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Annex 4 : Assessment of participatory processes in national forest programmes


Republic of Uganda



Assessment of participatory processes in national forest programmes

 Ugandan Experience

 Community of Practice

24-25 November 2003


Scott Geller

LTS International Ltd.


Stephen Khaukha

Forestry Inspection Division, Uganda




 After 4 years of planning (1999-2002), the National Forest Plan (NFP) formulation stage culminating in the Uganda Forestry Policy (2001), National Forest Plan (2002) and National Forestry and Tree Planting Act (2003). The long consultative process has been a mark of ownership of the forest sector reform process, and a basis for the implementation of the NFP, which clearly defines roles and responsibilities of stakeholders.

 Implementation during the NFPs initial years will focus on institutional development at central and local government levels, and continuous support to fulfil the needs and priorities of a young but maturing, private sector and network of civil society organisations.

 In practical terms the new forestry legislation provides for the most significant reform to affect the forest sector in 100 years - the establishment of the National Forestry Authority and the District Forestry Service to replace the Forestry Department. The challenge is now to use this opportunity to allow forestry to make its impact on poverty eradication throughout the country.

 This paper outlines how the NFP process has unfolded, briefly describes the way in which participation was assessed, and demonstrates key lessons that concern the assessment of participation in Uganda's NFP that may apply elsewhere.


Participatory process

 Participation in all aspects of the word has characterised the Uganda NFP formulation process. What does this imply? It means that deliberate investments were made by NFP organisers to discuss the vast array of issues facing the forestry sector, listen to the views of those concerned, and present decisions publicly in such a way that people understand the background, result and how the decision affects them.

 The NFP participatory process can be traced back and linked to the forestry policy formulation processes, and a series of other inter-linked sectoral planning activities. Government established the Forest Sector Umbrella Programme in 1999 with both international and national support and commitment, to co-ordinate and developed a series of sector reforms culminating in the development of the NFP.

 The Programme been steered by the cross-sectoral Forest Sector Co-ordination Committee with membership from central and local government, the private sector and civil society, and supported by the Forest Sector Co-ordination Secretariat (hereafter called the Secretariat) located within the Ministry of Water, Lands and Environment. In tandem with the Programme, the NFP process was guided by a 12 member Steering Group, and 7 Working Groups with 73 members from a diverse range of interest and specialisms.

 Over the past 5 years (1999-2003), the Secretariat, recently succeeded by the Forestry Inspection Division (FID), has organised 4 National Consultative Conferences, conducted 3 separate rounds of Regional Workshops involving all 56 districts with an attendance of 1,000 plus individuals during each of the 3 rounds. A livelihoods study was conducted in 9 districts to listen to the voices of poor people and better understand influencing forestry issues particular to them. A master-list of forestry-related initiatives in Uganda resulted from a comprehensive Review of Initiatives that recorded 673 initiatives distributed across the country and studied 44 of them in detail. NFP organisers continue with a programme of in-depth focus group meetings to clarify issues and develop rapport with stakeholder groups.[1]

 The organisation of participatory processes during the NFP formulation has always involved representation from different actors, both carefully considered for different purposes and different levels of engagement (national, regional and local level). The participant's list often involved the politician, the administrator, the technician, the organised civil society organisation, the researcher, many large and small-scale tree farmers, each of the forest resource users, and many others.


Assessment of participation

 Participation in the Uganda NFP process was never formally assessed through a complete exercise of engagement with its extensive cast of characters. In 2002, a team of two independent consultants used the NFP Qualitative Assessment Tool (QAT) to gather a quick and dirty view on how the NFP process was taking shape and who was involved[2]. The QAT provided a cohesive framework of 'process-oriented' criteria and indicators that reflected the current thinking on NFPs.

 In Uganda, the QAT was used as a checklist of assessment indicators to understand how participation was being institutionalised in moving along the forestry reform "road map". Its users found that for participation to be done well, worth the opportunity cost of engagement and sustains a lasting impact, the process must:

  •  Be well organised, with clear team / group structures, procedures and ways of working.

  • Clarify roles and responsibilities, with each participant knowing what s/he is doing and what others are doing.

  • Build on individual strengths, and use each participants knowledge and skills appropriately.

  • Resolve disagreements, deal overtly with conflict, and bring about trust and honesty.

  • Provide open and direct communication channels that solicit suggestions and build on ideas.

  • Produce objective decisions, reached through consensus.

  • Focus on results that meet time scales, budgets and deliver quality commitments.


