Section IV: Programme of Work for 2006-07
Context of reformulation
93. As was done in similar circumstances in the past, general guidance was given to all FAO units to prepare revised proposals for 2006-07 taking into account a number of policy considerations. These included: priority-based resource targets at department/office level, desirable changes in substance, a call to shift the proportion of resources from staff to non-staff allocations and strengthening decentralized professional capacity.
94. Extensive use was made of FAO’s computerised planning and budgeting system, PIRES with related training. Internal consultations were carried out as necessary, particularly as regards the formulation of multidisciplinary entities and activities between headquarters and decentralized locations.
New chapter and programme structures
95. The reforms submitted to the Conference included a completely revamped chapter (and underlying programme) structure for use in future planning documents. The Conference approved the new chapters, while the numbers, titles and contents of the constituent programme entities are summarised in this section and in Annex IV and are subject to review. No change is considered necessary to the 42 programmes, as shown originally in a text box after paragraph 44 of document C 2005/3 Sup. 1.
96. The new chapter and programme structures prevent direct comparison with the contents of the MTP 2006-11 and the main PWB 2006-07 documents due to the reformulation and renumbering of the “pre-existing” entities. This reformulation effort was aimed at ensuring that the new programmes contained coherent sets of activities with increased attention to multidisciplinary action, and also at reducing fragmentation. A mapping table of the previous entities to the new programmes and entities is provided in Annex IV, and in Annex IX placed on the Organization’s Web site, which indicates how the former entities have been transformed. A direct comparison of the resource allocations between “pre-existing” entities and the new entities cannot be derived from the budgetary system.
97. Changes to the substance were guided by several key parameters, as follows.
- In the first instance, the priority-setting criteria established by the Council were adhered to with particular attention to the first three criteria: i) relevance to the Strategic Framework (and MDGs), ii) clear focus on Members’ expressed priorities and iii) embodiment of FAO’s comparative advantage, particularly to determine the relative priority of a given entity or activity in relation to others.
- Accordingly, a number of expressed priorities of Members (as exemplified in the general chapter narratives below and in Annex IV) were afforded a maximum degree of protection in the calculation of the resource targets communicated to FAO units. It is recalled that the level of the TCP (Programme 4E) was set by the Conference itself at US$ 103.5 million.
- Changes to the programme entity structure (i.e. that used in the MTP 2006-11 endorsed by the Council in November 2004 and the main PWB 2006-07 document submitted to the Conference) were invited in order: firstly to respond to the call and expectations from governing bodies to reduce fragmentation; and secondly to better reflect the areas of programmatic emphasis authorised by the Conference, especially knowledge management and capacity-building aspects of the Organization’s technical and country assistance activities.
- Reformulation took account of the recommendations of a number of internal working groups established by the Director-General to address selected clusters of entities (with a view to their consolidation and/or refinement of their scope) and important cross-sectoral dimensions in the work of the Organization, e.g. the use of thematic knowledge networks, the dissemination of best practices, and support to capacity-building in countries.
- The concerned FAO units were also asked to respond to the invitation of the Programme Committee for more selectivity as regards Priority Areas for Interdisciplinary Action (PAIAs), for instance by incorporating PAIAs within defined entities wherever possible. More generally as regards interdisciplinary actions, units were asked to ensure ex-ante rather than ex-post cooperation in planning, programming, resource mobilisation, monitoring and evaluation.
Quantitative overview of programme entities
98. The major effort of reformulation of “pre-existing” entities has led to a much tighter set, reducing by 29% the number of substantive entities, from 261 to 186. The updated quantitative picture is presented in the following table.
Table 9: Evolution of entities
||MTP 2006-11 and PWB 2006-07 at ZRG
||Revised PWB 2006-07
|Number of substantive entities in "technical areas", of which:
|- CP (continuing activities)
|- TP (technical projects)
|- TS (service agreements)
|Number of substantive entities in "non-technical areas"
99. The same effort of concentration has taken place at the level of major outputs (as planned over the longer term in the MTP 2006-11) with a reduction from 829 to 636 (minus 23%).
