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Posts published in “Evaluation and Lessons Learned”

World: World Bank Group Support in Situations Involving Conflict-Induced Displacement – An Independent Evaluation

Source: World Bank
Country: Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Chad, Colombia, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Croatia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Ecuador, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Georgia, Guinea, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Montenegro, Myanmar, Nepal, Niger, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Philippines, Rwanda, Senegal, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, the Republic of North Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Turkey, Uganda, World, Yemen, Zambia


  • In 2016, the World Bank Group stepped up its engagement in situations of conflictinduced forced displacement at the global and country levels and adopted a new approach to its engagement that recognizes displacement as a development challenge that must be addressed to attain the World Bank Group’s twin goals.

  • Since fiscal year 2016, the Bank Group’s analytical, financial, and operational support has become more aligned with its stated development approach building on lessons from past engagements. This is an important shift.

  • Advisory services and analytics have shifted from providing a rationale for Bank Group engagement in situations involving conflictinduced forced displacement to contextspecific needs assessments focused on evidence-based, medium-term solutions.
    The World Bank successfully mobilized new financing to support situations involving conflict-induced forced displacement and crowded-in funding from other donors. World Bank support for populations forcibly displaced by conflict and their host communities has increased, become more balanced, and focused on priority sectors to
    generate economic opportunities. These are significant achievements.

  • At the same time, the Bank Group has not yet fully leveraged its comparative
    advantages in implementing its development approach. Evidence generated
    from analytical and advisory services needs to be translated better into
    context-specific policy dialogue, project design, and programming.
    Project design, in particular, could further address the specific needs and
    vulnerabilities of conflict-induced forcibly displaced persons and their host
    communities, especially the specific needs and vulnerabilities of the women
    and children among them. Projects should also more systematically include
    specific indicators to monitor and evaluate the effects on affected populations.

  • The World Bank engages and coordinates with humanitarian actors and
    development organizations at various levels, but coordination could be further
    strengthened. Additionally, select partnerships at the country level could be
    leveraged to ensure sector coherence and to foster policy dialogue to enact
    institutional reforms toward self-reliance that address the vulnerabilities of
    forcibly displaced persons. The Bank Group could also increase engagement
    to catalyze the private sector’s role in situations of conflict-induced forced

  • Internal and external factors inhibit the Bank Group’s development
    response to address situations of conflict-induced forced displacement.
    Internal factors include varying levels of active leadership in Country
    Management Units, growing but still limited Bank Group experience, and
    incentives. External factors include the varying nature of displacement
    situations, government capacity, macroeconomic and development
    challenges, and complex political economy factors.

World: Evaluation of the Coverage and Quality of the UNICEF Humanitarian Response in Complex Humanitarian Emergencies (January 2019)

Source: UN Children's Fund
Country: Afghanistan, Burundi, Central African Republic, Iraq, Mali, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Philippines, Somalia, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Ukraine, World, Yemen

By Sanchi Ravishanker, Jane Mwangi

The number of countries with violent conflicts is the highest it has been in the last 30 years. An estimated 535 million children — one in four — live in countries affected by conflict or disaster. As of early 2018, nearly 31 million children including 13 million children refugees had been forcibly displaced by violence and conflict — and more than 17 million inside their own countries. Conflict continues to be a significant driver of humanitarian need. In 2018, more than 134 million people across the world were in need of humanitarian aid.

Significant investment

In 2018, the United Nations and partners requested $25.2 billion to assist 97.9 million of the most vulnerable people worldwide and subsequently received $15.1 billion. That year, UNICEF invested considerably in its humanitarian action — approximately $2.8 billion, up from $600 million in 2006 — to meet the growing demand for assistance in multiple, simultaneous, complex and large-scale emergencies.

Time to evaluate

Given the size of the investment and the scale of the problem, an evaluation was commissioned to assess UNICEF’s performance in achieving coverage and quality in complex humanitarian emergencies. Building on the organization’s global evaluation plan, this is also the first corporate evaluation focused exclusively on such themes. The idea of conducting an evaluation to illustrate how UNICEF has fared in such contexts has not been explored before.

