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The French response to the Corona Crisis: semi-presidentialism par excellence

GDI Briefing - 19. Januar 2038 - 4:14

This blog post analyses the response of the French government to the Coronavirus pandemic. The piece highlights how the semi-presidential system in France facilitates centralized decisions to manage the crisis. From a political-institutional perspective, it is considered that there were no major challenges to the use of unilateral powers by the Executive to address the health crisis, although the de-confinement phase and socio-economic consequences opens the possibility for more conflictual and opposing reactions. At first, approvals of the president and prime minister raised, but the strict confinement and the reopening measures can be challenging in one of the European countries with the highest number of deaths, where massive street protests, incarnated by the Yellow vests movement, have recently shaken the political scene.

Kategorien: english

The French response to the Corona Crisis: semi-presidentialism par excellence

DIE - 19. Januar 2038 - 4:14

This blog post analyses the response of the French government to the Coronavirus pandemic. The piece highlights how the semi-presidential system in France facilitates centralized decisions to manage the crisis. From a political-institutional perspective, it is considered that there were no major challenges to the use of unilateral powers by the Executive to address the health crisis, although the de-confinement phase and socio-economic consequences opens the possibility for more conflictual and opposing reactions. At first, approvals of the president and prime minister raised, but the strict confinement and the reopening measures can be challenging in one of the European countries with the highest number of deaths, where massive street protests, incarnated by the Yellow vests movement, have recently shaken the political scene.

Kategorien: Ticker

A humanitarian reset: impacts of a historic year

ODI - 4. Dezember 2020 - 0:00
2020 has been a momentous year, but will it force a reset, or even a rethink, of a humanitarian system highly resistant to change?
Kategorien: english

Innovation in Africa-Europe relations beyond Covid-19

ODI - 2. Dezember 2020 - 0:00
Assessing the political landscape, common ground and major divisions heading into the AU-EU summit.
Kategorien: english

Game-changing finance: solutions to meet the Covid crisis

ODI - 1. Dezember 2020 - 0:00
Explore how public finance can support the scaling up of innovative finance to combat the effects of the Covid crunch in Africa.
Kategorien: english

Game-changing private finance: solutions to meet the Covid crisis

ODI - 1. Dezember 2020 - 0:00
Explore how public finance can support the scaling up of innovative finance to combat the effects of the Covid crunch in Africa.
Kategorien: english

Fortbildung: Lebensmittelabfälle in der Kita- und Schulverpflegung vermeiden Kosten sparen – Ressourcen schonen – Klima schützen

AgrarKoordination - 30. November 2020 - 10:00
Montag 30. November 2020 An vielen Kitas und Schulen werden große Mengen Lebensmittel weggeworfen – das ist problematisch, weil unnötigerweise wertvolle Ressourcen verbraucht und Kosten verursacht werden. Doch das lässt sich ändern. Das Projekt „Gutes Essen macht Schule“ bietet mit einem Fortbildungsprogramm das nötige Hintergrundwissen und praktische Hilfestellungen für Verpflegungsverantwortliche und Küchenmitarbeiter*innen an Kitas und Schulen. Die Teilnehmenden werden darin qualifiziert, selbst Abfallmessungen und Ursachenanalysen durchzuführen und daraus Maßnahmen für die eigene Einrichtung abzuleiten, um Abfälle zu reduzieren. Zusätzlich zu dem Fortbildungstag bietet das Projekt „Gutes Essen macht Schule“ Unterstützung und individuelle Beratung für die Einrichtungen der Teilnehmenden. Zielgruppe: Leitungen und Verpflegungsverantwortliche sowie Küchenmitarbeiter*innen an Kitas und Schulen; Caterer, die Kitas und Schulen versorgen Kosten: 30 Euro pro Person Eigenbeteiligung Veranstalter: Projekt „Gutes Essen macht Schule“, Agrar Koordination Anmeldung per Email bis zum 19.11.2020 an: Email: gutes-essen-macht-schule@agrarkoordination.de Infos: Julia Sievers (Projektleitung Gutes Essen macht Schule), Tel.: 040/392526 https://www.agrarkoordination.de/projekte/gutes-essen-macht-schule/
Kategorien: Hamburg

Building bureaucracies that adapt to complexity

ODI - 30. November 2020 - 0:00
The event will explore: are bureaucracies fit for purpose to address complex challenges on education, pandemics, international development and beyond?
Kategorien: english

Proteste gegen Rassismus überschatten Feiern zum 60. Unabhängigkeitstag Mauretaniens

Presseportal Afrika - vor 9 Stunden 36 Minuten
Gesellschaft für bedrohte Völker e.V. [Newsroom]
Demonstration von Witwen und Waisen hingerichteter Rassismus-Opfer niedergeschlagen Menschenrechtsorganisation fordert Freilassung 36 Festgenommener und Gerechtigkeit Die Gesellschaft für bedrohte Völker (GfbV) hat die sofortige Freilassung von ... Lesen Sie hier weiter...

First Person: ‘people with disabilities are the greatest untapped resource on the planet’

UN ECOSOC - vor 10 Stunden 16 Minuten
Worldwide, persons with disabilities experience higher levels of unemployment and economic inactivity than non-disabled persons. Ahead of International Day of Persons with Disabilities, Mike Hess, US-based entrepreneur and founder of the Blind Institute of Technology, spoke to UN News as part of the International Labour Organization (ILO) photography project "Dignity at Work: The American Experience".
Kategorien: english

VENRO informiert! Smart, aber fair – wie Digitalisierung alle mitnehmen kann

SID Blog - 28. November 2020 - 16:29
Ausgabe Nr. 8/2020

VENRO informiert! Ausgabe Nr. 8/2020

 

Nr. 8 / 2020

THEMENSCHWERPUNKT

Smart, aber fair – wie Digitalisierung alle mitnehmen kann
 

Liebe Leserinnen, liebe Leser,

 

unter dem Titel „Smart, aber fair" gehen wir im machbar-Bericht 2020 der Frage nach, welche Möglichkeiten die Digitalisierung bietet, die globalen Ziele der Agenda 2030 zu verwirklichen. Auch mit den Risiken und Gefahren der Digitalisierung setzen wir uns darin auseinander.

 

Auf unserer machbar-Konferenz am 1. Dezember 2020 wollen wir die Handlungsempfehlungen aus dem Bericht mit Gästen aus Politik, Digitalbranche und Zivilgesellschaft diskutieren und uns in Werkstattgesprächen darüber austauschen, wie eine faire Digitalisierung machbar ist.

 

„Wir müssen jetzt die Weichen stellen, damit in der datengetriebenen Welt von morgen die Länder im globalen Süden nicht nur wie in anderen Sektoren als Rohstoffquellen gelten", erklärt Geraldine de Bastion, Geschäftsführerin von Konnektiv und eine der Panelist_innen, im Interview.

 

Einen Eindruck davon, welche Fragen die Menschen mit Blick auf die fortschreitende Digitalisierung weltweit beschäftigen, können Sie in unserem Kurzfilm „Smart, but fair – make digitalisation work for all" gewinnen.

