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Report/Evaluation Type:Project Level Evaluations (PPARs)
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Cameroon, Chad, Central African Republic, Sao Tome, Principe: Internet and Mobile Connectivity (Central African Backbone Program APL 1A and APL 2) (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) assesses the development effectiveness of the Central Africa Backbone Project Adaptable Program Loan (APL) 1A implemented in three countries: Cameroon, Central African Republic and Chad; and the Central Africa Backbone Project APL 2 implemented in Sao Tome and Principe. The objectives of the projects were to help Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) assesses the development effectiveness of the Central Africa Backbone Project Adaptable Program Loan (APL) 1A implemented in three countries: Cameroon, Central African Republic and Chad; and the Central Africa Backbone Project APL 2 implemented in Sao Tome and Principe. The objectives of the projects were to help to increase the geographical reach and usage of regional broadband network services and reduce their prices to end-users. Ratings for these projects are as follows: Outcome is unsatisfactory, Risk to development outcome is substantial, Bank and Borrow performance are both moderately unsatisfactory. For APL 2, the ratings are: Outcome was satisfactory, Risk to development outcome is substantial, Bank performance is satisfactory, and Borrow performance is moderately satisfactory. Lessons from the projects include: (i) A thorough political economy assessment and high-level national and regional commitment are key ingredients for complex regional ICT projects. (ii) The experience from the Central Africa Backbone APL 1 and 2 project shows that public private partnership arrangements are difficult to implement in multiple countries, particularly when countries have asymmetrical needs and incentives with respect to increasing competition for the provision of international and national capacity. (iii) Technical assistance for the preparation of legislation and sector strategies is only the first step to creating an enabling environment for the ICT sector. (iv) Assessing and funding the capacity needs of Regional Economic Communities is important for project coordination and implementation, so that they can carry out their functions effectively. (v) In weak capacity environments, it is beneficial that the projects build the needed institutional capacity for the Borrower to further / implement the crucial reforms and to ensure sustainability of the investments in the country.

Guatemala: Enhanced Fiscal and Financial Management for Greater Opportunities DPL Series (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) evaluates a series of two development policy loans (DPLs) to Guatemala: Fiscal Space for Greater Opportunities ($200 million, P131763), and Enhanced Fiscal and Financial Management for Greater Opportunities ($340 million, P133738). The assessment aims to verify whether the operation achieved its intended outcomes, to understand Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) evaluates a series of two development policy loans (DPLs) to Guatemala: Fiscal Space for Greater Opportunities ($200 million, P131763), and Enhanced Fiscal and Financial Management for Greater Opportunities ($340 million, P133738). The assessment aims to verify whether the operation achieved its intended outcomes, to understand what worked well and what did not, and to draw lessons for the future. The objectives of the series were to (i) strengthen tax administration and tax policy, (ii) strengthen budget management and increase the results orientation of public spending, and (iii) improve the management and coordination of social policies. Ratings are as follows: Outcome was moderately satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was high, Bank performance was moderately unsatisfactory, and Borrower performance was moderately unsatisfactory. This Project Performance Assessment Report offers the following lessons: (i) Tax administration and tax policy reforms in the face of major governance issues and long-standing opposition from influential interest groups are unlikely to be successful, even if backed by the World Bank’s analytical support, policy dialogue, and financing. Under these conditions, directly and indirectly targeting the governance issues over a longer period is necessary. (ii) Achieving progress on results budgeting requires strengthening of capacity, political commitment, sound monitoring and evaluation indicators, and cross-agency collaboration. (iii) Achieving results in policy lending requires a sound results framework, a credible theory of change, close linking of objectives with policy actions, and outcome-oriented target indicators.

Albania: Secondary and Local Roads Project (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) assesses the development effectiveness of the Secondary and Local Roads Project in Albania approved in 2008. The project development objective was to improve access to essential services and economic markets via the provision of all-weather roads for the resident population in the rural areas of Albania. This would be achieved through Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) assesses the development effectiveness of the Secondary and Local Roads Project in Albania approved in 2008. The project development objective was to improve access to essential services and economic markets via the provision of all-weather roads for the resident population in the rural areas of Albania. This would be achieved through reconstructing selected secondary and local roads; building the competencies of the implementation agency Albanian Development Fund (ADF); building an asset management system for the secondary and local road networks; and improving capacity in the local community for maintenance. Ratings for the Secondary and Local Roads Project are as follows: Outcome was satisfactory, Risk to development outcome as moderate, Bank performance was satisfactory, and Borrower performance was satisfactory. Lessons from the project include: (i) Implementing a successful multidonor programmatic approach to sector development requires the combination of government commitment with credible planning and common rules of engagement. (ii) Concentrating competencies within one agency may frustrate future decentralization of responsibilities. (iii) In the absence of need-based and credible linkages to resource allocation, a road asset management system may not get sufficient traction.

