Remarks On Behalf Of The CDB: MfDR AND PRODEV Evaluation Tool (PET) Validation Workshop

Mr Isaac Anthony, Permanent Secretary/Director of Finance, other public sector officials, workshop participants, colleagues from the Caribbean Development Bank, members of the media, ladies and gentlemen.
First, I wish on behalf of the Caribbean Development Bank, to welcome all of you but especially the workshop participants to this workshop; secondly to congratulate the country's decision-makers for committing to the adoption of the Management for Development Results (MfDR) approach to managing the development process in St.Lucia and as a consequence for giving their support for this workshop and  its overall objectives. Ultimately this workshop is about enhancing St.Lucia's capacity to fully realize the development agenda it has set for itself. 

This Management for Development Results project seeks to strengthen the capacity of public sector officials in the OECS to manage for results and is funded jointly by the CDB and the Inter-American Development Bank.
I am aware that most or all workshop participants have had some prior exposure to the PRODEV Evaluation Tool and there is more to come during this workshop.  However, while I shall avoid pre-empting the work of the workshop facilitators, I want to briefly describe our understanding of MfDR.  It is both (i) a management approach and (ii) a set of tools for strategic planning, progress monitoring, outcome evaluation performance, results reporting, and organizational improvement and learning.
 
It can be used in both the public and private sector and applied to a variety of interventions at all levels - country, sector, program, project and organization. As a management approach/strategy MfDR is focused on development performance and sustainable development outcomes/results in countries, organizations and projects.

Results management improves performance as a management strategy which is focused on development performance and sustainable development outcomes.
Hence, it has been agreed for some time by stakeholders in the wider development community that the effectiveness of development aid will be based to a large extent on measurable/demonstrable results. In the case of the CDB, our MfDR approach is constantly being improved in order to measure the efficiency and effectiveness of our interventions through both of Ordinary Capital Resource window and the Special Funds Resource pools which are the main sources of soft loans, grants and technical assistance funding to our member countries.  Hence the value and importance of all these efforts at embedding results management cannot be under-estimated.
Some important features of the results management culture we seek to encourage include:

  • Adaptability to changing circumstances - Countries and organizations exist in a similar state of flux. Concentrated efforts are required to remain relevant and to continue achieving results in a constantly changing environment.  Results management, when properly implemented, represents a viable and powerful strategy for effectively meeting this challenge.
  • Effective teamwork - Implementing results management is best done using a blend of top-down and bottom-up approaches; it is essential to take into account the preferences and needs of staff, partners, and other stakeholders.  Participatory processes should be an integral part of designing results management approaches, both in order to identify basic constraints and to ensure that the voices of those who will use the systems are heard.  
  • Organizational flexibility and openness to innovation and creativity - Results management will not work in an organizational culture wedded to strict hierarchies, tight management control, and rigid compliance with rules and procedures.  This may sound ironical for an audience such as this one, since most public sector organizations tend to be rules-based and value compliance and predictability.  However, in today's circumstances of constant change in the economic and social environment and the continuous emergence of new challenges, public service management must also include those approaches which encourage innovation and flexibility. 
  • Persistence The implementation of the MfDR approach involves a significant commitment of human and financial resources time. However, there is no one standard approach to introducing the principles which underpin MfDR into organizations.  Many organizations have adopted an evolutionary approach to integrating the principles of managing for results into their planning and management structure while others have opted for more complex approaches. Whatever approach is adopted, the requirement for persistence and commitment remains common to successful implementation.  
  • Knowledge management - Measures to retain institutional know-how and information are partly facilitated by information and communication technologies (ICTs) but also require a commitment to and focus on results. Knowledge Management systems are an integral part of MfDR approaches and   are useful for effectively exploiting and transferring existing practices and techniques as well as standardizing work practices, although  they remain limited for managing non-routine knowledge. All successful organizations must deal with non-routine problems.  Emerging models of collaboration, specifically the role of Web technologies-blogs, wikis, and knowledge markets etc provide solutions for managing non-routine knowledge such as, coping with a changing environment or responding to a crisis (natural disaster and economic/financial shock).


All of the countries participating in this initiative already display some of these characteristics in their approach to results management.  This joint CDB-IDB initiative in which St.Lucia and other OECS countries are actively participating, will further develop these countries' existing capacity to manage for result through firstly, sensitizing senior public officials to the key principles, tools and techniques of MfDR; secondly, by assisting you in conducting a comprehensive diagnostic assessment of the entire results management cycle; and thirdly, through working with you to pinpoint priority areas for intervention.  Most importantly, we anticipate the validation of the PRODEV Evaluation Tool report and, following this validation, the natural transition to the project's action planning phase for addressing the agreed intervention areas. 
This MfDR project will also draw upon much of the work previously undertaken by St.Lucia and other development partners in public sector reform.
 It is CDB's expectation, and that of the IDB, that this workshop and the wider MfDR initiative will yield significant benefits to the people of St.Lucia.  In keeping with this expectation, the IDB will assist with the requisite financial resources towards St.Lucia's execution of the priority action plans prepared under this project. CDB will also continue to provide technical assistance and other relevant support, where necessary, for realizing your desired development outcomes.      
    In closing, I wish you two days of stimulating and productive work at the end of which, you would have covered significant ground towards charting a clear and irreversible course for embedding MfDR and a culture of results in the St.Lucia public service.

I thank you for your kind attention.

 

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