 

 

Herzliche Grüße,

 

Heike Spielmans
Geschäftsführerin

 

 

Rubriken dieses Newsletters

 

„Wir müssen jetzt die Weichen für die datengetriebene Welt von morgen stellen"

 

Geraldine de Bastion ist Geschäftsführerin der Beratungsagentur Konnektiv mit Erfahrung in der Arbeit mit Aktivist_innen, Regierungen, Startups und NRO auf der ganzen Welt. Im Interview erläutert sie die Herausforderungen der digitalen Transformation für die internationale Zusammenarbeit und Entwicklungsorganisationen mit Fokus auf Afrika.

  Zum Interview

machbar-Bericht 2020: Smart, aber fair

 

Unter dem Titel „Smart, aber fair" gehen wir im machbar-Bericht 2020 der Frage nach, wie Digitalisierung alle mitnehmen kann. In vielfältigen Beiträgen erörtern Expertinnen und Experten aus  Wissenschaft, Thinktanks und Zivilgesellschaft Potenziale und Risiken digitaler Technologien.

 

Aus dem Inhalt

 

Wer profitiert von der Digitalisierung?

Von Dr. Jakob Schwab

 

Kann Digitalisierung wirtschaftlichen und sozialen Ausgleich befördern und Teilhabe verbessern? Insbesondere für die Ärmsten der Armen soll sie ein Tor zur Welt sein und so Armut und Hunger bekämpfen. Ganz illusorisch ist das nicht. Fraglich ist allerdings, ob diese Potenziale auch tatsächlich genutzt werden.

 

Grün und digital – wie geht das zusammen?

Von Christiane Grefe

 

Ein Blick in die meisten Bereiche zeigt: Die Digitalisierung bietet Chancen für mehr ökologische Nachhaltigkeit, ihre positiven Wirkungen sind aber keineswegs selbstverständlich. Entscheidend ist, wie und wofür Technologie eingesetzt wird. Hierbei sind politische Rahmenbedingungen zwingend erforderlich.

 

Daten als digitales Gold

Von Sasha Ockenden und Theresa Henne

 

Wann immer wir uns online bewegen, hinterlassen wir Spuren. Diese Datenspuren sind das Rohmaterial einer globalen Industrie, die an Größe und Einfluss längst die Öl- oder Finanzindustrie eingeholt hat. Dies ist besonders problematisch, wenn die Auswertung von Daten aus sozialen Medien in demokratischen Prozessen zum Einsatz kommt.

 

Microsofts trügerisches Versprechen „negativer Emissionen"

Von Linda Schneider

 

Große Technologie-Unternehmen wie Google, Amazon und Microsoft präsentieren sich gerne als verantwortungsvolle Zukunftsunternehmen, die sich dem Problem der Klimakrise stellen. Ihre eigenen Geschäftsmodelle – und damit die Vorstellung fortwährenden Wachstums und eines ständig steigenden Ressourcenverbrauchs – hinterfragen sie nicht.

 

Blockchain-Technologie in der digitalisierten Landverwaltung

Von Mathias Pfeifer

 

Seit ein paar Jahren ist die Blockchain-Technologie in aller Munde. Auch an ihrer möglichen Anwendung in der Landverwaltung gibt es reges Interesse. Sie soll, so ihre Befürworter_innen, dazu beitragen, gerade in Ländern des globalen Südens Korruption und Betrug im Landsektor ein Ende zu bereiten. 

  Zum machbar-Bericht 2020 (PDF)

Einladung zur machbar-Konferenz

 

Auf der machbar-Konferenz „Smart, aber fair" am 1. Dezember 2020 vertiefen wir die Debatte über die Chancen und Risiken digitaler Instrumente für eine nachhaltige Entwicklung mit Gästen aus Politik, Zivilgesellschaft und Wirtschaft. Kurzfristige Anmeldungen für die Konferenz sind heute, am 25. November, noch möglich!

  Zur Einladung
 

Smart, but fair - make digitalisation work for all
Ein Kurzfilm über die Chancen und Risiken der Digitalisierung

  Zu YouTube

50 Jahre 0,7-Prozent-Ziel – Ein Anlass zum Feiern?

   

Vor 50 Jahren, am 24. Oktober 1970, setzte sich die Weltgemeinschaft zum Ziel, dass die reichen Länder 0,7 Prozent ihres Bruttonationaleinkommens (BNE) für Entwicklungszusammenarbeit und Humanitäre Hilfe aufwenden sollen. Im Interview nimmt unser Vorstandsvorsitzender Dr. Bernd Bornhorst das Jubiläum zum Anlass, einen kritischen Blick auf dieses Ziel zu werfen.

  Zum Interview

Dachverbände legen Forderungen zum Gemeinnützigkeitsrecht vor

 

In einem gemeinsamen Statement haben wir zusammen mit elf zivilgesellschaftlichen Dachverbänden und Netzwerken auf die Notwendigkeit einer Änderung des Gemeinnützigkeitsrechts hingewiesen. Die aktuell geplanten Änderungen im Gemeinnützigkeitsrecht würden die Arbeit vieler gemeinnütziger Vereine zwar vereinfachen, jedoch bei Weitem nicht für die notwendige Rechtssicherheit sorgen.

  Zur Pressemitteilung
  Zur Stellungnahme (PDF)

Welche Rolle spielen NRO bei der Prävention von Terrorismusfinanzierung?

 

Im Kampf gegen die Finanzierung von Terrorismus untersucht ein internationales Prüfteam der Financial Action Task Force (FATF) derzeit die Präventionsmaßnahmen in Deutschland. Vor der Länderprüfung haben wir eine Umfrage durchgeführt, um herauszufinden, wie Nichtregierungsorganisationen (NRO) das Risiko der Terrorismusfinanzierung selbst einschätzen und welche Maßnahmen sie ergreifen, um das Risiko zu minimieren.

  Zum Bericht (EN)
  Zum Blogbeitrag

Wahlprogramme zur Bundestagswahl 2021

 

In einem Standpunkt zur Bundestagwahl 2021 haben wir unsere Erwartungen an die Wahlprogramme der Parteien formuliert. Es braucht entschlossenes politisches Handeln, das die Lebensgrundlagen auf unserem Planeten bewahrt, das Allgemeinwohl in den Mittelpunkt stellt und niemanden zurücklässt. Dafür müssen die Agenda 2030 und die Deutsche Nachhaltigkeitsstrategie die Grundlage des politischen Handelns bilden.

  Zum Standpunkt

Nachhaltigkeit jetzt Vorrang geben!

 

Die Bundesregierung hat eine überarbeitete Dialogfassung der Deutschen Nachhaltigkeitsstrategie veröffentlicht. In unserer Stellungnahme „Nachhaltigkeit jetzt Vorrang geben! Handlungsempfehlungen für die Weiterentwicklung der Deutschen Nachhaltigkeitsstrategie" kommentieren wir den Entwurf und formulieren Handlungsempfehlungen für die weiteren Schritte.

  Zur Stellungnahme

Preisverleihung des Deutschen Engagementpreises 2020

 

Am 3. Dezember von 18.00 bis 19.30 Uhr findet die Verleihung des Deutschen Engagementpreises 2020 statt. Dieses Jahr wird die Preisverleihung von ALEX Berlin live übertragen - das heißt, alle können dabei sein, wenn verkündet wird, wer die Preisträger_innen des Deutschen Engagementpreises sind. Im virtuellen Raum sind die Plätze unbegrenzt!

