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United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)

United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)

In 2014, UNICEF headquarters, in collaboration with its East and Southern Africa Regional Office (ESARO), took the decision to address certain issues related to the health of women and children by implementing a regional Institutional Strengthening Support Initiative to improve the Programme Monitoring and Response (PMR) capacity of the centralized government decision-making bodies and communities in four countries (Kenya, Swaziland, Uganda and Zimbabwe).

The ESAR PMR was designed as a learning initiative with the following goals: 1)Improve service provision/program performance during the course of implementation through improved monitoring of intermediate results, establishment of citizen feedback loops, and the use of monitoring and feedback dated to adjust and strategies as needed in a timely manner; and 2) Identify and promote those promising practices of progress monitoring in response, tested and proven by early adopter districts, through the development of national scale-up plans with in participating countries in the establishment of knowledge exchange platforms.

ISG and Development Gateway have been selected to undertake a final evaluation to assess achievement towards the programme’s expected results (milestones, outputs, intermediate outcomes, and primary outcomes) as per the initiatives Results Framework and the extent to which the programme activities have changed how more real time data is collected, analysed, packages, disseminated, and used. The findings will be used to support the further national scale-up of documented effective PMR institutional strengthening interventions in the four participating countries and Guide replication in the other countries in which UNICEF operates. Additionally, the findings will add to the regional and global knowledge base by generating evidence on processes and outcomes related to strengthening decentralized PMR systems in the health and nutrition sectors.

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United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)

United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)

UNICEF is in the process of enhancing Results-Based Management (RBM) across all levels of the organization. A number of initiatives, such as development of an e-learning and face-to-face course on RBM, a requirement to develop Strategy Notes prior to development of Country Programme Documents, have been instituted to support application of RBM principles in UNICEF’s programming. To further strengthen guidance on programme monitoring, Field Results Group (FRG), is developing a Programme Monitoring Tool Kit that offers a compendium of tools and methods to draw upon to facilitate programme monitoring. The Programme monitoring Tool Kit will be a repository of methods/approaches/protocols  for programme monitoring in programme areas related to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and UNICEF specific programmes in child survival and development, education, child protection, youth and adolescents, social inclusion, C4D and policy advocacy. The Programme Monitoring Tool Kit will be a resource for both UNICEF staff and partners including governments.

ISG has been selected to work with UNICEF to develop a monitoring tool kit that will provide an index of tools as well as examples of the tools being used.

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Women’s World Banking

Women’s World Banking

ISG is working with Women’s World Banking on the Technological Solution for Program Monitoring and Evaluation project. Women’s World Banking (WWB) is an international network of MFIs in several countries working to bring financial services and information to low-income entrepreneurs. Its mission is to expand the economic assets, participation, and power of poor women as entrepreneurs and economic agents by opening their access to finance, knowledge and markets. It seeks to alleviate global poverty by expanding the economic assets, participation, and power of the poor, especially women.

Through this assignment, WWB is seeking to develop a technology-based solution for monitoring and evaluating the success of the new Leadership and Diversity for Innovation Program (the Program), including recommendations on an optimal technology platform and build-out of the platform. In doing so, ISG will review the 8 interventions and Theory of Change related to the program, and WWB’s organizational capacity to implement a monitoring plan. ISG will conduct a readiness assessment focused on understanding how the data platform and data will be used, who the users of the data platform are, and how current data is being collected and used, as well as an overview of Women World Banking’s approach to M&E at a global level. After the readiness assessment, and consultations and workshops with WWB, ISG will work with the organization to select an IT solution for the M&E program, and work with the organization in rolling out the platform.

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Engility / IRG

Engility / IRG

ISG is working with the Engility / IRG and the USAID Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA) on the Development of an online version of USAID/OFDA/LAC’s F2F Disaster Risk Reduction Course.