In carrying out their work, the architects of QAT found it beneficial to consider how other monitoring and evaluation (M&E) frameworks presented qualitative aspects of mainstay NFP components (e.g., policy, legal and institutional reform exercises)[3]. With this knowledge and experience brought together, the current version of QAT is structured along four distinct levels of assessment:

 Level One: Institutional arrangements that guide the NFP: what characterises the organisation of actors involved (e.g., supervision and operational control), so as to co-ordinate and drive forestry reform process.

 Level Two: Principles that govern the NFP: what is unique and/or characterises the NFP process (e.g., participation, inter-sectoral coordination, etc.), so as to negotiate the forestry reform agenda.

Level Three: Triggers and outcomes of the NFP: what are key support areas (e.g., setting up an autonomous forest service) and subsequent targets realised (e.g., better private forestry), so as to sustain the forestry sector.

 Level Four: Outputs delivered by the NFP: what characterises the policy instruments and/or products (e.g., sector reviews), so as to pave a realistic way forward.

 The initial brief QAT exercise was conducted in Kampala over a 10-day period by the two consultants. Conclusions from the assessment are implicit to the lessons captured below, covering levels 1 to 3 under the QAT.

 Since the QAT exercise, the two authors of this technical paper have considered participation throughout the NFP process under a more critical lense. Our open access to written documentation, direct facilitation of focus group discussions, and being orchestrator's of workshop fora, all have helped us understand participation.


Lessons learnt

 The influential factors and relevant indicators to assess participation

 In line with the QAT framework, lessons learnt from levels 1 to 3 are described in this section.

 Level 1: Institutional arrangements that guide the NFP

 QAT explores the organisational links between the various actors, including associated responsibilities in terms of operational control, technical support and policy co-ordination.  Four relevant lessons have emerged.

 Ongoing policy and strategy development to supervise and oversee the NFP. A broadly represented NFP Co-ordination Committee served its initial purpose during the formulation stage, and benefited from being located outside the Forestry Department. The Committee however was deliberately shelved once its driving members recognised its limited inter-ministerial co-ordination role that was required for a credible and embracing NFP process. In early 2002, NFP organisers lobbied hard to nestle NFP planning within the Natural Resources Sub-Committee under the Plan for Modernisation of Agriculture. Although the Sub-Committee is not specific to the forestry agenda, it offers the same membership as the Co-ordination Committee, and represents a more visible, sophisticated platform for policy dialogue. Its profiled chairpersonship gives forestry a leg up, and has been able to bring the poverty focused NFP agenda to the highest stratospheres of national planning. By avoiding the establishment of parallel co-ordination structures, the Sub-Committee has assumed a fundamental role in pushing a forestry indicator into the Poverty Reduction Support Credit (PRSC) matrix.

Lesson 1.1. A focus on forestry specific steering groups and extent of stakeholder representation are not always the most suitable indicators for M&E. Leadership, credibility of the group, getting a political champion to support the cause, and access to the high policy table dialogue influence the quality, impact, performance and sustainability of the process.

 Everyday process management and facilitation to co-ordinate and drive the NFP. A dynamic NFP Co-ordination Unit known as the Secretariat has exerted a great deal of resources on managing many high level processes (e.g., policy development, NFP co-ordination, and creation of new forestry institutions). In its previous institutional form as an agile Secretariat, it benefited from management freedoms to procure and deliver outside government processes, and often progressed at a significantly faster pace than its parent ministry. Bureaucratic inertia within the Ministry of Water, Lands and Environment, and the civil service in general, somehow limited the pace of progress. Regardless of these factors, the Secretariat has been very effective in delivery of outputs due to its accessibility to key policy-makers in and outside the forestry arena, secure financial backing, good balance of technical and process management capacity, and strong support from the minister responsible for forestry. As a result, the NFP is driven with adequate propensity to undertake credible participatory processes.  

Lesson 1.2. The Secretariat drove and determined the level of participation during planning. Efficiency and sustainability was dependent on its internal management capacity, ability to form strategic alliances key individuals, manage these relationships amidst civil service traditions. Willingness to take bold moves and position itself within the margins of government structures were important factors.

