitments to recruits beyond 12 months. The Formative Evaluation of the GPSF (2008) further remarked on the paucity of subject matter experts within START and the challenges of balancing research and policy expertise with programming and administrative expertise.

Since then much of the funding for GPSF has been unfrozen and restrictions on hiring relaxed, which has made it easier for START to both recruit and retain staff. Training in Grants and Contributions and project management is provided to all new staff and refresher courses are offered to incumbents. To augment DFAIT's in–house capacity, START has actively encouraged subject matter experts from OGDs to join START, a practice that has the added benefit of strengthening the whole–of–government character of the bureau's mandate. Under ReSTART, policy and programming functions have been separated, thereby allowing incumbents in each domain to develop and put into practice their respective areas of expertise.

Though human resource capacity within START has much improved over the last several years, there remains a need to strengthen access to subject matter expertise, particularly in areas relating to sector programming, procurement, and financial analysis, to support effective planning, performance monitoring, and comptrollership.

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5.8 Risk Management

Finding 50:
Though START has developed frameworks and adopted procedures to assess and mitigate risks, these frameworks remain incomplete.

The 2009 GPSF ARAF identified three major risk areas for the Fund as a whole. These are briefly described below:

Ability of Implementing Agencies: Challenges working with implementing agencies may include inexperience in project delivery, lack of core funding and staff turnover. These concerns are likely to be compounded because most donor countries are trying to work with the same institutions which may overextend their capacity and reach and may lead to delayed projects, unexpended funds and underachieved results.

Risk is mitigated primarily by selecting agencies with established reputations. Where feasible, START has relied on Canadian organizations with which it has a long standing partnership or arm's length relationship including Canadian OGDs and NGOs, and major international organizations.

Though a sound risk mitigating approach, partnering with large and well established implementing organizations, particularly UN organizations, carries with it its own set of risks, including limited influence over strategic decision making, diminished control over operations, loss of visibility, and potential missed opportunities to demonstrate GPSF leadership through innovative programming.

Project Management and Reporting: For the first several years of the GPSF, the focus of START's efforts were on securing the requisite authorities and establishing the administration infrastructure within DFAIT to support programming. Both have taken time, though considerable progress, particularly in the last two years, has been made in strengthening DFAIT's institutional capacity to plan and manage projects. Project specific risks are mitigated through multiple disbursements, interim reporting, and close contact with the implementing partners. This said START still faces challenges in instituting systems to adequately monitor performance and report on results to support institutional learning – see next Finding.

Escalation of Conflicts: Conflicts may escalate in fragile states which are the focus of GPSF projects and may result in harm to GPSF staff, lost project investments and loss of reputation. Such events test the institutional capacity of START to respond and adapt to changing circumstances, which is really the subject of the preceding paragraph. Mitigating this risk calls for a robust capacity to monitor events on the ground in real–time and to use that information for strategic decision making, capacities that are enhanced where there are systems in place to facilitate the sharing of information among stakeholders (domestic and international) as well as the where there is a significant field presence.

As remarked elsewhere in this report, mechanisms and forums put in place to support information sharing among stakeholders are mature and in those countries where START has deployed field representatives their contribution to intelligence gathering and analysis has been noted. It is also important to keep in mind that risks in fragile state environments are largely common to all actors in theatre and therefore can best be mitigated by a common and coordinated approach. In the context of risk mitigation, coordination is most effective where relevant stakeholders are clear on their respective roles and responsibilities.

In addition to those risks identified in the ARAF there are other risks to the GPSF which, though having found expression in the sub–program and country programs, have not been incorporated into the GPSF's overall risk management framework and they include:

Corruption: A constant risk in fragile states is corruption at all levels of government and the private sector. As a result, donors have to be ever vigilant for incidents of fraud or diversion of funds. In the case of GPSF, the approach to this risk has often been to avoid working directly with government where institutional capacity is known to be weak, favoring instead working through trusted partners. Such an approach, however, does not address the threat at its source. Corruption is a risk that can best be mitigated by instituting laws, policies and procedures to curtail it, which is an integral component of institutional capacity building.

Do no harm: One of the greatest risks that can be encountered is the risk of inadvertently doing harm. For example, donating food commodities into fragile states as a means of alleviating hunger can inadvertently undermine local markets. Supplementing local government salaries, as is often done by donors to improve performance, can lead to an unsustainable salary structure.(72) Engagements need to be designed with sufficient caution that they do not inadvertently create or exacerbate existing structural inequalities and societal divisions. One approach to mitigating this risk is to ensure that marginalized groups are included in state–building and service delivery strategies. Another is to build on pockets of administrative competence and political leadership in order to demonstrate effects.

The aforementioned risks highlight the need for a programmatic approach to risk mitigation, one which sees a risk as not just something to be avoided or worked around, but, in some cases, as an opportunity.

Programming in fragile states is a high risk enterprise which requires a higher level of risk tolerance. As remarked in the report Sustaining Canada's Engagement, “in [fragile state] environments, not all projects will succeed as planned: this needs to be managed, not avoided.”(73) This evaluation concurs with this view. Programming in fragile states demands risk taking and a willingness to test new ideas and approaches, including testing new partners, with the understanding and acceptance that these experiments may fail.

One way to conduct innovative programming while minimizing the consequence of failure is to reduce the level of financial exposure through small contributions to pilot projects. Support to projects of this kind can best be accomplished through locally managed funds. Such a fund was tested in Afghanistan (KIPS) and could well be replicated in other theatres of intervention.

