We implement a range of cross-cutting services that support and form part of our work in the various technical areas, or are delivered as discrete, stand-alone interventions
Cross-cutting services form part of our work in each of our technical areas. Or some cross-cutting services are delivered as discrete, stand-alone interventions – in areas such as communications, fund management, gender and social inclusion, monitoring and evaluation, political economy and analysis and programme scoping and design.
Our areas of expertise
Public policy programmes and initiatives often fail because of inadequate attention to the communication that is needed to build and maintain support.
Reform of government and public services can affect millions of citizens, firms and investors. Sustainable reform can only be achieved if these stakeholders understand and accept changes. Coalitions must be built in order to make reform as politically safe and painless as possible. Good internal communication is also a critical success factor within government. Simple, open and efficient communication and reporting mechanisms throughout ministries and upwards to institutions at the centre of government is fundamental to meeting public service delivery targets.
We provide technical assistance communications and public awareness campaigns associated with public policy reform. Our approach typically begins with a stakeholder assessment to map out the key stakeholders and audiences and to analyse their current attitudes towards likely project initiatives, their relative power in society and their influence on the decision-making process.
Designing and managing grant and loan funds is a specialised and challenging aspect of strong project delivery. Legal, institutional and operational aspects of establishing a fund must be designed, along with care in the implementation and evaluation of funds – especially in the challenging environments where development projects are often implemented.
Fund management requires strong accountability and value for money and the capacity to move quickly to establish and deliver funds.
We have managed funds in demanding circumstances, from the single multi-donor the National Transitional Council in Libya to a reintegration trust fund in Afghanistan. And our experience extends to many regions and sectors, such as a Sierra Leone WASH Facility, Kenya Market Access facility, and the Somalia Stability Fund, a multi-donor fund which supports peace and stability projects; as well as climate funds in Afghanistan and Rwanda.
Gender & Social Inclusion
Citizen’s needs, rights and roles can differ considerably depending on gender, class, geographical, ethnicity, (dis)ability or other characteristics. Development initiatives must be inclusive in order to effectively contribute to poverty alleviation, social equality and economic growth.
Inclusion, and a participatory approach, are at the heart of all good economic and governance reform work. Targeting women will not, in itself, address gender equality; the views of both men and women must be taken into account. There are inherent dangers in development programmes that reinforce the traditional roles of men and women without harnessing the potential of a transformation of gender relations. Other forms of social identity beyond gender can also affect how economic growth is experienced.
Perspectives must go beyond income to include social risks such as discrimination, unequal distribution of resources and power in households and communities, as well as limited citizenship.
Monitoring & Evaluation
Robust monitoring & evaluation (M&E) systems are vital for the delivery of successful development programmes.
Our M&E team has worked across the spectrum of development programmes, designing and managing M&E systems, building the capacity of local government partners, delivering M&E training seminars and undertaking M&E audits and independent evaluations.
Political Economy Analysis
Effective, sustainable reform needs an understanding of the political economy of the country or region and capacity to adapt to that environment.
A deep, current understanding of the political economy is vital in order to couch a reform programme in a relevant context and language that will command attention. There should be political support for programmes, ideally at senior level.
Much of our work bridges politics and economics, especially our stand-alone projects – whether the creation of a macro-fiscal policy unit in a Ministry of Finance, policy work on private financing of infrastructure or the privatisation of state-owned enterprises.
Programme Scoping & Design
Programme design is an integral part of any project. We offer services to undertake scoping and feasibility studies, design business cases, do institutional and human resource assessments and the full range of preparatory work that strengthens the ultimate impact of a project.