Development and Globalization: Facts and Figures2016 United Nations Conference on Trade and Development

Target 17.15: Policies for poverty eradication and sustainable development

Respect each country’s policy space and leadership to establish and implement policies for poverty eradication and sustainable development.

The Inter-agency Expert Group on Sustainable Development Goal Indicators (IAEG-SDG) selected Extent of use of country-owned results frameworks and planning tools by providers of development cooperation as the appropriate indicator to benchmark progress. To provide a comprehensive measure on the extent of use of country-owned results frameworks and other government planning tools, the indicator should calculate the degree to which objectives, results indicators and monitoring frameworks associated with new development interventions are drawn from government sources (United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Statistics Division, 2015). In other words, this indicator should assess the degree of alignment between donor support and a developing country’s goals priorities. It should also measure the degree to which each country’s policy space and development policies are respected. In so doing, it should also attempt to record the policy design, system of results-reporting and assessment mechanisms or country-led results frameworks that each country has put in place. Analyses of this indicator must recognize that accountability needs to be balanced with the need to learn and exchange knowledge and experiences as different stakeholders may approach common developmental challenges in quite different ways.

The Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation (GPEDC)17.63 established at the Fourth High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness in Busan, in 2011, with the aim of fostering engagement and sharing knowledge to agree on and implement the principles of effective development cooperation17.64 (EDC). Arising from this, a monitoring framework, building on the experiences and lessons of international monitoring efforts since the 2005 Paris Declaration17.65 was proposed in 2012 in order to better respond to developing countries’ demand for a global accountability framework that could support their national implementation efforts. The monitoring framework incorporates five TRUST principles: (1) transparency; (2) risk-sharing; (3) use and strengthening of country systems; (4) strengthening of capacity; and (5) timely and predictable aid. The framework is coordinated jointly by UNDP and OECD and aims to provide evidence on progress and identify opportunities and obstacles in the implementation of EDC.

The EDC monitoring framework comprises 10 indicators: (1) development cooperation is focused on results that meet developing countries’ priorities17.66; (2) civil society operates within an environment which maximizes its engagement in and contribution to development17.67; (3) engagement and contribution of the private sector to development17.68; (4) transparency: information on development cooperation is publicly available17.69; (5) development cooperation is more predictable17.70; (6) aid is on budgets which are subject to parliamentary scrutiny17.71; (7) mutual accountability among development cooperation actors is strengthened through inclusive reviews17.72; (8) gender equality and women’s empowerment17.73; (9) effective institutions: developing countries’ systems are strengthened and used17.74; (10) aid is untied17.75. These indicators attempt to measure progress towards making development cooperation more effective in specific areas related to EDC principles: ownership, focus on results, inclusive development partnerships, transparency and mutual accountability among partners.

Indicator 1 of the GPEDC monitoring framework is measured by the Proportion of providers of development cooperation using country results frameworks. These frameworks define a country’s approach to monitoring and evaluating progress towards development. They include objectives, indicators, a baseline and targets to measure progress in implementing them and achieving outputs, outcomes and impacts, as stated in national development strategies, sector plans and other frameworks (for example, budget support performance matrices). Such frameworks should ideally have been developed through participatory processes involving relevant national stakeholders (OECD and UNDP, 2014). The indicator aims to capture the relationship between the proportion of funding that is allocated to support national priorities versus expenditure programmes, the way in which this funding is disbursed, and its links to the country’s results framework. To account for some of these important aspects, the indicator has been designed to draw on a combination of quantitative and qualitative information.

At the time of writing no data are yet available. The indicator has been piloted by eight participating countries17.76 in coordination with a number of providers of development cooperation17.77. Following this initial pilot stage, further discussions and consultations are needed before the methodology can be validated. OECD and UNDP report (OECD and UNDP, 2014) that preliminary results from the pilot study indicate considerable variation in the use of country results frameworks. They also note that the current construction of the indicator may lead to a large variation in behaviour among development cooperation providers being hidden. But they caution that owing to the limited sample size, the conclusions from the pilot study cannot be generalized. A second monitoring round is being conducted during 2015-2016 and results are expected to be available in the fourth quarter of 2016.