  Zur Webseite

„Kein Hunger bis 2030" erfordert Transformation unserer Ernährungssysteme

 

Von Miriam Wiemers

   

Viel zu viele Menschen leiden noch immer an Hunger. Bereits vor der Corona-Pandemie reichten die weltweiten Fortschritte in der Hungerbekämpfung nicht aus. Auf unserem Blog erklärt Miriam Wiemers von der Welthungerhilfe, was der diesjährige Welthunger-Index deutlich macht: Die derzeitigen globalen Ernährungssysteme sind weder krisenfest noch gerecht oder nachhaltig. 

  Zum Blogbeitrag
07.12.2020 und 10.12.2020, VENRO, Online
  Zuwendungsrecht in der humanitären Praxis  

Viele deutsche NRO setzen ihre humanitären Projekte mit öffentlichen Geldern um. Derartige Zuwendungen gehen mit Verpflichtungen einher. Welche dies genau sind, wo sie stehen und wie Zuwendungen Schritt für Schritt abgewickelt werden, wollen wir in einer Onlinefortbildung aufzeigen.

  Zur Veranstaltung
  10.12.2020 - 11.12.2020, German Toilet Organization, Online
  Monitoring und Evaluation von WASH-Projekten  

Wie misst man am besten den Erfolg eines Projektes im Bereich Wasser, Sanitärversorgung und Hygiene (WASH)? Und wie fügt sich das in den Projektland-spezifischen und globalen Kontext ein? Das zweitägige Seminar von der German Toilet Organization vermittelt spezielle Anforderungen von Monitoring & Evaluation im WASH-Bereich und bietet einen Einblick in digitale und partizipative WASH-relevante Werkzeuge.

  Zur Veranstaltung
 

Germanwatch sucht eine_n Referent_in für digitales politisches Engagement, Öffentlichkeitsarbeit und Datenmanagement in Bonn.

 

Die Johanniter-Unfall-Hilfe e.V. sucht eine_n Referent_in Projektmanager_in IT, Kommunikation und Energieversorgung (m/w/d) in Berlin.

 

Don Bosco Mondo sucht eine_n Referent_in Online Marketing/ Fundraising (w/m/d) in Bonn.

 

AGIAMONDO sucht eine_n IT-Systemadministrator_in in Köln.

 

Die German Toilet Organisation sucht eine_n Praktikant_in in der Junior Projektassistenz in Berlin.

 

Opportunity International Deutschland sucht eine_n Finanzbuchhalter_in in Voll- oder Teilzeit.

  Alle Stellenangebote
  Besuchen Sie uns auf    

sekretariat@venro.org

www.venro.org

Tel.: 030 2639299-10

 

Über Venro

Impressum

Datenschutz

 

VENRO – Verband Entwicklungspolitik und Humanitäre Hilfe

Stresemannstraße 72

10963 Berlin

 

Redaktion: Ian Mengel, Janna Völker

Fotos: Roger von Heereman; Jörg Farys; Welthungerhilfe

© 2020 VENRO

   

Switzerland and the pandemic: Does the economy matter more?

Global #Geneva - 27. November 2020 - 19:11

Unlike most Europeans and North Americans, East Asians take their masks seriously. From China, Taiwan and Thailand to Singapore, people have tended traditionally to wear face gear in public if affected by a cold so as not to spread it or – as was commonplace in many cities prior to the current pandemic – to filter pollution.  (As NASA satellite imagery has shown, shutdowns have produced a far lower level of CO2 pollution. See Global Geneva article on the links between climate change and the pandemic). Asians also harbour a courtesy toward others which culturally does not exist in much of the West as well as a respect for the power of virus stemming from their experience with SARS and H1N1. 

The end result is that select East Asian government policies countering COVID-19 have proved highly effective leaving their countries virtually “Covid-free.” Australia has embraced similar approaches with relative success as have Iceland and Finland. (See Global Geneva article by Tira Shubart). According to Johns Hopkins University, Finland has the lowest number of cases in Europe with less than 20,000 cases and 374 deaths. The question now is why Switzerland has been unable to do the same.

A number of East Asian and Pacific countries have implemented highly effective measures to counter the spread of COVID-19, but Switzerland and much of Europe have failed to learn from their examples. (Photo: UNICEF) Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore: lessons for Switzerland?

With 5.7 million people, Singapore experienced severe Covid glitches earlier in the year, primarily caused by overcrowded migrant worker accommodation, but then imposed tight regulations. These have resulted in less than 60,000 reported cases and 28 fatalities. According to latest figures, there have been no community-based incidents for nearly three weeks. However, as with other countries, such as Malaysia and Thailand, tourism has been hit badly. Unable to open up yet, the government has introduced a “Rediscover Singapore” initiative to encourage residents to go out and enjoy themselves. According to Singapore Tourism Board chief executive Keith Tam, while “local consumption will not fully make up for tourism spending,” it will help sustain hotels and attractions.

For its part, Vietnam (population: 97 million) has been draconian in its clampdowns, but is now widely regarded as one of the safest Covid-free places in the world. It has suffered barely 1,400 reported cases and 35 dead, the latest of which are considered to have been ‘imported’. Perhaps more accustomed to virus outbreaks than in Europe, the Vietnamese chose to confront COVID-19 head-on from the very beginning. Doing it properly has paid off.

During the country’s first wave in early 2020, Hanoi closed its borders and – not unlike Wuhan Province in China – placed hundreds of thousands of people into quarantine. This produced 90 days of coronavirus-free contamination enabling restrictions to loosen. However, following a completely unexpected new outbreak in July in Da Nang, possibly caused by returning workers from abroad, it evacuated all tourists, closed non-essential businesses and even put entire streets into quarantine. Anyone who failed to respect the rules was fined. For British journalist Lauren Fox, who experienced Vietnam’s first surge, such remedial approaches may have appeared harsh, but life is now “back to normal” with only limited constraints. Special economic protocols are in place, for example, allowing business people, diplomats and specialized workers to enter the country.

Another success story is Thailand, which imposed a state of emergency with a broad lock down, including the closing of all its borders, in late March, 2020. It then began easing up once conditions had improved. Renewed on a monthly basis, the regime’s continued state of emergency also has been used as a tool for cracking down on political dissent under the guise of countering Covid. The government, for example, has been deploying its emergency powers to ban demonstrations and retains the right to censor the press.

Nevertheless, with less than 4,000 cases and only 60 dead (some question official figures as too low) Thailand’s methods appear to be working. While businesses have been badly affected, particularly tourism, many malls, markets, restaurants, gyms and bars are at least open, albeit with far fewer customers. Companies have returned to work, but many employees still operate from home. Regardless, everyone wears masks and there is an effort to social distance.

As noted recently in a Global Geneva article, tourism used to represent 20 per cent or more of the country’s economy. Since the pandemic, this has more or less collapsed. The Thais, however, like to stress the importance of doing it right the first time. The last thing they want is for the pandemic to start all over again. However, as various sources within the hospitality business point out, Thailand still has far to go. It is unlikely to return to ‘normal’ until a vaccine is broadly available worldwide, possibly toward the end of 2021 or well into 2022. Most of its foreign tourists come from Europe, North America, China, Middle East and Australia.

