Evaluation and Learning Partnership on Financing Forest and Forest Related Enterprises

Implementation of an evaluation and learning partnership on the topic of financing forest-related enterprises.  The purpose of this learning partnership is to help increase the viability and scale of investments in sustainable forest-related enterprises by harvesting lessons from different types and models of financing tested in the FIP as well as non-CIF investments, and applying learning to ongoing and planned forest investments.  The scope of work will largely focus on non-grant investments into both public and private sector organizations and institutions.  Findings will inform investment plans and strategies for overcoming barriers and effectively financing sustainable forest-related enterprises at scale. 

LTS’ role is to lead the evaluative component of the assignment, including co-development of scope with primary stakeholders, alongside IIED; design and implement the evaluative components of the assignment, based on formative evaluation of FIP projects, development of illustrative case studies, using qualitative methods.; lead the identification of success stories where there has been successful facilitation of private sector investment in sustainable forest-related enterprise, the final analysis, synthesis and reporting, including the identification of transferable lessons on financing of sustainable forest-related enterprises.

As part of the wider global Climate Investment Fund learning, LTS is managing an evaluation and learning partnership on the topic of financing forest-related enterprises within the Forest Investment Program (FIP) portfolio. LTS co-develops the strategic focus and scope of assignment (with IIED and key stakeholders) and designs the evaluative components of the partnership, based on formative evaluation of FIP projects. LTS performs meta-analyses and/or targeted research to complement this evaluative work; and facilitate continuous learning and exchange amongst key user groups. A series of illustrative case studies, using qualitative methods, supplements the portfolio review, meta-analysis, country evaluations focused on private sector investment in sustainable forest-related enterprises through engagement with private sector organisations, multi-lateral fund staff, and relevant non-governmental organisations. LTS will prepare the final analysis, synthesis and reporting across the different components of the assignment and identifying transferable lessons on financing of sustainable forest-related enterprises.

Program Evaluation of the Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP)

The Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP), is a multilateral mechanism to assist in the implementation of pledges made by the G8++ at the L’Aquila Summit in July 2009 and set up in response to a request from the G20 in Pittsburgh in September 2009. GAFSP provides a platform for coordinated donor financing around country programs and sustainable private sector investment.

GAFSP underwent a ’Phase 1 review’, conducted in 2014 by the Meridian Institute. In 2016, the Private Sector Window undertook a ‘formative evaluation’, conducted by Enclude BV.

As the Program approaches its eighth year, and as previously agreed by the Steering and Donor Committees, a more comprehensive programmatic evaluation of GAFSP is appropriate and necessary to take stock of progress to date and inform the Program’s future direction. This Programmatic Evaluation will build on the first phase of the programmatic evaluation and also take account of relevant completed reviews1, including the Private Sector Window’s completed formative evaluation.

The aim of this second phase or ‘mid-term’ program evaluation is to:

  1. a) Assess the development effectiveness of the whole Program to date;
  2. b) Assess the organizational/operational effectiveness of the whole Program to date; and
  3. c) Document lessons and experiences to help guide further refinements to GAFSP’s operational model.

The GAFSP is a multilateral mechanism to assist in the implementation of pledges made by the G8++ at the L’Aquila Summit in July 2009 and set up in response to a request from the G20. GAFSP provides a platform for coordinated donor financing to the agricultural sector via country programs and sustainable private sector investment. As the programme approaches its eighth year, and as previously agreed by the Steering and Donor Committees, GAFSP has commissioned a comprehensive programmatic evaluation to take stock of progress to date and inform the Program’s future direction. The evaluation is assessing the development effectiveness of the whole GAFSP to date, including the organisational and operational effectiveness of the GAFSP. It will also document lessons and experiences to help guide further refinements to GAFSP’s operational model. LTS will undertake a theory-based evaluation using portfolio analysis to assess the extent to which GAFSP is achieving its objectives as well as an assessment of governance and institutional arrangement to assess operational efficiency. We will also carry out a benchmarking assessment to identify the role of GAFSP in relation to other funds, conduct cost analysis, develop country case studies and conduct contribution analysis to understand the GAFSP’s influence on agricultural policy.


Image credit: Neil Palmer

Framework Agreement for Climate, Forestry and Low-Carbon Development

The overall thematic focus of the framework agreement is related to green economy, low carbon development and international climate change policy, especially REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation). The framework agreement will mainly, but not exclusively, be used for consultancy services related to the Norwegian International Climate and Forest Initiative (NICFI). The consultancy services fall within four different types of assignments/call-offs: i) Project proposal appraisals ahead of funding decisions; ii) Mid-term and end-reviews; iii) Technical assessments. This includes follow-up on recommendations from reviews/appraisals; and iv) Technical assistance to partner institutions, including capacity building and training. Assignments completed so far or in progress after the first two months of framework implementation include a Review of the GGGI Programme in Indonesia 2012-2017 and an Appraisal of the project document “Reducing the impact of large-scale agricultural investments in the Mekong region on communities, forest and climate change.”

