UNEP Programme Manual May, 2013 1

UNEP Programme Manual
May, 2013
Table of Contents
INTRODUCTION .................................................................................................................................. 7
UNEP PROGRAMME OVERVIEW .................................................................................................... 8
UNEP’S RESULTS FRAMEWORK AND PROGRAMME CYCLE ..................................................................... 10
ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES IN UNEP .................................................................................................. 13
PROJECT CYCLE ....................................................................................................................................... 16
PROJECT PLANNING AND DESIGN .............................................................................................. 18
DEVELOPING PROGRAMME FRAMEWORKS ............................................................................................... 18
GETTING STARTED WITH PROJECT CONCEPTS .......................................................................................... 19
PLANNING PROJECT INTERVENTIONS: THEORY OF CHANGE ..................................................................... 22
ENGAGING WITH STAKEHOLDERS ............................................................................................................ 29
FORMULATING PROJECT RESULTS............................................................................................................ 30
PLANNING HOW TO MEASURE THE RESULTS ............................................................................................. 33
DEFINING THE PROJECT APPROACH ......................................................................................................... 37
CROSS-CUTTING ISSUES ........................................................................................................................... 40
PLANNING HOW TO OPERATE A PROJECT .................................................................................................. 42
PROCUREMENT PLANNING ....................................................................................................................... 43
DEVELOPING THE PROJECT DOCUMENT ................................................................................................... 44
REVIEW AND APPROVAL ............................................................................................................... 45
APPROVAL OF PROJECT CONCEPTS .......................................................................................................... 45
APPROVAL OF FULLY DEVELOPED PROJECTS ........................................................................................... 46
PROJECT QUALITY STANDARDS AND REVIEW CRITERIA .......................................................................... 47
PROJECT REVIEW PROCESS ...................................................................................................................... 49
IMPLEMENTATION AND MONITORING...................................................................................... 51
ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES ................................................................................................................. 51
STARTING PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION ..................................................................................................... 53
HUMAN RESOURCES MANAGEMENT AND TRAVEL .................................................................................... 55
STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT DURING PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION ......................................................... 57
MONITORING AND REPORTING ................................................................................................................. 57
MANAGING PROJECT INFORMATION ......................................................................................................... 61
PROJECT REVISIONS ................................................................................................................................. 62
PROJECT EXTENSIONS .............................................................................................................................. 63
RESOURCE MOBILIZATION .......................................................................................................... 66
ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES ACROSS THE ORGANIZATION............................................................... 66
GENERAL PRINCIPLES FOR RESOURCE MOBILIZATION ....................................................................... 69
SOURCES OF FUNDING ............................................................................................................................ 70
PROCESSES TO MOBILIZE RESOURCES ................................................................................................... 71
INVESTING IN DONOR RELATIONS .......................................................................................................... 78
EUROPEAN COMMISSION........................................................................................................................ 79
PARTNERSHIP MANAGEMENT ..................................................................................................... 83
PARTNERSHIP ANALYSIS ........................................................................................................................ 84
DUE DILIGENCE ...................................................................................................................................... 85
LEGAL INSTRUMENTS ............................................................................................................................. 85
REVIEW AND APPROVAL OF PARTNERSHIP ........................................................................................... 89
EXECUTION OF A PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENT....................................................................................... 90
AUDIT OF PARTNERS .............................................................................................................................. 91
RISK MANAGEMENT ....................................................................................................................... 93
IDENTIFICATION AND ASSESSMENT OF RISKS ....................................................................................... 93
PLANNING MANAGEMENT RESPONSES TO RISKS .................................................................................. 95
MONITORING RISKS ............................................................................................................................... 96
PROJECT-AT-RISK SYSTEM .................................................................................................................... 96
PROCUREMENT RISKS ............................................................................................................................ 97
FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT ........................................................................................................... 99
HOW TO DEVELOP A PROJECT BUDGET ................................................................................................ 100
HOW TO ACCESS SECURED FUNDING .................................................................................................... 105
HOW TO PROCESS PROCUREMENTS...................................................................................................... 108
HOW TO MAKE ADVANCE PAYMENTS ................................................................................................... 110
HOW TO MONITOR FINANCIAL PERFORMANCE ................................................................................... 111
FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT OF EQUIPMENT ......................................................................................... 114
10. EVALUATION .................................................................................................................................. 117
UNEP’S APPROACH TO EVALUATION ................................................................................................. 117
TYPES OF EVALUATION IN UNEP ........................................................................................................ 118
PROCESSES OF EVALUATION ................................................................................................................ 120
MANAGEMENT RESPONSES AND RECOMMENDATIONS ....................................................................... 125
11. PROJECT COMPLETION AND CLOSURE ................................................................................... 127
CONFIRMING COMPLETION OF THE PROJECT..................................................................................... 127
ADMINISTRATIVE COMPLETION REVISION OF THE PROJECT ............................................................ 128
FINANCIAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE CLOSURE OF THE PROJECT ......................................................... 129
ANNEXES .................................................................................................................................................. 133
KEY TERMS AND DEFINITIONS .................................................................................................. 133
TEMPLATES..................................................................................................................................... 135
REFERENCES .................................................................................................................................. 137
Figure 1 – The Strategic Framework is derived from the MTS and leads to the PoW
Figure 2 – From Programme of Work to projects
Figure 3 – Hierarchy of UNEP’s Results Framework
Figure 4 – UNEP’s matrix approach with Lead Divisions indicated for each Subprogramme
Figure 5 – UNEP Programme and Project Cycle
Figure 6 – A simple problem tree/situation analysis
Figure 7 – The situation analysis shown in figure 6 converted into a simple objective tree
Figure 8 – A simple generic causal pathway, which can be also termed Theory of Change
Figure 9 – Multiple pathways within a generic Theory of Change
Figure 10 – Suggested steps in developing a Theory of Change for a project
Figure 11 – A simple impact pathway depicting assumptions, risks and impact drivers
Figure 12 – From project concepts to project documents
Figure 13 – Flow of work for approval process
Figure 14 – Likelihood and impact matrix of risk analysis
Figure 15 – Budget planning for results
Figure 16 – Project expenditure and financial performance
Figure 17 – Process of project completion and closure
Table 1 – Example of Stakeholder Analysis
Table 2 – UNEP Logical Framework Structure
Table 3 – Examples of SMART outcomes and outcome indicators
Table 4 – Summary of roles and responsibilities in project implementation
Table 5 – Complementary roles of monitoring and evaluation
Table 6 – Summary of UNEP reporting requirements
Table 7 – Process and requirements for project revisions
Table 8 – Summary of UNEP standard legal instruments
Table 9 – Standard legal instruments versus commercial contracts
Table 10 – Project risk assessment table in UNEP project document
Table 11 – UNEP project budget format and IMIS budget codes
Table 12 – Contact points for communication on key issues during an evaluation
Table 13 – Summary of roles and responsibilities in evaluation
Table 14 – Types of compliance status in implementation of evaluation recommendations
Box 1 – Key Terms in UNEP’s Results Framework
Box 2 – What is a Project in UNEP?
Box 3 - Some Key Terms Used in Theory of Change
Box 4 – Output vs. Outcome
Box 5 – Types of indicators (not all mutually exclusive)
Box 6 – MDG7 targets and indicators
Box 7 – The Project Review Committee
Box 8 – Human resources
Box 9 – Travel rules of the Travel Shipping and Visa Unit in Nairobi
Box 10 – European Commission funding instruments for the period 2014-2020
Box 11 – Financial and Administrative Framework Agreement
Box 12 – Co-financing in UNEP
Box 13 – Programme Support Costs and GEF Fees
Box 14 – Roles and Responsibilities of Certifying, Approving, and Authorising Officers
UN Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions
Advanced DGEF Database Information System
Accounts Service Unit of UNON
Bali Strategic Plan for Technology Support and Capacity-building
UN Common Country Assessment
Call for Proposal
UN Committee on Programme and Coordination
UN Committee of Permanent Representatives
Concept Review and Clearance
Division of Communication and Public Information
Deputy Executive Director
Division of Environmental Law and Conventions
Division of Environmental Policy and Information
Division of Early Warning and Assessment
(UNEP) Donor Partnerships and Contributions Section
Division of Regional Cooperation
Daily Subsistence Allowance
Division of Technology, Industry and Economics
Expected Accomplishment
European Commission
European Union
Executive Director
EC Environment and Sustainable Management of Natural Resources Thematic Programme
Fund Management Officer
Governing Council
Global Environment Facility
GEF Coordination Office of UNEP
Harmonized Approach to Cash Transfers
Human Rights Based Approach
Internal Cooperation Agreement
Initial Project Idea (GEF projects)
Invitation To Bid
Letter of Agreement
Letter of Commitment
Letter of Intent
GEF Least Developed Countries Fund
Local Property Survey Board
Multilateral Environmental Agreement
Major Groups and Stakeholders
Memorandum of Understanding
Medium-Term Strategy
Non-expendable Equipment
Non-Governmental Organization
Office for Operations
Office of Human Resource Management
UN Office of Internal Oversight Services
Project Cooperation Agreement
Project Identification Form
Programme Information and Management System
Portfolio Manager (GEF projects)
Programme of Work
Project Preparation Grant
Programme Performance Report
Project Review Committee
Programme Support Cost
Quality Assurance Section
Results-Based Management
GEF Special Climate Change Fund
Senior Management Team
Statement of Works
Strategic Presence Policy
Small-Scale Funding Agreement
Source Selection Plan
Task Manager (GEF projects)
Terms of Reference
UNON Travel Shipping and Visa Unit
United Nations Country Team
United Nations Development Assistance Framework
United Nations Development Group
United Nations Evaluation Group
United Nations Environment Programme
United Nations Office at Nairobi
United States Dollar
In 2008, based on demand from stakeholders and within the reform context of the UN Secretariat
management, UNEP introduced a results planning framework as part of a broader reform process. The
four-year Medium Term Strategy (MTS) for 2010-2013 provides vision and direction for all UNEP
work in this period, and sets out UNEP’s results framework. The MTS is implemented through
biennial Programmes of Work (PoW). The PoW includes objectives, Expected Accomplishments and
performance measures in line with MTS. In addition, the PoW includes specific outputs for which
UNEP is accountable, and which together make a credible contribution to the achievement of EAs and
UNEP has since implemented numerous significant changes to its operational and programme
management processes. Please see the UNEP Quality Assurance Section website for more information.
Annex 3 of the present document also includes a list of links to relevant policies, which were
approved as part of UNEP’s reform process on these reforms.
This Programme Manual replaces the 2005 UNEP Project Manual, and provides a consolidated
reference for standard operating procedures and requirements applicable to all projects implemented
by UNEP, including those financed by the Global Environment Facility (GEF). The programmes of
work for Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) and Regional Seas Conventions do not fall
under the purview of guidance in this manual. In addition, this manual does not provide detailed
administrative instructions that are readily available from other sources; for this purpose a list of
references is included in Annex 3.
The development of this manual was led by the UNEP Quality Assurance Section (QAS), in
consultation with Divisions and the GEF Coordination Office. The intended audience of this manual
is UNEP staff members responsible for executing and implementing projects and managing their
related accounts, as well as senior managers involved in overseeing project-related work, project team
members and partners.
This manual is structured around the processes and thematic areas of programme and project
management. Chapters 3-5 and 10-11 follow the project cycle from planning to evaluation and closure.
Chapters 6-9 present thematic areas (such as partners, risks, and resources management) which are
part of the project cycle, from beginning to end.
Overall, the content of this manual provides an overview of:
 UNEP’s results framework and its overall approach to results based management, including
the Theory of Change;
 The respective roles and responsibilities of Task Managers, Project Managers, Fund
Management Officers (FMOs), supervisors of Managers and project implementing partners;
 The respective roles and responsibilities of Division Directors, Subprogramme Coordinators,
and other bodies that steer implementation;
 UNEP project quality standards and how to develop and manage a project within the
 UNEP’s procedures for monitoring and for evaluation; and
 Key areas and basic requirements of operational management to ensure efficient programme
and project delivery.
QAS continually reviews and updates this manual. Future versions may include annexes dealing with
specific topics, such as the UNEP/GEF projects cycle and standards and approved Standard Operating
Procedures. Any suggestions or comments to improve this manual should be sent to: [email protected]
UNEP Programme Overview
UNEP is the United Nations’ designated entity for addressing environmental issues at the global and
regional levels. Its core objectives are to serve as an authoritative advocate for the global environment,
to support governments in setting the global environmental agenda, and to promote the coherent
implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the UN system.
The mandate and objectives of UNEP mainly emanate from:
1972 UN General Assembly Resolution 2997 (XXVII);
1997 Nairobi Declaration on the Role and Mandate of UNEP;
2000 Malmö Ministerial Declaration; and
2002 Cartagena Package.
The areas of work – labeled as service lines in the MTS 2014-2017 - within UNEP’s mandate also
constitute its comparative advantage. They are:
Catalyzing action on findings from solution-oriented environmental assessments, analyses and
early warning information;
Promoting the development and implementation of international environmental law;
Piloting innovative approaches and testing tools, norms and methods in countries and
catalyzing their uptake by others through strategic partnerships and demonstrations;
Fostering transboundary collaboration and catalyzing action on the management of shared
resources; and
Coordinating actions of the UN on common environmental priorities to improve coherence of
the UN system.
UNEP achieves its mandate through its four-year MTS and PoWs, which focus on cross-cutting
thematic priorities, referred to as UNEP’s Subprogrammes:
Climate change
Disasters and conflicts
Ecosystem management
Environmental governance
Harmful substances and hazardous waste (Chemicals and Waste from 2014-15)
Resource efficiency and sustainable consumption and production
Environment under review (from the biennium 2014-15)
Implementation of UNEP’s programme of work is further guided by the following key principles:
Results-Based Management (RBM): RBM is a fundamental principle of UNEP’s operations,
and a cornerstone of UNEP’s efforts to demonstrate results in tangible terms. Shifting the focus
away from inputs and activities, UNEP emphasizes the achievement of outputs and outcomes.
Bali Strategic Plan for Technology Support and Capacity-building (BSP): The Governing
Council (GC) adopted the BSP in 2005, which calls on UNEP to reinforce its engagement in
developing countries, and countries with economies in transition, in the fields of technology
support and capacity building. Through the BSP, UNEP will increase its attention to individual
country needs through strengthened technology support and capacity building across all thematic
areas. The BSP requires UNEP to demonstrate how countries utilize UNEP’s products and
services and benefit from strategic partnerships catalyzed by UNEP.
Strategic Presence Policy (SPP): UNEP’s Strategic Presence Policy (SPP) was approved in
January 2009 to provide a mechanism for the effective implementation of the MTS for 2010-13.
The policy states that ‘UNEP’s move towards a strategic presence model will be guided by the
objective to deliver on One UNEP-wide PoW in a coherent, coordinated and integrated manner by
all components of the Secretariat, in the most efficient and cost effective manner’. The SPP
clarifies the roles of UNEP’s Headquarters versus its Regional Offices. The role of the latter was
strengthened to lead the delivery of UNEP’s PoW in the regions.
Delivering as One: In 2006, the High-level Panel on UN System-Wide Coherence recommended
the Secretary-General to strengthen coherence across UN organizations by “Delivering as One.”
This means UNEP’s work at the country level must be implemented in a coordinated manner
among the various units within UNEP itself operating in the country, as well as with other UN
agencies and organizations. UNEP’s Regional Offices are key players in UNEP’s country and
regional level efforts to achieve coordination and coherence across the organization. UNEP also
provides technical guidance and leadership to strengthen environmental sustainability throughout
the work of the UN system, including in the UN Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF)
process and UN consolidated humanitarian appeals, among others.
Gender Balance: The importance of gender mainstreaming in environmental and poverty
eradication policies has been recognized in a wide range of global agreements and fora, and is a
key principle in UNEP’s work. The guiding document for gender mainstreaming within the
organization is the UNEP Gender Plan of Action (GPA), which sets out detailed activities leading
towards the full integration of gender aspects within the organization and its programmes. For
more information, please visit UNEP website on Gender Mainstreaming and the Guidance Note
on Gender Analysis at Project Level.
Public Participation and Access to Information: In line with Principle 10 of the Rio
Declaration from 1992, all UNEP activities and programmatic and policy work should be
designed in a way to allow for relevant stakeholder involvement and should have a high degree of
Human rights based approach (HRBA): UN agencies came together in 2003 to adopt a
Common Understanding, which aims to ensure that a HRBA is applied consistently at the global,
regional and country level.
Inclusion of Indigenous Peoples Issues, needs and concerns. The recognition and respect for
indigenous knowledge, cultures and traditional practices contributes to sustainable and equitable
development and proper management of the environment. The importance of inclusion of
indigenous issues in environmental policies has been internationally recognized, such as through
the adoption of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples adopted in 20071. The
concept of free, prior and informed consent is a goal to be pursued, and a principle to be respected
to the greatest degree possible in UNEP planning and implementation.
1 For more information and key documents supportive to project development and implementation with indigenous peoples
and their communities, please consult the UNDG guidelines on Indigenous Peoples, the UN Resource Toolkit on Indigenous
Peoples issues and the draft UN REDD guidelines on Free Prior informed consent.
Global Environment Facility (GEF): In 1991, UNEP, UNDP, and the World Bank came together to
form the Global Environment Facility (GEF), with the Secretariat to the partnership based in
Washington, DC. Today the GEF is the world’s largest funder of projects to achieve global
environmental benefits through incremental financing. The GEF allocated $8.7 billion in new grants
between 1991 and 2010 in more than 165 developing countries and countries with economies in
transition. The GEF Trust Fund is replenished every four years, and a “GEF Programming
Framework” is agreed to at the beginning of the four years by the GEF Council and GEF Assembly.
This is the equivalent of the MTS for GEF projects. For more info on the GEF see the UNEP/GEF
and GEF website. UNEP projects applying for GEF co-funding are subject to the policies and rules of
the GEF, which have been largely harmonized with rules and guidelines of UNEP projects. Each
UNEP Division houses technical and financial experts who are dedicated to the development,
implementation and oversight of GEF projects, and manage the portfolios relevant to the divisions.