Vietnam: Water Resources Assistance Project (PPAR)

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When the Vietnam Water Resources Assistance Project (VWRAP) was designed, Vietnam was the world’s second largest rice exporter, but land and labor productivity was relatively low in comparison with neighboring countries. About half of cultivated land was irrigated. Ninety-six percent of the nation’s 7,600 dams were used for irrigation, but the hydraulic infrastructure was Show MoreWhen the Vietnam Water Resources Assistance Project (VWRAP) was designed, Vietnam was the world’s second largest rice exporter, but land and labor productivity was relatively low in comparison with neighboring countries. About half of cultivated land was irrigated. Ninety-six percent of the nation’s 7,600 dams were used for irrigation, but the hydraulic infrastructure was deteriorating, and dam safety monitoring was considered inadequate. A major constraint to improving agricultural productivity was underperformance of the large rice-based flood irrigation systems, because of their outdated infrastructure and institutional design. The government of Vietnam had initiated a broad-based program to modernize agriculture and requested World Bank assistance to finance a project that would introduce innovative approaches to irrigation modernization and address dam safety issues. The project development objectives were to modernize and increase the productivity of Vietnamese agriculture, improve the management of water resources, and reduce dam safety risks.  Ratings for this project are as follows: Outcome was moderately satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was moderate, Bank performance was moderately satisfactory, and Borrower performance was moderately satisfactory. Lessons from the project include: (i) The Project’s close alignment with the government of Socialist Republic of Vietnam’s agriculture reform programs allowed it to pilot innovations that have had enduring policy impacts. (ii) Irrigation modernization is a complex learning process that requires time and a phased approach. (iii) Key results indicators and monitoring and evaluation (M&E) frameworks should be linked to development objectives and a clearly stated theory of change. (iv) For affordability reasons, water user fees may be insufficient to ensure the financial viability of water user groups; in that case, additional sources of funds including subsidies may need to be considered.

Jamaica Economic Stabilization and Foundations for Growth Development Policy Loan (DPL) (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) reviews the Economic Stabilization and Foundations for Growth Development Policy Loan (DPL), approved on December 12, 2013. The objectives of the operation were to improve (i) the investment climate and competitiveness, and (ii) public financial management for sustainable fiscal consolidation. Objectives were highly relevant to country Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) reviews the Economic Stabilization and Foundations for Growth Development Policy Loan (DPL), approved on December 12, 2013. The objectives of the operation were to improve (i) the investment climate and competitiveness, and (ii) public financial management for sustainable fiscal consolidation. Objectives were highly relevant to country conditions and the need to avoid fiscal insolvency and begin implementing a comprehensive program of stabilization and reform. They were closely aligned with the World Bank’s strategy and government priorities. The design of the operation was substantially relevant to challenges, with policy priorities identified based on significant analytical work and nonlending technical assistance. The theory of change was convincing, with clear links among inputs, outputs, and expected results, although some indicators could have been more outcome oriented and clearer in their relation to objectives. One shortcoming of the design was the ambitious time frame for the implementation of some of the reforms related to investment climate and pensions, given the limited institutional capacity and a realistic assessment of the time needed for major legal reforms. Achievement of both objectives is rated substantial. Under the investment climate objective, reforms targeted improvements in contract enforcement, approval of building permits, and registration of micro, small, and medium enterprises to encourage their participation in the formal sector. Under the public financial management and fiscal consolidation objective, the program targeted progress on pension reform, tax reform, civil service reform, cash management, and public investment management. The impact of all reform actions was measured relative to specific indicator targets, which were substantially achieved or exceeded. These achievements were confirmed by additional quantitative indicators, qualitative gauges, and international benchmarking data. Some reforms, such as those in investment climate and pension reform, took longer than originally envisioned, but they proceeded and deepened over time. Cumulative evidence suggests that the reforms supported by the operation have been sustained and, in several areas, deepened during the past six years. This is reflected in the new development policy financing series supported by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund Stand-By Arrangement that followed the successful conclusion of the three-year arrangement under the International Monetary Fund’s Extended Funding Facility.