Evaluation of the Prosperity Fund and Programmes

The Prosperity Fund is a cross-Whitehall £1.3 billion Fund which will run from 2017 – 2022. Its objective is to help promote economic growth in middles-income countries. The Fund is effectively a portfolio of programmes implemented in countries in Latin America (Brazil, Colombia, Mexico), Asia (India, China, Vietnam, Indonesia) amongst others. Programmes are either thematic or country-focussed. The Fund is loosely structured around five thematic areas: infrastructure; human capital, innovation and technology; trade; financial and economic reform; and ease of doing business. The Fund is intended to produce not only primary benefits for target countries (and particularly the poor people in these), but also secondary benefits for UK businesses (through the development of partnerships and market opportunities).

LTS has been contracted to deliver the inception phase of the Prosperity Fund and programme evaluations. In this role, LTS is developing an evaluation approach and methodology, a set of evaluation questions, a revised theory of change and an evaluation work plan amongst other outputs. LTS has a key role in the design of the evaluation. It is managing the inputs from a number of external evaluation specialists and coordinating with the teams undertaking stakeholder engagement and operational aspects of the evaluation in WYG and Integrity.


Image credit: Luke Price

Investments in Forests and Sustainable Land Use for Partnerships for Forests – Evaluation Manager

This assignment supports DFID’s Partnerships for Forests (P4F).   Focused on convening companies and governments, building support for demand-side measures and generating momentum for improved enabling conditions, P4F aims to catalyse increased private investment in sustainable forestry and ‘zero-deforestation’ agriculture.

LTS will support the P4F team and DFID through the design and implementation of an evaluation and learning framework that will generate evidence to support learning and adaptive management.

  • IFSLU is a global initiative, led by DFID.
  • LTS is contracted to lead this £1,154,000, four-year evaluation contract, working with NRI and Aid environment.
  • The contract is to design and implement an evaluation and learning approach for the programme, working closely with P4F.

The evaluation requires a strong focus on evidence and learning, to shape and influence effective outcomes.


Agricultural commodity expansion is the most important driver of forest loss globally. Working with the private sector is essential to ensure that future increases in agricultural and forest production avoid further deforestation.

However, approaches to influencing private sector investment have not had success; in part due to the low value placed by producers and consumers on the social and environmental benefits that forests provide. P4F is an innovative approach to resolving these complex issues and a highly engaged and learning approach to evaluation of it is therefore necessary.


This contract is providing:

  • Utilisation focused, theory-based evaluation to support adaptive management through generation of evaluation evidence and targeted learning activities.
  • A highly collaborative and cooperative approach to developing an overarching evaluation & learning framework for the entire IFSLU programme in partnership with the programme implementers (P4F).

The LTS team is responsible for implementing the E&L framework at the outcome level of the programme, ensuring learning across programme activities, and supporting adaptive management and knowledge management within P4F.   

Value and benefits

The evaluation and learning framework will support adaptive management to improve performance of P4F based on its experiences and those of others working on similar sectors or initiatives. Through the use of regular feedback loops that support evidence-based learning and build capacity for self-reflection by the P4F, the LTS team will help ensure that the evaluation findings inform strategy, management decision-making.



Image credit: Bob Wick

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Mid-Term Evaluation of the NAMA Facility

The NAMA Facility has been working since 2013 to support developing countries and emerging economies that show leadership on tackling climate change and that want to implement ambitious climate protection measures (ie Nationally Appropriate mitigation Actions – NAMAs).

LTS was contracted to carry out the Mid-term Evaluation (MTE) of the NAMA Facility.

  • The Facility is funded by Germany, the UK, Denmark and the EC and is managed by a Technical Support Unit (TSU) jointly run by GIZ and KfW.
  • The NAMA Facility specifically addresses the demand for tailor-made climate finance by funding the implementation of ambitious country-led NAMAs, thus delivering concrete greenhouse gas reductions.
  • GIZ contracted LTS to carry out the Mid-term Evaluation (MTE) of the first three proposal funding rounds managed by the Facility, representing €145m.

The MTE is strongly formative: the deliverables will inform further development of the Facility and improvements in its systems.


The NAMA Facility was officially announced by Germany and the United Kingdom at COP18 in Doha, 2012, and €120m committed.  It has since been further funded to €175m by Denmark, the European Commission (EC) and additional UK International Climate Fund (ICF) funding was approved in 2015. It is innovative and involves numerous partners in its governance and implementation.

An external MTE of the NAMA Facility was requested to analyse and improve the understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the Facility, including its governance and management, and the NAMA support project portfolio from the first 3 calls for proposals. It was also assessed in terms of its relevance to different stakeholders, including recipient countries, donors and Delivery Organisations; and consider improvements to its implementation.


LTS has led and managed a mixed methods theory-based MTE, including:

  • Strategic oversight, operational management and coordination of the contract and all related communication and interaction.
  • Design and application of evaluation methodology and data collection tools, using both qualitative and quantitative data (mixed methods including portfolio analysis, evaluation tailored rubrics, cross case comparative analysis for successful and unsuccessful applications, institutional systems review, comparative assessment, data synthesis methods, VfM analysis, perception surveys, and Theory of Change analysis).