The USAID/OFDA is the lead coordinator of U.S. Government responses to disasters in foreign countries. USAID/OFDA, through its Regional Disaster Assistance Program (RDAP), provides technical assistance and training in 27 countries of the Latin America and Caribbean region. The assistance and training focus on the following five areas: 1) Methods of Instruction; 2) Disaster Risk Management; 3) First Response; 4) Forest Fire Prevention and Control; 5) School & University Safety Program. The training and technical assistance program features 21 courses, and after nearly two decades of delivery of its courses in a face-to-face (F2F) format, OFDA LAC is beginning the process of transitioning some of its current portfolio of courses to an online format.  ISG is currently developing the Disaster Reduction online course. In doing so, ISG will provide concepts, information, tools, and instruments that will increase the overall understanding of the subject of Disaster Risk Management in general and the topics of Risk Reduction, Transfer, and Financing in particular.  At the end of the consultancy, ISG will deliver an online training course in DRR for USAID/OFDA’s LAC region, inclusive of content organization, technical design and deployment.

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World Bank

World Bank

ISG, in partnership with DevResults, is working with the the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP) to provide monitoring, evaluation and learning support to the Gateway Academy (the Academy) at the World Bank.

CGAP (the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor) is a global partnership of 34 leading organizations that seek to advance financial inclusion. Staff capacity at financial service providers (FSPs) has long been a challenge for financial inclusion efforts. Without strong staff, FSPs are limited in their ability to innovate and extend their outreach to the nearly 2.5 billion people who are excluded from the formal financial system. New applications of technology are bringing about massive change in the field of professional development and training. These approaches have the potential to dramatically expand the accessibility of high-quality content at a lower cost than traditional training models and thus boost much-needed capacity in the sector.

Gateway Academy is an innovative learning project that will offer both on-line and blended courses and cultivate communities focused on financial inclusion in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Gateway Academy will work with training providers, financial service providers and on-line learning experts to generate high-quality course content, build communities of practice and conduct on-going research to understand user needs.

The goal of the assignment is to develop and roll out a learning agenda that will inform a monitoring, evaluation and learning plan (MEL Plan) for the Academy.  The assignment centers on the organizational design and implementation of an approach to MEL that will measure the impact of the Gateway Academy’s programming and activities through comprehensive monitoring and data collection. This will require a review of the Theory of Change related to the Academy, and CGAP’s organizational capacity to implement a MEL Plan. Additionally, it will require the launch of data collection and training activities that will provide baseline and regular data collection over the course of the Academy’s programming. These activities will, in part, be coordinated through an M&E software system (DevResults) that will facilitate reporting and analysis of the Academy’s programming.

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United Nations Operations (UNOPS)

United Nations Operations (UNOPS)

ISG was selected, in partnership with Development Gateway, to perform research and coordination services for the development of an Innovative Data Toolkit on behalf of the Cities Alliance.

The Cities Alliance is the preeminent global partnership for the promotion of cities in poverty reduction and sustainable development. Headquartered in Brussels, it is a unique partnership with diverse members – local authorities, national governments, international non-governmental organizations, foundations and multi-lateral organizations – which have come together to strengthen both impacts and coherence in urban development.

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United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)

United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)

ISG, in partnership with Development Gateway, have been selected by UNICEF to undertake a review of technological innovations applied to program monitoring, real-time monitoring systems, citizen engagement processes, and strengthening of national systems in Malawi, Rwanda, Uganda, and Zambia.

In 2007, UNICEF began exploring innovative approaches and tools to advance the rights of children, specifically in the area of Information and Communication Technologies for Development (ICT4D). The Eastern and Southern African Region, led by the Rwanda and Uganda Country Offices, pioneered the design, development, and scaling of ICT4D initiatives across multiple programs. This work ultimately identified entry points for ICT4D solutions within traditional systems, and initiatives have been taken forward in health, nutrition, education, and youth engagement, particularly in Malawi, Rwanda, Uganda and Zambia.

As the tools and approaches evolved over the last seven years, they have been increasingly adopted and applied in other country offices in the Eastern and Southern Africa Region and beyond. While there has been significant progress in the development and application of ICT4D solutions in Eastern and Southern Africa, a comprehensive assessment of these solutions has not been conducted. Therefore, the UNICEF Field Results Group (FRG), the Global Innovations Centre (GIC), and the Eastern and Southern African Regional Office (ESARO) selected ISG to review ICT4D solutions that have been implemented in Malawi, Rwanda, Uganda and Zambia in order to determine how ICT4D solutions impact programming.