India: Tamil Nadu Irrigated Agriculture Modernization and Water-Bodies Restoration and Management Project (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report assesses the development effectiveness of India’s Tamil Nadu Irrigated Agriculture Modernization and Water-Bodies Restoration and Management (TN-IAMWARM) project, which was approved in 2007 and closed in 2015. The development objective of the project was to assist selected subbasin stakeholders in increasing the productivity of irrigated agriculture in Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report assesses the development effectiveness of India’s Tamil Nadu Irrigated Agriculture Modernization and Water-Bodies Restoration and Management (TN-IAMWARM) project, which was approved in 2007 and closed in 2015. The development objective of the project was to assist selected subbasin stakeholders in increasing the productivity of irrigated agriculture in the state of Tamil Nadu within an integrated water resources management framework. Ratings for this project are as follows: Outcomes was satisfactory, Risk to development was substantial, Bank performance was satisfactory, and Borrower performance was satisfactory. Lessons from the project include: (i) Irrigation project design that combines improvements in infrastructure with activities for improving agricultural and water use practices, agricultural inputs, and marketing support and linkages, can be a viable and effective approach for improving agricultural productivity and rural livelihoods. (ii) For the several line departments that are necessarily involved in multi-dimensional irrigation projects, the provision of appropriate training can play a pivotal role in fostering collaborative behavior among the departments, and to orient them towards the farmer beneficiary as the focal point of their services. (iii) The tone set by the project leadership is crucial for fostering and sustaining collaborative behavior across diverse implementing agencies. (iv) Including a water resource management component in an irrigation project can be a strategically important decision with long-term payoffs but may have to be supplemented by other projects to realize the potential for wider water management and climate smart agricultural policies. (v) Introduction of water budgeting concepts at the village or sub-basin level is a crucial first step to build on by gradually promoting the measurement of water use and agricultural water productivity.

Philippines: Social Welfare and Development Reform Project (PPAR)

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This is the Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) by the Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) of the World Bank Group on the Social Welfare and Development Reform Project (including additional financing) in the Philippines. The project had two objectives: (i) strengthen the effectiveness of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to efficiently implement the Show MoreThis is the Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) by the Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) of the World Bank Group on the Social Welfare and Development Reform Project (including additional financing) in the Philippines. The project had two objectives: (i) strengthen the effectiveness of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to efficiently implement the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (the CCT program, known as Pantawid); and (ii) strengthen the effectiveness of the DSWD to expand an efficient and functional National Household Targeting System of social protection programs. Results for this Social Welfare and Development Reform Project are as follows: Outcome was highly satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was substantial, Bank performance was satisfactory, and Borrower performance was satisfactory. Lessons from the project include: (i) The success of a large, nationwide social protection program like Pantawid lies in creating and strengthening the operational and institutional systems needed to support it. (ii) Strong government ownership is critical to establishing and sustaining ambitious programs like Pantawid. (iii) The World Bank’s ability to bring global knowledge to bear and skillfully deploy a full technical engagement was key to success. (iv) Continuous monitoring and evaluation are essential to maintaining CCT programs like Pantawid and ensuring their constant evolution. (v) The quality of education and health, not just service utilization, is critical to achieve the expected gains in human capital. (vi) As for all CCTs, a graduation strategy is essential to ensure that the program delivers on longer-term benefits and acts as a stepping stone into more stable livelihoods.

Armenia: Achievements and Challenges in Improving Health Care Utilization – A Multiproject Evaluation of the World Bank Support to the Health System Modernization (2004-2016) (PPAR)

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This is the multiproject Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) for the Adaptable Program Loan (APL) Health System Modernization series (comprising a first phase P073974, a second phase P104467, and an additional financing P121728). It evaluates the extent to which the APL series achieved its intended outcomes and offers an opportunity to draw lessons from Show MoreThis is the multiproject Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) for the Adaptable Program Loan (APL) Health System Modernization series (comprising a first phase P073974, a second phase P104467, and an additional financing P121728). It evaluates the extent to which the APL series achieved its intended outcomes and offers an opportunity to draw lessons from the long-term engagement of the World Bank in reform of the Armenia health sector aiming to inform and guide future investments in the health sector. The APL series was selected for an indepth field-based assessment due to its potential for learning from long-term engagement of the World Bank in health sector reforms; its clustering nature that allows coverage of multiple lending operation in the same country; and the relatively low coverage of previous IEG project evaluations in the country. Ratings for the Health System Modernization Project I are as follows: Outcome was satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was negligible to low, Bank performance was satisfactory, and Borrower performance was satisfactory. Project II ratings are as follows: Outcome was satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was moderate, Bank performance was satisfactory, and Borrower performance was satisfactory. Lessons from both projects include: (i) An approach that exploits synergies and lessons from other World Bank engagements in the health sector is important for undertaking complex reforms and helping the government stay the course of the reform. (ii) Macro and micro health policies need to be combined in a manner that the unintended consequences of policy changes are not overlooked. (iii) A shortened period between the approval dates of successive phases of an APL can limit the opportunity to incorporate lessons from previous phases into the design of new ones. (iv) In country contexts with strong social and cultural factors affecting uptake of health care services, supply-side and systemwide policy reforms need to be combined with demand-side interventions addressing the health-seeking behavior of patients. (v) While investments in infrastructure are not enough for health system modernization, they can help ensure acceptance of the proposed organizational changes involving strong stakeholders in the hospital sector.