Other UNEP staff can be called upon to assist or lead in such activities. The “blending” of GEF and
non-GEF financing into one coherent project/output is encouraged. The GEF Coordination Office
provides overall coordination and strategic guidance on the GEF Operations.
UNEP’s Results Framework and Programme Cycle
The development of UNEP’s programme cycle begins with planning a four-year Medium Term
Strategy (MTS) and constituent biennial PoWs. OfO leads, together with Subprogramme Coordinators,
the development of these strategic plans, in consultation with Divisions and Regional Offices. The
process requires several rounds of reiteration to ensure that the MTS and PoW are informed from
global environmental assessments and regional and country needs. There are also successive reviews
by UNEP Senior Management Team (SMT). The MTS and PoW are then implemented through
projects and monitored in terms of coherent and effective delivery at the programme level. Each MTS
and PoW planning process builds upon lessons learned and results of programme evaluations from
previous processes, as part of the cycle of institutional learning and analysis.
UNEP’s MTS is a strategic document that guides programme planning over a four-year period. The
MTS is developed through an extensive consultation process, which examines major global
environmental challenges and trends and analyzes UNEP’s comparative advantage against these
challenges. The main product of the MTS is the identification of thematic priorities, known as
Subprogrammes, supported by clearly defined objectives and strategies to achieve those objectives.
The MTS also sets out EAs for each Subprogramme, which are the desired outcomes of the SP (see
Box 1 below for key terms in UNEP’s Results Framework). The MTS is reviewed by the UNEP
Committee of Permanent Representatives (CPR) and thereafter the UNEP Governing Council (GC).2
Strategic Frameworks lay out what UNEP will aim to deliver in each two-year biennium of the MTS.
UNEP develops one Strategic Framework for each Subprogramme, where performance indicators for
each of the related EAs (from the MTS) are defined. Normally there are two to three EAs connected
to a Subprogramme. The UNEP Strategic Framework is reviewed by the UN Committee on
Programme and Coordination (CPC), the UN body responsible for ensuring coordination of the UN’s
2 The GC is UNEP’s main governing body and the CPR is a subsidiary body of the Governing Council, made up of
government representatives who are based in Nairobi.
planning and programming, to ensure coherence between different UN programs. UNEP Strategic
Frameworks are:
 Strategic Framework 2010-2011
 Strategic Framework 2012-2013
 Strategic Framework 2014-15 (as submitted to the CPC in June 2012)
The priorities and objectives developed in the MTS and associated biennial Strategic Frameworks are
translated into biennial Programmes of Work (PoW). The PoW is the programming document of
UNEP that describes specific outputs for which UNEP is accountable, and the resources required for
their delivery, which in turn contribute to the achievement of EAs. The PoW is first reviewed by the
UNEP CPR, then by the UN Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions
(ACABQ) - a UN body in New York responsible for reviewing budgetary and administrative aspects
of the PoW -, and subsequently by the UNEP Governing Council. The ultimate approval is from the
General Assembly (Fifth Committee) as part of the UN’s broader programme plan.
Programme of Work 2010-2011
Programme of Work 2012-2013
Programme of Work 2014-2015
Figure 1: The Strategic Framework is derived from the MTS and leads to the PoW
GC approval
Programmes of Work
(2 years)
Strategic Frameworks
(2 years)
MTS Strategy
(4 year)
Subprogrammes (MTS
accomplishments with
External factors
CPC approval
Subprogrammes (MTS
Objectives with indicators
accomplishments with
indicators (including
baselines and targets)
External factors
Box 1: Key Terms in UNEP’s Results framework
Results are changes in a state or condition which derive from a cause-effect relationship. There are three
types of such changes (result levels) which can be set in motion by a development intervention:
Output: products and services which result from the completion of activities within an intervention.
Outcome: intended or achieved short-term and medium-term effects of an intervention’s outputs,
usually requiring the collective effort of partners. Outcomes represent changes which occur between the
completion of outputs and the achievement of impact. Outcomes could be a change in capacity
(immediate outcome) or behaviour (medium-term outcome).
Impact: positive and negative, primary and secondary, lasting and significant effects contributed to by
an intervention. In UNEP, these effects usually concern the environment, and how it affects human life
and livelihood.
UNEP Programme level
Project level
PoW Output
Project output
Expected Accomplishment
Project outcome
Subprogramme Objective
Project impact
From the EAs and POW Outputs specified in the PoW, UNEP develops Programme Frameworks,
to spell out what projects should be planned to deliver on the POW objectives and the EAs. UNEP
uses Programme Frameworks to strengthen the causal logic between planned projects, their intended
results, and programme objectives.
Programme Frameworks should:
Identify the projects that contribute to each EA;
Set out the strategy and causal logic between project concepts, PoW Outputs, the EA(s) and
higher level results;
Identify important synergies and linkages that will be necessary among projects, and promote
communication and cooperation among Divisions and Regional Offices;
Identify resource needs and potential funding sources to achieve the EA(s);
Identify important strategic partnerships relevant across projects for achievement of the
EA(s); and
Map the portfolio of ongoing and planned GEF projects against the EAs and Outputs,
showing how they contribute to achieving the targets.
Each Programme Framework includes project concepts (see section 3B), and show how planned
project outputs and outcomes will lead to the achievement of the EA.
Figure 2: From Programme of Work to projects
Expected accomplishments
with indicators
External factors
GC Approval
Programme Frameworks (by
• Maps what projects are
needed to achieve Expected
• Contains Project Concepts
• Facilitates Resource
• Fundraising tool
SMT approval
Projects are the “building blocks” that operationalize UNEP’s achievement of results in the PoW and
Programme Frameworks. Projects involve a series of activities aimed at bringing about clearly
specified outputs that contribute to outcomes within a defined time-period and budget, all of which is
described in the Project Document (see Chapter 3 Section K). Projects may deliver parts of one or
more PoW outputs, and contribute to one or more EAs, but only one PoW Output and one EA to
which the project is contributing primarily need to be chosen for reporting purposes.
Box 2: What is a Project in UNEP?
A project is a planned set of coordinated and interlinked activities to deliver agreed outputs over a fixed time
period and within certain cost and other limitations. These outputs are expected to contribute to outcomes
and impact.
UNEP projects can vary significantly in their expected outcomes, scope and scale. Smaller projects might
involve modest financial resources and last only a year or so, whereas a large project might involve many
millions of dollars and last for many years.
For example, a project could be a regional climate change adaptation initiative with the aim of achieving a
change in the way a transboundary ecosystem is managed in the face of climate change, and costing USD 3
million over four years. Another project could focus on hazardous waste management with the aim of
developing norms related to the use of lead in paints, and phasing-out of leaded paints in four pilot countries
replicated through selected partners working with UNEP over a two-year period.
Projects normally involve legal agreements between UNEP and external partners in order to achieve the
project’s expected outcomes. GEF projects and programmatic approaches fall into this category.
Figure 3: Hierarchy of UNEP’s Results
4-year MTS
Expected Accomplishments
i.e. Outcomes
Programme of Work (PoW) Outputs
Roles and Responsibilities in UNEP
In 2009, the UNEP Executive Director announced a new matrix in which UNEP’s six 3 thematic
Subprogrammes cut across the organizational structure to maximize capacity and expertise, by
encouraging different Divisions and Regional Offices to work together to achieve common thematic
Each Subprogramme has a Lead Division Director to which overall accountability is assigned. The
Lead Division Director’s main role is to ensure programmatic coherence in the design and
implementation of the Subprogramme, and that the defined outputs and projects will lead towards the
achievement of the EAs and make credible contributions to the programmatic objectives.
3 A 7th Subprogramme on “Environment Under Review” will be created starting from the biennium 2014-15.
Figure 4: UNEP’s matrix approach with Lead Divisions indicated for each Subprogramme
Subprogramme 2: Disasters and Conflicts
Subprogramme 3: Ecosystem Management
Subprogramme 4: Environmental Governance
Subprogramme 1: Climate Change
Subprogramme 5: Harmful Substances and Hazardous Waste
Subprogramme 6: Resource Efficiency, Sustainable Consumption and Production
 = Lead Division
A Subprogramme Coordinator is appointed to ensure the development and implementation of a
coherent and strategic programme in each of the priority areas. The Subprogramme Coordinators
work under the supervision of the Director of the Lead Division; however their work spans across all
Divisions to ensure an integrated and strategic approach to programme development. The
Subprogramme Coordinator is primarily responsible for: facilitating the development of a Programme
of Work that cuts across all Divisions in UNEP in the relevant priority area; facilitating a coherent
implementation of activities across divisions to achieve measurable results for the Subprogramme,
and; ensuring that implementation enables UNEP’s ability to achieve results expected at the end of the
biennium (See Subprogramme Coordinators’ terms of reference for the development and
implementation of the 2010-2011 PoW). It is envisaged that, from 2014 onwards, Regional Offices
will host regional focal points, who serve similar functions at the level of each region, under the
supervision of the Regional Director and with a second reporting line to the Subprogramme
The Project Manager4 is a staff member of UNEP assigned by the Division managing the project to
have overall responsibility for executing the project on behalf of UNEP. Project Managers are
responsible for ensuring that projects contribute to PoW Outputs, and for monitoring and reporting on
project progress, particularly on project milestones’ delivery status.
Under the coordination of the Division of Regional Cooperation (DRC), the Regional Offices are
responsible for leading the coordinated delivery of the PoW at the regional level, including helping to
mobilize resources. UNEP has a limited country presence, and Regional Offices therefore play a
crucial role in programme implementation by ensuring coherence among UNEP activities across
4 GEF projects distinguish between Task Manager, who are assigned with the supervision and oversight of projects, and
Project Managers, who deal with the day-to-day management of project activities. Please refer to Annex 1 for the distinction
between “execution” and “implementation” of projects according to GEF terminology.
regions and countries, ensuring those activities respond to country needs and priorities, and ultimately
that project outputs can be up-scaled through the best placed partners operating regionally and
nationally. In addition, Regional Offices contribute to programme planning. They are best-placed to
determine the geographical focus for projects in the planning phase, and engaging and establishing
contacts with potential in-country partners, including UN Country Teams (UNCTs). The UNEP
Strategic Presence policy paper “Moving Forward with Strategic Presence 2010-2013” provides
detailed guidance on UNEP’s approach to deploying resources to regions and countries, and on the
role of Regional Offices vis-à-vis Headquarters Divisions.
The Programme Accountability Framework 2010-2011 clarifies roles and responsibilities within the
organization, and provides guidance on who is accountable for what in the delivery of the MTS and
PoW. Division Directors and Regional Office Directors and other senior managers are provided with
Delegations of Authority (DoA) 5 from the Executive Director, with clear accountability and
reporting obligations, to enable decision-making at the lowest appropriate level, for project, budget
and administrative management.
The Office for Operations (OfO) is responsible for enhancing corporate accountability, including by
issuing new delegations of authority and undertaking essential compliance, oversight and reporting. It
defines and maintains the approval processes for all programme planning and execution documents,
such as projects and legal instruments, and coordinates and services UNEP work in relation to
oversight bodies such as OIOS and the United Nations Board of Auditors. OfO provides corporate
support services to UNEP, and comprises various sections:
Quality Assurance Section (QAS): leads UNEP's overall strategic planning and RBM
processes. QAS also takes the institutional lead in establishing standards for programmes and
projects, ensures quality in UNEP’s programme and project review processes, as well as in
UNEP’s monitoring processes by analyzing programme performance; acts as the secretariat
for UNEP’s programme and project review committees, and builds project management
capacity in UNEP. From 2012, QAS lead UNEP’s annual quality of project management and
supervision review, and also started monitoring performance against the authorities delegated
to Divisions and Regional Offices.
Donor Partnerships and Contributions Section (DPC): leads UNEP’s efforts to mobilize
contributions to the Environment Fund from governments, and provides advice and support to
project managers to support extra-budgetary project-level resource mobilization from
corporate and governmental donors in cooperation with Divisions and Regional Offices’ staff
Legal Services: provides legal advice to Divisions and Regional Offices on partnership
Human Resources
These three Units (previously collectively labeled as Corporate Services Section) are responsible for
the strategic management of UNEP budgetary, financial, human, information technology and physical
5 http://www.intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=1352&Itemid=674
resources. They work in close cooperation and coordination with the United Nations Office at Nairobi
(UNON), which provides services to UNEP in respect of: accounting, payroll and payments,
recruitment and staff services, staff development, network and other systems administration,
procurement and inventory maintenance.
The GEF Coordination Office provides corporate support to the GEF operations, including
providing the central hub for all project submissions and communications with the GEF. It maintains
coherence in relationships with the GEF Council, GEF Secretariat, GEF Agencies and other bodies
within the GEF Partnership. It also hosts the Scientific Technical and Advisory Panel of the GEF
(STAP). GEF Operations mirrors the PoW structure above. Each Focal Area6 portfolio is overseen by
a Lead Division, which houses the Portfolio Managers (PM). These are staff who carry out the
“Implementing Agency” (IA)7 functions as required by the GEF, coordinate each portfolio, manage
pipelines of projects, ensure synergies with the PoW of UNEP, and provide technical input into
policies and strategies. The PMs work closely with Subprogramme Coordinators. Each Lead Division
also houses the Task Managers and Fund Managers who carry out the day to day oversight,
supervision and fund administration of projects. Task Managers can be co-located in Regional Offices,
where one staff member is chosen to be a GEF Regional Focal Point, to carry out the function of
liaising with governments and clients and helping to maintain coherence in the overall portfolio at the
regional level. Contributing Divisions work with the Lead Divisions either in the capacity of co-IA
divisions, or as executing divisions for directly executed projects.
Project Cycle
Projects are the operational vehicle for implementing UNEP’s PoW, and follow a sequential
(sometimes overlapping) series of phases known as the project cycle. The project cycle provides an
overview of project management and helps Project Managers identify decision-making criteria and
procedures at each phase. As illustrated in the Figure 5 below, the project cycle can be divided into
the following phases within the programme cycle:
Planning: In this phase new projects are planned, requiring interaction with relevant
stakeholders, and decision on details of project design (e.g., project approach, agreement on
planned results, budget, and activity schedule) (See Chapter 3: Project Planning and Design)
Review and Approval: In this phase, project design is scrutinized for quality, and formal
approval to initiate project implementation is obtained (See Chapter 4: Review and Approval)
Implementation and Monitoring: During this phase, project activities are performed as
planned in the project document, and changes are made as necessary. UNEP projects have
clear milestones8 for the duration of the project. The Project Manager measures and reviews
6 Biodiversity, Climate Change (Mitigation and Adaptation), Chemicals, International Waters, Land Degradation,
Sustainable Forest Management / REDD+, Ozone Layer Depletion
7 GEF Agencies are responsible for creating project proposals and for managing GEF projects. The GEF Agencies play a
key role in managing GEF projects on the ground; more specifically, GEF Agencies assist eligible governments and NGOs
in the development, implementation, and management of GEF projects. GEF Agencies are requested to focus their
involvement in GEF project activities within their respective comparative advantages. In specific cases of integrated projects
that include components where the expertise and experience of a GEF agency is lacking or weak, the agency is invited to
partner with another agency and to establish clear complementary roles so that all aspects of the project can be well managed
(GEF Instrument, Paragraph 28)
8 A milestone is a scheduled event representing progress towards the achievement of project outputs and outcomes, and a
benchmark against which the progress of the project will be measured.
the progress of project performance, in consultation with the rest of the project team and
stakeholders. Project Managers may need to take corrective management actions to re-direct
the project towards desired results. Key in project management is the adequacy of corrective
actions taken (and documented) to ensure the project is on track. (See Chapter 5:
Implementation and Monitoring)
Evaluation: During this phase, the project is reviewed and an assessment is made on whether
the project achieved the results planned. The findings and recommendations from project
evaluations contribute to the evaluation at programme level (See Chapter 10: Evaluation)
Completion and Closing: During this phase, all project activities are finalized. The project
and relevant contractual obligations are formally closed. (See Chapter 11: Project Completion
and Closing).
Figure 5: UNEP Programme and Project Cycle
Programme Planning
(Using MTS and PoW)
Programme Evaluation
UNEP Programme
Implementing and monitoring
Review and
Implementation and
and Closing
Lessons Learned
The actual duration of each phase of the project cycle may vary, depending on the project size, scope,
and approach. For example, a large UNEP project may require nine months only for a project
feasibility study and detailed planning, while an emergency assistance project (such as short-term
technical environmental assistance for emergency relief activities) may require only a few weeks to
start the project running. It is the responsibility of Project Managers to secure funding for approved
project concepts and they should plan the use of a proportion of such funds to better plan the project.
Directors of Divisions and Regional Offices should make project preparation funding available to
Project Managers to enable their staff properly plan projects in consultation with external stakeholders
and partners. It is however foremost the Project Manager’s responsibility to identify suitable funding
sources for projects to be developed as a contribution to the approved PoW.
The GEF establishes deadlines for project preparation (also called milestones) according to the size of
the project. Projects which are worth less than USD 1 million in GEF grants are expected to be
prepared within 12 months; those worth more than that, within 18 months. The GEF provides project
preparation grants (PPG) once the project concept (or project identification form – PIF) is cleared or
approved by the GEF Chief Executive Officer.
Project Planning and Design
Developing Programme Frameworks
UNEP is moving away from implementing isolated projects towards maintaining a cohesive portfolio
of projects that relate to broader strategic objectives, and together create greater impact than the sum
of the individual projects. Programme Frameworks represent the link between the MTS/PoW and the
projects. As a consequence, all UNEP staff is expected to contribute, in one way or another, to the
respective Subprogrammes of the Programme of Work.
During the PoW planning phase, two-year Programme Frameworks are developed for each of the
Subprogrammes. Each Programme Framework is designed to achieve one EA, or a limited number of
closely related EAs, from the MTS, and includes a set of project concepts that are needed to deliver
the EA(s). During the development of Programme Frameworks, UNEP identifies linkages needed
between projects to deliver the PoW, and to ensure that the results planned are not only feasible, but
also achievable in the most effective manner, drawing from the strengths of different parts of UNEP
and its partners.