Waiting for tourists to return. A virtually empty restaurant in a shopping mall on the island of Koh Samui in Thailand. (Photo: Edward Girardet)

While Thailand has not opened up per se, it is allowing foreigners and returning nationals to enter the country, but they are obliged to undergo 14 days quarantine – a highly tedious affair obliging one to remain in one’s room – at specially-designated hotels or military-run facilities. Most new cases are now from abroad, such as migrant workers, but also expatriates. The most recent were from Europe, including Switzerland and the UK, who tested positive during quarantine. Overall, however, Thailand ranks itself as Covid-free.

Why has Switzerland failed so badly?

So back to Switzerland with its 8.5 million people, one quarter of whom are foreign, plus over 300,000 cross-border workers. Since the first outbreaks in March 2020, Switzerland has embraced a curious, if not inconsistent approach for dealing with the pandemic. There has been no firm national policy; instead, cantons have taken their own half-hearted and often ineffective measures. While – as with much of Europe – the first spike largely dissipated over the summer due to a well-designed government-ordered lockdown, cases rose drastically in October. While numbers are dropping, Switzerland was – and still is – considered one of Europe’s worst affected countries.

Overall, Switzerland has witnessed over 315,000 reported cases and 4,100+ deaths. While daily cases appear to have gone down from a high 10,073 on 4 November, it has hovered at around 4,000 since 22 November (4,241, 4,876 and 4,509 for the last three days). On 24 November French daily cases were roughly double Switzerland’s (4,241 vs 9,155), yet France, which has suffered over 2.18 million cases and 51,000 deaths, has seven times more people.

Why has Switzerland failed so badly? Is it because – as some suggest – that the Swiss care more about money and their economy than human life? One repeated argument is that Switzerland has sufficient health care facilities to deal with any surges and hence does not need to be as harsh as other European countries with its counter-methods. But this argument has proven false. Beds with sufficient healthcare staff are running short. And not only are people dying at alarmingly elevated rates prompting the government to call in the army to help, but bioethicists have been asked to council doctors on moral triage practices—i.e., who should live and who should die. According to REGA, Switzerland’s air rescue organization, hospitals in French-speaking Switzerland “are already reaching saturation.”

Or is it because the Bern government – never one for confrontation — is reluctant to infringe on the freedoms of its fellow citizens with a nation-wide approach of informed but strict measures? Instead, the Federal authorities seem to prefer to ‘encourage’ rather than ‘impose’, such as the wearing of masks outside or restricting the number of shoppers at any one time in a mall or department store. The reality is that many Swiss have not been as voluntarily responsible as they should be – or as the government maintains they are.

As we know, the Swiss will follow orders quite rigidly, if given them. Had Bern required people to wear masks at the beginning of the outbreak instead of negating their efficacy, the Swiss would – like the Thais and the Vietnamese – be wearing them religiously. This would have placed Switzerland amongst the leading Coronavirus-free nations. As some point out, the fault lies with Bern’s lack of courage and crisis of leadership, not with the Swiss people.

While Swiss now rank Covid-19 as one of their main concerns, they have yet to grasp its seriousness. As medical sources note, even if those who contract the virus initially manifest few or no symptoms, we do not really know the long-term consequences. Cases of apparently healthy individuals, including young people, have begun to emerge with complications directly related to the virus, including death.

Swiss Covid-19 policy: Hard to grasp

It is difficult to know where Swiss policy really stands. Social media, but also news organizations such as the London Daily Mail, The New York Times and The Washington Post find Switzerland’s behaviour puzzling, even irresponsible if not altogether reprehensible.

One problem is that it is largely up to the country’s 26 cantons to decide what needs to be done. Some have imposed their own constraints with the closure of restaurants, cafes and night clubs coupled with limits on what shops can sell. The result is that many residents simply head over to neighbouring cantons to do their shopping. Geneva, which hit 1,366 new daily cases at the end of October, imposed its own partial lockdown. It now stands at roughly 400+ a day, still unacceptably high when compared to Vietnam or Thailand. Because of such progress, together with four other French-speaking cantons (Jura, Vaud, Neuchatel and Fribourg), it is now planning to re-open its cafes and restaurants on 10 December, plus “non-essential” shops this weekend. (See Le News)

Switzerland’s French-speaking parts, which make up one quarter of the population, currently represent 44 per cent of the country’s deaths. It is a somewhat different story in German-speaking Switzerland where cases have proven lower. Nevertheless, people in these cantons act as if the coronavirus does not exist. One Genevan visitor to Gstaad (a German-speaking luxury resort) recently commented that “you would never imagine there is a pandemic.” The town’s main street, she said, “was packed and the cafes and restaurants full, many people not even wearing masks.”

Police on a street corner in Geneva on 27 November, 2020. Neither masks nor social distancing in sight. (Photo: Global Geneva)

Such lassitude is even reflected by those supposed to oversee public safety. While some police pontedly wear their masks when on duty, many do not. When asked why he was not setting an example, one officer insisted that masks in the outdoors are not required by the law. Nor are there any effective controls, such as tracking, at border crossings, as with neighbouring France (which is in lockdown). Thus the virus can easily transit in both directions.

In a posture more in line with countries lacking a free press, the Bern government has repeatedly denied or ignored attempts by journalists representing the international community, including Global Insights Magazine, to interview Swiss Minister of Health Alain Berset. All the necessary information, one official noted, can be found in Swiss government communiques. Not only is the government Covid website regarded as not particularly informative, but it comes across as a propaganda mechanism more designed to obfuscate the truth. One has the impression that the last thing the government wishes to do is to respond to probing questions.

For example, what form of tangible collaboration is Bern taking with its European Union neighbours in tackling the pandemic so as not to undermine the far more targeted lockdowns of Germany or France? Why is Switzerland acting as if on it is an island? And what about informing Switzerland’s own international communities? Switzerland’s previous health minister, Daniel Koch retired when the going got too rough, while Berset has simply refused the international community’s press free access to information.

In an 18 November 2020 interview on the BBC’s Hardtalk, Dr. David Nabarro, Special Envoy for Covid of the World Health Organization (WHO) pointedly commented on how Geneva – the heart of International Switzerland – had become Europe’s new Covid-19 epicentre. He was polite in his criticism, but other WHO officials were less tactful when off the record. “Switzerland has been a complete disaster in its attitude,” noted one. “I don’t know whether it is arrogance or ignorance, but it’s disgraceful.”

Swiss ski resorts have already opened, or are planning to do so, such as Villars, on 19 December 2020. (Photo: Villars Tourism) Will Switzerland’s ski resorts endanger the rest of Europe?

One critical situation is the fact that Swiss ski resorts, some of which are already open for business, are planning to surge ahead with Christmas. Swiss minister Berset defended this decision by claiming that while there are “differences between the measures from one country to the other,” his government is in regular contact its neighbours. He admitted, however, that planned closures across the border could complicate Switzerland’s situation, including the bad press it is receiving. At the same time, he argued that Switzeland has the right to make its own decisions. “We know what’s at stake. The situation must not get out of hand,” he said. Yet why open ski resorts amidst rising infection numbers and insufficient surge capacity ICU care?