Finally, roles, responsibilities and accountabilities with respect to risk management within START remain largely assumed and not formally documented. There is a need to develop risk profiles and risk mitigating plans at each level of governance (bureau, division, envelope, and project levels) and to formally document the roles responsibilities and accountabilities of decision makers within this overall governance structure.

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5.9 Performance Monitoring and Results Reporting

Finding 51:
Current reporting frameworks at the GPSF and sub–program levels do not fully capture results and performance data.

The 2007–8 Internal Program Audit of GPSF recommended that:

START adopt a results based management approach by putting into practice its RMAF and RBAF. This would include a comprehensive schedule of planning, programming, monitoring and reporting for all its activities. Responsibility for delivering each component of the schedule should be stated and all staff informed.

START reported in response to the audit that “upon approval of the GPSF TB Submission in May 2008, it had launched a process to update the RMAF/RBAF following the ARAF model introduced by TBS to cover the period from 2008–09 to 2013.” START had reviewed and revised the ARAF as of March 2009. Logic models were developed at the sub–program and program levels to assist with program planning and results measurement.

Under the new GPSF requirements, a results–based performance framework document must be completed for each project. Results are to be reported at the envelope level (i.e., Afghanistan, Sudan, Haiti, fragile states, GBP, GPOP) at the end of each fiscal year. To align with corporate processes, a calendar is being developed for officers and managers. Re–START recommendations to streamline the business process will be factored into the new procedures.

The Evaluation Team reviewed the logic model in the current ARAF as potential framework for this evaluation, but found that the logic model provides an inadequate framework to report on overall GPSF outcomes. Although the GBP and GPOP sub–programs are adequate, and indeed relevant programming divisions report against the sub–program performance frameworks, the GPSP remains a challenge as articulation of immediate outcomes in the logic model are overly generic and overlap with the immediate outcomes of the other sub–programs. At the time of writing, START had yet to report on the overall performance of the GPSP.

Another deficiency in the existing performance framework is the fact that it does not fully capture the performance and results data of Vote 1 expenditures (operations), which includes the GPSF's contribution to the IPP, and which moreover constitutes roughly one third of total GPSF annual expenditures. These expenditures collectively contribute to, and support on an ongoing basis, Canada's readiness to respond to international crises. Though a discrete objective of the GPSF, its contributions thereto are not, except by inference, reflected in the GPSF's current performance measurement and results reporting framework.

Finding 52:
At the country level, performance and results reporting frameworks have improved, though reporting against strategic outcomes remains a challenge and uneven.

As indicated above, the ARAF calls for more comprehensive results reporting at the envelope level. This evaluation notes a marked improvement in the performance monitoring and results reporting frameworks now in use for the country envelopes. The new multi–year strategic frameworks, which replaced the country concept papers, contain “strategic outcome” statements that, though high level in their articulation, provide good reference points around which to organize programming and to demonstrate how the same contributes to the realization of those outcomes. The strategic frameworks also include output and outcome statements, performance indicators, performance targets, a baseline statement, and data sources to populate the foregoing.

The country cases studies conducted in support of this evaluation, however, found considerable variation in their construction and in their respective performance and results reporting frameworks. The Evaluation Team observed that inputs, outputs, baseline, performance indicators, targets and outcomes were often conflated, thereby compromising the utility of the instrument. This is likely the results of a lack of familiarity of START personnel charged with designing these frameworks with RBM principles. In all cases the Evaluation Team remarked that the choice of indicators could benefit from adherence to the SMART principles i.e., specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely. Other principles to be kept in mind when designing performance measurement frameworks include:

  • Validity: Does the performance indicator actually measure the results intended?
  • Reliability: Is the performance indicator a consistent measure over time?
  • Sensitivity: Is the performance indicator sensitive to changes in the programming environment?
  • Simplicity: How easy will it be to collect the data?
  • Utility: Will the information be useful to management (decision making, learning, adjustment); and
  • Affordability: Can the program afford to collect the data?
Finding 53:
The use of benchmarks is a best practice that should be replicated across the sub–program, thematic and country envelopes.

As remarked earlier in this report, benchmarks are a very useful tool which support effective planning, performance monitoring and results reporting. Benchmarks also, by setting clear and measurable targets tied to outcomes, provide a framework for eventual disengagement. Benchmarks were first employed in the context of Afghanistan and although the Afghan case study remarked that there were design problems with the benchmarks which require remedial attention, principally relating to the outcome articulations and choice of indicators, the benchmarks has allowed START to report on performance on a regular and consistent basis. Although reporting against the benchmarks has proven time consuming and costly, largely because START has committed to report on the performance of its investments on a quarterly basis, a requirement to do so annually might not prove too onerous. Benchmarks are already being incorporated into the sub–program envelopes and this is a positive development.

Finding 54:
Effective performance monitoring and results reporting is enhanced where there is a strong field presence.

All the country case studies undertaken in support of this evaluation have remarked on the important contributions of START staff deployed in the field to better planning and project implementation through oversight. Personnel in the field also support effective performance monitoring and results reporting. This should not be surprising given their physical proximity to both partners and beneficiaries in theatre. This said it is understood that deployments of this kind are costly and in some cases, such as in Afghanistan, dangerous.

In countries of significant GPSF engagement, there is no substitute to having a START representative in theatre. However, in countries where the quantum of investment may not warrant such a deployment or where security risks are high, START could make a more judicious use of proxies. These could be OGD partners with a significant field presence (DND in Afghanistan is a case in point) or persons hired locally to perform this function. CIDA has had a long history of hiring both local and foreign experts to monitor their projects and START might also consider doing so. This approach is most efficacious where projects can be easily clustered under sector or thematic headings.