Subprogramme Coordinators are responsible for ensuring coherence, synergy, and efficacy between
project concepts within the Subprogrammes. Subprogramme Coordinators are also responsible, in
collaboration with GEF PMs, for ensuring coherence, synergy and complementarity between the
POW and the GEF portfolio. All GEF projects, either directly executed by UNEP or executed by an
external partner, must be linked to one Output in the PoW. UNEP budgets for the respective outputs
can be counted as co-financing for GEF projects, but Subprogramme Coordinators must ensure that
there is no double counting or duplication of effort, and that a core amount of non-GEF resources (EF
and other extra-budgetary) is used to deliver a given PoW Output, with the GEF funding providing
additional value and funds to what UNEP is already funding with its own resources.
Comprised of the associated project concepts, a Programme Framework should describe the
Programme Framework Logic: How the sum of the projects in the Programme Framework
will contribute to the associated EA(s); How the projects fit within UNEP’s service lines and
therefore comparative advantage; How new project concepts, together with projects currently
under implementation, come together to deliver the associated EA and PoW outputs (causality
must be explicitly addressed); Dependencies (timing-related or otherwise) or synergies among
projects concepts within the Subprogramme; How to build complementarities with, or add
value to, the results of past and/or current GEF funded projects;
Total Framework budget: Estimate resource requirements and potential sources for the
Programme Framework (covering Environment Fund, regular budget, extra-budgetary
funding and any GEF- financed or Multilateral Fund contributions).
Key Actors in the field and Programme Framework partnerships: Identify important
strategic partnerships relevant across projects for achievement of the EA(s);
Internal management arrangements and reporting requirements
Subprogramme Coordinators lead a consultative process, through which the Programme Framework
is put together in consultation with other Divisions and Regional Offices. Regional Offices have a
specific role in providing guidance with regard to regional, sub-regional and national needs and
priorities (including environmental vulnerability affecting country development, commitment of
Government(s), as also emanating from regional forums, UNDAFs, etc.) and matching them with
UNEP’s services. For project concepts designed at the global level, consultation with Regional
Offices is therefore necessary at an early stage in the design process to ensure that the project
concepts are responsive to such needs and that the most relevant countries are selected. Regional
Offices will also advice on how the projects can be anchored in the relevant UN Common Country
Programming Processes to ensure coherence (One UN and One UNEP approach) and on partnership
building at regional and national level. Likewise, for project concepts designed at the regional level,
the Division of Regional Cooperation (DRC) and Regional Offices will draw upon technical expertise
of the Headquarters Divisions.
Getting started with Project Concepts
Programme Frameworks are developed to demonstrate the intended contribution of each project to the
MTS and PoW. At this point, initial ideas for projects are conceived in the form of project concepts.
The project concepts identified in the Programme Framework must be accompanied by a succinct
narrative on the intended project outcome and how it fits within the relevant EA(s) and the
Subprogramme. The project concept should consider the project’s relevance and expected benefits to
stakeholders, and the feasibility and sustainability of the project’s outcomes.
Taken together, the project concept presents the business case for the project. It may be used to solicit
funding from potential donors, and therefore should make a clear and compelling case for why the
project should be funded. See this example of a compelling business case for a proposed UNEP
Still using the standard Programme Framework template, the project concepts should provide the
following information:
Project objective: The project outcomes and outputs should be each stated in one sentence,
and how these outcomes are related to the relevant EA(s) and Subprogramme Objective(s) is
to be explained. The outcomes that one single project will be expected to contribute to should
be one, or very few in number and realistic;
Project idea and approach, including: Brief description of the project idea, key outputs
written as project outputs, and the overall approach to be taken; Socio-economic and
developmental challenges and opportunities the project will address or build upon, e.g.
competing economic and development issues; Description of how the project will build on
UNEP’s comparative advantage (See Chapter 2); Justification of the project’s relevance in
relation to national and/or regional development and/or economic priorities; Description of
how the project fits with existing UNEP and/or UN projects in the country(ies) or region(s)
Project’s roles and responsibilities: Potential project implementation structure and potential
roles of participating Divisions and Regional Offices.
Resource requirements: Indicate a realistic estimate of resource and budget needs, expected
donors, likelihood of funding;9
9 In case funds are not entirely secured, the project concept should indicate what is the strategy for mobilizing resources, and
– in case funds are not mobilized – what the exit strategy will look like.
GEF project concepts that are included in the Programme Framework Document should use the GEF
template for Project identification Forms (PIF), which covers all of these aspects and more.
Each project concept is listed under one EA and the most relevant PoW output, based on the dominant
outcome and outputs of the project, although it may contribute to additional EAs or PoW outputs.
This allows focused delivery and reporting on the PoW. If a proposed project contributes to more than
one PoW output, EA or Subprogramme, the Subprogramme Coordinators and Division Directors
should identify the most relevant outpus, EA and Subprogramme. Linkages should be established in
the design of the projects to ensure that different projects across Subprogrammes can leverage actions
from each other.
Once a project concept has been approved by the Senior Management Team as part of a Programme
Framework, or in exceptional cases as a separate project concept (that may have been submitted to
OfO for SMT clearance after the Programme Framework was approved), the responsible Division or
Regional Office develops each project concept into a fully detailed project document. Division
Directors or Regional Office Directors should plan for a project preparation phase with a devoted
budget, where the project approach and well defined expectations are spelled out, before the start of
the project. The UNEP Project Preparation Proposal Template can be used for such project
preparation phases, and project preparation budgets may be approved by Division Directors following
consultation with OfO/QAS as long as the budget is small enough that it falls within their delegated
authority 10 . In the unusual case that the project preparation budget would exceed the delegated
authority of the Division Director, the project preparation proposal and budget should follow the same
approval process as fully developed projects.
For this purpose, GEF projects should use the GEF PPG template. The grants are approved by the
GEF CEO after submission through the GEF Coordination Office. GEF projects are primarily
country-driven and conceived through a demand driven process. Proponents contact UNEP to seek
assistance in preparing and submitting the projects. UNEP participates in national GEF planning
exercises to help countries identify the right Agency for a project. However, projects can also be
conceived through strategic partnerships or regional needs assessments, much as with other UNEP
projects. In all cases, the Task Manager conducts an assessment of eligibility, viability, and fit with
UNEP comparative advantages, before agreeing to take on the project. Lead Division Directors hold
frequent “Initial Project Idea” (IPI) review and clearance discussions with the GEF Coordination
Office so as to maintain coherence in the overall portfolio. Task Managers should not invest too much
of their time upfront with the proponent on project preparation unless the project has passed the IPI
The approach to GEF projects is primarily based on the concept of achieving global environmental
benefits (GEB), through incremental financing. GEF projects fit along a continuum of interventions
that are categorized into three types:
Foundational projects: most countries need to be enabled with capacity building measures so as
to have a baseline on which investments can be delivered and have impact. Such projects address
the governance frameworks (commitments to MEAs through Enabling Activities; administrative
10 http://www.intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=1352&Itemid=674
reform; policy, legal, fiscal frameworks and incentives), help to assess environmental stress and
barriers to lifting the stress (through assessments, inventories and stocktaking, as well as targeted
research on innovative ideas), and disseminate knowledge and ensure access to information
through awareness raising and public participation in decision making. These projects can be
global, regional or national.
Pilot and demonstration projects: we may have some, but not all, of the means by which we
could address global environmental stress and their barriers, and often there is a need to pilot new
approaches for emerging issues, or demonstrate existing best practice adapted to a country or
context. This can include technology transfer, financial mechanisms for sustainability of actions,
and removal of identified barriers that are related to institutional arrangements, technical knowhow or equipment, lack of capacity and market disincentives or perverse subsidies. Most often
these projects are local, national or regional in scope.
Investment projects: these projects take the lessons from the pilots and demos, building on
foundations and enabling activities, to achieve long term catalytic change. They mainstream
upscale and replicate successful solutions. They also include “pre-investment” strategies focusing
on encouraging private sector investment. UNEP normally partners with a development bank for
a project that works along the pre-investment to investment continuum.
GEF provides grants to various types of projects ranging from several thousand dollars to several
million dollars. These are:
Full-size Projects - Over USD 2 million - Project concepts must respond to both national
priorities and GEF focal area/Least Developed Countries Fund/Special Climate Change Fund
strategies and objectives, and must satisfy eligibility requirements under the Conventions. Project
proponents work closely with national GEF Operational Focal Points (who formally endorse
project concepts) and the GEF Agency, to develop concepts and move through the project cycle.
Medium-Size Projects - Up to USD 2 million - They offer opportunities for a broad range of
programming that is typically smaller in scale than full-sized projects and follow expedited
procedures for their approval. Their approval is delegated by the Council to the CEO, and it is
subject to Project Review Criteria , similar to full-scale project. Following CEO approval, the
project document will be approved by the Agency following its own procedures, followed by the
start of project implementation.
Enabling Activities: The GEF finances Enabling Activities related to the conventions on
biodiversity, climate change, and persistent organic pollutants, to help countries prepare national
inventories, strategies, action plans, and reports under these conventions Enabling Activities that
go beyond the threshold are considered non-expedited, and follow the procedures for processing
full-sized projects.
Programmatic Approaches: they represent a partnership between country/ies, the GEF and other
interested stakeholders, such as the private sector, donors and/or the scientific community. This
approach secures larger-scale and sustainable impact on the global environment, than a single FSP
or MSP, through integrating global environmental objectives into national or regional strategies
and plans using partnerships. A program usually contains several projects that are linked through
common objective/s of the program aimed to foster increased horizontal and vertical integration
of global environmental issues into the country(ies) development agenda.
Small Grants Programme: Up to $ 50,000 - Funded by GEF as a corporate programme, the
Small Grant Programme is implemented by UNDP on behalf of the GEF partnership, and is
executed by the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS). The Small-Grant
Programme supports non-governmental and community organizations, providing small grants for
community-based projects in the GEF focal areas.
Planning Project Interventions: Theory of Change
Once the scope, problem, and approach has been decided, project logical frameworks (see section
below), are an extremely useful tool for summarising project interventions, specifying performance
indicators and documenting key assumptions. However, they do not readily capture comprehensive
information on the processes by which project outputs yield outcomes and eventually lead to impacts
and the associated risks.
To ensure that project logical frameworks are well designed, all project design processes must:
1. Undertake a problem tree or situational analysis;
2. Convert this into a simple ‘objective tree’;
3. Determine the intervention logic and develop it into a detailed Theory of Change;
4. Summarise the key activities, results levels and performance indicators from the Theory of
Change in a logical framework matrix.
All UNEP projects are subject to this design process. For GEF projects, there is as well the need to
conduct an “incremental cost analysis”, where the additional nature of the GEF financing is mapped
out. GEF projects build on a “baseline scenario” to provide incremental financing to achieve an
“alternative scenario”.
Situation or Problem tree analysis
Situation or ‘problem tree’ analysis is central to results-oriented project planning and helps in the
design of effective interventions by mapping out cause and effect relationships around an issue or
problem in a structured way. See this website for more info. This brings several advantages:
The problem can be broken down into manageable and definable ‘chunks’. This enables a clearer
prioritization of factors and helps focus objectives;
The analysis, especially when undertaken collaboratively with stakeholders, promotes shared
understanding of the problem and its often interconnected and sometimes multiple causes. This
can be an important step in finding win-win solutions;
It identifies the constituent issues and arguments, and can help establish who and what the actors
and processes are at each stage;
It can help establish whether further information, evidence or resources are needed to make a
strong case, and build a viable solution;
The process of analysis often helps build a shared sense of understanding, purpose and action.
Figure 6: A simple problem tree / situation analysis
Catch and income of fishing
families in decline
River ecosystem under serious
threat including declining fish
High incidence of water borne
diseases and illness among
poor families and under 5s
River water quality
High quantities of solid waste dumped into river
by riverine communities & industry
Population not aware
of the danger of waste
Government & civil
society have no
public information
Most households and factories
discharge waste water directly into river
Legal regulations
inadequate to prevent
direct discharge of waste
Polluters not
Environment Protection
Agency incapable of
controlling polluters and
closely aligned with industry
Pollution is low
political priority for
40% of HHs and 20% of
businesses not connected
to sewerage network
Inadequate levels of
investment in sewage
infrastructure and poor
planning by local govt.
The ‘problem tree’ can be converted into an ‘objectives tree’ by rephrasing each of the problems into
positive desirable changes. In this way, root causes and consequences are addressed in the proposed
solutions, and the causal logic and key partners / actors can more readily be identified.
Figure 7: The situation analysis shown in Figure 6 converted into a simple objective tree
Catch and income of fishing
families stabilized or
Threat on river ecosystem
reduced including recovering
fish stocks
Lower incidence of water borne
diseases and illness among
poor families and under 5s
River water quality
is improving
Less solid waste dumped into river by riverine
communities & industry
Population aware of
the danger of waste
Government & civil
society conduct
public information
Environment Protection
Agency is capable of
controlling polluters and
responsive to a broad range
of stakeholder interests
Less households and factories
discharge waste water directly into river
Legal regulations are
adequate to prevent direct
discharge of waste water
Pollution is political
priority for central
Lesser % of HHs and
businesses not connected
to sewerage network
Adequate levels of
investment in sewage
infrastructure and
improved planning by
local govt.
Developing a more detailed Theory of Change
A key part of project design is to identify the sequence of activities, conditions, factors and actors
necessary for a project to achieve the desired outcomes. Description of the relationships between a
project’s activities and the desired results can be variously described as ‘Theories of Change’, ‘Impact
Pathways’, ‘Results Chains’, and ‘Causal Pathways’ (to name only some!).
Figure 8 shows a generic ‘causal pathway’ which links the standard elements of project logical
frameworks in a graphical representation of causal linkages. When specified in detail - for example
including the key users of outputs, descriptions of the processes (the arrows) that lead to outcomes,
and with details of performance indicators - they can be invaluable as a tool to improve project
planning, monitoring of progress towards results, identification of risks and later evaluation.
Figure 8: A single generic causal pathway, which can also be termed Theory of Change
Project output
Outcome (EA)
Project output
activities or
activities or
A key point to note in Figure 8 is that project activities and outputs are needed to help achieve the
results also at higher result level (outcome, intermediate state, impact). Monitoring of project
milestones should therefore chart progress from the initial activities to the key outputs and onwards
towards outcomes and, eventually, contributions to Subprogramme objectives. Whilst Figure 8 shows
one causal pathway, many real-life problems are addressed through several related causal pathways as
indicated in Figure 7 and, generically, in Figure 9 below.
Figure 9: Multiple pathways within a generic Theory of Change
Figure 9 provides a generic example of a set of related causal pathways, and highlights the fact that
there are ‘change processes’ linking project outputs to the desired higher level results. Note that more
than one output and change process may be required to achieve a certain outcome or, conversely, one
output may lead to more than one outcome (via different change processes). In addition, there may be
additional stages (termed ‘intermediate states’ in the diagram), between the immediate project
outcome and the desired objective. The figure shows six different pathways from the outputs to the
objective, but activities to produce outputs and promote ‘change processes are not shown.
Very often a project may be able to undertake activities to increase the likelihood that desired changes
will happen. However, it is seldom the case that a project will entirely control the ‘change processes’
that occur beyond the production of outputs. For example, there is much a project can do to increase
the likelihood that an output is used (training, awareness-raising, demonstrations etc.). However, the
project does not control the decision of the target audience to actually start using a particular output,
nor does the project control the consequences that stem from its use. A further step in developing a
Theory of Change is to consider the ‘actors and factors’ that may either promote or inhibit the various
change processes identified. This will lead to the identification of the activities a project needs to
consider to increase the likelihood that the desired changes will happen (drivers) and also helps to
identify the assumptions or risks. Figure 11 at the end of this section shows how pathways can be
analyzed in terms of the ‘assumptions’ and ‘drivers’ that underpin the processes involved in the
transformation of outputs to outcomes and objectives via intermediate states. One pathway from
Figure 7 was chosen for the example.
Box 3: Some Key Terms Used in Theory of Change (see also Box 1)
Intermediate states are the higher level changes (outcomes) between the project’s immediate outcomes and
the intended impact or goal of the project. They are necessary conditions for the achievement of the intended
impacts and there may be more than one intermediate state between the immediate project outcome and the
eventual impact.
Drivers are defined as the significant factors that, if present, are expected to contribute to the realization of
the intended outcomes, intermediate states or impacts and can be influenced by the project / project partners
& stakeholders.
Assumptions are the significant factors that, if present, are expected to contribute to the realization of the
intended outcomes, intermediate states or impacts but are largely beyond the control of the project /
project partners & stakeholders. Assumptions are often positively formulated risks. E.g. Decision makers
championing the cause of the project within the Government remain in place over the course of the project.
Risks are uncertain events or conditions which, if they occur, can have an adverse effect on the realization of
the intended results, but are largely beyond the control of the project / project partners & stakeholders.
Risks are often negatively formulated assumptions. E.g. Project champions within Government are replaced
by decision makers that are unfavorable to the project cause.
Choosing the outcomes, outputs and activities on which the project will focus is called determining
the intervention logic or intervention strategy of the project. Depending on the resources and time
available to the project team, the project might be able to cover several causal pathways towards
impact, or only one. The choice of which pathways will receive the project’s main focus, i.e. the
choice of the intervention logic of the project, will then be made in function of several factors, such
The UNEP overall mandate, service lines, Subprogramme objectives and Expected
Accomplishments as set out in the Medium-Term Strategy. Outcomes that cannot be linked to an
Expected Accomplishment should be considered as drivers (in case the project will still influence
them) or assumptions (in case the project will not influence them). In the case of GEF projects,
the relevant GEF Strategic Framework has to also be complied with;
Government and other stakeholders’ priorities, including also donors.
The technical expertise and experience of UNEP and, in particular, the project team; whether
other stakeholders (Government agencies, other international development agencies, private
sector, major groups11, etc.) are already contributing to certain causal pathways. The idea here is
to look for complementarities and to avoid duplication, but also to maximize potential synergies,
The “weight” of the causal pathway in its potential contribution to the expected impact. If only a
few among many pathways can be covered, we would choose – resource and time requirements
being equal – these pathways with the highest possible contribution to impact.