Ethiopia: Urban Local Government Development Project (PPAR)

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This is the Project Performance Assessment Report for the Urban Local Government Development Project (ULGDP) in Ethiopia, which was approved by the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors on May 29, 2008, and closed on December 31, 2014. The project’s development objective was to support improved performance in the planning, delivery, and sustained provision of priority municipal services and Show MoreThis is the Project Performance Assessment Report for the Urban Local Government Development Project (ULGDP) in Ethiopia, which was approved by the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors on May 29, 2008, and closed on December 31, 2014. The project’s development objective was to support improved performance in the planning, delivery, and sustained provision of priority municipal services and infrastructure by urban local governments across the country. Ratings for Urban Local Government Development Project are as follows: Outcome was satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was negligible to low, Bank performance was satisfactory, and Borrower performance was satisfactory. Lessons from the project include: (i) There is a trade‐off between scope and development outcomes in municipal operations that use performance‐based grants. It is critical to ensure that funding is sufficient to both incentivize behavior at the city level and offer a meaningful level of technical assistance. (ii) A one‐size‐fits‐all approach is ineffective in urban development projects that target multiple cities at various stages of development. (iii) Performance‐based grants should be considered as a preferred method of intermediating intergovernmental fiscal resources to urban local governments in the context of emerging urban systems. (iv) Promoting autonomous decision making at the city level although ensuring that operational rules and supervision are in place is a necessary condition to ensuring the intended use of funds in municipal finance projects. (v) Urban development projects need to balance targeting core city administrative functions as well as improving city management and planning competencies.

Bolivia: Reducing Maternal and Infant Mortality: A multi-project evaluation of 16 years of World Bank support to the health sector (PPAR)

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Bolivia’s poor maternal and child health outcomes were of great concern in the 1990s. Infant and child mortality rates were 67 and 92 per 1,000 live births in 1998, and maternal mortality was 390 per 100,000 live births, risking Bolivia’s achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The capacities of the Bolivian health system were insufficient to respond to the need for health care Show MoreBolivia’s poor maternal and child health outcomes were of great concern in the 1990s. Infant and child mortality rates were 67 and 92 per 1,000 live births in 1998, and maternal mortality was 390 per 100,000 live births, risking Bolivia’s achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The capacities of the Bolivian health system were insufficient to respond to the need for health care access, availability, affordability, quality, and equity. Health facilities lacked essential drugs and equipment needed to provide good care. In addition to scarce and inefficiently distributed health workers, heath staff were often poorly trained, compromising the quality of treatment. The Expanded Immunization program had too little funding, poor communication strategies, and unreliable data, which led to declining immunization rates starting in 1996. Cultural and economic barriers limited demand for both preventive and curative care. The World Bank supported the government’s health sector reforms through a series of Adaptable Program Loans (APLs) over 16 years, including the 1999 Health Sector Reform Project, 2001 Second Phase of the Health Sector Reform Program, and 2008 Expanding Access to Reduce Health Inequities. The reforms supported by these projects are the subject of this Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR). This report spans three projects. Ratings for the first project, Health Sector Reform (APL 1) is as follows: Outcome is satisfactory, risk to development outcome is moderate, Bank and Borrower performance is both moderately satisfactory. Ratings for the second project, Sector Phase of the Health Sector Reform Program (APL II) is as follows: Outcome is moderately satisfactory, risk to development outcome is moderate, Bank and Borrower performance is both moderately satisfactory. Ratings for the third project, Expanding Access to Reduce Health Inequities (APL III) is as follows: Outcome is moderately satisfactory, risk to development outcome is moderate, Bank and Borrower performance is both moderately satisfactory. Lessons from these projects include: (i) The definition of a common results framework is useful to align the efforts of different government levels. (ii) A robust results-based approach needs to define a clear mechanism of rewards/sanctions to function well. Otherwise it risks turning into a mere monitoring tool that could lead to perverse incentives. (iii) Project design coordinating efforts with parallel programs that have similar goals has a great potential for efficiency, but it raises methodological concerns about the attribution of outcomes. (iv) While continued focus on quality objectives is certainly commendable, it needs to be accompanied by more robust outcome measures to prove quality enhancements. (v) Programmatic approaches are suitable where sector knowledge is strong, program objectives are long-term and clear, and country ownership is established. (vi) Ambitious projects partially relying on a government promise to pass a reform law are likely to need a restructuring. Reallocation of project funds in response to ad hoc government requests may lessen the logic of the results chain and risk the M&E framework from providing sufficient evidence of project achievements.