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6.0 Conclusion

The GPSF represents a significant new direction for DFAIT in terms of the much greater dollar value of resources available for programming than has historically been the case. In its early years the GPSF faced many challenges in developing the capacity to program effectively in fragile state environments. These have, among other things, included:

  • The freezing of a substantial portion of GPSF funds;
  • The demand faced by the program in responding to numerous interim evaluations and audits;
  • The inability of DFAIT to develop an appropriate financial information system suitable for the management of this type of program;
  • The challenges of coordinating a whole of government response, in a situation where other government departments have distinct mandates and direct accountabilities to individual Ministers.

In spite of the above constraints, START has managed to implement programming in direct support of government priorities in many countries that are unstable and often poorly governed. START has also managed to develop planning frameworks for these countries, oversee the design and implementation of hundreds of projects, support the deployment of hundreds of Canadian specialists, contribute to policy and doctrinal development, and to coordinate with OGDs and implementing agencies as well as with international donors in the service of common objectives.

The major conclusions of the evaluation follow:

Relevance

The rationale for creating the GPSF continues to be valid. It fills both a funding gap and an institutional gap, thereby enhancing the GoC's ability to respond to crises in an effective and coherent manner. The GPSF supports GoC foreign policy objectives and, in both design and practice, is consistent with international best practices for programming in fragile states. Though originally conceived as a rapid response funding instrument to crises with a 1 to 3 year time horizon, many of the institutional capacity development initiatives it supports, including supporting the development of institutional capacity within Canada to respond to crises, require long–term commitments. If the GPSF retains its short to medium–term time horizon then it would have to adjust, if not actually abandon, some if its higher end goals. If it is to continue to support longer term institutional capacity development, then some of its authorities and planning instruments would need to be adjusted.

Achievements

The assessment of achievements was based on a review of the three sub–programs. In the case of the GPSP, much of the analysis was derived from the case studies in Sudan, Afghanistan, and Colombia. Based on the analysis, the evaluation concludes that GPSF has made important contributions to the advancement of peace and security in its areas of engagement.

GPOP sub–program has contributed to enhancing the capacity of the AU, UN and other International Organizations to plan, manage, and conduct effective peace operations and the capacity of states to contribute to peace operations and policy development with a focus on Africa and Latin America. In addition, GPOP assistance to the UN peacekeeping reform agenda is producing tangible results by helping the UN organization implement some of its key initiatives and advancing the overall reform agenda. This also underlines the Canadian tradition of being a strong backer of the UN multilateral system in maintaining international peace and security.

The GBP has allowed Canada to embed and exercise the core principles of its foreign policy – freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law – in international peace and security efforts. In spite of its limited funding level, it has contributed to promoting policy change, advancing new international normative agendas, and achieving consensus among stakeholders on highly contentious issues, thus advancing Canada's foreign policy objectives abroad. As such, the evaluation concluded that the GBP remains a valuable tool for Canadian foreign policy, particularly in mobilizing support for the priorities of the GoC.

The GPSP has been an important participant in the peacekeeping, reconstruction and stabilization efforts in a number of volatile countries, such as Afghanistan, Haiti, Colombia and Sudan. In these very difficult and challenging environments, GPSP has successfully contributed, inter alia, to mediation and peace efforts, conflict prevention in border zones, DDR processes, mine clearance action and building rule–of–law and justice institutions. These efforts have made Canada a leader among donors and have contributed to sectors that other donors generally avoid such as prison and correction system reform.

Efficiency and Economy

Past evaluations noted weaknesses in the governance structures for GPSF as well as the procedures and information systems. Since then the governance structure has been revitalized under the ReSTART process, providing greater clarity in terms of accountability, and better ability to undertake policy analysis in support of planning and responding to crises. Roles and responsibilities have also been clarified among internal START personnel, between START staff and other DFAIT Branches, and between START and OGDs. Project approval processes, once considered by proponents to be lengthy and difficult to navigate, have been reconfigured and streamlined which should expedite decision making and improve program delivery.

The evaluation notes, however, that the DFAIT Finance Branch has not developed appropriate financial system modules for managing the GPSF. As a result, GPSF has had to develop its own system using a Microsoft database. While the system in use is adequate, a separate system from the departmental financial system leads to duplication of effort and potential errors as information is transferred manually from one system to the other. The local GPSF database cannot easily be decentralized for field usage, which is also a disadvantage.

Despite modifications to START's performance monitoring and results reporting frameworks, these frameworks do not fully capture results and performance data at the programmatic level. At the country level, performance and results reporting frameworks have improved, though reporting against strategic outcomes remains a challenge and uneven, particularly at the sector level. Where START has deployed staff in theatre, their contributions to more effective planning, performance monitoring and results reporting has been noted. While START has developed frameworks and adopted procedures to assess and mitigate risks, these frameworks and the risk mitigating strategies relating thereto do not, at the program level, capture the full range of risks to the program. Risk mitigating strategies focus too heavily on risk avoidance rather than risk management, which may discourage innovation and undermine START leadership.

Related to the foregoing, the evaluation further remarks on the value of locally managed funds in select theatres of intervention. Such funding instruments have not only allowed START to respond quickly to threats to its investments, but have also allowed START to pilot new initiatives, thereby contributing to Canada's reputation as a leader in innovation. Managing funds of this kind call for a robust field presence with the requisite financial and decision–making authority. While acknowledging that such delegated authority carries with it risks of its own and will not be appropriate in all theatres of programming, it is nonetheless a funding mechanism worthy of consideration.

Finally, and despite the relaxation of some of the more onerous T&Cs which hampered START's ability to deliver on the mandate of the GPSF effectively in the past, additional flexibility is still required with respect to limits on contribution arrangements to specialized suppliers, receipt of third party funds, core funding, and authority to issue advanced payments.