The process of identifying the intervention logic of a project should preferably be done as a group
exercise, led by the lead designer with a cross-section of project stakeholders. The group exercise is
best done through collective discussions to develop visual models of the ‘problem tree’, the ‘objective
tree’ and, finally, the intervention logic using cards taped to a wall or laid out on the floor. The
component elements (outputs, outcomes, drivers, assumptions intended impacts etc.) of the causal
pathways are written on individual cards and arranged and discussed as a group activity. Figure 10
below shows the suggested sequence of the group discussions needed to develop the Theory of
Change for the project, with the ‘objective tree’ as a starting point for brainstorming. Remember,
multiple causal pathways are discussed and mapped, to produce a complete Theory of Change. In this
example there is only one.
Figure 10: Suggested steps in developing a Theory of Change for a project
Brainstorm the project’s
intervention logic: key project
outputs, outcomes, and intended
Project output
Outcome (EA)
Project output
activities or
Brainstorm to identify any
additional outputs and
activities needed to support
the drivers
activities or
Brainstorm the factors and
identify the key actors that
increase the likelihood of
achieving results and the risks
that might jeopardise them
Discussion questions might include:
Have all major pathways been identified? Are there other causal pathways that would stem from
the use of project outputs by other potential user groups?
Is (each) impact pathway complete? Are there any missing intermediate states between project
outcomes and impacts?
The 9 Major Groups are: women, children and youth, workers and trade unions, indigenous people and their
communities, NGOs, local authorities, scientific and technological community, business and industry, and
farmer as recognized in Agenda 21
Have the key impact drivers and assumptions been identified for each ‘step’ in the pathway?
Does this represent the reality? Are the economic, political and socio-cultural dimensions needed
in the intervention considered?
Figure 11: A single impact pathway depicting assumptions, risks and ‘impact drivers’.
Pollution Management
receives high priority by
central government
 Review of existing
assessment tools
completed and
guidelines for water
 Guidelines for water
Assessment tools and
Management methods
for maintaining
of t
Preparation of
training materials
Training modules
and courses for
EPA staff on tools
and mehtods
of f
Intermediate State
Intermediate State
Polluters are effectively
controlled by EPA
Quantity of solid waste dumped
into river is reduced
River water
quality is
a ke
Environment Protection Agency
effective and responsive to a broad
range of stakeholder interests
of EPA
mgt. m
f tools /
Threat to riverine
ecosystem is
decreased and fish
stocks increase
 Change of behaviour is
not at sufficient scale for
measurable effects.
Demonstration of
assessment tools and
management methods
in selected pilot sites
 Regulations are not sufficiently
 Select pilot sites
 Adapt freshwater
assessment tool to
suit conditions in
pilot sites
 Enforcement of
regulations, changes
household and industry
waste disposal behaviour
 Regulations and enforcement
mechanisms exist and penalties
are sufficient to deter polluters
Catch and
income of
fishing families
is stabilized or
Training provided
to water officials
 Awareness-raising events
for new management
approaches and role of
 Involve key stakeholders
including civil servants in
project activities.
 Promote visits to pilot
sites by international orgs
and development
 Project raises awareness
among among Civil society
‘watchdogs ’to demand
enforcement of pollution
regulations and public
disclosure of offenders
 Project lobbies for public
disclosure of offenders
 Active civil society
‘watchdogs’ for
enforcement of pollution
 EPA disclosure of
pollution offenders
 Project lobbies for public
information campaigns
 Project supplies resources to
help develop public
information materials
 Project pursues partnerships
to promote widespread and
effective delivery of public
information materials
Incidence of water
borne diseases and
illnesses among
poor families and
under 5s is reduced
 Govt. & Civil Society run
effective public information
Drivers to reach outcome
 EPP staff take ownership of assessment tools and management methods
 Strong civil society interest in water quality issues and EPP activities
 International organisations and development agencies help promote replication of pilot sites
d. Engaging with Stakeholders
The process of project design involves stakeholder consultations. Stakeholders may be from the
public sector, Major Groups (including the private sector), and other UN agencies operating at the
country level (including UNCTs). Stakeholders should include any individual or group who is likely
to affect, or to be affected by, the project implementation and its outcomes, either negatively or
positively. The Project Manager should consult relevant Regional Offices for assistance in identifying
key stakeholders and engage them in planning exercises. When stakeholders may become partners in
implementing the project, Project Managers should consult Chapter 7 of this manual and the UNEP
Partnership Policy and Procedures for details on how to proceed. Once the project intervention is
broadly specified and a broad-range of stakeholders is identified, the project team should analyze their
relative roles, needs and responsibilities. Stakeholders should be identified and mapped depending on
their importance and influence relative to the project. Stakeholder consultations should be shaped to
better understand problems, barriers, risks and feasibilities, to inform the design of the project
approach. This exercise should also consider socio-economic linkages, including gender and poverty
alleviation. How the project responds to competing stakeholder needs and interests while contributing
to human well-being should be a key output of a stakeholder analysis 12 . Results of stakeholder
consultations are entered into the Project Document.
Table 1 below incudes an example of Stakeholder Analysis (referring to the example provided in
section C above). Please bear in mind that this is a simplified example; project teams may add
columns and rows as necessary and appropriate for the actual project and stakeholder groups they are
assessing. GEF PIFs have a specific Stakeholder Analysis table included in the template.
Table 1: Example of Stakeholder Analysis
Riverine Communities
Problem and
towards the
Ineffective in controlling
Solid waste and waste water
dumped into river / Water
borne diseases and
reduction in income from
fish stocks
Solid waste and waste water
dumped into river
Poor capacities/Lack of
Lack of awareness and
availability of alternative
No incentive to collaborate
Mandate and political
Change in behaviour /
Control over industry
Change in behavior / Increased
Positive impact
Increased effectiveness in
controlling polluters
Improvement in health
conditions and income
Negative impact
Resources diverted from
other priority areas
Payment of fines / Increased
costs re: alternative methods of
waste discharge
12 This includes the rights of indigenous peoples in accordance with international human rights instruments and the United
Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP-2007). Draft guidelines are available under the UNREDD programme. GEF projects have also to comply with relevant GEF Policies, including: Environmental Social
Safeguards, Indigenous Peoples, and Gender
In addition, during project planning and implementation, continual stakeholder analysis should
provide the following information which should be documented in the Project Document for
Identification of the social consequences of the project (who will benefit or be impacted
negatively, and how?);
Examination of broad social, environmental, political, economic and technical contexts and
identification of appropriate responses or mitigation strategies;
Identification of existing or potential conflicts of interest and appropriate mitigation
strategies; and
Stakeholder expectations of the project and associated outcomes.
Stakeholder engagement throughout the project cycle is essential to bring behavioural changes with
the project’s interventions, and to avoid negative and unforeseen effects of a project or activity. UNEP
should proceed from activity to activity in a sequenced manner based on a Theory of Change
(underlying rationales and assumptions that define the chain of results). This will normally involve
changing the behavior of stakeholders within their political and economic context. The principle of
Prior Informed Consent13 is to be adhered to in all projects working directly with local stakeholders.
Stakeholder engagement includes defining a project’s execution arrangements. With regard to GEFfinanced projects, most of them are executed by national or local organizations. The GEF Council
sees this modality as a way to ensure country ownership, mainstreaming of environment into
government policies, and building local and national capacities in accordance with Accra and Paris
Declarations, as well as in support of the Bali Strategic Plan. In addition, it improves the sustainability
of the project through project management capacity building in the country. Therefore, for national
GEF-financed projects, local execution should be encouraged. In some cases, a local institution that
may feel it requires additional support for project management, may request UNEP’s assistance for
both technical and managerial support. These cases should be discussed on a case by case basis with
the GEF Coordination Office at the IPI stage.
e. Formulating Project Results
Projects should contain a series of logically connected and sequenced activities aimed at achieving
clearly specified outputs and outcomes. Based on the project concepts in the Programme Frameworks,
feedback from stakeholder consultations, and preparation of a detailed ‘Theory of Change’, the
expected outputs and outcomes of a project can be summarized using the Logical Framework (or
more briefly the LogFrame) approach during the planning stage. The LogFrame Approach is an
analytical process to develop interlocking concepts of project ideas in a structured and systematic
The LogFrame Approach has been adopted as a project planning and management tool by most
multilateral and bilateral development agencies. Over time, different agencies have modified the
formats, terminology and tools of the LogFrame Approach; however the basic analytical principles
13 The principle of Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) should be followed when indigenous peoples and their
communities are affected by the project through potential relocation for example in which a just and fair compensation can
be expected by indigenous communities.
have remained the same. Knowledge of the principles of LogFrame Approach is therefore essential
for all staff involved in the design and delivery of UNEP projects. The LogFrame Approach should be
thought of as an ‘aid to thinking’. It allows information to be analyzed and organized in a structured
way, so that a project intervention can be quickly understood. While the development of a Theory of
Change is a process involving stakeholder analysis, problem analysis, objective setting and strategy
selection (see preceding sections), the LogFrame captures a summary of the results of this process.
The LogFrame consists of a matrix with a row for each result at different levels, i.e. project goal,
outcomes and outputs, and columns to specify a results statement, a performance indicator with
baseline and target, and a means of verification for the indicator.
UNEP uses a modified template of the LogFrame as shown in the Table 2 below with the following
The project outcome(s) and the relevant EA(s) from the MTS under which the project
outcome(s) can be categorized;
The project outputs and the relevant PoW output under which they can each be classified;
Activities are not included as part of the LogFrame (instead, the project activities are
described in the “delivery plan” of the project document); and
Milestones at the project outcome and output level. Milestones capture progress from project
initiation to achievement of outcomes. They can be activities or sub-outputs needed to deliver
key outputs (output level milestones), outputs themselves, or activities or events needed to
ensure that outputs lead to outcomes (outcome level milestones).14
Donors might have specific requirements concerning the LogFrame design. Yet, for projects to be
submitted and approved to PRC, they need to include a Logframe that follows the UNEP template.
For GEF projects, please use the template provided in the GEF Monitoring and Evaluation guidance.
The GEF template combines features from the UNEP template with GEF requirements.
Table 2: UNEP Logical Framework Structure
Project Outcome
Outcome Indicators (with
baseline and targets)
Means of Verification
MTS Expected
Capacity or behavioral changes to
which the project is expected to
How the outcome will be
measured including quantity,
quality, time
How the information
required to measure
the indicator will be
collected, when, and
by whom
The Expected
Accomplishment under
which the project
outcome can be fitted
Project Outputs
Indicators (with baseline
and targets)
Means of Verification
PoW Output
Reference Number
How the outputs will be
measured including quantity
quality, time
How the information
will be collected,
when, and by whom
Number of the
corresponding PoW
Tangible products or services
delivered by the project
Project Milestones
Expected Milestone
Delivery Date
A scheduled event or output representing progression towards achievement of project outputs
or outcomes
14 Milestones are usually identified from the detailed Theory of Change. Together with the baseline and targets, milestones
need to be thought through after operational details are clearly shaped.
For examples of LogFrames in the UNEP format, please click here.
The focus in project design should be on outcomes and contributions to objectives, rather than solely
on the production of outputs. Focusing on outcomes pushes Project Managers and teams to examine
the many factors influencing a project and make better implementation plans. However, outcomes
need to be formulated in such a way that they remain achievable by the project’s intervention. The
project might not have full control, but the likelihood that the project outcome will be achieved due to
the project’s outputs must be as high as possible.
For example, a project may involve supporting a Government in preparing environmental legislation
to improve the protection of wildlife in buffer areas surrounding national parks. If one focuses on
outputs, then the project is considered successful when training and advice has been provided to the
relevant officials drafting the legislation. But if one focuses on outcomes as UNEP has committed
itself to, then one needs to examine if the legislation has been approved and gone into effect, and
whether it has actually changed the behaviour of stakeholders in buffer areas surrounding national
parks, in a way that protects wildlife in those areas better.
If the drafted legislation is not approved and acted upon, then the project will be a failure because the
intended, immediate outcome was not achieved (‘improved environmental legislation to protect
wildlife in buffer areas surrounding national parks’), despite all of the planned outputs having been
delivered (‘training and advice has been provided to the relevant officials drafting the legislation’). If
Government has drafted the legislation but has no resources to raise awareness about and enforce it,
then again the project could be considered a failure because the medium-term outcome could not be
achieved (‘stakeholders in buffer areas surrounding national parks behave in a way that protects
wildlife in those areas better’), despite the immediate outcome having been achieved.
Project outcomes should be set at a level whether the project can realistically influence the behavior
of stakeholders, and all the factors (e.g. resources, capacities) related to it. In the example presented
above, the project should have set as its objective its immediate outcome (‘new legislation’). This will
make the project more realistic. Due attention should be given to the level of ambition of a project, in
line with resource and time constraints. However, this doesn’t mean that the project should ignore the
need for changes to happen further along the causal pathway. It should also include activities and
outputs that contribute to the drivers needed to achieve the medium-term outcome and longer-term
impact. For example, the project could still support the Government’s resource mobilization efforts to
finance awareness campaigns or equip rangers. This service might fall outside the main intervention
logic of the project (‘assisting the government with preparing new legislation’), but would still be
included in the project to enhance the likelihood of the project achieving outcomes towards impact.
Finally, if the project has the resources and time to cover all immediate outcomes required for the
medium-term outcome to be attained, it can set the medium-term outcome as the project outcome.
Box 4: Output vs. Outcome
Outputs are the products, capital goods and services which result from a development intervention. Outputs
relate to the completion of activities and managers have a high degree of influence over them. Examples of
outputs include: conferences; workshops; publications; legal or policy advice; public awareness campaigns;
training; etc.
Outcomes are the uptake or use of project outputs by the project target groups or clients, and cause in
general a change of behavior. Before this change in behavior can occur in the medium term, outputs can, in
the short term, first lead to a change in capacity of the target groups. These changes in capacity are often
called ‘immediate outcomes’ and these are more realistically within reach of the typical UNEP project.
Examples of immediate outcomes include changes in policies, regulations, and laws, enhanced knowledge
and skills, an improved financial resource base, improved planning etc. Examples of medium-term outcomes
include: use of ecosystem management for climate change adaptation in coastal areas; improved wildlife
protection practices in National Parks; etc.
The detailed Theory of Change for the project intervention should facilitate identification of the
underlying assumptions and potential risks. Project details on risk and opportunities are later captured
in the Project Document under Risk Analysis. For more details on what the risks are and how to
analyze the risks, please see Chapter 8: Risk Management.
f. Planning how to measure the results
LogFrames also contain indicators for each specified output and outcome. Successful specification of
indicators allows the project to monitor its progress towards results and facilitates later evaluation.
Also, project outcome and outputs can be further clarified from the process of defining the indicators.
Difficulties in finding an outcome indicator could stem from the lack of clarity or unrealistic scope in
articulating the outcome. If this is the case, the project needs to revisit the Theory of Change and the
LogFrame to better define the output and outcome. More detailed information and examples of
indicators can be found in the UNDP document RBM in UNDP: Selecting Indicators.
Definition: An indicator is a quantitative or qualitative factor or variable that provides a simple and
reliable means to measure achievement, to reflect the changes connected to an intervention or to help
assess the performance of a development actor.
Purpose: An indicator is a tool to help determine whether progress is made towards implementing
activities and achieving the desired outcomes of an intervention. Indicators can help demonstrate
progress when things go right and provide early warning signals when things go wrong; their purpose
is to support effective programme planning, management and reporting by:
 Measuring progress and achievements
 Clarifying consistency between activities, outputs, and outcomes
 Ensuring legitimacy and accountability to all stakeholders by demonstrating progress
 Assessing project and staff performance
Limits: Indicators only indicate; they do not explain. Determining that change has occurred does not
tell the story of why it has occurred. Indicators constitute only one part of the logical and substantive
analysis needed for development efforts to succeed. In addition, success requires common sense,
sound managerial judgment, leadership and creativity – none of which can be replaced by the use of
Box 5: Types of indicators (not all mutually exclusive)
Input indicators: Measure quantities of physical, human or financial resources provided to a
program or project, often expressed in amounts of e.g. dollars or employee time.
Output indicators: Track and measure the most immediate results delivered by a project – that is,
the goods and services provided by the project (e.g. the number of wells constructed which
provide access to clear drinking water).
Outcome indicators: Measure the immediate, or short-term, results of program or project
implementation for the beneficiaries (clients, customers) such as changes in behavior and or
practices. Measures of beneficiaries’ preference and satisfaction with goods/services are also
considered as outcome indicators.
Quantitative indicators: Objectively or independently verifiable numbers or ratios. Measure
quantity, such as the number of people who own sewing machines in a village, the wage rate or
education levels.
Qualitative indicators: Subjective descriptions or categories which Indicate people's judgments
and perceptions about a subject, such as the confidence people have in sewing machines as
instruments of financial independence.
Process indicators: Measure delivery activities of the resources devoted to a program or project
and achievement during implementation. Often indicators are set as completion or milestone
events taken from an activity plan, and may measure the time and/or cost required to complete
The use of indicators can be made into an elaborate science demanding a major workload. Using a
large number of different indicators, however, has no merit in itself. The key to good indicators is
credibility – not volume of data or precision in measurement. A quantitative observation is no more
inherently objective than a qualitative observation. Large volumes of data can confuse rather than
bring focus. It is more helpful to have approximate answers to a few important questions than to have
exact answers to many unimportant questions.
Effective indicators should be “SMART”:
Specific (Specific enough to assess the progress and taking into account the target group (for
whom) and location (where);
Measurable (reliable and clear measurement is possible that can specify quantity (how much)
and/or quality (how well));
Attainable (credible link to results) and Attributable, the indicator is measuring UNEP/project
partner –related performance (and not something that might have ‘happened anyway’);
Relevant (relevance to intended outputs and outcome); and
Time-bound (by when) and Trackable (availability of data within reasonable cost and effort).
Table 3: Examples of SMART outcomes and outcome indicators
Expected outcome
Expanded connectivity to information and
communication technologies (ICT).