Facilitating exchanges of experiences and identifying improvements, lessons learned and best practice to inform the NAMA Facility.

 Values and benefits

This formative evaluation will inform further development of the Facility and improvements in its systems for enhanced effectiveness and impact.

The MTE has explored the role the Facility plays in the context of the wider landscape of climate financing, including its influence in relation to the NDCs and LEDS that provide the framework within which specific NAMA actions may be coordinated and supported. This includes understanding the implications of the Paris COP agreements and the capitalisation of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) on the strategic relevance of the Facility.  

Review of Civil Society Organisations working on REDD+

The Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad) provides grants to civil society organisations (CSOs) working on climate and forest issues in developing countries through its Civil Society Department. Norad currently supports several CSOs that implement projects in DRC. Norad has provided grants to CSOs since 2009, and will enter into new agreements for the period 2016-2020. Amongst the prioritized countries for the grant scheme is the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

This external review is part of the overall assessment of selected Norad grant recipients working with climate and forest issues in DRC. The review assesses the results of four CSOs funded by the Civil Society Department under the current grant period (2010-2015). The findings from the review will inform Norad’s decisions regarding continuation or adjustments of future cooperation with the organisations in the upcoming grant period from 2016-2020. The light-touch review describes, assesses and verifies the results achieved over the last 5-6 years. The scope includes the Rights and Resources Initiative (RRI), World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Rainforest Foundation Norway (RFN) and Care Norway.

LTS has led the theory based evaluation. The evaluation included the design of the evaluation framework, and interviews and focus group sessions with relevant stakeholders.

Development of Methodologies to Assess Changes in Carbon Stock for Managed Conservation Areas

This assignment provides RSPO with information to guide the development of an approach to account for net-greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from conservation areas within oil palm plantations. An initial methodology was proposed to provide a framework for further development of accounting approaches. The proposed methodology seeks balance the need for accurate assessment of GHG emissions and removals with the feasibility of implementing the approach given current data availability, and the resource and capacity constraints faced by plantation managers. Calculation approaches for assessing GHG emissions and removals in natural forest areas maintained within palm oil plantations as buffers or because of their high conservation value have not been developed in the current version of PalmGHG. This assignment explores accounting approaches and methodological options that could allow RSPO members to include conservation areas in future GHG accounting. It aims to provide RSPO with information to guide the development of a GHG accounting approach that can be integrated with PalmGHG for assessing GHG emissions and removals from managed conservation areas within RSPO oil palm plantations.

Climate Private Public Partnership Programme – Monitoring and Evaluation

CP3 aims to increase the amount of funding in private equity for climate investments through directly funding two commercially run private equity funds with a leveraging effect of bringing on board other donors and other institutional investors. LTS provides rigorous M&E of CP3, for both accountability and learning, to inform on-going delivery and to help mitigate some of the risks associated with this highly innovative programme.

  • DFID/DECC funded; CPI is the lead partner; total LTS budget is about £200k
  • The CP3 project is a total of £130 million, mainly invested in two private equity funds managed by the ICF- Catalyst Fund and the ADB run Asia Climate Partners. The portfolio also includes smaller investments which are aimed at addressing regulatory and market barriers to climate friendly investments.
  • LTS provides support in monitoring and evaluating the development outcomes of the CP3 investment. The overall evaluation approach focuses on assessing impact dimensions, including financial leverage, human development impacts and transformational impacts, such as the creation of financial infrastructure and local capital markets.


To drive low-carbon climate resilient growth in developing countries, private finance for climate friendly investments needs to be mobilized at scale, but the market remains sceptical. To test, stimulate and mobilize finance, CP3 is participating as an equity investor in two private equity funds. These investments – while expected to deliver climate and development benefits – are also expected to provide commercial returns to the UK Government. The ability to generate commercial returns is central to the CP3 theory of change – demonstrating to the market that climate investments are feasible and profitable.  This will help unlock additional private finance.

This is conceptually innovative, so capturing the results and testing the original theory of change model and its underlying assumptions is critical.


LTS has supported the design and implementation of a robust theory-based monitoring and evaluation strategy for the entire CP3 programme that:

  • Assesses the success of the CP3 programme in driving low-carbon, climate resilient growth in developing countries.
  • Tests the transformational effects of CP3 and the theory of change and its underlying assumptions.
  • Uses utilisation and realist approaches to identify key findings and recommendations.
  • Relies on a mixed methods approach, including case study and portfolio level analysis to identify portfolio level trends, rubrics and contribution analysis to triangulate key findings.
  • Uses data collection and indicator selection methods including key informant interviews, evaluator judgement, indicator proxies, survey data and field site data.

Makes recommendations to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the CP3 programmes and disseminates evaluation approaches and lessons learned to HMG offices and more widely. 

Value and benefits

The focus is on ensuring that evidence from M&E feeds back into programming decisions and tests the design assumptions of the CP3 model – particularly important given the innovative concept of using private investment for development benefits.  Lessons and evidence will be of interest to when designing new programmes in this space.