Provisions for Programme Management
100. The above picture does not include provisions for Programme Management which, as per established practice, are separately identified. While they were recognisable by the last figure “9” in former PWBs, provisions for Programme Management are henceforth grouped under one programme per chapter identified by the letter X (i.e. 1X, 2X, etc.). Programme management includes the general direction of the programmes (ADGs, Directors, Programme Coordination Units, Registries) and resources for the development of staff related to the chapters. This does not apply to Chapters 6, 8 and 9 in view of their special nature.
Increased attention to multidisciplinary action
New areas of focus
101. The revised programme of work takes due account of newly-recognised multidisciplinary areas of focus such as: the dissemination of knowledge including the use of networks and the sharing of best practices; and support to capacity-building.
102. This was greatly facilitated, not only by specific encouragement from senior management during discussions with the concerned units, but also by action-oriented recommendations from the working groups established by the Director-General. Greater attention to knowledge management and capacity-building, with multidisciplinary approaches as required, was translated in particular into modifications to titles of entities and/or the establishment of specific new entities, with joint efforts to design concrete outputs, and the provision of adequate resources.
103. Programme 3H: Knowledge Exchange and Capacity Building will spearhead the implementation of these multidisciplinary priorities throughout the Organization. Beyond bringing together existing work on WAICENT and early warning systems, it will facilitate the establishment of knowledge networks, the synthesis and dissemination of best practices and the coordination and monitoring of capacity-building activities across all programmes. It will pilot the progressive implementation of Ask FAO services, providing more direct and timely access by all potentially interested persons (individuals or institutions) to the information accumulated by the Organization and in Member Nations, as well as disseminating best practices.
104. FAO units will promote networks at two levels: 1) to enhance knowledge sharing and exchange among staff in different locations, and 2) to do the same between FAO and experts in centres of excellence in countries. Through these theme-based networks, FAO will strengthen links with the global knowledge community, and will be able to have greater leverage in discussions of global issues. As regards dissemination of best practices, this will build on the Organization's experience acquired in programmes and projects, and that of partners and member countries. Best practices will be continuously synthesised and made widely available in various forms tailored to effective needs of users, including policy-makers and practitioners in member countries.
105. Capacity-building activities will address a broad range of disciplines, in line with evolving demands, within the following overall framework, i.e.:
- being proactive in identifying and filling fellowship opportunities for postgraduate and work-related training in both the North and South;
- launching learning programmes on policy, also using distance-learning systems, targeted at senior policy-makers and analysts;
- promoting adult education opportunities for rural people, including through farmers' field school programmes and other extension methods;
- institution-building for cooperatives, farmers' organizations, chambers of agriculture, etc.;
- including theoretical and practical courses on production, conservation, storage and processing of agricultural products for extension staff, ensuring a multiplier effect through training-of-trainers.
Use of “ex-ante” joint planning
106. Besides the above multidisciplinary areas of clear added focus, there has been more generally a drive to join forces across departmental and divisional lines to address common issues and reduce potential duplication. This should in particular take the form of planned application of resources to provide multidisciplinary solutions to well identified problems, rather than reliance on “unbudgeted” cooperation which has often been the case hitherto.
107. While FAO’s corporate planning and budgeting process and system allow for entities to be of a genuine multidisciplinary nature, thus factoring at the planning stage resource inputs (including staff time) from as many different units as needed, in the past this has been more the exception than the rule. Multidisciplinary programme entities require joint planning across organizational boundaries so as to assemble complementary skills with each unit contributing resources to achieve predefined common objectives. As a major departure from the past, this revised PWB includes a larger number of such entities, which will be closely monitored during implementation.
Priority Areas for Interdisciplinary Action (PAIAs)
108. This approach is well exemplified by the tangible efforts made during the reformulation exercise to rationalise the handling of those areas so far referred to as “PAIAs”. At its last session, the Programme Committee stressed the need for greater selectivity in themes to be addressed as PAIAs. Therefore, “mainstreaming” of the implementation of current ones was considered highly desirable, whenever possible.
109. PAIAs, as conceived and operated hitherto, were used when units had to face new issues or respond to new areas of demands by Members cutting across disciplinary lines, particularly when these areas were not well recognised in the organizational and programme structures. While good work has been achieved under the aegis of the corresponding IDWGs, as reported to the Programme Committee, there have been constraints to both effective planning and the delivery of outputs and outcomes under the PAIAs. There might have been a tendency to apply the PAIA “label” to new themes in order to seek greater visibility, leading to an unwarranted increase in the number of recognised PAIAs (19 at present).
