The Mexican Evaluation Society (ACEVAL) with EvalPartners support aimed to strengthen monitoring and evaluation capacities of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through an innovative programme roll-out at the sub-national level. Here is a snapshot of what the project covered.
The answers were provided by ACEVAL.
From July 2020 to April 2021, ACEVAL carried out the project Strengthening monitoring and evaluation capacities for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the subnational level, which was part of the EvalPartners Flagship 1 Program. This effort had five key strategies:
From ACEVAL we are sure that the Flagship Program contributed to the professionalization and development of the evaluation field in Mexico, enhancing the exchange of experiences and providing information in the promotion of an innovative evaluation exercise
No, the current federal government has shown resistance to the use of evidence and/or acceptance of CONEVAL’s information, stating that it has other data that attempt to counteract unfavorable data on the country’s situation.
On the other hand, electoral conflicts within our presidential system favor the imposition of positions and little forces political actors to generate consensus. To a large extent, this means that evidence is not only insufficient when making political decisions, but also hinders and conditions them.
The evaluation community can promote the relevance of the information by showing its usefulness through accessible language that connects with people and reinforces the learning character of the evaluation.
In Mexico, information systems have had ample growth but are limited in their publicity, management and systematization. Defending evidence as an input to make agreements possible goes hand in hand with the existence of information and efficient communication of the data obtained, but it is also required that the normative frameworks of evaluations are not anchored to the mere compliance of procedural factors, but that the training of evaluators should be more robust in quantitative and qualitative aspects. And even more, that evaluation is seen as part of a system where the public problem, the government agenda, the formulation, design and implementation are interconnected so that evaluation is permanent and contemplated in all the phases of public policy.
The evaluation community can promote the relevance of the information by showing its usefulness through accessible language
Recently, the Mexican government released the Voluntary Report on compliance with the SDGs, which is positive because it speaks of an intention to comply with the 2030 Agenda. At the same time, civil society presented its Light Report, with which there are a number of areas of opportunity that are important to reinforce and discuss.
In this context, progress has been made in local legislatures on the need to regulate planning with a focus on the 2030 Agenda, however, much progress has been made in nominal and regulatory terms, but it is still a challenge to make it operational. This is largely due, on the one hand, to the large number of federal entities, and on the other, to the high number of municipalities in the country (about 2,500). This amplitude and dispersion of local governments generates problems for the proper applicability of the 2030 Agenda.
Despite the above, the SDGs continue to gain ground in institutional agendas and have been seen as an ally to incorporate dispersed and distant issues, such as the human rights agenda and the need to visualize the 2030 Agenda as a way to implement more efficient policies.
Progress has been made in local legislatures on the need to regulate planning with a focus on the 2030 Agenda
Better evidence allows us to illustrate what the real diagnosis is, based on objective information and, on that basis, to propose more consistent public actions and solutions according to the needs recorded. Otherwise, public action loses power and direction.
It allows us to visualize substantive progress as well as the limitations of the 2030 Agenda. Something that has become important is that every time the SDGs are advanced nominally, it allows to visualize a more general panorama but with local challenges, for example, the international human rights standards that support each of the goals, which, when viewed with this approach, is nourished by other operational frameworks.
Better evidence allows us to illustrate what the real diagnosis is, based on objective information and, on that basis, to propose more consistent public actions and solutions according to the needs recorded
It is highly relevant to position evaluation as a tool for transformation in an articulated manner.
Progress has been made in observing evaluation as part of public policies and not as an isolated element, thus not only reformulating the evaluation practice, but also improving the way in which we understand public problems, generating better program and project designs, and allowing implementation to be seen not only as a mere inertia of the designs, but in this phase of execution, opening up the possibility of analyzing the conflictive field of implementation.
No less important is that the meaning of the Global Evaluation Agenda allows to register advances and setbacks, allowing to visualize a scenario in which the citizenship is favored with information, which generates its involvement.
As we belong to a country where presidentialism is far superior to parliamentarism, the records on the progress of something very concrete such as the 2030 Agenda, generates inputs that allow a new way of planning, but also of programming and budgeting.
The EvalAgenda is highly relevant to position evaluation as a tool for transformation in an articulated manner