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7.0 Recommendations

Recommendation 1:
START should seek corporate assistance in the development of an integrated financial management system capable of supporting the administration of grants and Contributions.

In spite of on–going efforts to improve financial and information management, START continues to rely on financial and information management systems that are incomplete, placing program management and corporate memory at risk. Given the continuous need for better financial and information management systems that are adaptable to programming in fragile states, DFAIT should invest in developing such systems. In the meantime, START should continue to develop its financial and information management systems.

Recommendation 2:
START should develop a Performance Measurement Strategy and revisit the GPSF logic model to enhance its ability to monitor performance and report on results. In addition, START should develop clear benchmarks for its engagements and ensure that exit conditions are incorporated into these benchmarks.

START has made significant progress in developing its performance and result reporting systems. Nevertheless, GPSF's reporting frameworks do not fully capture results and performance data and, at the country level, reporting of strategic outcomes remains uneven and incomplete. The design of the current logic model does not provide an adequate framework for reporting on the outcomes of the GPSF. START should redesign the GPSF logic model and develop a performance planning framework that facilitates reporting on results at the Fund level.

The GPSF increasingly supports initiatives that are of a long–term nature such as institutional capacity building. This begs a question about the duration of GPSF engagement and at what stage GPSF should exist or hand over activities to others (e.g., CIDA or other donors). Addressing this is particularly pertinent in a countries where the crisis is protracted requiring a sustained and long term–engagement. Therefore START should develop for each intervention benchmarks for achievements of results and incorporate exit conditions in these benchmarks. In addition, START should examine the sequencing and transition of initiatives at the country level in consultation with OGDs and other international donors.

Recommendation 3:
START should develop strategies of engagement at the sector level in priority countries.

GPSF planning instruments at the country level have improved significantly over the last several years, though this evaluation remarked that strategic planning at the sector level was uneven among the countries reviewed. Programming is most effective when guided by a clear vision of what one wishes to achieve within a given sector, how programming will contribute to the realization of that vision, and the resources required to do so. The need for a strategic framework at the sector level becomes even more compelling when enlisting the support of OGDs in order to ensure programming coherence. START is in the process of strengthening its policy development and conflict analysis capacity, and these competencies could be employed to good effect in formulating sector specific strategies of significant GPSF engagement in consultation with relevant stakeholders.

Recommendation 4:
START should work with S–Branch and the Treasury Board to review the Terms and Conditions that have encumbered the implementation of some GPSF programs, particularly those in support of peace operations.

Notwithstanding the exemptions provided in the T&Cs, the evaluation has identified a number of cases where the current T&Cs have limited START's ability to make timely and responsive decisions. The review of T&Cs were found to be either silent on certain issues (e.g., the eligible levels of overhead and administrative expenditures, risks of currency fluctuations, and the processing of retroactive eligible expenditure), or limiting the flexibility of the program to make decision with the flexibility required to manage programs in fragile states and conflict areas (e.g., recipient of third party funding, making advance payment, competitive tendering, core funding etc.). Therefore, it is recommended that START, in consultation with the S–Branch and the TBS, should clarify the T&Cs and the application of GoC policies with the view to identifying ways to increase their flexibility and adaptability.

Recommendation 5:
START should seek to enhance its ability to delegate authority to field level personnel where warranted and define the risks, roles, responsibilities, and accountabilities relating thereto.

The deployment of START officers to the field have played an important role in building networks of support, gathering intelligence, problem solving, monitoring and reporting on results. All of these contribute to more effective strategic planning and lead to better informed decision making. Their roles could be further strengthened by delegating resources and decision making to the field level. This will be based on the level and specificity of each engagement and the conditions on the ground. START should determine the conditions under which this is possible and the criteria for use.

Recommendation 6:
START should review its program level and envelope level risk mitigating strategies to ensure that they fully incorporate the lessons learned from different programming environments.

Though START has begun to modify its risk mitigating strategies based on lessons learned at the envelope level, the adoption of this best practice is uneven across envelopes, and has yet to fully find expression at the sub–program and overall Fund level. Further, roles, responsibilities and accountabilities with respect to risk management are largely assumed, and not formalized. At the Fund level, risk articulations remain overly project centered with risk mitigating strategies that, at times, are at odds with the exigencies of programming in fragile state environments. Programming in fragile states is intrinsically a high risk enterprise where a low risk tolerance approach may itself risk condemning a donor to either performing a subordinate role or at worst to irrelevance.

Risk mitigation approaches can be reactive or proactive, depending on the nature of the risk identified. Proactive risk mitigation entails neutralizing the threat at source which usually involves a commitment of resources either by a single donor or in concert with other donors. That risks are often common to all actors in theatre highlights the importance of coordination as a risk mitigation strategy and with that the need to clarify the roles and responsibilities of affected stakeholders. The risks entailed in testing new partners and approaches can be mitigated by limiting the degree of financial exposure which can best be served by locally managed funds designed to support pilot projects.


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8.0 Management Response and Action Plan

Recommendation 1:

START should seek corporate assistance in the development of an integrated financial management system capable of supporting the administration of grants and Contributions.

In spite of on–going efforts to improve financial and information management, START continues to rely on financial and information management systems that are incomplete placing program management and corporate memory at risk. Given the continuous need for better financial and information management systems that are adaptable to programming in fragile states, DFAIT should invest in developing such systems. In the meantime, START should continue to develop its financial and information management systems.

