Holding a Mirror to the Governance Partnership Facility (GPF): $89 Million Multi-Donor Trust Fund Releases Annual Report

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Click on image to read the report.The Governance Partnership Facility (GPF), a multi-donor trust fund, has released its 2013 Annual Report. The GPF was created in 2008 as a partnership between the World Bank and leading donors from the UK, Australia, Norway, and the Netherlands, in the field of governance with the aim of facilitating the implementation of the Bank’s Governance and Anti-Corruption (GAC) strategy.

The GPF program’s US$89 million budget has been allocated to 126 projects spread widely across Bank operations with public sector governance having the largest chunk with 37 projects, followed by the water sector with 12 projects having used GPF-funded outputs in project preparation/implementation. In addition, the number of Bank projects influenced annually by Political Economy Analysis (PEA) funded through the GPF has steadily increased, reaching 60 in 2013. This is significant, since PEA has gained momentum after the adoption of the first GAC Strategy at the World Bank. Around 224 PE studies – such as the recently published Problem-Driven Political Economy Analysis: The World Bank’s Experience – were conducted by Bank teams between 2009 and 2013, and in addition, there was greater interaction between Bank staff and donor agencies working to mainstream a political economy perspective into their operations. 

The report also highlights examples from Afghanistan, Cameroon, Nigeria, Mongolia, and Tajikistan – key lessons for fragile and conflict states, middle-income countries, as well as states looking to improve the governance of natural resource management through effective supply and demand side interventions.

How have donor efforts addressed increasingly topical issues of importance such as governance in extractives industries and Public Financial Management (PFM) reform? In case of the latter, the GPF has helped to create a community of PFM practitioners such as the West African Monetary and Economic Union which helps in the exchange of cross-country insights on the political economy of PFM reforms. Open Contracting: A Guide for Practitioners by Practitioners and a Procurement Innovation Challenge is one of several outputs from a GPF grant helping countries like the Philippines to pilot effective procurement reforms that are informed by a deeper understanding of the drivers of performance improvement and the political economy of implementation. GPF grants in resource-rich settings are helping to understand where interventions work better, especially under the new EITI standard, and where platforms such as GOXI are enabling practitioners to easily share information. 

In 2013, GPF funds have also been innovatively used to pilot new approaches in governance issues from Information and Communications Technology (ICT) tools and applications such as Uganda’s Data Tracking Mechanism, which monitors corruption trends and has influenced dialogue on governance in the health and education sectors in 10 different activities, estimated at roughly US$18 million, aimed at strengthening the capacity of Anti-Corruption Authorities and parliaments. GPF grants are supporting Right to Information laws from Peru, Zambia, Bhutan, Cambodia, India and Pakistan.

With a number of GPF grants closing, it is possible to review, evaluate, and learn lessons from the implementation of those grants. A governance conference scheduled to be held in London in September will be a viable forum to discuss the sustainability of the activities initiated by the GPF within a new operating environment.  How would a new Governance Global Practice help the World Bank serve its clients better?


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