Specialist Evaluation and Quality Assurance Services

DFID is placing a strong emphasis internally on the development and strengthening of programme M&E skills. At the same time, DFID is becoming a more “intelligent consumer” and commissioner of high quality monitoring reviews and evaluations, including the synthesis of evidence and strategic evaluation analysis.

Specialist Evaluation and Quality Assurance Services (SEQAS) delivers a range of core evaluation and monitoring services to support an improvement in the effectiveness and efficiency of DFID programme performance. The services also support the development of programmes funded through the UK Government 2.9 billion pounds International Climate Fund (ICF), jointly managed by DFID, the Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy (BEIS, formerly DECC) and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

As part of the IOD consortium, LTS provides expert advice on M&E planning and design. This helps staff from the three organisations to make strategic choices from the range of appropriate methods, approaches and designs for monitoring reviews and evaluations, including theory of change design, business case development and impact evaluation. We also provide quality assurance services for M&E design, implementation and delivery.

Image credit: European Commission DG ECHO

Final evaluation of Non Timber Forest Products-Participatory Forest Management project in SW Ethiopia

The project’s overall objective was “to maintain a forested landscape to support improved livelihoods of local, forest-dependent, communities and thereby ensure the delivery of environmental services in a wider context” in the highlands of south-west Ethiopia. It intended to achieve this objective by developing and promoting local forest management and forest-based economic incentives with integrated practices of Non-timber Forest Products (NTFP) and forest product development, for different people/forest scenarios. The project has been implemented jointly by three partners: the University of Huddersfield (UHUD) in the UK (the contractor to the EU), the Ethio-Wetlands and Natural Resources Association (EWNRA) in Ethiopia, and Sustainable Livelihood Action (SLA) in the Netherlands.

The main outputs and areas of work of the project included: 1) Effective Participatory Forest Management (PFM) approach developed and implemented in the majority of the project area. 2) Benefits to communities from sustainable forest management increased. 3) Strengthened PFM support / services delivered from government officers and Development Agents. 4) Economically viable forest management and forest enterprise development institutions operating. 5) Forest proclamation and regulations development and implementation influenced in support of devolved forest management (PFM). 6) Government enabled to develop participatory land use planning and intensify land use and domesticated production of forest products.

LTS prepared an evaluation and sampling frame, data collection instruments & methodology for field work; undertook field work including conduct of interviews and secondary data review; analysed evidence and reviewed the project design theory; assessed the scope and potential for climate financing of participatory forest management (specifically VCS/CCBA, Plan Vivo or any broader PES schemes) at local and landscape scales; and revised the Project logical Framework and prepared the Final Evaluation Report and recommendations.

Image Credit: Benoit Rivard