Increased capacity of parliament to perform its
oversight functions
The national policy framework reformed on the
subject of universal access to basic services.
Outcome indicator
Estimated number and proportion of the population
with access to the internet, disaggregated by gender.
Mechanisms for accountability such as a Public
Accounts Committee are in place to ensure legislative
New, adequate policies and legislation in effect on the
subject of universal access to basic services.
Women’s organizations enabled to advocate and
monitor improvement in the status of women.
Systematic monitoring of progress in linking national
development targets with globally agreed goals.
Existence of national legislation and measures to
provide an enabling environment for women’s nongovernmental organizations (NGOs).
A comprehensive monitoring and evaluation system in
operation to track progress in the country’s human
development in the context of PRSP.
Source: Adapted from the Strategic Results Frameworks of Gabon, Kyrgyzstan, Nepal, Tanzania and Venezuela, 2001.
For each indicator, a baseline should be specified. Baseline data are needed to measure changes
brought about by the project activities. The baseline defines the current situation (and recent trends),
before the implementation of the project/activity. In addition to the baseline, a target should be set for
each indicator before the outset of the project/activity. It is important to distinguish whether the target
is an absolute value, or an incremental change from the baseline. For example, if your indicator is
“number of countries,” and your baseline is “2 countries,” and your target is “5 countries,” you will
need to specify whether the target is a total of 7 countries (incremental change of 5) or a total of 5
countries (incremental change of 3). Project Managers should establish the baseline and targets for the
project by consulting relevant stakeholders and reviewing existing data and literature. For complex
and/or large-scale projects, Project Managers can hire a consultant or institution to carry out a detailed
baseline analysis.
Defining indicators for UNEP’s normative work (such as policy advice, advocacy, and regional
coordination) can be challenging. However, if a detailed Theory of Change has been developed,
indicators can more readily be identified. For example, if a project’s desired outcome is an enhanced
environmental legal framework, then the actual change can be measured with the adoption of new
legislation. Measuring the change from normative activities can strengthen UNEP’s ability to show its
achievement of results. Again, many UNEP projects involve activities on capacity-building, which
may be difficult to measure. The critical questions in this case are ‘what capacity is to be developed?’,
‘What UNEP assistance is being provided?’ and “Who are the target groups (clients)?” A careful
analysis of the relevant details can help determine the actual change to measure through indicators.
For example, if the project is to provide capacity building on planning to the local government, it
might be measured by monitoring the timeliness and quality of government action on a particular
issue (using independent experts), prior to and after capacity building efforts. In this case, we would
use the effect of the capacity building effort as a proxy indicator for the quality of the actual capacity
building effort. Caution should be taken in using proxy indicators at different results level than the
actual result we want to measure. Proxy indicators at a higher results level (as the one in the example
above), might be affected by other factors than the project result and therefore not give a fair measure
of achievement of the result in question. Proxy indicators at a lower results level do not always
guarantee the achievement of higher level results. For example, if the number of days of training and
coaching received is used as a proxy indicator for the enhanced knowledge and skills of the trainee,
one has to be sure that the quality of the training was good, and not in the least that the training and
coaching were appropriate for the trainee’s needs and initial knowledge and skills. Otherwise, this
proxy indicator might give a much distorted measure of the intended result.
The design of a Theory of Change and LogFrame should be an iterative process involving
stakeholders. Project Managers should consult the stakeholders to identify key results and indicators
to establish a common understanding of the stakeholders on project intervention, agree on how project
progress will be monitored, and how performance will be assessed. More details on stakeholder
engagement are in Section D of this Chapter.
All the above applies to GEF financed projects. However, in addition, an indicative and quantified
baseline and target at mid and end point are required for each indicator at the PIF stage. During
project preparation, the baseline has to be measured and indicators and targets adjusted accordingly.
In addition, the projects have to identify which of the indicators in the GEF Tracking Tools is relevant
to their project; only the key indicators should be selected. Projects that seek financing from multiple
windows or focal areas of the GEF, have to choose indicators from all the Tracking Tools. The GEF
projects have to report on the Tracking Tools at mid-term and end of a project.
Means of Verification
Indicators should include an accompanying means of verification, which specifies the quality (how
well), time (e.g., at what week of the project, or month of the year), and location (where). It should
measure change that is attributable to the UNEP project intervention. Each indicator should be linked
to easily obtainable data sources in order to measure and verify progress towards planned results. In
developing the means of verification, the Project Manager should consider: accessibility, reliability,
relevance, and cost-effectiveness in collecting the data. Means of verification can include partners’
reports, but not the own project progress reports, and any tangible project output (e.g. manual, policy
guideline, course material). For example, if the desired outcome of the project is the application of a
renewable energy policy, and if it is to be measured by the number of countries incorporating a
renewable energy component in national energy plans, government reports and statements on national
energy plans can be used for means of verification
Milestones towards achieving outputs and outcomes
For UNEP projects, a milestone is a scheduled event representing progress towards the achievement
of project outputs and outcomes. Milestones are used for project monitoring and management
purposes, and should give an honest indication of the implementation status of a project. In UNEP,
milestones are the benchmarks against which the progress of the project will be measured. Therefore,
Project Managers need to spend adequate time thinking through the milestones during the design
phase to be sure they are reasonable, attainable, and specific. The detailed Theory of Change is a
useful tool to identify milestones and they should be formally captured as part of the project Logframe.
For milestones to be useful to project management and supervision, they need to provide a true picture
of progress towards results. If they are chosen in such a way that their attainment is almost guaranteed,
so that a false image of progress is given, they don’t tell much about real progress to results, and this
defeats their purpose.
LogFrames should show clear milestones for each output for each six-month period of the project15,
adhering to the following principles:
Each Project Output should have only one milestone per six-month reporting period – the
most important milestone for that project output in the six-month period; Note the milestone
can be leading ‘to’ or stemming ‘from’ the output; Also note that the delivery date of a
milestone should be within the six-month period, but not necessarily fall on the last day of the
Milestones must have only one dimension so their achievement can be qualified as either
‘yes’ or ‘no’; and
15 GEF projects have instead their own reporting system, based on Project Implementation Review (PIR) sheets.
Outcome milestones should show that efforts are being made to help the project bring about
capacity and behavioral changes in stakeholders so that progress towards achieving the
desired project outcome is evident.
For example, if the project’s desired output is to develop tools for ecosystem assessment and
management for sustainability of water regulation and purification services, the progress can be
measured with the following milestones:
Three preliminary community meetings with local stakeholders organized by April 2012
Core experts selected to develop management tools and options by December 2013
At least 3 tools and options developed by October 2012
Total 10 tools and options developed by September 2013
Monitoring and Evaluation Plans
Planning for monitoring and evaluation should be also considered as part of the project design.
Monitoring and evaluation are critical parts of project management and should enable the Project
Manager to understand whether the intended results are being achieved, and to identify issues which
require corrective actions. Monitoring is a continual process that provides up-to-date information on
the project’s performance, whereas evaluation is conducted at a specific point (mid-term and terminal)
for an in-depth analysis of whether the project achieved its planned results, what the project
performance has been, the identification of corrective actions (usually at mid-term), and formulation
of lessons learned.
Project Managers should plan in advance the necessary tasks and activities to conduct monitoring and
to facilitate an independent evaluation, and should incorporate resources for monitoring (by the
Project Manager with his/her team and partners) and evaluation (by the UNEP Evaluation Office) in
the project budget. When designing a project, it may be appropriate for the Project Manager to
allocate part of the project budget for the purpose of collecting data to establish an empirical baseline
for the project and for collecting data on a regular basis to monitor project progress. (See Chapter 9:
Financial Management) For detailed processes of planning for evaluation, please see Chapter 10:
GEF financed projects are required to identify the expected costs of M&E during the life of a project
at the PIF stage, and then to prepare a fully costed M&E Plan and Budget at the project document
stage. Cost standards have been developed for all GEF projects.
g. Defining the Project Approach
When the project intervention and desired results have been defined using the Theory of Change and
specified in a LogFrame, the project’s approach needs to be developed to define exactly what methods,
tools and procedures will be used. The project approach includes developing a work plan with a clear
schedule and responsibilities.
The results formulated in the LogFrame can be delivered by a variety of methods. For example, the
project may be implemented by UNEP staff, UNEP-hired consultants, project staff hired by UNEP
specifically for the project, or external partners. Each of these options has different procurement rules,
costs, recruiting time, legal procedures, and time needed to formalize the arrangements. It is important
to carefully evaluate the budget and timeline of the project approach before making a decision. (See
Chapter 9: Financial Management for more details on how to develop a project budget)
As mentioned in the example, a key decision to be made at this stage is on the use of partnerships in
project implementation. Based on the stakeholder analysis and consultations, a Project Manager
should identify potential partners and evaluate the benefits and risks of working with an external
partner against the option of implementing the project within UNEP. Details on partnership analysis
and management are available in Chapter 7: Partnership Management.
If the project involves activities at the country or regional level, the Project Manager should consult
the Division of Regional Cooperation (DRC), including relevant Regional Offices. The geographical
focus should be reviewed in detailed project planning to confirm its relevance, avoid duplication, and
increase synergy with other UNEP activities in the region or country. The Common Country
Assessments (CCA) conducted by UN Country Teams can also provide valuable background
information on the country situation and therefore inform the best approach for UNEP at the country
Planning for sustainability
Many projects fail to deliver long-lasting results because their achievements and results are
unsustainable (i.e. they will not continue after project completion). Actions to ensure the sustained
value of project outputs and long-term sustainability of project outcomes should be embedded in the
project design. The Project Manager should consider sustainability during project design when: (a)
selecting the most appropriate partners and beneficiaries for project implementation, and (b)
developing activities or strategies to provide beneficiaries with the skills, training and tools they
would need for the project outcomes to be sustained post-project. A sustainability plan may entail e.g.
an initial and sustained training and capacity building effort for project partners, followed by a phased
withdrawal of UNEP inputs/funding. All sustainability plans should take into account key issues such
as: fostering ownership by the stakeholders, providing policy support, using appropriate technologies,
respecting human rights (including indigenous peoples’ rights) and social and cultural norms, values
and attitudes, ensuring responsiveness to gender issues, meeting social and environmental safeguards,
developing partners’ institutional and management capacity, and considering economic and financial
viability as of project design.
In the UNEP context, sustainability means the continuation or maintenance of outcomes and benefits
such as improved institutional capacities after the completion of a project. Sustainability should be
planned along three main lines:
1. Environmental and social sustainability: where the environmental and social benefits of a
project are sustained;
2. Institutional sustainability: where the relevant institutions expected to continue to take action
have the necessary means and interests to do so; and
3. Economic/Financial sustainability: where the actions that may require financial input are
likely to continue.
In order to strive towards sustainability, the following key questions should be considered at the
project design phase:
Policy Support
Will new policies (or changes in existing policy priorities) be in place by the project end, to
support the project outcomes post-project?
Is the required support from relevant political, public and/or business organizations expected to be
in place by project end? How can and will this be achieved, and who will the project support this
Financial sustainability
Can partners afford to sustain the achievements and results of the project independently, postproject?
Is there demonstrated government commitment to provide the budget required to sustain the
achievements of the project in the longer-term?
Is a cost-recovery mechanism being considered and developed during the project, among other
measures to sustain project results in the long term?
Is the private sector’s involvement being considered among the options for sustaining project
achievement results?
Capacity Development
Are sufficient resources being allocated in project design to ensure the appropriate transfer and
utilization of the new knowledge generated?
Is institutional and/or technical capacity of partners sufficient to absorb and sustain the results and
achievements of the project in the long term? If not, what will the project do to ensure that such
capacity can be developed during the life of the project?
Environmental & Social Safeguards
Are environmental and social safeguards being considered at project design? While all UNEP
actions should lead to environmental sustainability, it is important that unintended negative
impacts across different environmental sectors are avoided. For example, measures to adapt to
climate change should not aggravate ecosystem degradation. See the GEF Environmental and
Social Safeguards checklist and the Environment Management Group guidance for an example of
how to think through this question.
What are the mechanisms envisaged and put in place to ensure compliance with the UNEP E&S
safeguards (under development), during project implementation?
Did Environmental & Social safeguards prevent and mitigate undue harm to the environment and
people at the earliest possible planning stage?
Exit Strategy
What is the project specific plan for the gradual phase-out (or exit) of the project, including i.e.
hand-over of management/technical responsibilities to those partners that are expected to sustain
or replicate project results post-project?
All GEF projects have to define a sustainability plan. Sustainability in the context of GEF projects
depends on the type of project and its location along the continuum of GEF interventions.
Furthermore, sustainability may be assured by the government, partners or other Agencies building on
the results of a completed project.
Planning for replicability
“Replicating” or “scaling up” is sometimes used as a cost-effective way of achieving a project or
programme outcome. UNEP projects may test certain new environmental tools or methodologies,
working closely with one or more partners, and, if successful, these new tools and technologies may
be carried forward, expanded upon and replicated by the project’s partners. UNEP’s role is not usually
to replicate the use of such tools or methodologies, but rather to select and assist partners that are
better placed in taking ownership of the project outputs and new approaches in order to scale them up
and replicate them widely. Click here to reach about the “Wings Over Wetlands” (GEF project) which
was successfully scaled up to achieve the expected outcome.
Some key questions that should be considered during the project design phase to maximize
replicability include:
 Are the appropriate partners being selected to ensure maximum uptake, replication and scaling-up
of project results in the long term?
 Are project partners being adequately involved in all stages of project design and implementation
so as to ensure their ownership and support for project results?
 Are project partners and their respective networks interested and clearly committed to the uptake,
replication and up-scaling of the new tools and technologies to be developed by the project?
In addition, the inclusion of mechanisms for sharing knowledge across countries and regions can also
help promote replication of the project outputs and approaches. In particular, South-South
cooperation – meaning the exchange of knowledge, best practices, technical support, human
resources, trade and policy advice among developing countries - can be an effective and efficient way
to support replication, as experts and institutions in developing countries may share similar political,
socio-economic and environmental challenges and can provide support to each other based on their
own lessons learned. The Bali Strategic Plan stipulates UNEP’s role in strengthening capacity
building and technology support in line with country needs and priorities. It highlights the importance
of South‐South cooperation as a key delivery mechanism, and underlines the importance of
developing human resources and institutions of the South. Typically, the range of services provided
by UNEP’s South‐South Cooperation initiatives include specialized data support, policy advice,
technical backstopping support, training and related capacity development, expertise inputs including
tools and methodologies, outreach materials and mechanisms for information sharing. See UNEP’s
recently revised policy on Integrating South-South Cooperation in the Programme of Work.
h. Cross-cutting Issues
UNEP has defined several cross-cutting objectives which the organization aims to achieve through the
implementation of its work. Thus, when designing a project, managers and teams should consider how
the intervention may contribute to these cross-cutting objectives. Project managers will be also
required to report progress on the achievement of objectives related to cross-cutting issues during
project implementation, in the project’s monitoring section within the Programme Information
Management System (PIMS).
MDG7 Environmental Sustainability: UNEP projects claiming a contribution to the achievement of
MDG7 targets must meet specific indicators pertaining to one or more specific targets. More
information can be found here: Goal 7.
Box 6: MDG 7 targets and indicators
Target 7a: Integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and
programmes; reverse loss of environmental resources
Target 7b: Reduce biodiversity loss, achieving, by 2010, a significant reduction in the rate of loss
Target 7a and 7b Indicators:
7.1 Proportion of land area covered by forest
7.2 CO2 emissions, total, per capita and per $1 GDP (PPP)
7.3 Consumption of ozone-depleting substances
7.4 Proportion of fish stocks within safe biological limits
7.5 Proportion of total water resources used
7.6 Proportion of terrestrial and marine areas protected
7.7 Proportion of species threatened with extinction
Target 7c: Reduce by half the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking
water and basic sanitation
7.8 Proportion of population using an improved drinking water source
7.9 Proportion of population using an improved sanitation facility
Target 7d: Achieve significant improvement in lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers, by 2020
7.10 Proportion of urban population living in slums
Poverty Alleviation: To fight poverty, promote security and to preserve the ecosystems that poor
people rely on for their livelihoods, green economic growth and environmental sustainability must be
placed at the heart of economic policies, planning systems and institutions. The Millennium
Development Goals (MDGs) have helped to refocus the attention of the world community on these
needs by setting ambitious targets for the elimination of poverty. They reaffirm the importance of
achieving environmental, social and economic sustainability.
Science-Policy Interface: One of UNEP’s over-arching objectives is to strengthen the science-policy
interface, meaning that sound science better informs policies, and policy makers have a better
understanding of science. UNEP’s work often facilitates science policy dialogue with the goal being
that scientists and policy makers reach an understanding over competing interests.
Coherence in the UN: As part of the UN system-wide efforts to achieve coherence in Delivering as
One, UNEP projects need to consider how the activities can be coordinated with other UN agencies at
the global level (United Nations Development Group, Chief Executives Board), regional level
(Regional UNDG, Regional Coordination Mechanism) and country level.
Catalyzing Change in the UN: As the environment programme of the UN, UNEP provides
leadership to strengthen the integration of the environmental agenda and provides technical assistance
in environmental activities of the UN system.
Integration of Gender Concerns in Project Formulation and Implementation: Gender disparities
are deeply entrenched in policies, institutional and legal practices, households and social relations.
Gender is therefore a cross-cutting issue that needs to be built into all aspects of policy formulation,
programme and project planning, institutional structures and decision making procedures. The process
of integrating gender equality concerns across all these areas is known as gender mainstreaming. See
the Guidance Note on Gender Analysis at Project Level for more information.
Bali Strategic Plan (BSP): As described in Chapter 2, The BSP is one of the key principles in
UNEP’s programme which aims to strengthen UNEP’s technology support and capacity building for
developing countries.
Implementation through South-South Cooperation Approach: South-south cooperation (meaning
cooperation between developing countries) can be an effective and efficient way to support replication,
as experts and institutions in developing countries may share similar political, socio-economic and
environmental challenges and can provide support to each other based on their own lessons learned.