Management Response & Action PlanResponsibility CentreTime Frame
Agree with recommendation.As the number of DFAIT grants and contributions programs has increased over the past decade, so has the need for corporate tools to manage them. While previous program evaluations have made similar recommendations, responding is beyond the purview of START alone. Instead corporate action is required and close collaboration with AID/AIT (IM/IT Bureau) and SMSF (the business owners of IMS) is especially important.

In response to similar recommendations in previous evaluation reports, START has instituted more rigorous procedures of verification and quality assurance to improve data quality. START also strengthened input controls in a development version of the GPSF project management database to improve the completeness of individual project records.

However, bridging the gap between the corporate financial Information Management System (IMS) used for expenditure management and START's customized MS Access database used for project management and performance reporting will require AID/AIT's and SMD's collaboration on developing and integrating a corporate application with IMS. This solution will ideally be a corporate one and used by all DFAIT grants and contributions programs.

START's project management database supports grant and contributions management across the project lifecycle (including the planning phase) and thematic performance reporting – not currently supported by the department's IMS (SAP). Since the database and IMS are not integrated systems, the movement of financial information between them is not automated, requiring manual updates and reconciliation of financial data. This process is labour intensive and increases the potential for errors.

  
Commitment: A new version of the database will be launched in 2010–11 supported by an online demo tailored to user roles.IRC3rd Quarter,
2010–11
Commitment: START will begin drafting business requirements for a successor application to its current project management database in 2010–11 and make further changes to the existing database to support the new risk and performance management requirements of the revised GPSF terms and conditions, to take effect April 1, 2011. These business requirements would inform the specifications of a possible corporate system.IRC4th Quarter,
2010–11
Commitment: START will continue discussions it initiated over the summer with the department's key corporate and program stakeholders with the goal of drafting business requirements, identifying funding and securing authorization to develop and implement a corporate solution. An Initiative Request Form will be prepared formally outlining the proposal and business case and will be submitted to the appropriate departmental governance board for approval.AID/AIT, SMSF & IRC, IXS4th Quarter,
2010–11

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Recommendation 2:

START should develop a Performance Measurement Strategy and revisit the GPSF logic model to enhance its ability to monitor performance and report on results. In addition, START should develop clear benchmarks for its engagements and ensure that exit conditions are incorporated into these benchmarks.

START has made significant progress in developing its performance and result reporting systems. Nevertheless, GPSF's reporting frameworks do not fully capture results and performance data and, at the country level, reporting of strategic outcomes remains uneven and incomplete. The design of the current logic model does not provide an adequate framework for reporting on the outcomes of the GPSF. START should redesign the GPSF logic model and develop a performance planning framework that facilitates reporting on results at the Fund level.

The GPSF increasingly supports initiatives that are of a long–term nature such as institutional capacity building. This begs a question about the duration of GPSF engagement and at what stage GPSF should exist or hand over activities to others (e.g., CIDA or other donors). Addressing this is particularly pertinent in countries where the crisis is protracted requiring a sustained and long term–engagement. Therefore START should develop for each intervention benchmarks for achievements of results and incorporate exit conditions in these benchmarks. In addition, START should examine the sequencing and transition of initiatives at the country level in consultation with OGDs and other international donors.

Management Response and Action PlanResponsibility CentreTime Frame
Agree with recommendation.The GPSF provides grants and contributions in cases of state fragility, governance crises and conflict–affected situations; funds the Canadian Police Arrangement and supports the work of the Stabilization and Reconstruction Task Force in responding to crisis situations. Past performance measurement frameworks and logic models have struggled to capture this dual nature of the fund as both investor in transfer payments to entities outside of government and investor in Canada's whole–of–government crisis response capacity.

By the end of FY 2009/10, START had implemented comprehensive project and envelope–level logic models and Performance Management Frameworks. Country and thematic annual reports derived from this GPSF data have already improved the quality of START input into the Departmental Performance Report.

  
Commitment: START developed a Performance Measurement Strategy (PMS), in consultation with ZIE that will support performance measurement and evaluations of all GPSF resources and will contribute to improved performance reporting. The PMS is intended to be an iterative document that supports continuous learning and improvement. The current version will be finalized this Fall.IRC3rd Quarter,
2010–11
Commitment: Implementation of the PMS will occur through the annual planning process with full implementation planned for the 2011–12 fiscal year planning and reporting cycle. Logic models will be developed or revised as appropriate simultaneously.IRD Bureau3rd Quarter,
2011–12
Commitment: START is also leading an interdepartmental process to develop guidelines on whole–of–government benchmarking in fragile and conflict–affected states, for consideration by the START Advisory Board in Winter 2010–11. Once completed, the guidelines will provide policy guidance for the development of specific benchmarks at the early stages of future START engagements and can also guide whole–of–government engagements in fragile and conflict–affected environments and address the issue of when and how to exit from a programming environment.IRP1st Quarter,
2011–12

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Recommendation 3:

START should develop strategies of engagement at the sector level in priority countries.

GPSF planning instruments at the country level have improved significantly over the last several years, though this evaluation remarked that strategic planning at the sector level was uneven among the countries reviewed. Programming is most effective when guided by a clear vision of what one wishes to achieve within a given sector, how programming will contribute to the realization of that vision, and the resources required to do so. The need for a strategic framework at the sector level becomes even more compelling when enlisting the support of OGDs in order to ensure programming coherence. START is in the process of strengthening its policy development and conflict analysis capacity, and these competencies could be employed to good effect in formulating sector specific strategies of significant GPSF engagement in consultation with relevant stakeholders.

