PC 93/8

Programme Committee

Ninety-third Session

Rome, 9 - 13 May 2005

Indicative Rolling Workplan of Strategic and
Programme Evaluations 2006-09

Table of Contents

1. The objective of this paper is to seek the decision of the Programme Committee on the workplan for major evaluations to be carried out by the Evaluation Service and presented to the Committee during the next two biennia 2006-2009. The indicative rolling workplan of thematic and programme evaluations for the 2003-2007 period was presented at the Eighty-ninth Session of the Programme Committee in May 2003. The Committee appreciated the overall scope of the evaluations being proposed. It agreed that the emphasis of such evaluations should be on in-depth assessment of programmes and activities supporting specific strategies of the Strategic Framework and the Medium Term Plan, while not excluding evaluations of individual Programmes.

2. Over the biennium 2004-2005, the Evaluation Service will have presented the following evaluations to the Programme Committee:

3. The Service will also have completed an Independent Review of the Technical Cooperation Programme in the context of the Committee’s Review of the Policy and Operational Framework of the TCP; provided a report on auto-evaluations conducted in 2004 (being considered by the Committee at its current session); and initiated an evaluation of Strategic Objective D.2: Conservation, rehabilitation and development of environments at greatest risk (to be presented to the May 2006 Session). Evaluations presented to the Committee during the biennia 2000-2001 and 2002-03 are listed in Annex 1.

Significant new factors for the Evaluation Programme since the Eighty-ninth Session of the Programme Committee (May 2003)

4. Since the current biennial programme of evaluations was agreed by the Programme Committee, auto-evaluation was introduced (in 2004). While auto-evaluations do not substitute for independent evaluations of programmes, they can provide substantive inputs to the evaluation of parts of the programmes and/or strategies. They may also on occasion reduce the need for a separate programme evaluation. Hence, the programme of auto-evaluations is being considered when prioritising and timing the implementation of programme and strategy evaluations.

5. In addition, at its Hundred and Twenty-seventh Session (November 2004), the Council agreed to launch an Independent External Evaluation of FAO and established an Inter-Sessional Working Group (ISWG) to formulate proposals for the scope, conduct and institutional arrangements for the Evaluation, for the Council’s consideration. The external evaluation is likely to begin in the second half of 2005 or early 2006. Should inputs be requested from the Evaluation Service to support this evaluation, adjustments may be necessary in the agreed evaluation programme.

6. Similarly, if there is less than a zero real budget change for evaluation work in the 2006-07 approved Programme of Work and Budget, less evaluation work will be possible. Under the zero nominal growth budget scenario, the budget planned for the actual conduct of evaluation work (i.e. the non-staff budget for employment of external evaluators and for travel) would be reduced by approximately half. This would lead to a reduction of two or three evaluations for the governing bodies and would diminish the use of external consultants as team leaders and participants in evaluations. Moreover, one existing P-4 post will be newly dedicated to the support of auto-evaluation with the ending of extra-budgetary support for this function.

Programme of Proposed Evaluations

7. The basis for defining proposed evaluations has included: a review of the topics already endorsed by the Programme Committee in May 2003 as part of the rolling workplan 2003-07; the evaluations presented to the Programme Committee over the past three biennia; expressed interests in the governing bodies and by FAO managers; the programme of auto-evaluations; and the balanced and progressive coverage of the Organization’s strategies and programmes. Thus, in line with the comments expressed by the Programme Committee, the systematic coverage of the Strategic Framework : Strategic Objectives and Cross-organizational Strategies as well as technical programmes as specified in the Medium Term Plan has been maintained in the proposals, as well as:

8. In addition, the Programme Committee would receive a biennial summary of auto-evaluations undertaken by programme managers.

9. As with the current rolling workplan, FAO department heads have been consulted and the newly established Internal Evaluation Committee has fully endorsed this set of proposals, while recognizing that the final decision on proposals to the Programme Committee remains with the Evaluation Service.

10. Five to six evaluations are suggested for each biennium. All the evaluations would consider both Regular Programme and extra-budgetary-funded activities and would include headquarters, regional and country level work. Suggested evaluations have been classified into two groups: those considered as higher priority topics for the Committee’s selection (for completion in 2006-07) and those which could be considered in 2006-07 (together with those not selected from the 2006-07 priority list).