The purpose of this review is to create an evidence-based document that can be used by Country Office Program Sections to decide whether or not the application of an ICT4D solution will enable more effective and efficient achievement of program results. ISG aims to provide UNICEF with a holistic overview of the selected ICT4D solutions and a regional perspective of key opportunities afforded by ICT4D activities to country programs; the impacts of ICT4D solutions on in-country programs and systems; efforts made and lessons learned in generating national ownership of ICT4D solutions; country-level sustainability efforts including national government participation and contribution to ICT4D solutions; and the business case for investment in ICT4D solutions.

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Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR)

Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR)

International Solutions Group has been contracted by Development Gateway to provide design, advisory, research, and analytical support to help enhance donor accountability for DRM efforts through the Disaster Aid Tracking (DAT) initiative under the Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery.

The Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery (GFDRR) is a global partnership, managed by the World Bank and funded by 25 donor partners, to help high-risk, low-capacity developing countries better understand and reduce their vulnerabilities to natural hazards and adapt to climate change. Working with over 300 local, national, regional, and international partners, GFDRR provides grant financing and technical assistance to help mainstream disaster and climate risk management policies into country-level strategies. It also serves as a global platform for knowledge-sharing and capacity building for disaster and climate resilience.

Under GFDRR, and in collaboration with Development Gateway, the DAT initiative aims at collaborative development of a global system for tracking investments in disaster risk reduction and post-disaster recovery and reconstruction. The DAT initiative allows donor organizations, recipient governments, NGOs, researchers and ultimately beneficiaries on the ground in developing countries to gain a more detailed understanding of past and present trends in aid, and the disaster-development nexus.

Through utilization of the DAT dashboard as a starting point, ISG will help explore how DRM aid is addressed by a sample of donor agencies and recipient governments, with the goal of “mapping” the flows of DRM aid in these different contexts, identifying what DRM means to different donors and different countries, categorizing types and pathways of aid flow and trends of DRM aid to build a picture of global DRM efforts. In addition to the mapping, ISG will complete several in-depth country case studies and case studies of select donors with the goal of catalyzing further research to generate a better understanding of DRM aid flows from donors to recipient governments.

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Opportunities Industrialization Centers International

Opportunities Industrialization Centers International

Opportunities Industrialization Centers International (OIC International) is a non-profit organization headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Since 1970, OIC International has trained socially and economically underprivileged women, men and youth in the skills they need to transform their lives and their communities.

OICI recently selected ISG to design and implement an operational monitoring and evaluation system to provide OICI with the framework and tools necessary to more effectively monitor project progress, evaluate intervention impact, and analyze and disseminate information to inform the organization’s broader priorities and objectives.

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Plan International Asia Regional Office (Plan ARO)

Plan International Asia Regional Office (Plan ARO)

ISG was recently selected by Plan International to develop minimum standards of service delivery for victims of trafficking, map and assess service providers, and develop a database of service providers through a technologically-enabled platform for Missing Child Alert.

Missing Child Alert (MCA) is a three-country project active in Bangladesh, India, and Nepal led by Plan International. MCA aims to develop a technologically-enabled system that can facilitate tracking, tracing, and repatriation of children vulnerable to or victims of cross-border trafficking. Additionally, MCA aims at mapping service providers, assessing the quality of institutional services, and developing a directory of service providers through a technologically-enabled platform.

ISG, in partnership with Development Gateway and ChangeMantras, was selected to map qualitative indicators for assessment of services for victims of trafficking, particularly children, and adapt them to the South Asian context; map and assess the quality of services for child victims of trafficking in Bangladesh, India and Nepal; and develop a web-based solution to store data of institutions and services they provide.

Data collection consisted of a consultative desk research for development of indicators, empirical assessment in selected locations and the development of database in a web-based technological format and using GIS.