Management Response and Action PlanResponsibility CentreTime Frame
Agree with recommendation.GPSF programming in priority countries proceeds in accordance with multi–year strategic frameworks. These frameworks articulating the scope, objectives and resources for intervention within a programming country or thematic area are developed in consultation with all OGD partners and are updated annually. START continuously improves these documents based on results achieved and evolving dynamics in the field.

Programming engagements begin with START policy leadership and direction, and/or a political decision, defining the rationale and broad policy and programming ends. The strategic dimension of START's programming interventions was strengthened during the bureau reorganization in 2009 – reSTART, which created a dedicated policy division. START is thus now better equipped to generate the sectoral policy analyses and strategies that can be used to inform country/thematic programming frameworks.

Working with subject–matter experts in DFAIT and from across government, START conducts assessment missions to determine needs and prepares a strategic framework with programming objectives, benchmarks, baseline information, targets and identifying resources, timelines and progress indicators. These frameworks are revised annually and, where appropriate, are structured along sectoral lines to ensure synergy with other donors and coherence between policy, programming goals and individual projects or initiatives.

  
Commitment: As noted in the recommendation, GPSF planning instruments have improved significantly. Sectoral planning has improved in the most recent iterations of these plans and will be given greater focus in the next iterations as a means of improving coherence between START activities and those of our partners.IRG, IRC3rd Quarter,
2010–11

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Recommendation 4:

START should work with S–Branch and the Treasury Board to review the Terms and Conditions that have encumbered the implementation of some GPSF programs, particularly those in support of peace operations.

Notwithstanding the exemptions provided in the T&Cs, the evaluation has identified a number of cases where the current T&Cs have limited START's ability to make timely and responsive decisions. The review of T&Cs were found to be either silent on certain issues (e.g., the eligible levels of overhead and administrative expenditures, risks of currency fluctuations, and the processing of retroactive eligible expenditure), or limiting the flexibility of the program to make decision with the flexibility required to manage programs in fragile states and conflict areas (e.g., recipient of third party funding, making advance payment, competitive tendering, core funding etc.). Therefore, it is recommended that START, in consultation with the S–Branch and the TBS, should clarify the T&Cs and the application of GoC policies with the view to identifying ways to increase their flexibility and adaptability.

Management Response and Action PlanResponsibility CentreTime Frame
Agree with intent of recommendation.START is in the process of making revisions to the GPSF terms and conditions that would provide greater flexibility to address the issues identified, where appropriate. These changes are subject to Treasury Board approval.

However, a number of issues referenced in this recommendation are not appropriately addressed in the program terms and conditions. START initiated a consultative process led through an intra–departmental steering group, including representatives from S–branch, to make recommendations on approaches to resolve these issues.

  
Commitment:Clear instructions on a list of key issues will be completed this fiscal year, however, as programming issues will continue to arise; there will need to be ongoing collaboration within DFAIT and with TBS to find ways to address them.

Evidence of management engagement and success at tackling issues that can slow or hamper timely programming was seen in recent changes to the mechanism for obtaining Cabinet approval to access funding for crisis responses. This mechanism was tested in Canada's recent response to the Pakistan floods and significantly reduced the response time and effort associated with securing funding.

IRC1st Quarter,
2011–12

Recommendation 5:

START should seek to enhance its ability to delegate authority to field level personnel where warranted and define the risks, roles, responsibilities, and accountabilities relating thereto.

The deployment of START officers to the field has played an important role in building networks of support, gathering intelligence, problem solving, monitoring and reporting on results. All of these contribute to more effective strategic planning and lead to better informed decision making. Their roles could be further strengthened by delegating resources and decision making to the field level. This will be based on the level and specificity of each engagement and the conditions on the ground. START should determine the conditions under which this is possible and the criteria for use.

Management Response and Action PlanResponsibility CentreTime Frame
Deployment of field representatives is a management decision founded in considerations of the need for close monitoring, the need for programming expertise in situor clear criteria for the deployment of civilians.

While GPSF fund management from headquarters has proven timely and effective in most circumstances, there are some situations when the delegation of programming authorities to the field has provided distinct benefits or advantages.

Proposed changes to the GPSF terms and conditions, if approved, would remove the more centralized project approval, signing and certification authorities of the current program design and facilitate easier delegation of program authorities, should management decide it would be prudent to do so in a given context.

As the only significant example where program authorities were delegated to the field, START will assess the Afghanistan programming experience and lessons learned, to help determine those elements that may be replicable in other circumstances.

  
Commitment: To exercise these flexibilities, management will develop a protocol for delegation of authorities to the field with criteria that will clarify, among other things, the costs and benefits, the programming capacity and support infrastructure in the field, the balance of centralized and decentralized authorities and accountabilities, and the associated risks.IRC4th Quarter,
2010–11

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Recommendation 6:

START should review its program level and envelope level risk mitigating strategies to ensure that they fully incorporate the lessons learned from different programming environments.

Though START has begun to modify its risk mitigating strategies based on lessons learned at the envelope level, the adoption of this best practice is uneven across envelopes, and has yet to fully find expression at the sub–program and overall Fund level. Further, roles, responsibilities and accountabilities with respect to risk management are largely assumed, and not formalized. At the Fund level, risk articulations remain overly project centred with risk mitigating strategies that, at times, are at odds with the exigencies of programming in fragile state environments. Programming in fragile states is intrinsically a high risk enterprise where a low risk tolerance approach may itself risk condemning a donor to either performing a subordinate role or at worst to irrelevance.

Risk mitigation approaches can be reactive or proactive, depending on the nature of the risk identified. Proactive risk mitigation entails neutralizing the threat at source which usually involves a commitment of resources either by a single donor or in concert with other donors. That risks are often common to all actors in theatre highlights the importance of coordination as a risk mitigation strategy and with that the need to clarify the roles and responsibilities of affected stakeholders. The risks entailed in testing new partners and approaches can be mitigated by limiting the degree of financial exposure which can best be served by locally managed funds designed to support pilot projects.

