Evaluation report 2014:4 Peace and Development in Finland´s Development Cooperation: Case Study of Finland´s Regional Programme in the Western Balkans
Zehra Kacˇapor Dzˇihi´c
ISBN 978-952-281-258-2 (pdf)
This case study assesses the approach, methods, and results of Finland’s development programme in the Western Balkans 2009–13, as part of a wider evaluation of Finland’s development cooperation in fragile states. It includes an extensive review of documents and interviews with a limited, but diverse sample of programme stakeholders, mainly in Kosovo.
The programme has focused on addressing state fragility in Kosovo and increasing cross-border cooperation in the region. In Kosovo, it has been coordinated with Finland’s diplomatic and crisis management missions and covered a wide range of development issues in order to be comprehensive. In the region, the environment
has been a uniting theme, while the Kosovo portfolio increasingly focuses on economic development. Finland has ensured relevance by complementing other donor interventions and aligning with Kosovan government policy, but it has retained control of many interventions through its project approach. Finland has contributed visibly to the strengthening of Kosovo’s institutions by supporting policy reform and also the integration of minorities at the community level. Regional projects in the environment were very successful in bringing people together across political and cultural divides. Finland has contributed to establishing an improved environment
for economic development in Kosovo. Impact attributable directly to Finland is limited to long-term involvement with inclusive and special needs education in Kosovo. Programme results generally require continued external support to ensure sustainability.
Recommendations are given to strengthen planning and strategic management of both a limited continuation of the programme and future MFA support to peace and development.
Keywords: Western Balkans, Kosovo, development, security, stability.