Monday, 6 February 2012
AusAID and AAPF staff have recently finalised an AAPF performance monitoring framework to provide quality assurance for activities it supports.
A series of tailored tools will help ensure that the Facility designs, implements and completes programs in line with AusAID benchmark standards. Importantly, the AAPF will be able to accurately determine the benefits of each activity against the Facility's development, relationship and partnership objectives.
AusAID’s Performance Management and Evaluation Policy sets out minimum requirements for measuring performance at Facility and activity levels. Measuring performance from both these perspectives is critical to enable activity managers to deliver against objectives, address problems promptly and inform programming and budgeting decisions.
The policy places a strong focus on quality, defined as "the extent to which aid activities apply internationally recognised characteristics of good aid practice". The characteristics of "good aid practice" include relevance, effectiveness, efficacy, efficiency, sustainability and gender equality. These characteristics shape AusAID's Quality Reporting System (QRS).
The Facility's performance measurement tools, which are aligned to the QRS, are based on a series of questions directly relevant to the mission of the AAPF:What is the activity trying to achieve and why?Does the activity harmonise with the development priorities and strategic intent of Australia and the partner country, particularly in the mining and agriculture/food security sectors?Do the objectives of the activity align to the AAPF's objectives?Does the activity complement other AusAID initiatives?What results can we expect this activity to deliver?
By rigorously answering questions such as these about each proposed activity, the AAPF can be confident that the activities it supports are likely to be successful. A key pillar of the Australian government's aid program is a commitment to delivering effective development assistance, with an emphasis on maximising the benefit to recipients. Ultimately, the Government is accountable to the Australian Parliament and the Australian public. It must be able to demonstrate that its international development programs are providing value-for-money.
In the coming editions of The Argus, we will share with readers evidence that illustrates the value of our quality assurance processes. We will reflect on the successful completion of a wide range of different activities, identifying key lessons learnt and better ways of supporting ongoing and future initiatives.