110. Many PAIA groups have, therefore, sought to switch to the more effective operating mode of creating a multidisciplinary entity to host joint work under the theme, anchored more firmly to the most relevant programme, as reflected in the following table:
Table 10: Disposition of PAIAs
||Host programme or entity
||WTO Multilateral Trade Negotiations on Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
||3CA02, in fact centered on support for these Negotiations and implementation of agreements
||2KP07, entirely devoted to Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation
||2KP08 (Fragile eco-systems)
||Global Perspective Studies
||3BA04 (Socio-economic analysis of global perspective issues in food and agriculture)
||Local Institution Building to Improve Capacity for Achieving Sustainable Rural Livelihoods
||3GA02 (Participatory processes for sustainable rural livelihoods)
||Sustainable Management of Mountains
||2KP08 (Fragile eco-systems)
||Integrated Production Systems
||Programmes 2A, 2B and 2D
||Definition, Norms, Methodologies and Quality of Information
||Disaster Prevention, Mitigation and Preparedness and Post Emergency Relief and Rehabilitation
||4DS02, with virtually the same name: Disaster preparedness, mitigation and support to emergency and rehabilitation programmes
||Spatial Information Management and Decision Support Tools
||Programmes 2K and 3H
111. The Gender and Development Plan of Action sanctioned by the Conference has effectively mainstreamed the related PAIA in the work of all units, with the SDW Division guiding its implementation and progress periodically reported to the Conference. Work on Ethics (ETHI) would continue, but at a reduced scale. Two other themes formally highlighted as PAIAs, i.e. Food for the Cities (FCIT) and Organic Agriculture (ORGA), will continue to be addressed in a multidisciplinary manner, but under the broader frameworks of identification of best practices, knowledge dissemination and meeting specific demands from Members for operational projects at national or subnational level.
112. For the remaining five PAIAs, the extent of interdisciplinary cooperation was not deemed mature enough (e.g. bio-energy and HIV/AIDS, which in fact were to start during this biennium) or it was not feasible to locate or establish a potential “host” entity. Hence, the following five PAIAs will continue to operate as envisaged hitherto, at least in the present biennium 2006-07, and will pursue needed coordination within the Organization and, where relevant, a concerted interface with external instruments (conventions) or events:
- AIDS (Implications of HIV/AIDS on Food and Agriculture);
- BIOD (Integrated Management of Biodiversity in Food and Agriculture);
- BIOS (Biosecurity for Agriculture and Food Production);
- BTEC (Biotechnology Applications in Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry); and
- ENGY (Bioenergy).
113. This approach will still ensure that all of these interdisciplinary areas:
- remain among the stated priorities of the Organization;
- are guided by corresponding working groups or mechanisms to allow for regular consultations across departments and divisions;
- have access to central catalytic funds. In effect, one entity (previously 210S5, now 5BS02) will continue to support interdisciplinary work, with increased resources over the level in the PWB 2004-05.
Main substantive priorities
114. While inviting them to adjust their activities to reduced resource targets, the policy guidance given to FAO units stressed the need to “protect” a number of priority areas as expressed by the governing bodies. Preferential treatment for these areas was built into the overall targets, while units could augment the degree of protection afforded to them by more substantially reducing work in other areas. The level of the TCP Appropriation (Programme 4E) was set by the Conference itself at US$ 103.5 million, US$ 0.5 million higher than in the approved 2004-05 Appropriation.
115. Besides the impact of vastly different chapter and programme structures, there are other differences in budgetary presentation techniques between the previous PWB document (2004-05) and this revised PWB 2006-07. For instance in previous budgets, consistent with cost accounting principles, the provisions for most Information Technology (IT) services were distributed to all programme entities in the form of an indirect cost of the “user” programmes. For the sake of transparency, they are now shown in toto under Programme 3I: Information Technology Systems. A similar cost allocation across all programme entities was in place for the delivery of management support services (primarily personnel servicing), which now appear exclusively under programme 5H: Shared Services. The resource allocations to programme entities of decentralized structures (see more explanatory details below on inputs from these structures) is also subject to variation due to changes in the discipline mix in these offices.