 Ad hoc planning groups to provide technical advisory support. Uganda's NFP has involved 7 Working Groups covering topics framed and eventually integrated into the Uganda Forest Policy and the NFP document. In the early days, some of the Working Groups were as much (if not more) about ‘influencing’ as they were about ‘working’. Attendance records and attitudes amongst participants illustrate the concept of ‘working’ in a ‘group’ may be over simplified. In some instances the Groups were regarded by group convenors as more detrimental than productive to the planning process. The outcome, lots of resources (time and money) was spent working with a good, but not excellent set of stakeholders. In those cases where groups met expectations; limited vested personal interest, strong leadership and sound technical capacity were identified as success factors in delivering transparent results. At the same time, the identification of a core inner circle of 'doers', and a level of ownership taken on by those previously not convinced, helped the Secretariat identify constructive, able and willing individuals ready to make contributions as the processes limped along. 

Lesson 1.3. The quality, cost, performance and outcomes delivered by a Working Group directly relate to organisational aspects. The groups size, continuity and synergy between its members and chairperson, manner in which vested personal and institutional interest are managed, capacity to interpret issues and devise solutions are all important factors for M&E.

 Annual national stakeholder forums to facilitate dialogue. The National Consultative Conference has been used to guide and firmly establish Uganda's forest sector priorities, set by those on the core and periphery of NFP dialogue. For 4 years running it has been professionally organised and mediated, bringing a wide set of interest groups, over 120 participants, together to listen and learn. This was not only been costly, but challenging in terms of organisation, and the quality of information gathered during the process. As a result, the profile of forestry and its cross-cutting issues have been significantly raised during this time period. Individuals and institutions can associate with forestry, and now there is a forum that gives them this opportunity. The role of the Conference as a platform for consensus and policy building between national interests and local needs has been essential to keep the process country driven in nature and has given the Secretariat a basis to hold public figures accountable to political statements. A means or entry point to continue with participation. 

Lesson 1.4. In terms of cost effectiveness and impact, the Conference needs to structure debate and negotiate in such a way that the Minister to the small farmer can relate, measuring the balance of technical and political content is important for M&E, and how outcomes feed and are sustained within public planning processes.

Level 2: Principles that govern the NFP 

QAT explores the principles that characterise 'process', agreed with provisions that their incorporation would help overcome bottlenecks plaguing past forest sector-wide initiatives. Government ownership, inter-sectoral co-ordination and awareness raising are particularly important in Uganda. Three relevant lessons have emerged. 

(1). Ensuring government ownership that drives the process. In Uganda, a country where 52% of the country's cashflow is subject to donor contributions, structured involvement of the donor contingency is a fundamental part of the NFP process. Many insiders would argue that government's ability to communicate the NFP process to fit within donor terms and conditions, often sporadic in nature (e.g., budget support as a recent policy shift), is a true test of who is in the drivers' seat. At first the donors met infrequently, to share views, ideas and experiences, as a forum for wider review.  Over the years communication between the donors, through the Secretariat, has improved, and some very practical partnerships have been developed. Process-oriented interventions that offer flexibility in planning and budgeting have been critical for the Secretariat (a short-term strategic donor backed institution) to manevour through complex policy processes, while retaining an adequate degree of government ownership. For the most part, relationships between relevant actors in host governments, their development partners (and respective contractors) are supportive. 

Lesson 2.1. The capacity of civil servants to deal with their development partners is crucial for managing relationships. The extent to which firm conditions are set, the manner in which communication takes place between parties, and the ability of the contracted change agent to manage multiple masters are important indicators for an M&E process. 

Strengthening inter-sectoral co-ordination at national and local levels. At a minimum, ‘co-ordination’ can begin with communication and sharing of information - letting people know what’s going on.  It can extend up to ensuring that all the players in the sector, working together towards shared goals, made all decisions collectively. Before the Secretariat could co-ordinate the sector with others, it had to know what we were bringing together – a broad understanding of the sector and all its players and their attributes is extremely helpful to designing the right kind of co-ordination approaches. On a national level, co-ordination is evident through the emergence of cross-sectoral planning inertia evolving with a new Environment and Natural Resources Sector SWAP, led by a Working Group that involves all relevant ministries. Since its inception in 2000, forestry has, and continues to be very effective in arguing its cross-cutting sectoral features through this forum. As exciting as the national SWAP, for the first time in 100+ years a long established sector tradition of exclusiveness is being broken. Although still too early to judge outcomes, co-ordination of relevant productive sectors via District Forestry Development Planning processes is now taking place in 4 of the 56 districts.  

Lesson 2.2. The Secretariat was able to informally lobby, maximise personal contacts to bring people together, and deal with trade-offs at the national levels by taking advantage of an emerging willingness to ‘join-up’ sister institutions. The spirit of forestry advisory support decentralised in districts has led to far-reaching approaches to planning that now involve officials outside the Department, and hopefully will be mainstreamed within the district development budgeting cylces and plans.  