The premise of the evaluation is to generate practical solutions to guide how UNICEF can improve the coverage and quality of its humanitarian responses. To do so, eleven countries were included in the evaluation:

  • 5 field missions (Nigeria, Afghanistan, the Central African Republic, the Philippines and Somalia);
  • 4 desk reviews and remote interviews (Pakistan, Ukraine, Burundi, Mali, State of Palestine and the Syrian Arab Republic);
  • 3 additional countries for in-depth interviews (South Sudan, Yemen and Iraq).

What we found

The findings shed light on UNICEF’s organizational courage and tenacity in sustained humanitarian action.

Across all countries, UNICEF was among the largest and most important providers of humanitarian assistance and protection, often working in some of the most challenging areas.
Program coverage in these environments has been significant, and large populations have benefited greatly from the organization’s humanitarian action.
UNICEF has established meaningful partnerships with national authorities, local and international NGOs, and UN partners enhancing coverage of humanitarian needs in conflict-affected countries.
Finally, UNICEF’s leadership, its staff, through organizational systems and procedures, have consistently been able to mobilize people and funds to enable program coverage and ensure quality.

While the evaluation showed areas of great achievement, it also highlighted several areas that require improvement for the organization to enhance and facilitate the provision of effective assistance and protection. For example, it was found that in many cases coverage was prioritized over quality and equity. Equity programming often requires additional activities or program areas, making it less cost-effective to deliver. The evaluation also reveals that often, insufficient evidence makes it difficult to judge key aspects of its humanitarian practice. We do not always have the information and analysis required to inform effective humanitarian action and to monitor changes systematically over time to ensure the continuing relevance of the assistance we provide. Additionally, UNICEF often lacks a structured approach towards community engagement at the country level to ensure program relevance and quality and to include the views of those receiving UNICEF-funded assistance. This is an important strategy given how the delivery of quality program services and community acceptance are closely inter-linked.

The spectrum of findings has proven useful in that they clearly define the challenges UNICEF shares with the humanitarian system more broadly. The report draws conclusions and makes recommendations intended to support the organization to reach those in greatest need of assistance, including those who are hard to reach. The Management Response addresses some of the challenges faced by UNICEF in its bid to ‘leave no child behind’, and provides a detailed course of action to each key recommendation. By systematically addressing these challenges at the country, regional and global levels, UNICEF aims to enhance its delivery of humanitarian assistance and protection in these complex humanitarian emergencies – for every child.

Click here to access the evaluation.

Sanchi Ravishanker works with the Innovation, Learning and Uptake unit of the Evaluation Office at UNICEF and is the author of this blog.

Jane Mwangi is an Evaluation Specialist with the Evaluation Office at UNICEF and is the manager of this evaluation.

World: UNICEF & UNHCR Regional Meeting on the Global Compact on Refugees (GCR) and Application of the Comprehensive refugee response framework (CRRF) in Eastern and Southern Africa: What we have learned and what we can do better

Source: UN Children's Fund, UN High Commissioner for Refugees
Country: Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, World, Zambia


On 16-17 April 2019, UNCEF East and Southern Africa Office (ESARO), UNHCR Regional Coordination Offices (RRCs) for the South Sudan and Burundi situations and UNHCR Regional Support Centre (RSC), organized a workshop with senior representatives from UNHCR and UNICEF from Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania and Zambia country offices, and Headquarters with the following objectives:

  1. To share good practices and identify joint priorities to operationalize the GCR and reinforce the application of the CRRF in the East and Southern Africa Region

  2. To identify ways to enhance collaboration between UNICEF and UNHCR in the context of implementing the GCR

  3. To explore opportunities to work together in advocating with governments, and in mobilizing resources for comprehensive responses and refugee inclusion The report provides a summary of the main issues discussed and recommendations. The recommendations that concern both Agencies, have been further summarized below.