Evaluations proposed with first priority for flexible initiation in 2006-07 (5-6 evaluations)

11. One of the following two Strategies and related PAIAs:

  1. Within Corporate Strategy B, Strategic Objective B.1: International instruments concerning food, agriculture, fisheries and forestry, and the production, safe use and fair exchange of agricultural, fishery and forestry goods - building on the Codex evaluation, an evaluation of FAO’s role in the development and support of major international instruments and frameworks, with a focus on the International Plant Protection Convention, and including work related to the PAIAs on Biosecurity for Agriculture and Food Production and Climate Change. A report covering the IPPC will be presented separately to the Interim Commission on Phytosanitary Measures (which has also been requested independently by the Commission) – retained from the 2003-07 rolling plan; or
  2. For Corporate Strategy E, Strategic Objective E.2: Regular assessments, analyses and outlook studies for food and agriculture, including the PAIA on Global Perspective Studies - retained from the 2003-07 Rolling Plan.

12. One of the two following Cross-organizational Strategies:

  1. Enhancing inter-disciplinarity (including analysis of the workings of a number of cross-organizational extra-budgetary projects and of the PAIA modality – this latter to be initially reported on by the Secretariat at the September 2005 Committee); or
  2. The Cross-organizational Strategy (SACOI) on leveraging resources for FAO and its members (substantial aspects of this Strategy have been covered under other evaluations, including that on Decentralization) - retained from the 2003-07 Rolling Plan.

13. Two among the following Technical Programmes (technical programmes would not be chosen if included in a Major Programme selected below):

  1. The assessment of food needs in emergencies and crisis deficit situations (possibly jointly with WFP);
  2. Water related work under Programme 2.1.1, Natural Resources;
  3. Trade and commodity related work under Programme 2.2.4, Agriculture, Food Security and Trade Policy (taking account of the results of auto-evaluation);
  4. Programme 2.4.1, Forest Resources; and
  5. Programme 2.5.3, Rural Development.

14 One of the following Major Programmes:

  1. Major Programme 2.4, Forestry; or
  2. Major Programme 2.5, Contributions to Sustainable Development and Special Programme Thrusts (Programmes 2.5.1, 2.5.2 and 2.5.3 only) - taking account of the recent internal review conducted by the Sustainable Development Department.

15. One evaluation of FAO Country-level Activities:

  1. An evaluation drawing conclusions on the basis of 2-3 evaluations of the totality of FAO’s work in individual countries (including FAORs, projects and Regular Programme advisory work) and a synthesis of recent field programme evaluations, including the current review of the TCP.

Evaluations with second priority (retained from the Rolling Workplan 2003-2007)

16. As follows:

  1. Within Corporate Strategy B: Promoting, developing and reinforcing policy and regulatory frameworks for food, agriculture, fisheries and forestry - the evaluation would cover work related to the PAIA on WTO Multilateral Trade Negotiations and other trade related work falling in Programme 2.2.4, Agriculture, Food Security and Trade Policy and also in Fisheries;
  2. Within Corporate Strategy C, Strategic Objective C.1: Policy options and institutional measures to improve efficiency and adaptability in production, processing and marketing systems, and meet the changing needs of producers and consumers – an evaluation of the strategy component “Promoting the diversification and specialization of production to take advantage of new opportunities as well as of comparative advantages based on different resource endowments”;
  3. Within Corporate Strategy C, Strategic Objective C.2: Adoption of appropriate technology to sustainably intensify production systems and to ensure sufficient supplies of food and agricultural, fisheries and forestry goods and services - this would cover the PAIA on Biotechnology Applications in Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and significant parts of Programme 2.1.5, Agricultural Applications of Isotopes and Biotechnology (it may be noted that this work is subject to auto-evaluation during 2005 and external evaluation could be duplicative); and
  4. Within Corporate Strategy A, Strategic Objective A.2: Access of vulnerable and disadvantaged groups to sufficient, safe and nutritionally adequate food.


17. The Committee is invited to provide its views on the priorities among the evaluation subjects proposed and/or propose alternative subjects it considers important. In defining its priorities, the Committee is requested to indicate those evaluations it considers important for completion in the 2006-07 biennium and those to be initiated and presented in 2008-09.



Strategy evaluations

  1. Evaluation of FAO’s Policy Assistance (covering substantial aspects of Corporate Strategy B.2, National policies, legal instruments and supporting mechanisms that respond to domestic requirements and are consistent with the international policy and regulatory framework); and
  2. Thematic Evaluation of Strategy A.3 – Preparedness for and effective and sustainable response to, food and agricultural emergencies.

Programme evaluations

  1. Evaluation of the Animal Health Component of Programme 2.1.3;
  2. Programme Evaluation of EMPRES-Desert Locust;
  3. Food and Agricultural Policy (Programme 2.2.4);
  4. Evaluation of Codex and other FAO/WHO Food Standards Work;
  5. Evaluation of Programme 2.2.2 (Food and Agricultural Information) – Activities related to agricultural statistics in the context of FAOSTAT; and
  6. Independent External Evaluation of the Special Programme for Food Security.

Other evaluations

  1. Review of FAO Associate Professional Officers Programme; and
  2. Review of FAO’s Training Activities for Development During 1994-99.