Management Response and Action PlanResponsibility CentreTime Frame
Agree with recommendation.START is building on existing risk management practices by developing a program level risk management framework and risk management tools to formally manage operational and strategic risks at all levels of the bureau. This work has broken new ground and will contribute to Inter–departmental work developing a model for program–level risk management frameworks for Government of Canada grants and contribution programs.

The framework and tools clearly identify governance and accountabilities for risk management, meet the Policy on Transfer Payments 2008 requirements for managing project risk, comply with the department's IRM policy, incorporates lessons learned over the course of GPSF programming and fosters a practice of learning and improving in the area of risk management within START.

  
Commitment: The risk management framework, support tools and training will be finalized and approved in fiscal year 2010–11.IRC3rd Quarter,
2010–11
Commitment: Implementation of the new risk management practices and processes will take effect April 1, 2011.IRD Bureau1st Quarter,
2011–12

  1. GPSF Accountability, Risk and Audit Framework (ARAF), 2008
  2. Ibid.
  3. Summative Evaluation of the Human Security Program
  4. Ibid.
  5. So renamed in 2007 and replacing the hitherto Human Security Programme.
  6. ILX, which formally dealt with both mine action and small arms and light weapons, used to be housed within START but, following the launch of ReSTART, has been relocated to the Non–Proliferation and Disarmament Division (IDA).
  7. Formative Evaluation of the Global Peace and Security Fund, DFAIT, DFAIT Feb 2008
  8. ReSTART Revised Model – Option C
  9. The New GPSF Work Process Guidebook(January 2010)
  10. 2008, GPSF Accountability, Risk and Audit Framework (ARAF)
  11. Bureau plans, allocations, and financial/results reporting are governed by existing mechanisms such as the RPP, DPR, and ARLU. This ARAF, by contrast, applies uniquely to GPSF funded projects and programmes.
  12. The GBP used to have a programming allocation of CAD $15 million per year, which accounts for its comparatively large proportion of disbursements to date. However, as of the fall of 2008, GBP's share of total GPSF programming funds has been reduced to CAD $5 million per annum.
  13. DFAIT internal Submission April 2008
  14. Note that GPSP incorporates the funding components for Afghanistan, Haiti, Sudan, and Fragile States
  15. START Operating Procedures – Edition 2
  16. The Crisis Pool further requires a separate submission to Cabinet for every occurrence.
  17. The Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and transfer of Anti–Personnel Mines and their Destruction.
  18. In 2008, the Official Development Assistance Accountability Actcame into force. The Act sets out the mandate and purpose of Canadian official development assistance (ODA). More specifically, it provides that for aid to be considered ODA it must: 1) focus on poverty reduction; 2) be consistent with international human rights standards; and 3) take into account the perspectives of the poor.
  19. Formative Evaluation of the Global Peace and Security Fund(February 2008) at p. 41.
  20. It is note worthy that the concept of human security as advanced under the old HSP was decidedly citizen focussed, whereas the emphasis on "peace and security" associated with the GBP, at least notionally, imputes a more state centered focus, which more properly falls within the mandate of the GPSP.
  21. GPSF support to the Special Court in Sierra Leone presents an example of how permeable the boundary between the GBP and the GPSP can be. In this case, because commitments to the Special Court exceeded the envelope allotment under the GBP, JLHA, which was charged with administering the project, made up for the short–fall by tapping into the GPSP.
  22. START has also actively recruited professionals and subject matter experts from OGDs in order to augment its in–house capacity. This practice further supports whole–of–government cooperation and coherence.
  23. Sustaining Canada's Engagement in Acutely Fragile States and Conflict–Affected Situations, Government of Canada (July 2009) at p. 20.
  24. Taken from the Evaluation of the Human Security Program, 2004.
  25. Taken from the 2008–2009 Envelope Strategic Frameworks
  26. The recent Doha meeting in November 2009 have brought together key players and representatives of civil society organizations.
  27. The EU official interviewed has indicated that the EU is considering withdrawing their contribution or at least not providing further financial support until they see progress in spending.
  28. The risk is related to the lost opportunities for spending vis a vis keeping our contribution locked in the Trust Fund.
  29. According the START Representative, these committees will serve as a sounding board for future development of the prison and judiciary system.
  30. As public attention was on Darfur, Canada and the international community have agreed to sipport the AU in its first peace operations. AMIS faced a number of operational challenges and a hybrid UN–AU mission was envisioned. The political negotiation was extensive and resulted in an agreement to transition the AMIS to a hybrid mission. Although the GoS agreed to this mission, mission deployment faced considerable delays.
  31. Several sources including the Sudan Multi–year Strategic Framework.
  32. On 6 March, the "Friends of UNAMID" group was launched with US and Canadian support. The group--comprising Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Tanzania, the UK, the US and the EU--is expected to support UNAMID troop contributors with training and equipment.
  33. A report produced by the by Darfur Integrated Task Force remarked that the mission had challenges executing its mandate.
  34. On 31 July 2007, the Security Council passed resolution 1769 to authorize the establishment of the AU–UN hybrid operations in Darfur to replace AMIS.
  35. Key informants argued that because this cooperation is the first of its kind and the AU is almost learning by doing. Key stakeholders underlined that this learning is paying dividends and that it is now reflected in AU management of the AMISOM operations.
  36. Canada is providing 6 armoured personnel carriers/riot command vehicles (APCs/RCVs). Additional funding of up to $1.0 million has been allocated for FY 09/10 for training for African police and military personnel deploying to UNAMID. Currently, most of the remaining 103 APCs provided as part of AMIS has been withdrawn from operations after replacements were provided by other sources and there are no Canadian personnel in Darfur. Also, the UN requested that Canada withdraw the rented helicopters and fixed wings aircrafts in 2008.