See UNEP’s recently revised policy on Integrating South-South Cooperation in the Programme of
Participation of Major Groups and stakeholders of Civil Society at all levels of project
development and implementation. UNEP’s work is guided by the Principle 10 of the Rio
Integration of Indigenous Peoples issues, needs and concerns in project planning, development,
implementation and evaluation.
i. Planning how to operate a project
When the project’s desired outcome and methodologies have been chosen and outlined in the project
Logical Framework (see Section C), Project Managers need to identify the main activities to be
implemented and break them down to manageable tasks. Based on the project Logical Framework and
related activities and tasks identified, Project Managers should develop the associated work plan to
meet each specific target, along realistic timelines. In this process, the clarity of sequence (order of
activities) and dependencies (dependence of an activity on start or completion of another activity)
should be considered to develop an effective and realistic work plan. The project Logical Framework
and milestones should be used as key benchmarks in developing the work plans. Gantt charts are one
type of standard tool used to communicate the details of the work plan.
If the project involves complex funding arrangements or a long-term timeline, the Project Manager
may wish to consider managing the project in separate phases and include them in the work plan.
Work plans should also present clear roles and responsibilities for each task or activity. The Project
Manager should assign each task to a member of a project team or a partner, considering the skills,
experience and capability required for each. Clear accountability is essential for the successful
management of the project and achievement of the intended results.
In UNEP’s matrix approach, every project output is assigned to one Division or Regional Office,
along with a budget for that project output. Even when responsibility for individual project outputs
may be assigned to different Divisions or Regional Offices, only one Division or Regional Office
remains accountable for the overall management of the project and the overall project budget.
In developing the details of a work plan, Project Managers should also take into account the
requirements for project supervision, including monitoring and evaluation. The work plan should
include the timing of mid-term and terminal (i.e. end-of-project) evaluations. Realistic estimates of
time required should be made for each activity and task related to the project, informing the realistic
design of milestones. For more details on these areas, please see Chapter 5: Implementation and
Monitoring, and Chapter 10: Evaluation. See also the section “References” for templates of a Project
Logframe, Workplan, Monitoring and Evaluation plan, and Supervision Plan.
GEF Task Managers are required to submit a Project Supervision Plan at the time of project appraisal
(project document), as well as report on implementation of the plan on a yearly basis.
j. Procurement Planning
The planning phase of a project should, where appropriate, consider the procurement component.
Whether the requirements are for goods, services or works, early and accurate planning is essential to
avoid last minute, emergency or ill-planned procurement, which is contrary to open, efficient and
effective – and consequently transparent – procurement.
The ultimate goal of procurement planning is coordinated and integrated action to fulfill a need for
goods, services or works in a timely manner and at a reasonable cost.
In addition, most potential savings in the procurement process are achieved by improvements in the
planning stages.
Good procurement planning is essential to optimize the contribution of the procurement function
towards achieving the overall goals of the organization. It supports many goals, of particular interest
to the project are:
Early requisition to reduce any delays in procurement and timely delivery to project sites.
Early identification of right commodities and quantities to meet programme needs.
Effective supply strategy and timely programme and project implementation.
Effective and timely solicitation of offers, award of contracts and delivery of the goods, services
and works required.
Sourcing the right suppliers on time to avoid cutting corners under rush procurement to meet
deadlines or budget expenditure.
Avoidance of unnecessary exigencies and urgencies, enabling full competition and full
compliance with standard rules and procedures.
Procurement planning clarifies what is needed and when it is needed to both user and buyer. Effective
procurement planning enables the organization and its staff to work smoothly to achieve the project’s
goals with the right quality and quantity of inputs in place; ineffective procurement planning may
result in failure to achieve those goals, putting in jeopardy the FRR and procurement principles and
causing damage to the credibility of the organization.
k. Developing the Project Document
Once the Project Manager and team decide on a project design, they must enter all the details into a
Project Document. Project documents may follow different templates, according to whether they will
use GEF funds or not. For GEF-financed projects, the DGEF UNEP Project Document Template
should be used, along with its appendices. In the other cases, the UNEP Project Document Format
The Project Document specifies the project boundaries in terms of project duration and planned
budget, and shows the logical flow of project elements towards a clearly specified result. The Project
Document should describe key issues in each of the sections of the template, in particular because
these details will be uploaded in PIMS and serve as the basis for monitoring project performance:
Project Overview
Project Justification: Why UNEP is well-positioned to get involved; Justification for the
proposed intervention (business case); How the project will contribute to the achievement of the
Project Statement & Approach: Full description of methodologies; Relationship with past and
on-going projects; Analysis of key stakeholders, their relative roles, responsibilities, and
expectations, and the possible impact of the project on certain stakeholder groups;
Delivery Plan, Budget, and Organization: Logical relationship among activities, outputs and
outcomes based on challenges, strategy and purpose; Clear management and operational structure
showing how the organization will implement the project, not just with external partners but also
internally, showing the responsibilities and budget allocations of other participating UNEP
Divisions and Regional Offices
Risk Analysis: Opportunities and challenges that will be encountered during the project lifecycle
(See Chapter 8: Risk Management for more details on risk analysis)
Reporting & Evaluation: A monitoring plan with a defined budget and assignment of tasks to
ensure adequate and continuous monitoring of the progress; Description of any planned
evaluations (e.g., mid-term and/or terminal)
Review and Approval
Approval of Project Concepts
In order to set minimum quality standards, UNEP has one consistent project approval process for all
projects, regardless of the managing Division or funding sources, including GEF. All UNEP Project
Concepts are reviewed and approved by the SMT as part of a Programme Framework and the PoW.
The Subprogramme Coordinator obtains authorization from the Lead Division Director to submit the
Programme Frameworks to QAS for final review by the SMT as part of the PoW.
The SMT reviews the overall portfolio of project concepts in the Programme Frameworks, and
assesses the following, on the basis of the information included in the project concepts:
Coherence: Logic and rationale in relation to the Subprogramme strategy and EA;
Structure: Clarity in the roles and responsibilities of Divisions and Regional Offices,
coordination mechanism and accountability between them;
Capacity: How the expertise in divisions and regional offices will be used to deliver the
projects and how shortfalls in capacity can be addressed;
Partnerships: Use of partnerships in implementing the PoW, in particular to leverage
UNEP’s catalytic role;
Geographic Balance: Appropriate geographic balance between different levels of
engagement at global, regional and national levels, and suitability of geographic locations for
Risk: Implications of relevant risk and opportunities; and
Resource Mobilization: Potential and ability to attract donor funding.
If a project concept is proposed after the approval of the Programme Frameworks, the project concept
must demonstrate how it builds upon the existing portfolio of projects in the relevant Programme
Framework in delivery of Outputs and EAs in the PoW, using the format provided in the Programme
Framework template. This project concept should be reviewed by the relevant Subprogramme
Coordinator, who – once (s)he is satisfied with the quality of the project concept - submits it to QAS
for quick review by a strategic team of Division Directors (but smaller than the SMT). A new project
concept does not trigger revision of the whole Programme Framework or development of a new
Programme Framework.
Figure 12: From project concepts to project documents
Programme Frameworks (by Expected
• Maps how to achieve Expected
• Specifies performance indicators
• Contains Project Concepts
• Facilitates Resource Planning
• Fundraising tool
• Building blocks to achieve POW
• Aligned with POW Outputs and EAs
• Contain Milestones
SMT Approval
Project Review Committee Approval
In the case of GEF concepts that are proposed after approval of the Programme Frameworks, the
project concept must undergo a “Concept Review and Clearance” (CRC) process prior to being
submitted to the GEF Coordination Office for clearance and submission to GEF. Key features of the
CRC, in addition to those mentioned above, are:
 Evidence of country ownership and endorsement of the project
 Fit with UNEP’s comparative advantages vis-à-vis other GEF Agencies
 Capacity of the Executing Agency to deliver
 Adequacy of indicative budgeting proposed (including co-finance) to deliver; level of
ambitiousness and absorptive capacity of the proponent
 Compliance with all GEF standards, including availability of GEF financial resources
Exemptions from CRC are provided only to those projects that are being resubmitted after GEF Sec
review, and to Enabling Activities that are sub-projects of a main project or programme already
cleared by CRC.16
All GEF projects undergo a second review by the GEF Secretariat, prior to being recommended to the
GEF Council for approval as part of the GEF Work Programme. The GEF Council reviews at least
two and sometimes four Work Programmes every year.
Approval of Fully Developed Projects
The Subprogramme Coordinator coordinates the steps involved in getting a project from a concept to
the PRC, according to the following steps (***):
Step 1 - Project design: A project is designed in consultation with Regional Offices and relevant
Divisions, using the ProDoc template provided by QAS.
Step 2 - Peer Review: This is now considered as a good practice, and it is strongly recommended.
Before a project is submitted for any kind of approval, its draft ProDoc should be peer reviewed
by UNEP colleagues in the relevant Regional Offices and Divisions, who have the requisite
expertise in order to improve the quality of the project document. The project team identifies who
is in the peer review panel, and the names of the peer reviewers should be mentioned on the draft
ProDoc submitted for review and approval.
Step 3 - Submission to the Division Director: The Project Manager submits the project document
to the Division Director of the Managing Division, who reviews and signs it. In the case of GEF
financed projects, the Lead Divisions signs.
Step 4 - Submission to the Subprogramme Coordinator: The Director submits the project
document to the relevant Subprogramme Coordinator for review. In the case of GEF projects, the
Subprogramme Coordinator reviews first and recommends to the Lead Division Director.
Step 5: Submission to QAS / PRC or GEF PRC - Once the Subprogramme Coordinator is
satisfied with the quality of the project s/he submits it to QAS for PRC review. As the secretary of
the PRC, QAS ensures that the project checklist of standard items to be contained in the project
are followed and then organizes PRC meetings from a selected list of members based on the
thematic areas of the projects under review. In the case of a GEF financed project, the GEF
16 So called Enabling Activities are not required to go through PRC, unless they are more than $500,000. This is to expedite
the process, given the fact that all Enabling Activities (like NIPs, NAPAs, etc.) are blueprints and follow the same mold. In
the case of stand-alone enabling activities, the "first" one of its kind is approved, while the remainder is delegated to the
Director of GEF-Coordination Office for further quality assurance prior to submission. Once submitted to GEF Secretariat
and following approval, enabling Activities directly go to the Division Director who can sign it (if it is within the Delegated
Portfolio Manager is responsible for obtaining all reviews and signatures and submitting to GEFCO for PRC review. QAS will also enter the project Overview and Executive Summary from the
submitted project document into the Programme Information Management System (PIMS) and
upload the draft project document and other relevant submissions on PIMS and the UNEP Intranet.
This is the beginning of the pipeline to project approval and implementation. Project Managers
and teams can check PIMS to see the approval status and PRC meeting dates convened by QAS to
review the project. The date of the PRC is the first day the project appears in PIMS, and it is
therefore in the monitoring system. If a project does not proceed to approval within six months bt
remains open, it will be caught in the “projects at risk system”. In the case of GEF projects, the
Task Manager is responsible for entering relevant data into ADDIS, a dedicated GEF data base.
ADDIS will soon be integrated into PIMS.
Box 7: The Project Review Committee
The PRC is a quality assurance mechanism of UNEP that reviews project documents against clearly defined
criteria. The primary function of the PRC is to ensure the compatibility of projects with the PoW and to assess
quality of their design. The PRC is comprised of:
The Head of QAS as Chair of the PRC;
Secretary of the PRC (QAS);
Two staff members with substantive thematic expertise in the Subprogramme, who do not have a
conflict of interest vis-à-vis the projects under review;
A representative of QAS whose role is to pay particular attention to the logic of the project, examining
whether the project approach is properly designed to achieve the identified results in the PoW, and
whether the milestones will enable UNEP to monitor progress towards achieving those results;
A representative of OfO whose role is to ensure the accuracy, cost-effectiveness and feasibility of the
project budget;
Gender Advisor, whose role is to review whether the project design reflects an adequately analyzed
and integrated gender perspective; and
A representative from DRC (and relevant Regional Offices) whose role is to review the delivery
arrangement of the project, the coherence with other projects in the region, and the adequacy of the
partners selected.
A representative of GEF, if the project requires GEF financing
The Subprogramme Coordinator and Project Manager attend the meetings of the PRC to discuss the project and
liaise with the PRC on questions it may have.
Project Quality Standards and Review Criteria
Projects must meet the following general criteria to be successful:
Feasibility: The project must be feasible vis-à-vis specified results, timeframes and resources.
The desired outcome can be achieved within the project boundary and capacity of UNEP
and/or available partners.
Coherence: The project is based on a project concept in an approved Programme Framework,
and must support a PoW output and EA. The project complements other UNEP projects
including those implemented under the GEF (a well-formulated project should reflect the
logical relationship between UNEP’s strategic priorities and the development priorities of the
donor or beneficiary).
Relevance: The project must respond to the issues and problems of the stakeholders and
demonstrate relevance to the needs of country and/or region.
Stakeholders: The project must clearly identify stakeholders, including target groups and
beneficiaries and articulate the engagement to be undertaken with stakeholders in the planning
process (such as through the application of the Free Prior Informed Consent (FPIC) with
indigenous and local communities residing in the project area and who are dependent of its
natural resources), as well as during project implementation.
Geographic Focus: The project’s geographic location and relevant management arrangement
must maximize support for UNEP to achieve the POW EAs.
Budgeting: The project must demonstrate that its benefits will exceed the costs, and must be
planned in a cost-effective manner. Expectations for resource mobilization must be reasonable.
Projects must have a secured funding worth 25% of the total budget or a minimum of 200,000
USD (whatever is greater) before they are eligible for review and approved by the PRC17. (See
Chapter 9: Financial Management for minimum budget requirement)
Coordination: Proposed project implementation arrangements must demonstrate a
commitment to cross-divisional cooperation and the optimal use of expertise from UNEP’s
divisional and regional offices.
Accountability: The project must clearly show the distinct roles and responsibilities of, and
budget allocation to, partners, as well as to Divisions and Regional Offices (Internal
Cooperation Agreements can be used to show what each division and regional office is
responsible for, including the milestones and progress reporting/monitoring roles).
Risk Management Strategy: Project risks must have been clearly identified. Feasible and
appropriate management plans for addressing the foreseen risks must be presented.
Monitoring: The project must include an effective monitoring plan for tracking progress
against outputs and outcomes, and tracking delivery by Divisions, Regional Offices, and
Evaluation: An evaluation plan must be clearly articulated to support performance
Cross-cutting Issues: The project must address its potential impact on environmental,
economic and social conditions, and responds to gender-related issues.
Sustainability and Replicability: The project document must demonstrate that the benefits
generated by the project are likely to be sustainable, and that implementation arrangements to
increase replicability have been thought through.
The PRC for GEF financed projects (including those that may have UNEP co-finance) is conducted in
a similar manner as above, but the chair is delegated to the Director of the GEF Coordinator Office.
The GEF-CO may also provide the Secretary as required. The PRC is conducted prior to submission
of the full document for CEO Endorsement to the GEF Secretariat and Council. Resubmissions of
project documents to the GEF Secretariat or Council are not required to undergo a second UNEP PRC.
Exemptions from PRC approval are provided for Enabling Activities that are considered as “subprojects” of Programmes already reviewed by the PRC. In addition, GEF projects must adhere to the
following criteria:
GEF eligibility: The project must be consistent with, and contribute to, the GEF Strategic
Framework and the 4-year GEF Programming Framework. The proponent must be eligible for
receiving GEF funds. The Country must have ratified the relevant convention (or in
exceptional cases, be on the way to ratification), and be eligible for receiving funds through
the World Bank or UN system.
This applies also to projects subject to revision
Incremental cost principle: The project must make a convincing case that the GEF resources
are being used to generate Global Environmental Benefits (GEB), as defined by the GEF
Instrument and Operational Strategy
Stakeholders: the project has to show evidence of Free and Prior Informed Consent (FPIC) in
cases where there are concrete activities on the ground.
Innovation and lessons learnt: The project must justify its innovativeness, in line with
UNEP’s comparative advantages. Lessons from previous GEF and non-GEF projects,
including from evaluations, should be referenced. An adequate bibliography should be
included referencing scientific information.
UNEP’s comparative advantage and baseline: The project must identify the linkages to
ongoing UNEP activities, and quantify this “project baseline” as part of the UNEP co-finance.
Care must be taken not to count the same baseline for two different projects.
GEF fiduciary and business standards: The project must adhere to all standards as
approved by the GEF Council, or operational standards as directed by the GEF CEO
including correct templates, record of country endorsement of a project, etc.
Budget: 100% of financing resources must be identified and confirmation letters obtained
from all co-financiers. The budget must be adequate to the task, including duration of the
project. The duration should also include at least 6 months for inception, and 6 months for
financial closure. All budget figures are correct, meet standards, and consistent throughout the
Implementation Arrangements: All implementation and execution structures must be
clearly identified along with a project organogram. If UNEP is to directly execute any or all
of the project components, then this has to be clearly explained in the project document. The
PRC will validate whether the internal arrangements are correct and meet the policy on
establishing a firewall between the IA and EA responsibilities. Previous experience with the
Executing Agency is reviewed and adjustments made where necessary. In case of no previous
experience, then the team will have to undertake and submit a Harmonized Approach Cash
Transfers questionnaire. The Task Manager has submitted a Supervision Plan that is adequate
to the task.
Inter-Agency coherence: In the case of a multi-agency project, the design should reflect the
appropriate accountability and division of responsibility between GEF Agencies, show
evidence of efforts to streamline and harmonize as much as possible the procedural
requirements of two or more agencies as applied to the project.
UNDAF: Projects that have direct impact on the ground, should provide evidence of being in
line with the country UNDAF(s)
M&E: A fully costed M&E Plan and Budget is included, to meet GEF and UNEP standards.
The plan envisages a terminal evaluation at least 6 months prior to project closure.
Project Review Process
Step 6 - Review by PRC: The PRC reviews projects based on the criteria articulated in Section C,
and either: i) recommends approval of the project by the DED; ii) defers any decision pending
receipt of an amended project based on PRC comments, or additional information or clarification;
or iii) does not recommend approval of the project.