Communicating forestry issues in a professional manner to raise awareness. Generating 'societal dialogue' through closed workshops is evidently not adequate. Widespread marketing initiatives that place a new face or image of forestry is what is needed during change processes. Uganda has used media programmes with changing themes to keep people interested in sectoral developments that impact their lives. An effective information dissemination strategy was informed from a baseline survey on stakeholders’ awareness and perceptions of forestry issues. The marketing efforts benefited from professional communications support, and our vibrant production of material, especially the policy statement and briefing notes is a positive feature that distinguishes us from our African neighbours. Radio is used as an appropriate medium for distributing information on political matters. Regular monthly external newsletters, done jointly with forestry advocates were obvious ways to facilitate information flows. Bumper stickers and Tree Talk magazine were excellent to bring on board schools and the public at large. The role of communication is often under-emphasised, and under-budgeted, but it has been critical. The initial budget of USD$ 90,000 projected over 5 years ended up being roughly USD$ 800,000.  

Lesson 2.3. Impact from a visible communication effort is found by an increased profile of forestry, press coverage is now common, and public awareness is most definitely raised. Co-ordinated efforts with other players should be done to reduce costs, and targeting the young is one way to have long-lasting impact. 


Level Three: Triggers and outcomes from the NFP

 QAT explores the various substantive 'elements' that the NFP concept evokes, including triggers or driving forces, improving the policy and regulatory environment, that will lead to desired outcomes of better partnerships in governance and able sector institutions. Six relevant lessons emerge. 

Identifying stakeholder groups and reviewing qualitative issues influencing the forest sector. At the beginning of reforms, public perceptions of forestry had become strongly linked to negative perceptions of the Forestry Department.  In order to develop more integrated forest policy, a sector review was conducted to help understand the key issues, players, and dynamics of the sector. Within this context, the Review of Initiatives (RoI) provided a qualitative balance to a typical technical review process, by capturing and learning from ‘voices from the field’. The RoI was useful to demonstrate that ‘forestry’ extended beyond the Forestry Department, to a wide range of players across the sector, and helped those involved in policy development to understand what the activities, distribution, motivations and needs of those players were. During the RoI process, natural suspicions of motives for collecting information were afloat. These could have been avoided if the purpose of the exercise was communicated more clearly to those involved. 

Lesson 3.1. As far as impact, the RoI has strengthened the case for linkages of livelihoods data with forestry, and forestry-related questions are now mainstreamed within the national household survey. In terms of quality and extent, the process was very successful in capturing many unheard voices. 

Developing a forest policy that is nationally-owned and addresses concerns beyond the Forestry Department. In Uganda, developing the policy was a process of moving from suspicion and conflict to building consensus and confidence, through extensive consultation. There were a number of underlying conflicts in the policy discussions and the Secretariat had to deal with these. The consultative policy process really brought ownership – the Policy would not have been accepted or really noticed without it.  At the policy formulation stage it would have been easier to just publish a document drafted by a consultant as done in other countries, but it would not have been effective. Persistent invitations to consultations and time were important, and building on the RoI results forced the Forestry Department staff to see outside their narrow box. Engagement and getting commitment amongst doubters meant working though a sector vision with the participation of many new players, and selling far-reaching ideas within the corridors of an uncooperative Forestry Department and key ministries. The policy, at the output stage, became a neutral and widely accepted rallying point for further reforms. 

Lesson 3.2. In terms of cost effectiveness, policy formulation was the first costly endeavour, and without this level of input and effort to get policy ownership, the eventual new legislation would have been very difficult to progress. The process has been about getting the right personalities working together, being tactful at the right levels of bureaucracy, and persistently selling the vision. 

Mobilising investment from public sources of finance. Like most developing countries with a weak private sector, financing forestry in Uganda is mainly being sought through domestic public resources. In absence of public expenditure, real political commitment to forestry is put into question. Whilst the NFP provides a vision and presents a costed framework for action, there is no evidence as of yet that it provides an implementation framework that can necessarily attract and utilise funding efficiently. Exception is made to the NFA whereby a joint-donor basked fund has been created. Otherwise, most long-term strategies focus on identifying ways to generate cash through improved revenue collection and pricing systems that capture a fair share of the resource rent. Results are marginal at best, and will continue to be until the NFA is launched and established new systems. Attempts to tap into ring-fenced Poverty Action Funds were met without success, and not because the poverty-forestry case wasn't strong, rather the cake was already eaten. Not surprisingly, forestry as a government priority in the PRSC matrix has not meant more investment from the public pool of funds, and it is doubtful it ever will as the shrinking pie is divided in too many slices. Public-private partnerships are not established at the present.  

