|An Independent Evaluation Report of the Cities Alliance is released
The Cities Alliance “has succeeded in establishing a unique platform for international urban development cooperation,” bringing together key actors including bilateral donors, multilateral organizations, associations of cities and NGOs. This was the overall conclusion of the recently concluded Independent Evaluation of the Cities Alliance, released on April 16, 2012.
The evaluation found that the demand-side relevance of the Cities Alliance has been strong from the outset, and this relevance has further increased with the new Cities Alliance Charter (adopted November 2010) and business model. This is resulting in “improved coherence of effort among members and partners,” and the Alliance’s new country programme approach “has very promising potential in establishing new ways of organizing urban development cooperation.”
The evaluation was commissioned by the Cities Alliance Consultative Group and undertaken by COWI A/S of Denmark during 2011. Previous independent evaluations were undertaken in 2002 and 2006.
On supply-side relevance, the evaluators found that the Alliance’s work “is complementary to other programmes, with no major overlaps,” and that the Cities Alliance “has a good professional reputation.”
The evaluation offered several recommendations for improving programme outcomes, including elaboration of a clear and concise strategic results framework, supported by a robust monitoring and evaluation system. “Progress has been slow in this area,” the evaluation found. This framework is even more important now, “in light of the considerable changes that have taken place as result of the reform process.”
In addressing this point, Cities Alliance Manager William Cobbett said, “While the evaluation noted that inclusion of a results framework in the business plan is an important first step, much more needs to be done. We have moved quickly to address these recommendations.” Cobbett said the Secretariat will update the Cities Alliance Executive Committee on progress on this and other recommendations at the June 2012 meeting of the Committee.
Other recommendations include “further enhance cooperation with members on knowledge & learning and advocacy & communications”, and to make more information available to non-members so as “to increase transparency and enhance communication.”
The full evaluation report is available here