Step 7 - Revision by Project Manager (where necessary): After a PRC meeting, QAS (and in the
case of GEF projects GEF CO) uploads the minutes and decision of the PRC meeting to PIMS,
posts them on the UNEP Intranet, and follows up with the responsible Project Manager. The
Project Manager revises the project document based on the comments received, and submits it
back to the Subprogramme Coordinators/GEF Portfolio Manager who will then submit the revised
project document to QAS. QAS will check the revised document and consults QAS to decide
whether an additional PRC review is necessary.
Step 8 - Submission to the Deputy Executive Director: If the revised document satisfies all PRC
recommendations (including edits required), QAS submits it to the Deputy Executive Director
(DED) for approval. Upon signature by the DED, the full details of the project, including the
Logframe, are updated by QAS in PIMS, and the signed project document and PRC minutes are
uploaded in PIMS and posted on the UNEP intranet. The project record is then available for
project managers to provide additional information on their project and subsequently report on its
progress. The Project starts officially after DED approval. In the case of GEF financed projects,
the GEF-CO submits the PRC-endorsed document to the GEF for approval. Once it is approved,
the Task Manager is responsible as above, for shepherding the project through the steps necessary
for DED sign-off on the Decision Sheet, and Director sign off according to their delegated
Upon approval of the project, Project Managers should liaise with the responsible FMO to formalize
the financial and administrative arrangements of the new project. Project implementation cannot
proceed without an action sheet signed by the Chief of OfO. For more details, please see Chapter 9:
Financial Management.
Figure 13: Flow of work for approval process
If a project is developed in a different document form, such as one required by a donor or partner (e.g.,
as required by the European Commission, GEF and UN Development Account), it is not necessary to
reformat the document into the UNEP template for submission to the PRC. However, in order to
guarantee that all UNEP relevant information are provided, the Project Manager should make sure
that the main fields required in the UNEP Project Document Format and the Project Document
Supplement are included in the alternative project document, or alternatively that at least the project
overview sheet and log-frame are included. The UNEP Guidance Note on Delivering as One explains
requirements for UNDAF at the country level.
5. Implementation and Monitoring
a. Roles and Responsibilities
Proper project management requires a team effort governed by project management standards and
procedures. Generally the roles in project implementation can be grouped into the three levels of
directing, managing, and delivering.
The Supervisor is the first reporting officer of the Project Manager and provides guidance for overall
direction and management of the project. Critical tools of supervision include: progress reports and
milestones (easily monitored through PIMS), mission reports, and the E-Performance Assessment
System (e-PAS). Supervisors should include project supervision responsibilities in their own e-PAS,
and ensure that Project Managers under their supervision also include project management tasks in
their e-PAS. Supervisors should also asses the performance of the responsible FMOs from financial
and administrative perspectives, and share feedback with the first reporting officer of the FMOs. The
e-PAS appraisal should be based on the performance in project management against project outcome,
duration, budget, and output quality.
A project steering committee may be established to provide additional management guidance during
project implementation. If the project needs a steering committee, the Terms of Reference (ToR) for
the steering committee should be prepared before the project implementation starts, including a
regular meeting schedule (often once a year). Click here to see an example ToRs for a Project steering
The composition of the steering committee may vary depending on the nature of the project; however,
it is recommended to keep the size small (less than ten members). Members of the steering committee
should be selected in a way that balances and diversifies perspectives and areas of expertise of the
committee, and should have sufficient authority and experience to guide the project during
implementation. Often these members will come from related partner agencies and stakeholders. A
typical project steering committee will include one representative from UNEP, one from an
implementing partner, two technical experts on the subject of the project, one donor representative,
and relevant government representatives.
If a project involves highly technical aspects, the Project Manager may establishing a technical
advisory committee, made up of experts willing to provide advisory services for the project on a
regular basis. This is particularly useful for quality assurance of projects that focus on science-policy
synergies or methodology development. In all cases, roles and responsibilities of these committees
should be clarified and established during project planning.
The Project Manager is accountable for the day-to-day management of the project within the defined
schedule and budget. Project Managers liaise with the responsible supervisor and the project steering
committee where necessary, and manage the deliverables from project team members and partners.
One of the key responsibilities of the Project Manager is to organize the project team at the beginning
of the project implementation. The Project Manager is required to:
Clarify the roles and responsibilities of project team members, supervisor, partners and
stakeholders (once the project team members are recruited, further details of the roles and
responsibilities can be developed);
Finalize details of a project steering committee, if required;
Organize an inception mission or workshop, where appropriate;
Prepare, at least on an annual basis, an HR plan to take stock of what human resources will be
required during the year, and initiate the necessary steps for meeting the needs in a timely
manner, and
Recruit project staff, if necessary.
In the case of GEF financed projects, the Project Manager is typically hired by the Executing Agency
and supervised by someone in that agency. The Task Manager and the GEF team provide oversight
and technical assistance, and key indicators of performance of the projects are entered into their ePAS.
While the primary responsibility of project management lies with Project Manager, the Fund
Management Officer (FMO) provides technical support in financial and administrative management.
Project Managers should closely engage responsible FMOs throughout the project cycle management
and seek their advice on financial and administrative matters. More information on financial
management is available in Chapter 9.
The project implementation structure also includes project team members who are assigned to
deliver particular project outputs. Project team members report to the Project Manager regarding their
work on the project, but may have different supervisors located in their respective Divisions or
Regional Offices. The Project Manager may assign responsibilities to the team members.
External partners may implement projects in whole or in part. More details on managing project
delivery through partnerships are included in Chapter 7: Partnership Management.
Table 4: Summary of roles and responsibilities in project implementation
Initiate and lead consultations with stakeholders
Draft Project Document and LogFrame
Initiate project in PIMS and IMIS via QAS and FMOs
Actively manage all project activities and problems and raise issues as required to
higher management
 Manage project team members' roles and responsibilities
 Maintain records of communications, financial records, and progress
 Carry out monitoring and reporting in PIMS
Project Team
 Plan, monitor and manage specific outputs
 Take responsibility on monitoring progress and use of resources
 Identify and advise Project Manager of any issues and risks associated with
responsible work area
 Propose corrective action or revision within project boundaries, if necessary
 Prepare work plan, report on progress and field missions
 Carry out oversight of partners’ performance
 Consolidate inputs for progress reporting
 Guide Project Managers on project feasibility and provide timely and adequate
 Advise Project Managers on coordination with other relevant UNEP projects
 Ensure effectiveness and efficiency in project delivery
 Resolve conflicts and approve any changes within the authorities defined in the
Project Revision Guidelines
 Identify and deal with implementation problems on both administrative and
technical/substantive issues, including political judgments
 Oversee progress through field missions or occasional communications with
stakeholders and review project documents and progress reports
 Raise resources and monitor expenditures
 Raise any issues to QAS and/or the steering committee where necessary
 Ensure coherence, coordination in monitoring and reporting of projects within
Subprogramme, and highlight relevant issues to the responsible supervisor
 Assess project’s contribution towards overall delivery and achievement of PoW
outputs and EAs
 Review of progress against approved work plan and budget and help provide advice to
the Project Manager to ensure project achieves desired outputs and outcomes
 Provide guidance to Project Manager so that project business case remains valid,
especially among stakeholders whose behavior must change if project is to achieve its
planned results
 Provide guidance to Project Manager on needed changes or revisions of project
Monitor and certify expenditures
Advise Project Manager on administrative issues
Alert Project Manager of financial risks anticipated or faced
Initiate annual budget revision and regular budget revisions to reconcile expenditures
and assist any budgetary issues in project revisions
 Review expenditure reports of implementing partners, and facilitate cash transfers if
reports are satisfactory
In the case of GEF financed projects, these terms do not apply. The roles and responsibilities are
established between the Implementing Agency (represented by the Task Manager) and the Executing
Agency (represented by the Project Manager).
b. Starting Project Implementation
The date of the DED’s signature for approval is the date of project commencement. In the case of
GEF projects, the date of Director’s approval of the legal instrument with the Executing Agency is the
date of project commencement. This date is entered into UNEP’s Programme Information
Management System (PIMS) by QAS. The approved project document is then forwarded to the FMO,
who prepares a "pink file" and submits to OfO. OfO creates a project in the Integrated Management
Information System (IMIS) and enters the 'IMIS project code' in PIMS to automatically link related
financial transactions to PIMS (for details of financial arrangements during this stage, see Chapter 9:
Financial Management, Section C: How to access secured funding). At the same time, QAS enters
additional information into the PIMS project page, including duration, cost elements, LogFrame,
delivery plan, and budget. QAS also updates the Executive Summary and the Overview according to
the approved project document. At this point, the project is completely initiated in PIMS and IMIS,
and is ready for implementation, disbursement, and reporting. In the case of GEF financed projects,
all data entry into ADDIS is the responsibility of the divisional GEF team. The GEF Coordination
Office monitors compliance.
The Project Manager starts implementation of the project by carrying out the following tasks in
cooperation with the project team:
Review the work plan and budget for the first year, together with the project team members,
partners and supervisor;
Review the project approach and verify the baseline, targets and milestones;
Confirm the implementation plan with the project team (documented in the Project
Document) and formally approve it before project implementation begins;
Set up the project filing system, in which all project implementation documents will be
Set up a first Steering Committee Meeting;
Finalize contracts for implementation partners (See Chapter 7: Partnership Management);
Review and allocate the budget based on the secured funding (See Chapter 9: Financial
Management); and
Confirm and finalize co-financing arrangements (See Chapter 9: Financial Management).
Project Managers should consider holding a Project Inception Meeting to bring the project team
members and external partners together, and to reach a common understanding of the project tasks.
Project Inception meetings are mandatory for GEF financed projects. The results of a successful
inception meeting include:
 Project partners and staff are familiar with the design of the project and share its vision,
approach and methods to achieve the stated results;
 External partners are familiar with UNEP rules and regulations.
 The log-frame and work-plan are revisited and updated/fine-tuned if needed;
 Project linkages with relevant ongoing/planned projects are assessed;
 There are clear roles and responsibilities within a common accountability framework for, inter
alia, the Project Steering Committee (PSC), UNEP, and external partners;
 Communication lines and methods are agreed upon;
 Procurement plan is agreed upon;
 Monitoring plan is agreed upon and its costs known;
 Project risks are assessed and a risk management plan is developed (or a risk management
plan in the project document is validated/updated);
 A plan for filling any gaps concerning baseline data is agreed upon and its costs determined;
 Project team members are familiar with the substantive and financial reporting processes, and
formats and quality standards are agreed upon;
 The budget (all sources of funding) is understood by all and the rules for its revision are
known. Co-financing for the first year of the project from the project partners is verified and
c. Human resources management and travel
The responsible Division/Regional Director can assign an existing UNEP staff member or employ a
new staff member the task to establish a project team. Detailed information on recruitment process of
the UN staff is available on the Administrative Instruction on the Staff Selection System
(ST/AI/2010/3). It should be noted that recruiting a new staff member will take a minimum of 120
days. If the recruitment is project specific (former 200 series), the process should comply with the
UNEP Guidelines for Project Related Recruitment. In case the project requires temporary
appointments for less than one year, please refer to the Administrative Instructions on Administration
of Temporary Appointments (ST/AI/2010/4)
Box 8: Human Resources
The following actions may be taken in advance of project approval in order to avoid delays in recruitment
during project implementation:
 Reclassify existing posts to add new duties;
 Review the list of rostered candidates that may be recruited in an expedited manner;
 Prepare to begin recruitment process at least 6 months in advance of the intended start date;
 Properly monitor post incumbency and personnel records (e.g. retirement) to inform planning
process; and
 Start building the vacancy pending the approval of the project and related positions.
Human Resources Hotline: [email protected]
A central "hotline" email address has been established for follow up on staff requests to HRMS. The
objective is to provide a One-Stop-Follow-up Hotline for immediate attention to requests which have been
submitted to HRMS but not addressed satisfactorily. Staff is encouraged to use this "Hotline" central email
address only on the following situations:
 If you have not received a response (after 5 working days) to a request you submitted to HRMS;
 If you think that action on your request is taking too long;
 If you are not satisfied with the reply/service you received;
 If you have an issue requiring urgent attention (emergency):
 For HR related suggestions and complaints;
 For expression of commendations and appreciation of service well-done.
To avoid duplication and confusion, please do not copy messages to the Hotline email address when sending
your initial request to HRMS.
Process for Special Post Allowance
Process for Reclassification of a post
Process for creating a new post
Recruitment process of a staff member (in inspira only)
Recruitment of international staff member on an existing post
If consultants are to be recruited for the project, Terms of Reference (ToRs) should be developed to
define the technical and logistical conditions required to contract for professional services and
deliverables from a consultant. ToRs state what is expected from the consultant, and what kind of
support the consultant can expect from the project staff. ToRs do not cover contract matters, such as
fee and payment methods, which are addressed in the consultant’s service agreement. The service
agreement is the legal contract with the consultant which provides financial and administrative terms.
TORs are attached to the service agreement as a component. (Click here to see detailed guidance on
ToRs for consultants).{ Process for recruitment of consultant}
Box 9: Travel Rules of Travel Shipping and Visa Unit in Nairobi
Adherence to the 14 day travel directive:
 The traveller is to obtain 3 quotes where feasible for the mission, at least 2 weeks in advance, to ensure
the lowest advance purchase fares are obtained. In order to provide a quotation, the Travel Agents
create bookings. The ticketing time limit (TTL) should be clearly indicated on the quotation. Staff can
also submit a quotation from an online source if they intend to purchase the ticket themselves.
 The traveller must ensure that a Travel Request (TR) is raised and certified based on the agreed
quotation. The TR should be queued or submitted to the UNON Travel Shipping and Visa Unit (TSVU)
for approval no less than 14 days before actual travel. The traveller must ensure that the TR is received
in good time before the TTL expires. Please note the process of verification of fares, checking of DSA
and final approval takes a maximum of 3 days in TSVU.
Please remember to consult the Regional Office prior to field any mission/travel to a country or a group of
Requests for exceptional authorization:
 If the mission cannot be postponed, the traveler should still obtain quotations as per instructions above.
 The available options should be discussed with TSVU, and the traveler will be advised whether travel
should be facilitated through an official ticket or a self-purchased ticket. This discussion should occur
prior to any purchase, to ensure that any money paid will be refunded in full.
 If visas are required, processing times will need to be considered.
 A memo to the Division/Regional Director (delegation of authority) providing justification for the
request for travel within 14 days is required.
 Without delay, a TR should be created and certified based on the agreed fare.
Group travel (staff members):
 When a group of 10 or more staff members will travel to the same destination, TSVU should be advised
as soon as possible to allow them to request a group discount from suitable airlines.
 If visas are required, the entire group’s passports/UN Laissez Passer should be submitted together to the
Visa sub-unit for processing.
Travel of meeting participants to Nairobi:
 TSVU should be notified of meetings in advance to provide an opportunity for them to request group
discounts from partner airlines.
 Substantive office should communicate with the meeting participants to confirm attendance, obtain
IMIS index numbers through HRMS, raise and certify TRs at least 21 days before the travel date.
 A minimum of 21 days before the travel date, a list of all confirmed participants and DSA should be
forwarded to TSVU so they may verify correctness of individual TRs, liaise with participants on
suitability of itineraries, ensure tickets are processed with names as per passports, issue tickets, and
process visas.
d. Stakeholder Engagement during Project Implementation
During project implementation, Project Managers and their teams involve stakeholders continuously.
One common way of doing so is to run stakeholder workshops/consultations at crucial points in the
project, such as the kick-off, mid-term, and at the conclusion, in order to validate the results and
findings. Stakeholder workshops are not appropriate for all projects, but when planned carefully, they
can significantly support achievement of the desired outcome and intended result. Stakeholder
workshops can be particularly beneficial because they allow for an exchange of ideas between several
groups that may otherwise be isolated, and thereby increase the likelihood of continued
communication and cooperation between the stakeholders beyond the lifetime of the project. The role
of communication officers is of utmost importance in this process, in ensuring – among others - that
the outcome of the engagement is transmitted to a wider audience through adequate channels.
A typical kick-off workshop would bring all the stakeholders together (or one representative from
each stakeholder group) for one or two days to review the planned project and to generate ideas and
reach consensus on possible problems, benefits, and timelines.
A mid-term stakeholder workshop could be held to review the results of a mid-term review/evaluation
or the results of the first phase of a project, providing an opportunity for stakeholders to raise issues
and concerns and provide advice.
A results’ validation workshop is common when the output of a project is a policy paper or a set of
recommendations that must be implemented by stakeholders and partners in order for the final result
to be achieved. Normally comments solicited during the results validation workshop are included as
an Annex, and the workshop participants should formally accept the report/results/recommendations.
e. Monitoring and Reporting
In RBM, the implementation process is significant only in terms of what it leads to – or what follows
from the process of planning, managing and implementing. It is important to get to outcomes and not
just outputs. The reporting function translates project monitoring into a useful monitoring tool.
Monitoring is “a continuing function that uses a systematic collection of data on specified indicators
to provide management and the main stakeholders of an ongoing development intervention with
indications of the extent of progress in the achievement of desired outcomes as well as progress in the
use of allocated funds.” (OECD/DAC Glossary) As such, monitoring is different from evaluation.
Table 5: Complementary roles of monitoring and evaluation
Links activities and their resources to outputs
and outcomes
Translates desired outcomes into performance
indicators and sets targets
Routinely collects data on indicators, and
compares actual results with targets
Reports progress to management and alerts them
to problems
Analyzes why intended results were or were not
Assess specific causal contributions of activities
to results
Examines the implementation process
Explores unintended results
Provides lessons, highlights significant
accomplishment or program potential, and offers
recommendations for improvement
Monitoring at the project level serves several important functions, including:
Guiding the progress of the project (i.e. monitoring provides Project Managers with the
information needed for adaptive management towards desired results);
Assuring that funds are properly spent, and projects are carried out according to plan;
Revisiting the appropriateness of results and plans in light of experience;
Informing future projects; and
Providing the information needed to undertake evaluation – and demonstrating accountability.
One major aspect of monitoring is risk management. See Chapter 8 for more information on
monitoring and managing risks.
