National Evaluation Capacities (NEC) webinar: Engaging youth, addressing crisis, and building resilience (GEI and UNDP)

This National Evaluation Capacities (NEC) conference webinar explores the themes of youth engagement in national evaluation systems and the challenges associated with evaluating and strengthening these systems in crisis settings.

With a focus on building resilience and inclusivity, the conference, organised by Global Evaluation Initiative (GEI) and the UNDP Independent Evaluation Office (IEO), aimed to advance the Turin Agenda, which emphasized the need for adaptable and forward-looking national evaluation systems. 

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About the event

In October 2022, the National Evaluation Capacities (NEC) Conference in Turin, Italy, concluded with the unanimous agreement on the Turin Agenda. The agenda called for the strengthening of partnerships and increased efforts to develop national evaluation systems that are resilient, agile, flexible, adaptable, and forward-looking. The Turin Agenda highlights the importance of gender equality, social inclusion, and the meaningful integration of environmental sustainability and climate change considerations into evaluation processes. 

One year has passed since the inception of the Turin Agenda, and it is time to assess where we stand and where we aim to be in another year, as we approach the next NEC Conference in October 2024. To facilitate this, the Global Evaluation Initiative (GEI) and the UNDP Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) have organized a series of events and knowledge exchanges building on the Turin Agenda and the discussions from the NEC Conference in October 2022. The first event, held in May 2023, focused on gender-responsive and climate-informed evaluation systems.  

The second event, held on the October 31, 2023, focused on the inclusion of youth in national evaluation processes and the challenges associated with evaluating and strengthening national evaluation systems in crisis settings. 

Overview of Webinar:  

1. Taking Forward the Turin Agenda: Introduction 

Isabelle Mercier (UNDP Director), Dugan Fraser (GEI Programme Manager), Richard Jones (UNDP IEO Evaluation Advisor), and Patrizia Cocca (GEI Knowledge Management and Communications Lead), set the stage for discussions on how to advance the Turin Agenda. 

2. Inclusion of Youth in Evaluation Systems 

This section focused on how national evaluation systems can actively engage with young and emerging evaluators as outlined in the Turin Agenda. It explored the challenges and lessons learned in this process. 

Gabriela Rentería Flores (Chair of EvalYouth) moderated the session, with speakers Erdenechimeg Ulziisuren (Mongolian Evaluation Association) and Seirah Ngcobo (South African Department of Planning, Monitoring, and Evaluation) sharing their insights on youth engagement in evaluation. 

3. Addressing Crisis and Building Resilience in Evaluation Systems 

This segment addressed the importance of considering fragility and resilience in evaluation planning and implementation, particularly in crisis settings. It delved into how national evaluation systems can be better prepared for evaluating under crises. 

Edoe Djimitri Agbodjan (Director, Centre for Learning on Evaluation and Results - CLEAR FA) moderated the discussion, with Methode Mulamira (M&E Officer, WFP, Haiti) and Juliet Parker (Director, ALNAP) presenting experiences and approaches in crisis settings. 

4. Discussion and Next Steps 

The discussion segment explored the level of integration of youth into national evaluation processes and the readiness of national evaluation systems to respond in unstable or crisis settings. 

The event concluded with a focus on charting the way forward. Isabelle Mercier and Dugan Fraser discussed what needs to be done to further the goals of the Turin Agenda, strengthen national evaluation systems, and prepare for the next NEC Conference in 2024.