The possible partnership between UNDP and Telefónica (TF) continues to move ahead. A face to face meeting between the two parties will take place in NY on 30 September. From the TF side, we are expecting people from the foundation side who had done programme development on the ground. On the UNDO side we have BERA, RBLAC, DGG and post-2015.
After an initial exchange of ideas about the proposal UNDP should present to TF, RBLAC took the initiative and drafted an initial document which was rhen shared with UNDP colleagues for comment.
I edited the proposal and also added some comments to the text. In addtion, I also shared the following comments with the UNDP team.
1. We need to make TF aware of the work we do in the region in terms of the areas we are highlighting (youth, ICTs, livelihoods, local development, democratic governance, etc.). A section should thus be added describing our portfolio of ongoing projects. We are not starting from zero and what we are putting on the table is significant and has also significant investments, etc. The idea is also to use some of the ongoing initiatives as clear and agile entry points for bringing in new resources, etc. – as starting new programmes can be cumbersome and slow in many countries.
2. We should linked a bit more tightly the work being proposed at the national and regional levels. The former should be the “raw material” for the latter and should this inform regional activities. At the same time, I am not sure social innovation at the regional level will be as effective as having it at the local level first and foremost to hen take it nationally and regionally.
3. As mentioned in one of my comments, the M&E and impact assessment of national prgrammes is missing. This should be a critical regional component that can then inform activities at the global lever for replicability and scalability.
4. In terms of country programme we should adopt a modular approach. By this I mean having clear estimates for programme focus on either employment/entrepreneurship or participation in public policy making. Having investment estimates per output per country will allow the donor more flexibility to contribute resources for x number of outputs in y number of countries, etc. We have tried this previously with other private donors with good success.
5, In terms of strategy vis-a-vis TF, we need to decide what level of granularity we shall bring to the table at the end of this month. Seems to me that in order not to “scare TF away” we should keep the initial pitch at an intermediate level without aiming at having a fait au complet before meeting with them. In this light, it seems to me that the first 6 pages of the current draft could be shared keeping the details as backup for the discussions. We need to spread the ownership of the proposal a bit before we can present a fully fledge proposal to TF. The more they owned it, the happier they will be and perhaps the larger the contribution they could make to UNDP.