Lesson 3.3. Whether or nor public investment will ever reach the forestry sub-sector is notionally unclear. All the right buttons are being pushed, perhaps it is too early to tell. Met by changing government priorities on preferred channelling of international support through the central budget, in all likelihood, efforts thus fare will not avail positive outcomes. More creative financing means are required. 

Shaping, planning and launching the National Forestry Authority (NFA). The centrepiece of institutional reform is the establishment of the NFA, traced backed to 1998 demands for restructuring the Forestry Department. Three main phases characterise the process: initiating the idea and getting buy-in; business and operational planning; and corporate governance and recruitment. Today, Uganda is in the last of these phases with a new Board of Directors recently appointed. The shake-up of the Forestry Department was very much top-down, initiated amidst larger public sector reform driven by the Ministry of Public Service. There however was not clear agreement across the sector of what was needed. Antagonism against the NFA by FD headquarters staff persisted, and resistance to change, largely due to fear of loss of jobs, influenced the level of participation required to successfully establish the new organisation. The Secretariat felt more comfortable trying to tighten up the plans and predictions before widely sharing them, strengthening the case before discussing it. The Working Group, designed to win and build political support from other ministries succeed in its efforts, but only partly due to vested interest and veto power amongst certain individuals. As of late, productive relationships with the Department and its core projects (financing instruments) has been instrumental in advancing operational planning, mending relationships, and resolving doubts as the launch becomes a reality in early 2004. 

Lesson 3.4. Conflict management approaches are essential during hard-hitting institutional change processes. Few in the forest sector had an understanding of what the NFA was, non-one had experience of how it could work, the fear of the unknown pervaded for a long time. Testing NFA approaches, bringing sabetours close to the process, and using success stories elsewhere all helped get needed buy-in 

Encouraging civil society to advocate, lobby and assume a watchdog role. In Uganda, the governments’ relationship with civil society is increasingly open, transparent and organised. Naturally, this has fostered an attitudinal shift amongst decision-makers in the civil forestry service. The level and scope of involvement amongst these interest groups is best captured by the creation of the Uganda Forestry Working Group (UFWG), a loose association of more than 50 national and local civil society organisations. Because of the civil society vacuum in forestry, in 2001 the Secretariat helped finance the establishment of the Group, although it yet a legal entity. Since then, UFWG co-ordinator’s widely consult with NFP planners on a regular basis. The Group's members are able to provide government with technical support on policy analysis and development. Unfortunately, its limited resources to co-ordinate and drive their planned initiatives have hampered their ability to become an effective advocacy forum. A joint effort with the FID to collaborate on accessing financial support from the NFP Facility is an indicative measure of how governments centre and the UFWG perceive each other as part and parcel of the same cause. The next challenge is to UFWG members co-ordinated on the ground where the trees grow. 

Lesson 3.5. The Secretariat seeded the development of the NGO network, and at hands length managed any doubt of its role in the institutional landscape as inherent within the civil service syndrome. The legitimacy of UFWG, and its access to the minister hinges largely on it becoming a legally established entity of organised members. 

Leveraging the private sector to practice better forestry. Positive efforts are being instituted to create a supportive climate for private sector investment. The private sector welcomes invitations to be involved in the policy process, but often complains about cheap talk in absence of real action. It appears to be a mix of poor management of expectations and failure get over the lack of trust with government. It is difficult to gauge if the private operators are really ready to change. In most senses, the private sector is very split, those who genuinely wish to raise their standards, while others are up to business as usual. Because of there is no real cohesiveness, the sawmiller sub-sector represented by the Uganda Forest Industries Development Association (UFIDA) does not accurately portray the interests of all its members. UFIDA's organisational problems, along with very recent internal factioning, and individual connections with political elite has good governance in the sector very difficult. As a result, getting genuine commitment from the private sector to make sound and responsible investments is marginal at best. Eventually, we hope buy-in could be achieved once market distortions dissipate, contracts for licences in central forest reserves become fair, marketing of wood product information is available, and the Sawlog Production Scheme gets up and running. Most are in the early stages of development, and/or still await the arrival of the NFA. 

