Evaluation report 2011:1 Evaluation of the Sustainability Dimension in Addressing Poverty Reduction: Finnish Support to Energy Sector
ISBN 978-951-724-894-5 (printed)
ISBN 978-951-724-895-2 (pdf)
This evaluation examines the results and impact of Finnish aid to the energy sector from 2000 to 2009. The findings rely on a documentation review and case studies in Kenya, Vietnam, El Salvador and Nicaragua. The projects are well in line with the development agendas of Finland and its partner countries. Finland coordinates closely with other donors and partner countries to design activities in a way that facilitate harmonisation. The final results are dependent on where the development cooperation actually occurs.Extensive capacity development is required over a longer period of time, based on proper training needs assessment.
The EEP (Energy and Environment Partnership) model is unique, a source of actual added value and a useful tool to identify priority areas. It has the advantage of bringing together international and regional actors with national and local partners. It has become a strong promoter of synergy and innovative ideas. A shift in implementation approach is required, away from one-off pilots, and with clear links to policy. The Central American EEP (CA EEP) is the most advanced project in the Finnish energy portfolio in terms of both sustainability and poverty reduction. Environmental sustainability is included in the regional programmes, but they can have only a limited impact on the broad environmental situation.
The absence of a proper M&E system for projects is a major inhibiting factor in tracking the overall effectiveness and results. Monitoring is not systematic or made accessible for learning from individual projects or for RBM. The impact on poverty reduction will become identifiable only with time and with sound M&E systems.
Improved coordination of the instruments would be very promising in terms of leverage and generation of Finnish added value. It would be beneficial to link a broader Finnish-supported investment scheme with pilots for larger-scale replication and investment.
This evaluation recommends focusing on the following: 1) implementing current energy strategies; 2) identifying country-specific niches; 3) linking with policies in partner countries; 4) strengthening capacity-building; 5) mainstreaming of cross-cutting issues; 6) favouring longer-term involvement over punctual intervention; 7) increasing the technical capacity of MFA in the sector; and 8) risk assessment, monitoring and evaluation, and sharing results.