116. It is recalled that the approved budget level provides a nominal increase of only US$ 6 million over the 2004-05 biennium (excluding earmarked increases for security expenditure). Table 11 below shows that a nominal increase of US$ 16 million has been applied to the main priority activities emphasised by Members in 2005 before presentation of the reform proposals.
Table 11: Treatment of priority areas
|Priority Area (CL 128/REP para 74)
||New PE or Prog 2006-07
||Old PE or Prog 2004-05 or MTP 2006-11
||Programme or Programme Entity
||2004-05 PoW w/o distributions
||2006-07 Revised PoW
|Land and water management
||Agricultural Water User Efficiency, Quality and Conservation
||Incorporates work from 211A5, 211S2
|Land and water management
||Integrated Land, Water and Production Systems Policies, Planning and Management
||No distinct entity. PAIA with 10 biennial outputs 2006-07 ZRG, housed under PE on Fragile Ecosystems in rev PWB
||Technical Cooperation Programme
||Secretariat of the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC)
||Joint FAO/WHO Food Standards Programme (Codex Alimentarius)
||Animal Product Food Safety
||Was 213A6 in 2004-05, moved to 213B4 in MTP
||Improving Food and Environmental Safety through Nuclear Techniques
||Food Quality and Safety throughout the Food Chain for Consumer Protection
||Incorporates work from 221P8
||Provision of Scientific Advice on Food Safety
||EMPRES - Progressive Control of Transboundary Animal Diseases
||Was 213A7 in 2004-05, renumbered 213P2 in MTP
|Early warning systems
||Global Information and Early Warning System on Food and Agriculture
|Animal genetic resources
||Management of Animal Genetic Resources
|Plant and Animal Genetic Resources
||Secretariat of the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (CGRFA)
|Plant genetic resources
||Conservation and Sustainable Use of Plant Genetic Resources
|Plant genetic resources
||Technical Support to the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture
|Plant genetic resources
||Secretariat of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture
||New in MTP 2006-07
||Sustainable Intensification of Crop Production Systems through Nuclear Techniques and Biotechnology
||Sustainable Intensification of Livestock Production Systems through Nuclear Techniques and Biotechnology
||Pesticide Risk Reduction through Pesticide Management, IPM and the use of Biopesticides
||Incorporates work from 212A5
|Right to food
||Implementing Guidelines on the Right to Food in the context of National Food Security
||New in MTP 2006-07
||Food Insecurity and Vulnerability Information and Mapping Systems (FIVIMS)
||2H, 2I, 2J
||Resources = FI planning unit and any others under FI programmes
||2E, 2F, 2G
||Resources = FO planning unit and any others under FO programmes
||No distinct entity. PAIA with 6 biennial outputs 2006-07 ZRG.
|Combating desert locusts
||EMPRES - Migratory and Transboundary Invasive Plant Pests
||Was 212A4 in 2004-05, revised to 212P6 in MTP and incorporates work from 212A5, 212P3
||Promoting Gender Equality, Social Equity, Education and Communication in Rural Development
||Incorporates work of 252A3, 252A5, 252P2
|Participation in trade negotiations
||Support to the Multilateral Trade Negotiations and support for Implementation of Multi-Lateral Trade Negotiations
||Was 224A2 in 2004-05, revised to 224A4 in MTP 2006-07
|Total Absolute Change
117. While changes in the resource allocations between 2004-05 and this revised 2006-07 programme of work provide useful indications, they do not permit a proper appreciation of the substantive thrusts in the revised PWB. FAO units were also able to build on the benefits stemming from the new chapter and programme structures themselves, in terms of opportunities for enhanced synergies. At an aggregate level of formulation and presentation, the work of the Organization is now more clearly focused on three major thrusts, as represented by the new Chapters 2, 3 and 4. Chapter 2 brings together all those areas of FAO’s work which lay the foundation for sustainable food and agricultural systems. Chapter 3 regroups a range of economic and social programmes which underpin FAO’s basic functions of knowledge exchange, policy and advocacy, thus facilitating outreach of the work under Chapter 2. Chapter 4 puts for the first time a major accent on ensuring closer cooperation with the wider UN system, not only at global level, but also through the decentralized structure, coupled with the delivery of FAO’s own programmes of development cooperation and emergency assistance to reduce food insecurity.