The Swiss decision is starkly at odds with other European countries. Some, too, consider it a serious threat to their own containment efforts. And Switzerland’s past record is not good. Swiss stations, such as Verbier (See Global Geneva article on the first cases in Switzerland), were partially responsible last March for spreading the virus to other parts of Europe. Despite warnings by local medical personnel, the Bern authorities delayed shutting down Verbier and other resorts for two weeks. This enabled holidaymakers to pursue a hefty weekend of partying prior to heading home, thus explosively spreading the virus amongst themselves and then to other parts of Switzerland and Europe.

Germany, France and Italy are currently all seeking a concerted European response to the closing of EU ski resorts. They fear that keeping them open will only re-accelerate the spread of the virus. Italy’s prime minister Guiseppe Conte has warned that it could become “uncontrollable”, while Bavarian premier Markus Soeder, whose state hosts most of Germany’s mountain stations, maintained that it could “thwart all efforts” to contain the pandemic.

Austria, whose stations proved to be an early spreader of the coronavirus, is reluctant to see them shut – like Switzerland – for economic reasons. As a result, both countries are playing down the risks. According to the Washington Post, this is “the second time this year that officials in Alpine skiing resorts are facing accusations of putting economic incentives over health consideration.”

The Vienna government, which may have to bend to Brussels’ wishes, is demanding that the EU pay the bills if it does. French President Emmanuel Macron, however, has been more forthright. He announced that French resorts would remain closed over Christmas as a crucial measure to vanquishing the virus. At the same time, the government would consider re-opening them in February if all goes well.

Will Swiss hospitals be able to cope if infections rise again over Christmas? (Photo: HUG) When Covid hits the fan – again – it’s up to the medics to deal with it

The Swiss, on the other hand, seem determined to proceed as normal. From St Moritz to Crans-Montana, they have announced select precautions, such as the wearing of masks on ski lifts and social distancing in ski lift lines, cafes and other crowded spaces, but it seems doubtful that these will significantly keep infections down.

One suggestion is that the Swiss should at least provide quick (and cheap) testing not only in ski resorts but elsewhere. In the United States, for example, families in Los Angeles wishing to visit others over Thanksgiving were able to be tested immediately. Children in Manhattan’s private schools in New York are also tested on a weekly basis. Switzerland has no policy for such tests and even in places where they are available, such as certain Geneva pharmacies, the waiting list is long and thus completely impractical.

Some medical observers fear a major spike in infections – and deaths – over the holidays as a result. As one Swiss doctor at Lausanne’s CHUV hospital system noted: “I fully understand that the resorts need to do business. But, once again, it’s all about money, not lives. To imagine that nothing bad’s going to happen is delusional…When it does, it’s up to us medics to take care of the problem. And we’re already stretched as it is. It’s very selfish.” Another often ignored factor is the high number of accidents on Swiss slopes, some 76,000 every year according to the Swiss Council of Accident Prevention (BFU/BPA/UP). This is another severe drain on emergency medical facilities.

As in the United States, while many Swiss now regard the possibility of having the anti-Covid-19 vaccine (by early 2021 according to Berset) as the key to all their problems, numerous others do not. Misinformation if not ignorance has played a huge derogatory role. According to a recent Swiss Broadcasting Corporation survey of 40,000 people, more than one quarter (28 per cent) of people interviewed said that they would not take it; nearly half (47 per cent) were hesitant. (See Global Geneva article on the need for better reporting of pandemics)

The problem is that vaccine or not, people will still need to take precautions and probably for months. Counter-measures will prove fruitless if more than 70 per cent do not participate. According to The Lancet, the Swiss rank amongst the lowest in the world with confidence in a vaccine.

From the international point of view, one key issue is that the United Nations agencies in Geneva have been obliged to follow the guidelines presented by Switzerland as host country. “The Swiss seemed determined that everything shoud appear as normal,” commented a UN official. Many UN employees were obliged to go into the office during the recent spikes despite the dangers.

The Palais des Nations has implemented significant precautions, such as limits on numbers entering the building and the need for everyone to wear masks, but the fears of contagion remain. In mid-November, the UN announced – to no surprise – 128 cases amongst Geneva-based staff, including Filippo Grande, the head of the UN’s Refugee Office. Nevertheless, unlike UN offices elsewhere, such as New York and Bangkok, Geneva has continued to hold significantly sized (partly in person, partly viral) international meetings, notably the Afghanistan donor conference earlier this month.

As one senior UN official noted: “With WHO and other organizations, Geneva is the world capital for health. The Swiss should have been setting an example from the very beginning…They didn’t. The trouble now is that they still haven’t.”

Edward Girardet is a foreign correspondent, author and editor of Global Insights Magazine. He is based between Geneva and Bangkok.

With additional reporting by journalist and film-maker Andy Cohen. (See his earlier articles on whether the Swiss government is engaged in false news regarding Covid and whether its don’t test, don’t tell policies endanger the old generation.)

Related articles in Global Insights Magazine (Global Geneva) COVID-19 and climate change: the planet’s twin crises FOCUS Wildlife & Pandemics: COVID-19, bushmeat and poaching in Africa Letter from Thailand: Tourism and the pandemic – until we’re back POLAR FOCUS: Iceland Exceptionalism – Renewable energies, effective pandemic measures and careful tourism. Could better-funded journalism have prevented the pandemic? Impact investing and SDGs in the COVID-19 era: maths matters more than opinion Coronavirus Stories: Not just a health pandemic, but a multi-sectorial crisis requiring Africa specific solutions Coronavirus Stories: Letter from London. On the NHS Frontline with COVID fatigue Coronavirus Stories: Lessons from the roller coaster life of an Italian ICU nurse Coronavirus: Community participation and credible information: the core of any serious response Coronavirus Stories: My Verbier Covid-19 Experience Letter from Bangkok: Coronavirus – The Asians may have got it right. Masks yes, but SWISS Air still refusing to social distance on flights posing a severe risk to passengers. (Updated 12 August 2020) Pandemics, climate change and UN reform Covid-19 : Comment protéger les migrants et requérants d’asile ?

ARTS seminar series : „SDG4: Education – European and African perspectives“

Postgraduates - 27. November 2020 - 18:38

The new Agricultural Sciences and Resource Management in the Tropics and Subtropics (ARTS) seminar series of the University of Bonns are focussing this winter term on:
„The Sustainable Development Goals: Case studies & operationalization“.

On December 3rd Eric Dambo & Karen Hattenbach from the United Nations University will give a presentation on
SDG4: „Education – European and African perspectives“.

You are cordially invited to join the virtual meeting!

Join the meeting: ARTS C-04

Zoom Meeting Information:

Meeting-ID: 929 5571 9896
Access code: 119536

Download the Programme here

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Senior Researcher (f/m/diverse) on stability of political orders - Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) - Bonn

Indeed - 27. November 2020 - 17:23
German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE). The German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik … 55.000 € pro Jahr
Gefunden bei Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) - Fri, 27 Nov 2020 16:23:31 GMT - Zeige alle Bonn Jobs
Kategorien: Jobs

BMW, Daimler & VW: Wie nachhaltig sind ihre Lieferketten?