Refugee children are at the core of the CRRF and GCR agendas Children have great potential to open avenues for effective advocacy towards refugee inclusion in national systems. Children are at the center of the agenda not only because of numbers -with close to 60 per cent of the refugees of the region being children, or because of the length of the displacement - which last often the equivalent of a childhood. They are because failure to invest in children and refugee communities undermines the equity and human rights base approach, will prevent the achievement of SDGs, and will avoid millions of children attaining their full potential.

Yielding results for children

The application of CRRF has already yielded tangible results for refugee and host children. This has been possible, among others, by the fact that all governments CRRF pledges and related roadmaps have prioritized sectors concerning children, including health and nutrition, education, child protection and WASH. Some of the areas where progress has been made are:

i. Inclusion of refugee children in national education and health systems. For example, 86% of refugee children in Rwanda are integrated in the national education system. Uganda costed Education Response Plan is set to include 277,293 refugee children by 2021 in the national education system.

ii. Accreditation of health and education facilities for refugees as national institutions so that can serve to refugees and host alike. For example, 72% of permanent health facilities in refugee settlements in Uganda have been nationally accredited. In Kenya, registration of schools in refugee areas as public learning institutions and allocation of Government officials is in progress.

iii. Investments in WASH infrastructure that benefit both refugees and host communities and that use national utility models, like the Itang Water scheme in Ethiopia that benefits 230,000 people from both host and refugee communities.

iv. Strengthening child protection and social welfare systems in refugee hosting areas, especially in Tanzania, Ethiopia and Uganda. Given that national child protection and case management systems are very incipient in these countries, both Agencies are supporting increased allocation of government social workers and building their capacities in these areas in an integrated manner.

World: DFID’s aid spending for nutrition: 2017 (30 April 2019)

Source: Global Humanitarian Assistance programme (Development Initiatives)
Country: Somalia, South Sudan, World, Yemen

This report builds on previous years’ analysis to present detailed information on aid investments to improve nutrition by the UK’s D...

South Sudan: 2018 Cluster Performance Monitoring Final Report

Source: UN Children's Fund, Nutrition Cluster
Country: South Sudan


South Sudan Nutrition Cluster

The cluster approach was established in 2005 following an independent Humanitarian Response Review, to address gaps and to increase the effectiveness of humanitarian response by building partnerships. The Nutrition cluster was established late in 2010. The primary purpose of the Nutrition Cluster is to support and strengthen coordination of nutrition actors within the humanitarian community, and to ensure appropriate and efficient response to humanitarian crisis by providing life-saving nutrition support to populations in need in accordance with national and global standards.

Emergency nutrition activities are coordinated through fortnightly cluster coordination meetings and ad hoc meetings. The cluster also coordinates a number of technical working groups (TWG): Community Based Management of Acute Malnutrition (CMAM) TWG; Nutrition Information Working Group (NIWG); Maternal Infant and Young Child Nutrition (MIYCN). Given the evolving and challenging environment and emergency nutrition response context in South Sudan, specific task forces were also established for providing common guidelines and response modalities, information sharing and developing and promoting coherent monitoring and reporting systems. This includes: Rapid Response Mission (RRM) task force; Quality and Accountability to Affected Population (QAAP) task force; and Nutrition in Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) task force. The vision and strategic direction of the nutrition cluster is decided by a Strategic Advisory Group (SAG). The SAG is chaired by the Director of Nutrition and co-chaired by the nutrition cluster coordinator and has representation from the Government (MOH), UN agencies, National and International NGOs and observers.

The nutrition cluster coordination team has formally established Sub national nutrition cluster coordination arrangements in 10 of the former states (Upper Nile, Jonglei, NBeG, Unity, EES, WES, Lakes, Warrap, CES and WBeG).

All the Sub national nutrition cluster coordination support the existing government health system on the ground and are supposed to be chaired by the heads of State or County Health Departments (CHD) or heads/nutrition focal points in the State and sub states. The composition of the State level coordination mechanisms is similar to that at Juba depending on the number of operational partners on the ground.

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