Lesson 3.6. An immature private sector with little incentive to change or invest in the long term, operating within a corrupt culture of doing things, and poorly organised, offers little basis to build up participation. A competitive forest product market with adequate linkages between the forest, industry and the market place, can only evolve once credibility is restored. 


The method and approach to assess participation 

Lessons learnt from the Uganda QAT exercise suggest that the QAT itself as a checklist of assessment indicators, guided by four levels of assessment, would further benefit by incorporating three cross-cutting elements: 

The impact of participation on outcomes and performance of the sector: In Uganda, stakeholder participation resulted in a clear understanding of roles and responsibilities of stakeholders, and created ownership and uptake of NFP as a reference document for forestry developments. There is increased confidence of the private sector and civil society in participating in forestry developments, and greater understanding of forestry and poverty. It has contributed to raising the voice of the sector, which has gained more recognition at the national and international levels, and led to better co-ordination of sectoral priorities. Is forestry any better off in terms of management and generating investment? This still remains to be seen in the immediate term. 

Quality, intensity and extent of participation: The preparation of the Uganda NFP has been a national undertaking. The level of participation and quality of information obtained from the large numbers of participants during certain fora was however questioned. While acknowledging the importance of all stakeholders, there is need to keep a balance between representation, and the size of the consultation groups. Some of the stakeholders may participate directly in the process, while others may be consulted or involved in some other ways. But most important is to create awareness and keep the stakeholders close to the NFP process through an effective information dissemination strategy, dealing with antagonism, and allowing free expression.

 Costs, benefits and sustainability of participation: The participation of stakeholders in the NFP process raised the profile and contributed to building confidence within the sector. The NFP is generally accepted as a strategic plan for the forestry sector development. However, the costs associated with stakeholder participation are very high, roughly $3 million spent over 5 years[4]. It has also been a challenge to satisfy all the expectations and aspirations of stakeholders. The question of sustainability is often raised, government nor its development partners are in a secure position to pay such high costs.

In light of the method and approach employed (doing a quick and dirty exercise), the qualitative assessment faced a few hurdles and limitations, including: 

The context of assessment at two different stages is required to gauge real impact. The Uganda NFP process has only recently been formulated, and only now are actors seriously considering implementation. On the surface, the Ugandan NFP seems to be very much in line with international principles of participation, and the strategies address the needs of most stakeholders. The relative immaturity of the implementation phase however makes it difficult to assess in real terms on how governance in the sector has improved and the durability of the new institutional framework established to implement reforms. Whilst some new approaches to forestry exist, after five years of planning, the impact being felt on the ground is limited. In most respects forestry governance is worse, not any better. This is partly due to the fact that Uganda is now at the crux of reform, the old empire is crumbling and contentious issues are in the public domain - all outcomes of opening up the sector through participation. Assessors recognised that in order to gauge the 'value for money' or 'return on investment' of participatory exercises, assessment must be done during at least two stages - the formulation process, and then once implementation ensues. 

A stakeholders perception needs to be taken within the context of their involvement: Perceptions of cause and effect relationships between the time an issue is presented, a decision taken, and consequent action, are naturally difficult things to gauge.  Communicating an individual’s experience with involvement, at whatever stage and in whatever manner, can easily be deliberately twisted by the concerned party, who often has vested interests in the outcomes of the process. In this respect, assessors found it difficult to decipher the extent to which participation was done well.

Short fieldwork can never account for the long-time frame of events: NFP processes are long term endeavours lasting years and are difficult to grasp in the allocated time of assessment (10 days). A general level of detail can only be unearthed due to the scope of intelligence gathered within a limited ‘fieldwork’ period. Assessors did not feel confident in presenting detailed findings of specific areas without a proper comprehensive analysis of technical issues

 In the end, we believe a good balance of participation was achieved, and that a neutral ground to move through complex institutional changes was firmly established in an open and transparent manner.

[1] For more information on participation in the Uganda NFP process see: Khaukha, Stephen. Enhancing Participation in NFP Process: Ugandan Experience. Paper presented at the FAO Technical Meeting on NFPs, Rome, November 2002. 

[2] For more information on the comparative analysis of Africa experiences see: Geller, Scott and Owino, Fred. Qualitative Assessment of NFPs. LTS International Ltd. and African Academy of Sciences, Edinburgh, 2002. 

[3] For more information on relevant methodologies being developed see: Mayers and Bass. Building Good Governance: A diagnostic planning tool. International Institute for Environment and Development, London, 2001.

[4] This represents an indicative figure calculated from a brief assessment of the Secretariats budget specific to workshops, meetings, communications, and relevant studies.

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