INKOTA - 27. November 2020 - 17:05
Die gute Nachricht ist: Unsere Forderung, dass es mehr Transparenz über die Lieferketten von Automobilherstellern braucht und, dass Menschenrechte und Umweltstandards beim Rohstoffbezug gewahrt werden müssen, ist bei den namhaften Autokonzernen zumindest angekommen. Es gehört mittlerweile zum guten Ton, Mitglied in Rohstoffinitiativen zu sein und eine Unternehmenspolitik zu Menschenrechten und Umweltstandards zu haben. Außerdem fangen die Unternehmen an, über ihr Engagement für Menschenrechte und Umweltstandards zu berichten. Die schlechte Nachricht ist: Beim genaueren Hinsehen zeigt sich, dass das allein nicht reicht. Vom Anspruch, konsequent und transparent über die genaue Herkunft sowie die Bedingungen beim Abbau der Rohstoffe zu berichten, bleibt am Ende wenig übrig. Nur schleppend und wählerisch übersetzen die Unternehmen ihre Verantwortung in einzelne konkrete Maßnahmen. Deren Wirksamkeit bleibt darüber hinaus fraglich. Das zeigt unsere gemeinsam mit PowerShift herausgegebene Studie „Performance-Check Automobilindustrie: Verantwortungsvoller Rohstoffbezug?“. In der Studie haben INKOTA und PowerShift verschiedene Rohstoff- und Industrieinitiativen analysiert, in denen die drei größten deutschen Autounternehmen BMW, Daimler und VW Mitglied sind. Außerdem wurden ihre Nachhaltigkeitsberichte untersucht. Dabei stellte sich heraus, dass den großen Worten und hohen Zielen häufig kleine, selektive Taten und niedrige bis gar keine nachvollziehbaren Ergebnisse folgen.
  • Die Berichte geben nur lückenhaft Auskunft über einzelne Rohstoff-Lieferketten. Während die Rohstoffe für E-Auto-Batterien Kobalt und Lithium mittlerweile mehr Aufmerksamkeit bekommen, bekommen die Massenrohstoffe wie Aluminium, Stahl und Kupfer relativ wenig Beachtung.
  • Es wird nur selektiv über Maßnahmen berichtet, die die Autohersteller ergreifen, um ihrer Sorgfaltspflicht nachzukommen - deren Wirkung und Abhilfemaßnahmen werden darüber hinaus kaum bis gar nicht erwähnt.
  • Besorgniserregend ist außerdem, dass keines der untersuchten Unternehmen bisher einen Beschwerdemechanismus eingerichtet zu haben scheint, der den Effektivitätskriterien der UN-Leitprinzipien für Wirtschaft und Menschenrechte entspricht. Das heißt, dass Betroffene von Menschenrechtsverletzungen und Umweltschäden, die im Zusammenhang mit Unternehmensaktivitäten stehen, nur unzureichend Möglichkeit haben, sich zu beschweren und angemessen entschädigt zu werden.
  • Außerdem bleibt von außen unklar, inwiefern die Unternehmen bei der Ausgestaltung und Umsetzung ihrer Sorgfaltspflichten potentiell Betroffene einbeziehen, um ihr Wissen und ihre Erfahrungen dabei zu berücksichtigen.
Insgesamt drängt sich der Eindruck auf, dass die Autounternehmen versuchen, ihre eigene Verantwortung durch die Mitgliedschaft in Industrie- und Rohstoffinitiativen auszulagern. Allerdings bleibt die Wirkung der Maßnahmen solcher Initiativen ebenfalls unklar. Abschließend kommt die Studie zu dem Fazit, dass die deutsche Automobilindustrie von verantwortungsvollem Rohstoffbezug noch weit entfernt ist. Starkes Lieferkettengesetz nötig Damit wird einmal mehr deutlich, warum wir ein Lieferkettengesetz brauchen, das Unternehmen keine Wahl lässt, sondern sie verpflichtet, Verantwortung zu übernehmen. Entscheidend dabei ist, dass solch ein Gesetz, den Betroffenen von Menschenrechtsverletzungen und Umweltverstößen ermöglicht, vor deutschen Gerichten auf Schadensersatz zu klagen. Studie Performance-Check Automobilindustrie: Verantwortungsvoller Rohstoffbezug? Erfahren Sie mehr zum Themen Bereich Ressourcengerechtigkeit
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27.11.2020 Minister Müller: Gesundheitsexperten unterstützen Kirgisistan, Costa Rica und die Dominikanische Republik

BMZ - 27. November 2020 - 17:00
Das Bundesentwicklungsministerium verstärkt seine Unterstützung im Kampf gegen Corona weltweit: In diesen Tagen starten Einsätze der Expertengruppe Gesundheit in Kirgisistan, Costa Rica und der Dominikanischen Republik. Entwicklungsminister Gerd Müller: "Wir müssen alles tun, um ein weiteres Ausbreiten einzudämmen. Deutschland unterstützt deshalb seine Partnerländer mit Experten von der Charité und mit Testkits, Labormaterial und der Schulung von ...
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Evaluation South Caucasus (m/f/d)

epojobs - 27. November 2020 - 15:48

1. Description of the intervention

HEKS/EPER is the aid organisation of the Protestant Churches of Switzerland and has its headquarters in Zurich/Switzerland. HEKS/EPER is active in development cooperation and focuses, amongst others, on access to land and resources, fostering sustainable agroecological production and inclusive markets. HEKS/EPER has its own coordination offices in 16 priority countries and around 200 projects worldwide. HEKS/EPER is active in South Caucasus since 1988 with the aim to contribute to improved living conditions of rural households and providing them with a perspective towards a dignified life and peaceful coexistence. 

The opening of the regional office in Tbilisi in 2007 contributed to the development of HEKS/EPER’s visibility and positioning in the region. By strengthening the regional office, the HQ in Switzerland supported the further decentralisation process and delegation of responsibilities to the regional representative and her team.

The first South Caucasus programme (elaborated for the years 2008-2010[1] and later extended until 2012) was to some extent an attempt to fit existing partners and projects into one coherent strategy which then promoted the institutional development of the regional office.

The second programme (elaborated for the years 2013-2016[2]) focused on finding an adequate balance between the financing, supervising, coaching and capacity building of partners, supporting local initiatives and the direct implementation of mandates. Having a leading role in the implementation of mandates (financed by EU and SDC) enabled the regional office to conduct large-scale projects with greater impact. At the same time, the programme limited the number of projects and increased the efficiency of the programme. Furthermore, to underline its presence and increase the impact of the conducted work, the programme concentrated on certain geographic areas in each country.

The main objective of the regional office South Caucasus is “to implement the HEKS/EPER regional programme for the South Caucasus successfully and compliant with HEKS/EPER standards”. More specifically, the targets of the regional office are as follows:

  1. The country programme is professionally implemented in-line with HEKS/EPER’s requirements and standards and yields results.
  2. The regional office fosters the exchange and capacity development of its staff as well as its partners and ensures that the HO South Caucasus is a learning organization.
  3. The regional office secures grants and tenders from available sources of funding.
  4. The competences and achievements of the regional programme of the South Caucasus are visible to the relevant stakeholders and the competence of HEKS/EPER South Caucasus in the domains of conflict transformation and rural development is demonstrated.