  37. Participants to the courses indicated that they had an increased knowledge and understanding of the mission, benefitted from an exposure to new issues, and had improved attitude and increased confidence. Also, they had an opportunity for networking and used the training materials to guide their day–to day duties – Pearson Peacekeeping Centre (2009), UNAMID Peace Support Training Program, Interim Narrative Report, Ottawa.
  38. Moving troops in Darfur is problematic and attacks still occur.
  39. Some argued that the AEC has not been effective and its capacity is limited to put sufficient pressures on the parties involved.
  40. The first phase of the project was completed and the second phase started in June 2009. CIDA is also implementing a governance project with the Parliamentary Centre as the executing agency
  41. The national DDR coordination Council (NDDRCC) was established by presidential decree to oversee the DDR process at the highest policy level. The North and Southern DDR Commissions were also formed and are responsible for implementing the DDR process.
  42. The 2006 eastern Sudan Peace agreement ended a decade–long conflict between the Government of Sudan and the Eastern Front.
  43. It was reported that The DDR National Coordination Council had not met for over a long period of time.
  44. For example, with regard to the DPA, the Janjaweed argued that the government should start first to disarm themselves and provide security before they ask others to do so.
  45. PRTs first appeared in Afghanistan in 2001, established by the United States (U.S.) in order to facilitate reconstruction efforts outside Kabul. Each PRT, of which there are 25 across the country, consists of a small operating base from which a group of civilian and military specialists work to deliver aid and perform reconstruction projects while providing security for them and other aid workers operating within an area. PRTs are backed by local and international security forces.
  46. CIDA had its own Afghanistan Task Force, and some other departments had parallel units responsible for activities in Afghanistan at this time.
  47. This strategy is called the Kandahar Model Police Projectand was developed by the RCMP contingent deployed to the Canadian Embassy in Kabul.
  48. Although Canadian CIVPOL trainers operate within the framework of the American led Focus District Development (FDD) program, the FDD curriculum was considered to be too focussed on combat skills.
  49. LOTFA was established in 2002 under the authority of the UNDP to cover “all reasonable costs associated with the start–up and operational needs of the police force.” Canada has contributed to the Fund since 2006.
  50. Stabilization Teams are composed of civilian and military personnel with a mandate to extend programming to the outlying districts.
  51. When the GPSF and START was established in 2005 there was considerable, and justifiable, concern over the risk of overlap and duplication of effort between DFAIT and CIDA, resulting in a directive from TB to demarcate the roles and responsibilities of each in a MoU.
  52. Colombia presents an exception in so far as GPSP programming in that country focuses almost exclusively on one sector, the justice sector.
  53. Prior to the KMPP, the U.S. led FDD program was the de factostrategy of engagement in support of the ANP.
  54. As remarked in the Afghan cases study, the absence of policy guidance on how to engage the informal justice sector resulted in programming paralysis in this area.
  55. It is important to note that in the context of Afghanistan, policy leadership resides with FTAG and PCO.
  56. Although IRP has the lead on policy development, strategic planning with respect to specific countries of engagement will remain with IRG.
  57. Note 23 at p. 21.
  58. Ibid at p. 28
  59. The CPA, for example, was amended to permit RCMP officers to participate in peacekeeping missions abroad other than those sanctioned by the UN. The CPA has also recently been amended to allow the recruitment and deployment of retired RCMP officers to augment the RCMP's in–house capacity to respond to deployment requests.
  60. It also bears mentioning that DND has provided START with technical advice and assistance in the design of several GPSF supported projects. A case in point was the provision of medical supplies to the Sierra Leone Reconnaissance Unit (RU) and the Uganda Formed Police Unit (FPU) where DND provided both technical assistance and logistics support.
  61. By one estimate, 60% of project aid to Afghanistan goes to overhead – see “promoting Stability and Development in fragile and Failed States” by Francois, Monica and Indur Sud. Development Policy Review Vol 24, No.2 (March 2006) at pp 141–160.
  62. Findings and Recommendations of an ADM–led interdepartmental group, in consultation with international allies and the SAB.
  63. The Evaluation Team was advised that CIDA possesses the authority to provide core funding to select partners.
  64. Report on the Summative Evaluation of the Canadian Consortium on Human Security (CCHS), Evaluation Division, Office of the Inspector General, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (September, 2007)
  65. All START programming with all UN agencies have been affected.
  66. Following protracted negotiations with the UNDP, a template was finally agreed upon which should expedite the approval of future CAs with the UNDP.
  67. Revisions to the Transfer Payment Policy are reported to have addressed this issue.
  68. A case in point is the equipment support to UNAMID project where the direct purchase authority, within specified limits, was granted to CCC to procure APCs, non–armoured vehicles and communications equipment.
  69. Note 23 at p. 15
  70. It is also worthy of note at this juncture that tensions between START and the country task forces, which are housed in DFAIT's geographic divisions, have largely dissipated.
  71. One exception to this was the development of a strategy by FTAG for justice reform in Kandahar – see Towards a Working Court system: Canada's Justice Sector Reform Strategy for Kandahar City.
  72. Another risk relates to inadvertently providing funding to organizations which may channel resources to criminal or terrorist organizations.
  73. Note 23 at p. 9
  74. Office of the Inspector General
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Date Modified:
2013-01-02