FS5 Telephone: (904) 392-1965
Cable: CENTROP FSSP
Farming Systems Support Project
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences
University of Florida
3028 McCarty Hall
Gainesville, Florida 32611
ITEM: ANNOUNCEMENT TO MOA SEs OF THE FORMATION OF AN AID FSR PROJECT
EVALUATION TASK FORCE
The FSSP is using this On-Demand issue to poll the SE network for
expressions of interest in developing guidelines to lead to a revision of
the way in which AID-funded FSR projects are evaluated. This request is
going out as a specific task activity. A task, as described in the FSS?
management memo of April 18, 1984, from Chris Andrew to the Technical
Committee, ACs and PLs, includes the following specifications:
"C. Task activity:
1) Performed where very specific terms of reference can be aivan with
outputs specified for purposes of strengthening the technical assistance and
training program directly.
2) Specific financial and budget commitments commensurate with the size
of the task to a lead entity or one entity performing the s .rvice.
3) Specific human resource needs and directives for outvtti nrec,,sary to
meet recommendations from...the core and the technical comnmic:ee trout the
core." (p. 3).
This request for a statement of interest represents an exceilear-r c-ance
for the SE network to react in a very constructive wa-y to a r-'il ne rad wich
is deeply felt by AID/W and most, if not all, bilateral -oirr, ccor, i involvedd
in FSR projects of any type.
Background: There is no doubt that project evaluations mirt occur.
However, little agreement exists as to how FSR projects are "unique" and
therefore should be evaluated differently from other nore traditional AID
agricultural research projects. While there is little conce nsus a-:, to HOW
FSR projects should be evaluated differently from traditiolai azricultiral
projects, most agree that SOME changes are necessary ii tio evaluation
process to account for the unique assumotions and time frdames encountered in
FSR projects. Bilateral contractors, AID/W and USAID Missions are extremely
uncomfortable with current evaluation procedures of FSR projects.
FSSP guidelines -- The FSR Project Evaluation Task Force: T1is task
should be undertaken by a combination of those individuals who
1) have had extensive experience in recent AID FSR project evaluations;
2) are implementing bilateral FSR project contracts; and
3) represent the FSSP core staff.
EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY/AFFIRMATIVE ACTION EMPLOYER
The task group will also be backstopped by representatives of both the
Technical Committee and AID/W. Communication of progress and reactions
thereto will flow in both directions between the task force and the
Technical Committe and AID/W through Chris Andrew and Wendell Morse.
The task group will use current AID documents which outline project
evaluation procedures, and will review existing FSR project evaluation
reports as background documents. A list of issues which are not addressed
by the current evaluation outlines will be prepared by the task group. When
the group reaches this stage, discussions with AID/W may be necessary to
account for the different positions held by AID/W, USAID Missions and
bilateral contractors. The task group will reconcile such differences, and
present their recommended and modified FSR project evaluation outline to the
FSSP core, the Techincal Committee and AID/W for final comment and approval.
The task force will continue to function until such a time that all
parties to it agree that the tack has been satisfactorily accomplished. The
documented output of the evaluation revision task force should include at
least these two items:
1) A revised outline for evaluating AID FSR projects. This outline
should incorporate the agreed-upon concerns of the FSSP, bilateral
contractors, AID/W and USAID Missions.
2) A collection of notes and/or minutes of any necessary meetings and/or
telephone conversations documenting the progress of the task force.
Selection Procedure: It is assumed that individuals from more than one SE
will be needed for this task force. If you are interested in having a PA on
this task force, but do not wish to act as the lead SE, simply notify "an
Galt, by letter or telephone, and your request will be noted and acted upon
in due course.
The selection of SEs, individuals and groups of individuals for this task
force will include those procedures set forth in section E, sub-section 3),
pp. 3-4, of the April 18 implementation memo referred to above.
Response Requested -- Statement Of Interest: Contact Dan Galt (904)
392-2309 if you need more information before making a decision. If your SE
has an interest in the area of improving FSR project evaluations, send a
draft outline of your proposal for addressing the FSR project valuationin
issue, no longer than 3 pages, to: Dan Galt, IFAS/International Programs,
McCarty Hall, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611. Draft proposals
should be received no later than June 27, 1984.
Along with your proposal, include a list of those individuals at your SE
who have the experience necessary in, and the interest to continue working
on, FSR project evaluations. Please include those who are not at your SE
but who have agreed to assist your effort. Refer to the previous section
for the type of backgrounds necessary for this task.