As transversal topics, HEKS/EPER’s cross-cutting themes - gender, conflict sensitivity and disaster risk reduction (DRR) - were considered.

Additional to the South Caucasus Regional Programme 2017-2021, a Framework paper on conflict transformation was elaborated in August 2014 as a subordinate of it[3]. The Framework paper completes the conflict transformation strategy incorporated in the Regional Programme and it is expected that lessons learnt from the programme phase, together with the result of the current evaluation, will flow into the new programme 2022-2026. The synopsis below offers an overview of the paper.

2. Purpose and scope

The evaluation is premised on the South Caucasus programme 2017-2021 document. Its two main aims are to 1) evaluate in how far the objectives of this programme have been reached and to 2) provide recommendations for the design of the new South Caucasus programme 2022-2026, based on the global HEKS International Programme (HIP) 2021-2024. The evaluators should give particular importance to the second aim.

The regional programme evaluation will assess the pertinence of the regional program strategy and approach within the context of Georgia and Armenia and look at a set of projects within the programme in order to find out how the projects contribute to the achievement of higher-order-objectives. It will also look at the management of the programme and its contribution to the development of the region.

The purpose of the evaluation of the South Caucasus regional programme 2017-2021 is both formative and summative. As a formative evaluation, it is intended to provide insights in order to learn and improve the performance and the steering of the new programme 2022-2026. It will assess the internal dynamics of the programme and projects, policy instruments, service delivery mechanism, management practices and the linkages among them.

As a summative evaluation, it aims at accountability for the results achieved (intended and unintended, direct and indirect, positive and negative, and at output/outcome level) and is intended to provide information about the added value of the programme.

Target audience of the evaluation is mainly internal (HO and HQ). It will be a learning tool, helping to capitalize its experience and adjust its strategy for the next 5 years. It will also contribute to the reflection needed to adapt the future programme to the current requisite[4] in terms of theory of change of the programme and milestones and key indicators on (regional) programmatic level.

The second target group of the evaluation are the HEKS/EPER partner organisations for whom the regional programme is a tool for guiding the projects implemented in partnership with HEKS/EPER.

Finally, upon HEKS/EPER’s decision the evaluation report might also be shared with HEKS/EPER’s main donors.

 

3. Criteria and questions

In the following, the relevant questions are listed. During the kick-off meeting, it will be decided to which ones the evaluators have to give priority:

Regional programme strategy, objectives and approaches

  • Are the programme objectives still relevant (DAC criteria relevance) to the context? If not, in which way should they be reformulated to better respond to the context?
  • Are the programme objectives adequate to fit in the new HEKS International Programme (HIP) 2021-2024? How has the programme objective and/or project portfolio to be adapted to contribute to the HIP 2021-2024 (especially to outcome 2 “economic, social and political discrimination is overcome discrimination” and outcome 3 “land & resource governance”)?
  • How and to which extent were the approaches defined in the regional programme (HRBA; Environment; Cooperation/coordination/networking; Systemic; MSD; Capacity building and regional exchange; Advocacy) applied and adjusted to the context? How can these approaches contribute to the development of the region in the new programme? What needs to be further improved? Which importance should be given to the MSD- approach in the new programme (is it relevant, effective, does it sell to donors)?
  • Is the regional approach (cross-border projects, regional HO, regional trainings and partners’ exchange) still relevant to the context and how could it be improved?
  • Are the actual geographical priorities of the programme appropriate considering the programme objectives, set-up and needs of the population? How to broaden the geographical concentration in each country to reach more beneficiaries with consideration of presence of other donors in the area?
  • Is the budget allocated (project and HO) adequate to reach the objectives? How could objectives be focused/adapted to financial means of the programme?

Partners and projects

  • To what extent have the projects contributed to fulfil the programme objectives?
  • In how far are the projects which have been implemented sustainable (DAC criteria)?
  • What are the perspectives / strategic options for the future? What capacities / experiences or what kind of partners would be needed to increase the impact of the programme? (distinguish between operational implementing, systemic, strategic and research partners as described in the new HIP 21-24, p.48-51).

Added value of HEKS/EPER in the region

  • What is the added value of the HEKS/EPER programme and the projects of its partners in the region? What needs to be developed to strengthen this added value?
  • What is the added value of HEKS/EPER as donor/support for its partners? How can it be improved?
  • What are the perspectives / strategic options for the future? Which could be the profile of the programme and the niche it could occupy?

Acquisition of mandates and fundraising

  • Which measures should be taken in order to increase the probability to win new tenders? Which type of donors should be addressed particularly? Are there other ideas on how to raise funds (besides applying for tenders)? What should be done to increase the visibility of HEKS/EPER in SC?

Cross cutting issues (gender, conflict sensitivity, DRR)

  • Are the DRR/resilience measures adopted by the projects based on a risk assessment?
  • Have context analyses and conflict assessments been made by HEKS/EPER and its partners (on programme and project level, with regular updates)? Is programme/project implementation done in a conflict sensitive way? How can this be promoted the best?
  • Did the programme as a whole have any intended or unintended side effects concerning the current conflict dynamics?      
  • How far is HEKS/EPER aware of the intended and unintended side effects of its work? How can this awareness be increased?
  • Which potential and possibilities has this regional approach of HEKS/EPER to strengthen further local peace capacities?
  • How do the projects and/or the programme contribute to gender equality and equal gender relations, e.g. to participation in decision making processes, economic empowerment/participation of women and distribution of workload between women and men? How can this be improved?
  • Is monitoring and evaluation gender sensitive? Are the indicators and targets gender sensitive (disaggregated and gender responsive)?
  • What are the major gender challenges on institutional level (HO and partners, incl. staff balance, gender competencies, protection of sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment - PSEAH) and how should we work on them?
  • How is the (new) cross cutting issue of strengthening civil society already implemented and how can it be promoted in and through the programme/projects in future?
  • What are the perspectives / strategic options for the future?

Management

HEKS/EPER regional office for South Caucasus

  • How can the support provided by the HO to partners in project management and institutional building be further improved? To what extent has the quality of partners project work increased during the programme period and were the weaker organisations strengthened?
  • How can the exchange among partners from the three countries be further encouraged and more synergies established?
  • How have the trainings provided by HEKS/EPER to its partners in the region contributed to improve their skills and work?
  • How can the networking of HO in the region be improved? How can the cooperation with other actors be developed further?
  • Is the set-up and staffing of the HO adequate for the defined tasks and the further planned decentralisation? How can the HO improve its effectiveness and efficiency?
  • What are the perspectives / strategic options for the future?

HEKS/EPER HQ (Desk for South Caucasus, controlling, management)

  • How can the repartition of tasks between Desk / management / Tas / controlling and HO be improved?
  • Is the support and control provided by Desk, management, TAs and controlling appropriate? How can it be improved?
  • Are communication flows between HO and HQ smooth and efficient? What should be changed?
  • To what extent are the field missions from HQ to the region contributing to the programme? How could they be improved?
  • What are the perspectives / strategic options for the future?