118. Within these chapters, the constituent programmes generally embody a more articulated presentation of priorities and consequent resource allocations. Some programmes, while including activities of long standing, constitute in their conception a new area of emphasis for the Organization. Other programmes include shifts in focus and attendant resource requirements towards the highest priority aspects. Yet other programmes include activities which are appreciated by the membership and thus expected to continue, albeit with adjustments to enhance efficiency and effectiveness, grouping these activities to foster greater interaction. For instance, in the latter group: diseases and pests of both animals and plants; the clustering of land, including land tenure, and water management and conservation with related activities for sustainable natural resources management; planted forests and trees outside forests, incorporated with sustainable forest management; policy analysis across a range of subjects; and technical services to the membership, also reflecting inputs from the multidisciplinary teams at subregional level in those geographical areas where these are being established. The main purpose of the general chapter narratives below is to convey these substantive thrusts.
Inputs from decentralized offices
119. As the Organization is introducing a new operating model in one region and in an additional subregion, it is useful to recall how the contributions from decentralized offices are factored in the programme of work, in both substantive and budgetary terms.
120. The programme of work is presented in a "unified" manner in FAO, combining resource allocations from various organizational units as appropriate. The implementation of programmes, and of entities and major outputs within programmes, may depend in many cases on complementary inputs from staff positions in decentralized offices. Apart from supporting normative work, decentralized offices are also the main providers of technical services to Members and support to the field programme.
121. A number of entities also require closely related outreach to the country or regional levels of the results of global work, such as in the implementation of international regulatory instruments (IPPC, Codex, etc.) or for collection or analysis of statistical information. Policy advisory services are also jointly delivered, drawing on resources at all levels, with the aim of assisting Members to attain the MDGs, establishing the priorities for FAO assistance within existing frameworks including PRSPs, CCAs and UNDAFs, and taking advantage of the progressive development of FAO’s national medium-term priority frameworks.
Impact of reduced resources on substantive work
122. While the maximisation of synergies through consolidation and the identification of efficiency savings and productivity gains have assisted to some extent in coping with an average reduction in real terms of 5.2% from the resources available in the 2004-05 biennium, the net cuts enforced in many areas will have a negative impact on the programme of work.
123. FAO’s capacities in many technical or other areas will remain underfunded to varying degrees. Even some priority areas (e.g. support to the IPPC, plant and animal genetic resources, food safety, agricultural water management, rural infrastructure, GIEWS, support to implementation of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries) may not be funded at the desired level. The following is an indicative list of underfunded technical and economic areas of work under Chapters 2
- general analytical work on, and testing of, integrated crop production systems as well as rangeland systems, horticultural and industrial crops, and biotechnology;
- soil fertility and drainage;
- environmental and social aspects of animal production and health, and livestock sector analysis;
- support to the International Programme for Technology and Research in Irrigation and Drainage (IPTRID);
- geo-information infrastructure;
- farm mechanisation;
- agribusiness development policies and practices;
- the interface between research and extension;
- nutrient requirement recommendations and nutrition education;
- household food security and nutrition;
- global commodity market assessments
- comparative work on food and agricultural policies;
- delivery of policy assistance to match effective demand;
- support to the Common Fund for Commodities;
- support to forestry research, education and extension;
- work on rural development and the follow-up to the International Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development.
124. Under Chapters 3, 4
, other main areas of risk caused by reduced resources include:
- operational backstopping of projects, field inspection and investigations;
- ability to meet demands from partner International Financial Institutions (IFIs) at the anticipated level;
- support to implementation of decentralization policy by OCD in the context of changes in locations and nature of work of the field office network;
- financial management, information systems support and maintenance of premises.
General chapter descriptions
125. The main substantive thrusts under the new chapters are summarised below, including consolidated tables projecting resources to carry out the programme of work. More detailed narratives and resource allocations (down to entity level) are provided in Annex IV, as mandated by the Conference.