Philippines Coalitions for Change 2021 Independent Progress Review and Management Response
Summary of the report
An Independent Progress Review (IPR) was commissioned to assess the performance of the Coalitions for Change Program (Phase 2) against its objectives and the program’s continuing relevance including its operational arrangements, in the context of the Philippines’ advanced middle-income status and the COVID-19 pandemic. The IPR found that CfC is performing well against its objectives and was successful in helping put in place relevant policy reforms despite the pandemic. There were also notable improvements in the gender equality, disability, and social inclusion (GEDSI), as well as monitoring, learning and evaluation (MLE) mechanisms of the program.
The IPR put forward the following suggestions:
- ensure safeguards are implemented or put in place, and these, along with risks, are routinely monitored;
- articulate CfC’s contribution to higher-level outcomes pursued by the program; and
- broaden partnership and constructive engagement with members of ‘civil society’.
The IPR also recommended for DFAT to consider extending CfC until 2024 but with a more robust way of analysing contribution within its MLE system. Other suggestions from the review include the articulation of what success looks like and how the program contributes to DFAT’s long-term strategy and plans.
Summary of the management response
DFAT welcomes the findings and agrees with the recommendations of the independent evaluator including the program extension. DFAT will review CfC’s alignment with its long-term plans and consult with The Asia Foundation to better articulate the program’s purpose and continuing relevance. The results from these discussions are expected to make the program more responsive to the shared strategic objectives of Australia and the Philippines.