 

4. Methodology and process

The evaluation team will be composed of two external evaluators: one international consultant, preferably with knowledge of the donor landscape in Switzerland and SDC and one local/regional consultant. The team should have experience in rural development, conflict transformation, gender and knowledge of the context.

The external evaluation will involve key stakeholders in the South Caucasus as well as in Switzerland in order to have a comprehensive vision.

It is anticipated that the evaluation will be conducted using primarily qualitative methods and tools.

The methodology should include the following steps but can be adapted according to the evaluations team specific working plan and Covid-19 related situation.

  1. Finalisation of TORs by Desk Officer and Regional Director in consultation with the evaluation team. Definition of the specific tasks of the two consultants;
  2. Developing and agreeing on a work plan which includes detailed methodology and timetable (as provided in the ToR) and budget;
  3. Studying documents related to the programme and projects (project proposals, contracts, project reports, mission reports, project evaluations, HEKS/EPER thematic and strategy papers, etc.);
  4. Kick-off meeting, evaluators and HEKS/EPER staff.
  5. Workshops with HEKS/EPER partner organisations (one regional workshop or one per country)
  6. Field visit of selected projects in each country (minimum 2 projects per country), including meeting with partners, beneficiaries and local authorities (marzes, municipalities, etc). (to be decided/confirmed by the evaluation team);
  7. Bilateral meetings with additional partners to be selected from list by evaluation team (min 1 per country);
  8. Meeting with civil society actors and other stakeholders;
  9. Consultative meetings with other development agencies (SDC and min. two other agencies cooperating with HEKS/EPER to be selected from list);
  10. Bilateral consultations with the HEKS/EPER HO staff (Finance officer, regional director, Rural development officer);
  11. Bilateral consultation with HEKS/EPER desk officer for South Caucasus in Lausanne and other HQ staff from list (Head of Asia/Europe department; Head of international department; Conflict transformation adviser, Rural development advisor, Gender adviser, Communication staff);
  12. Debriefing with HO staff in the South Caucasus;
  13. Analysis of the collected data and drawing of conclusions:
  14. Compiling of a preliminary evaluation report and sending it out to HEKS/EPER HQ and HO prior to the finalisation.
  15. Debriefing with HEKS/EPER HQ (Desk officer, Head of Asia/Europe department, Head of international department, Thematic advisers);
  16. Amendment (if necessary) and submission of the final report.
  17. Presentation of the evaluation results to partner organisations (by HEKS/EPER office)

 

5. Deliverables

The evaluators are expected to present the following deliverables to HEKS EPER:

  • Inception Report comprising of the following parts:
  • Background
  • Purpose of the Evaluation
  • Evaluation Design (Implementation Approach, Evaluation Questions and Scope)
  • Methodology and Activities
  • Evaluation Limitations
  • Description of Deliverables
  • Evaluation Schedule
  • Draft Evaluation Report comprising of the following parts:
  • Methodology
  • Findings and Discussion
  • Conclusions with Evaluation Matrices incorporated
  • Recommendations
  • Final Evaluation Report containing the following sections:
  • Executive Summary (2 pages max.)
  • Introduction (1 page max.)
  • Methodology (2 pages max.)
  • Findings and Discussion (10 pages max.)
  • Conclusions with Evaluation Matrices incorporated (6 pages max.)
  • Recommendations (6 pages max.)
  • Appendices

The evaluator will submit all deliverables of the evaluation to the Regional Director for review and comments prior to their finalization.

 

6. Schedule and budget

The tentative schedule for the evaluation process 2020-2021 is:

Activity

Nov 2020

January

2021

Feb

2021

March

2021

Apr

2021

Finalisation of TORs, budget and time frame

X

       

Contracting evaluators

 

X

     

Evaluators read documents

   

x

   

Kick-off meeting

   

x

   

Inception report

   

X

   

Preparation of field work

   

X

   

Field work

     

x

 

Draft report of the evaluation

     

X

 

Final report of the evaluation

       

X

 

7. Management roles and responsibilities

The evaluation mixed team (f/m) will be composed of two people: one international evaluator and one local consultant.

HEKS/EPER will provide

  • Transportation for all local travels (within Tbilisi, Tbilisi to target areas and back, within adjacent areas), accommodation in Tbilisi and target areas, plus office space in Tbilisi.
  • A professional Georgian-English and a professional Armenian-English interpreter will work with the evaluator during the «field phase» of the evaluation mission (if needed).

HEKS/EPER will be responsible for arranging and paying for international travel, accommodation in Georgia and Armenia, interpreter, etc.

The HEKS/EPER SC Director will be responsible for all management arrangements. She will also be in charge of coordinating all feedbacks to the inception and final reports and signing these off.

 

8. Follow up of the assessment

The follow up of the assessment will be sharing the report with HEKS/EPER SC office and HEKS/EPER HQ and facilitating the learning of findings and recommendations. HEKS EPER will ensure learning of the report within the country office.

List of documents

  • Regional programmes for South Caucasus 2008-2010, 2012-2016; 2017- 2021
  • Framework on Conflict Transformation 2014-2020;
  • Annual SC Reports; Project Proposals and Reports;
  • Mission Reports;
  • Programme and Project Evaluations;
  • HIP (HEKS International Programme Strategy) 2017-2020 and HIP 2021-2024
  • HEKS/EPER International Division thematic and strategy papers and reports
  • Minutes of country team discussions on all HIP 2021-2024 Outcomes
  • HEKS/EPER Gender guidelines and Gender Action plans of the partners
  • Other documents upon request

 

9. Assessment team / qualifications

The evaluation team will consist of an international consultant (lead) and a local/regional consultant (co-evaluator). With this announcement we are looking for an international consultant only (the national/local consultant will be recruited in South Caucasus):

  • The international consultant should have proven experience and competencies in rural development, institutional development, gender and knowledge of international/EU/and particularly Swiss donors including SDC.
  • The local/regional consultant should have proven experience in conflict transformation, preferably in CIS countries; the consultant should have an excellent knowledge of the social, political and economic environment in the South Caucasus (Armenia, Georgia) and of gender.

The evaluators should have thorough knowledge, experience and understanding of the development sector and proven background in evaluating similar development programmes. High commitment for and proven expertise in participatory/inclusive, gender and conflict sensitive programme evaluation are required. The evaluators should have excellent qualitative data collection and analysis skills and willingness to travel extensively (to Armenia and Georgia) and to meet with partners and stakeholders. The consultants should be fluent in written and spoken English, knowledge of local languages is an asset.

Please send your offer to Sabina Schmid, Desk Officer for the South Caucasus programme sabina.schmid@eper.ch until the 10th of December. Interviews will be held during the week of 14th to 18th of December 2020.

 

[1] South Caucasus Regional Programme (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia), 2008-2010

[2] South Caucasus Regional Programme (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia), 2013-2016

[3] HEKS/EPER South Caucasus, Framework on Conflict Transformation, 2014-2020

[4] Cf annex 1.2_Programme Theory of Change of the PCM Manual

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