Independent Completion Report (ICR) for Australia China Environment Development Partnership (ACEDP)
Australia China Environment Development Partnership (ACEDP) is a five-year, 25 million environment facility. Its goal, objectives and revised outcomes reflected the interests of both countries. The program provided a solid platform for future work in the environment field, primarily through shared experiences and lessons learned. ACEDP was reasonably effective in achieving its partnership and capacity building outcomes but truncated timeframes limited its capacity to influence China's national-level environmental policies. In the final two years of the activity AusAID drove significant improvements to the program that led to better and more measureable outcomes, particularly through the IPR and subsequent changes.
ACEDP is a good learning experience to build upon for future cooperation in areas of mutual interest. It is essential to take time to build the understanding necessary in the early phase of a program/activity and, remain open to the broad range of possibilities and options for cooperation as situations can be fluid and context can change. Flexibility and an open minded approach are necessary in management mindset, dialogue, design and implementation. The overall lesson is that process is important in building partnerships, relationships and undertaking activities of mutual interest to achieve a common objective.