There are several key questions Project Managers should ask when monitoring project processes:
Is the project on schedule? – The concern here is about meeting the requirements of the
project specifications. If there are variations to the project’s schedule, then decisions are
required on whether, and how, to deal with these variations.
Does progress with project implementation correspond to expected financial expenditure?
There should be a strong monitoring link made between technical progress and financial
Is the project working as well as it could work? - This can be unpacked into questions such
as: ‘Is the project team functioning effectively and productively, both during meetings and
between meetings?’ and ‘Are the project’s processes for reporting, allocating work,
communication, budget monitoring and the like, reliable and efficient?’ Such questions
should be considered, as a matter of course, at each project team meeting and in project
reports. The questions should not simply be asked; they should also be answered, and of
course the answers should be acted on.
There are three additional questions relevant for monitoring the project outputs:
Are the outputs being produced on schedule? - This is a question about the extent to which
contractual requirements are being met. In case the answer is ‘Yes with exceptions’, a
judgment is required as to what remedial action is required.
Are the outputs as good as they could (reasonably) be; and if not, in what respects could they
be better? - The aim of this question is not to induce a fit of gloom in the project team, but
rather to see what could be learned, for future work within the project or for future projects.
Again, if some outputs are produced early in the life of the project, then the learning from
early assessment can be applied to improving later products within the project.
Do the outputs work? or Are they essential to achieve the planned outcomes? – The question
is aimed at assessing the effectiveness of the product or process being developed and
disseminated. If several products are being developed, they should if possible be developed
on a rolling schedule. This allows lessons about the success or effectiveness of the first
materials developed to be applied to the design or revision of later materials.
Is the project on track to achieve the outcomes? The project should also review whether the
necessary project activities to promote the achievement of the outcome are on track. This will
require the Project Manager / partners and stakeholders periodically reviewing the Theory of
Change for the project design. Have any new ‘pathways’ that may lead to the desired results
emerged? Are the ‘impact drivers’, risks and assumptions still valid?
UNEP’s Monitoring Policy 18 describes the key elements of required monitoring and reporting on
programme performance, and defines the institutional framework for monitoring and reporting. The
policy is complemented by a Monitoring Plan, which outlines a schedule and approach for programme
performance monitoring and reporting. The plan also provides further details on processes, work plans,
and roles and responsibilities in monitoring and reporting.
The result of monitoring should be reflected and documented during the reporting phase. Monitoring
and reporting at the project level must be directly linked to the achievement of EAs and delivery of
outputs in the PoW.
[Project Progress Report]
One of the main responsibilities of Project Managers is to monitor the performance and progress of
the projects they manage. The project document specifies reporting plans for monitoring activities.
The logical framework, delivery plan, and budget in the project document are the reference against
which actual progress of a project is tracked and measured.
Project Managers are responsible for obtaining all the required reports from implementing partners
(see table 6 below) and ensuring they are properly documented. FMOs should be consulted in the
review and approval of the financial reports. It is also the Project Manager’s responsibility to
routinely update PIMS with interim progress toward outcome and output targets and to report against
project milestones (See PIMS tutorials for detailed instructions).
Once a Project Manager reports in PIMS, a project progress report can be printed. Progress reports
should be used by the Project Manager as a tool for reviewing project progress with the rest of the
project team, management, and the project steering committee. Six-monthly progress reporting also
allows Project Managers to routinely review a project’s approach and business case. If necessary, the
Project Manager can propose changes and get approvals from the appropriate authority (See Section
G: Project Revisions). The Project Manager should also use the progress report as a tool for
discussing project progress with the Project Manager’s first reporting supervisor. In addition to
periodically reporting in PIMS, the Project Manager is responsible for routinely uploading reports
prepared by implementing partners into the PIMS document repository. Mission reports, and other
relevant monitoring documentation can be uploaded into PIMS at any time.
Division Directors are responsible for overseeing what is recorded in PIMS under lessons learned, risk
assessments, and management actions. The ED holds regular meetings with Division Directors to
discuss Divisional performance and decide on corrective actions to improve the efficacy of
Subprogrammes. This process is supported by an electronic project-at-risk system in the Programme
Information Management System (PIMS). For more details on the project-at-risk system, see Chapter
8, Section D: Project-at-risk System.
[Programme Performance Report]
18 The Monitoring Policy for 2010-2011 is now outdated as several changes have been made. A new Policy is expected soon.
The Programme Performance Report (PPR) is produced and presented to the CPR annually, providing
an overview of UNEP programme performance based on an aggregation of all the other types of
monitoring in a given year in order to inform Senior Management and the Committee of Permanent
Representatives (CPR). In addition to the annual Programme Performance Reports, UNEP conducts
internal semi-annual programme performance reviews similar to the PPR, but for internal use only.
QAS prepares the semi-annual report in consultation with Subprogramme Coordinators, and presents
it to the SMT for review and action. Highlights of the semi-annual performance review are presented
in an oral briefing to the CPR.
Aggregated project data for the PPR – including the delivery of PoW outputs, and any progress
towards EAs – are derived from PIMS. The reporting data in PIMS are also linked to UNEP’s
Integrated Monitoring and Documentation Information System (IMDIS) to meet the reporting
requirements of the UN Secretariat.
QAS leads the PPR data collection through PIMS, and in consultation with Subprogramme
Coordinators and Lead Divisions provides analyses in addition to what is generated automatically
through PIMS. The Subprogramme Coordinators collaborate with QAS to review the aggregated data
in PIMS, enter performance remarks, and submit supporting documentation. Click here to see the
most recent list of PoW reporting focal points for each Division and Subprogramme. PPRs are
reviewed by UNEP’s SMT, CPR and the Governing Council (GC).
In the case of GEF projects, an Annual Monitoring Report (AMR) is prepared by Agencies and GEF
Secretariat on the basis of the GEF fiscal year (July to June of following year), and submitted to the
GEF Council. In addition, an Annual Performance Report is prepared by the GEF Evaluation Office
using information generated from the annual Project Implementation Reports.
Table 6: Summary of UNEP reporting requirements
Preparation by
Submission to
Progress Report
Six-monthly (end of June and
end of Dec); in addition, GEF
requires an annual Project
Implementation Report
PIMS; and electronic or
hard copy
Project Manager Supervisor
and, for GEF, Task
Manager validates
Mission Reports
Whenever a mission talks place
(for supervision, meetings,
workshop, etc.). GEF projects
also recommend Aide Memoires
signed with project partners
Person or team
who goes on
Project team and
project manger’s
Six-monthly (End of June and
end of Dec); Quarterly in the
case of GEF projects
Electronic or hard copy
using UNEP format
UN and non-UN
Project Manager
and FMO
Inventory of NEE
(items over USD
Annually by 31 Jan and within
60 days of project completion
Electronic or hard copy
to be attached to
progress report
UN and non-UN
Project Manager
and FMO
Audit Report
Yearly submitted before 30 Apr
of the following year and at the
end of the project within 180
days of the completion of the
Original document
Project Manager
and FMO
Final Report
Within 60 days from project
Electronic or hard copy
UN and non-UN
Project Manager
and FMO
Final Audited
Statement of
Within 60 days from project
Electronic or hard copy
using UNEP format
UN and non-UN
Mid-Term Review
(MTR) / Mid Term
Evaluation (MTE)
Just before mid-point of project
Electronic or hard copy
Commissioned by
Project Manager
(MTR)) or
Evaluation Office
After project completion and
before the project closure
Electronic or hard copy
Evaluation Office
Project Manager
and FMO
Division Director
and Project
f. Managing Project Information
The maintenance of up-to-date information on all ongoing activities (knowledge management) is of
utmost importance, as projects’ information and lessons learned may be relevant to future projects and
UNEP work. In UNEP, PIMS is the primary repository for project-specific information and
supporting documentation. It is responsibility of the Project Manager to carefully maintain all the
records and information related to a project, and regularly (perhaps monthly) update the System.
Every 6 months a more detailed progress reporting must be entered in PIMS (See Section D of this
chapter for more info on the monitoring and reporting process). GEF financed projects must maintain
information in the Advance DGEF Database Information System (ADDIS), which holds data of
importance for reporting to the GEF Council. In the near future, databases will be merged and finally
only PIMS will remain as the database for all UNEP projects.
The Project Manager is responsible for maintaining up to date records, including:
Financial and progress reports;
Progress reports, including specific dates and evidence for outputs delivered and results
Mission reports;
Documentation related to project personnel (e.g., recruitment material for consultants, interns,
staff, etc.);
Legal instruments and related communications and documents;
Records of communications with the project team, other UNEP staff, partners, stakeholders
and consultants (e.g., meeting summaries and correspondence);
Project risks and relevant management actions;
Project revisions (including changes in LogFrame, if any); and
Challenges and lessons learned.
It is also recommended that the Project Manager maintains an email file (or set of files) to keep all
communication organized and easily accessible. In addition, the Project Manager should maintain a
system of files on his/her computer, backed up on a UNEP shared drive, containing all the relevant
documents, meeting minutes, and other information. All the supporting documentation is necessary in
case of an evaluation or audit.
19 Management is required to provide a management response to evaluation recommendations.
Many projects require information to be shared with partners and/or the public (e.g., project-specific
data, maps, national legal and policy frameworks, results of pilot projects and targeted research, etc.).
Information may be collected and stored using different media and software programmes. Challenges
project teams may face when making the information accessible to partners and other users include:
confidentiality of sensitive information, protection of ownership or copyright, translation into
appropriate languages, and communicating the availability of such information to interested parties.
Information collected during project implementation will have different levels of sensitivity. It is
proposed that information be classified as:
 Confidential (for project management purposes only): This would include budgets, progress
reports, informal management reports and reports to the Project Steering Committee.
Distribution of such information should be restricted to the contracted project partners, and
released to the Project Advisory Groups with the agreement of the contracted project partners.
 Restricted Circulations: This would include, for example, distribution of draft research
papers, technical reports and plans prior to publication. Distribution of such information
should be restricted to relevant parties identified by the partners who produced the document.
This should prevent breach of ownership rights and pirating of unpublished data.
 Public Access: All information not included in categories 1 and 2 above. There would be no
restrictions on the use of such information, although the source should be acknowledged and
any copyright respected.
Under normal circumstances, the organization funding a project and the organization implementing
the project would retain the ownership rights to data collected and published as a result of that project.
The issue of royalties and copyright for any project outputs should be reviewed and agreed on a caseby-case basis.
g. Project Revisions
Change is a constant factor in the project management environment. Project managers are responsible
for continually assessing the project’s business justification and making adjustments to achieve the
intended results. Regularly revising and updating the project documents is important for
accountability, transparency and effective communication.
Project revisions are often due to changes in the project budget. However, since budget revisions are
often associated with changes to activities, durations or implementation modalities, project managers
have to take the lead in the revision process, while working closely with FMOs.
While some routine revisions should be handled between project managers, supervisors or the
Division Directors, revisions beyond the division Directors’ delegated authority should be reviewed
and cleared at the corporate level. In the case of UNEP projects, thresholds related to project
outcomes, milestones, duration, and budget determine whether review and approval is required from
OfO or the PRC. Table 7 provides more details and the actions required by the relevant entities.
1. For all types of project revisions, the Project Managers must prepare the required documents
shown in the table 7 in consultation with the responsible FMO; Process for carrying out a
project budget revision
2. The Project Managers must secure clearance for Project Revisions from their Supervisors;
3. Project Managers should then submit revision documents to the responsible approval
authority (see Table 7) with the Project Revision Cover Letters ;
4. When the Revision requires OfO approval, OfO may consult the concerned Subprogramme
Coordinator, to seek his/her views and suggestions depending on the type of revisions. OfO
will provide comments to the project revision, which the Project Manager needs to take
seriously into account. Whenever the latter fails to happen, OfO will suspend the project until
action is taken. If this situation persists, OfO will close the project in the financial system
5. Upon approval, the Project Managers, with help of the responsible FMOs, should update the
relevant information in the Programme Information Management System (PIMS); and upload
relevant documents in PIMS (any changes related to duration and logframe in PIMS are
managed by QAS).
Please note that also projects subject to revision must have secured funding for 25% of the total
budget, or a minimum of USD 200,000 (whatever is larger), before the fully detailed project
document can be submitted.
Project revisions result in a project that maintains its original business case. If a project requires such
extensive changes20 that they cannot be properly addressed through a project revision, the Project
Manager should terminate the current project and formulate a new project to accommodate the
changes. The new project formulation will be subject to all the steps required for the development of
any project, including a new stakeholder and problem analysis.
h. Project Extensions
Projects should aim to deliver their results in line with the originally designed and approved workplans. The Project Officer is responsible for monitoring the delivery of a project against its work-plan,
and anticipating and mitigating problems as they arise so as to minimize the need for project
extensions. Such extensions increase the transaction costs of UNEP (and partners) and result in poor
performance ratings.
Project extensions may be requested due to external risks (e.g. force majeur) or delivery problems.
Requests for extension can be granted but should be treated as exceptional.
Extensions of projects often require adjustment to or addition of milestones up to the end of revised
project completion dates. If there is no change to milestones, supervisors can approve the project
extension. Otherwise, OfO approves the extension requests. For GEF projects, a decision as to
whether to grant an extension is delegated to the Task Manager, as long as the extension does not pass
one year (or cumulative requests do not pass one year). An extension request for longer than one year
requires approval by the Division Director. The Executing Agency is responsible for providing a full
justification for why an extension is requested, and it is preferable that the Project Steering Committee
endorses the request. In agreeing to an extension, the Project Officer and FMO should verify that the
20 Examples
of significant deviation include changes in: Countries or regions selected; Total resource requirements; Division
managing the project; Divisions responsible for project outputs; and Linkages to EAs and PoW outputs.
original legal instrument is still valid. The Project Officer and FMO should inform the GEF
Coordination Office whenever a project completion date is extended, by providing the new dates.
Table 7: Process and requirements for project revisions21
Division Director
Reason for Project
Required Documents1
Office for
(Incl. PRC if
1. Year-end re-phase
and closure
 Ap
2. Change to the PRC
approved budget
within the Delegated
 Ap
2. Extension of project
Ap or Rv
 Ap
3. Amendment to the
Rv (for changes in
 Ap
4. Change to the PRC
approved budget
beyond the Delegated
 Rv
 Ap
Rv: Review
budget table
approved project
Latest project
Ap: Approval
1 Most of the required documents should be available in PIMS. Entities responsible for review, consultation and approval of the revision requests should look at these required supplementary documents for sound decision-making.
2 Signed by Chief of OFO.
Delegated authority threshold for the Division Director is usually a cumulative amount of US$500,000 per project.
Approval should be by the Division Directors or those who receive delegated authority from the Directors.
Supervisors can approve revisions if a project does not require any additional milestones for the extended period.
Extensions of projects often require adjustment to or addition of milestones up to the end of revised project completion dates. If there is no change to milestones, supervisors can approve the project extension. Otherwise, OfO approves the extension requests.
21 These processes apply to GEF projects too. Terms may differ in some instances (see other sections of the Manual)
Resource Mobilization
Following the approval of a project concept as part of the Programme Framework, or in
exceptional cases as a separate project concept presented after the approval of the Framework, the
project manager will need to address the challenging question on how to mobilize the financial
resources needed for the development and implementation of the project. For GEF financed
projects, once the GEF Council approves/endorses the project, then the GEF grant is considered
as completely leveraged. However, the challenge still remains to actually commit the co-financing,
whether this is in cash, or in kind.
Although the Project Manager has the primary responsibility to fund-raise at the project level,
resources mobilization from a corporate perspective is a shared responsibility across the
organization, coordinated by Donor Partnerships and Contributions Section (DPC).
In order to guide the project managers in how resource mobilization works at UNEP, this chapter
Roles and responsibilities across the organization;
General principles for resource mobilization;
Sources of funding:
Processes to mobilize resources;
Investing in donor relations
Resource mobilization with the European Commission
Roles and Responsibilities across the Organization
Key actors in mobilizing resources at UNEP are:
Executive Director/Deputy Executive Director
Lead resource mobilization negotiations with major donors at corporate level;
Provide information and guidance on resource mobilization to DPC, Division Directors and
Subprogramme Coordinators, based on intelligence gathered during his/her missions, highlevel meetings, etc.
Donor Partnerships and Contributions Section (DPC)
Leads and supports a federated UNEP-wide resource mobilization effort and serves as the
UNEP intelligence bank on resource mobilization issues;
Takes the lead in mobilizing contributions to the EF, working closely with the Regional
Offices and the Executive Office;
Serves as the UNEP focal point for consultations with the leading donor countries on policy,
programme and financial issues;
Facilitates UNEP’s interface with donors, in close collaboration with Divisions,
Subprogramme Coordinators and Regional Offices, to ensure a coherent and strategic
outreach by UNEP to donors;
Reviews funding opportunities, circulates information on calls for proposals from potential
donors and funding opportunities;
Facilitates an inclusive process for the identification and preparation of concept proposals and
project documents for submission to potential donors including business, foundations and
individuals, in close cooperation with the Divisions, Subprogramme Coordinators and
Regional Offices;
Coordinates adequate and timely reporting to donors, in close collaboration with OfO, QAS,
Subprogramme Coordinators and the relevant Divisions;
GEF Coordination Office
Negotiate GEF co-financing policy with GEF Secretariat and Council;
Provide regular updates to Divisions on GEF resources, Least Developed Countries Fund
(LDCF), and Special Climate Change Fund (SPCCF) availability;
Identify at the strategic level, sources of co-financing, including strategic partnerships or
agreements with potential co-financiers, and communicate the same to divisions;
Facilitate use of templates and databases for reporting and recording co-financing; maintain a
central data base of co-financing sources and amounts for the entire portfolio.
Subprogramme Coordinators and GEF Portfolio Managers
Identify priorities for fund-raising within the Subprogramme, taking into consideration inputs
provided by project managers, Divisions and Regional Offices;
Develop a resource mobilization strategy at the Subprogramme level working closely with
DPC, Regional Offices and Divisions;
Guide project managers in the development of resource mobilization strategies at project level
within their respective Subprogramme. Review and approve these strategies in line with the
Subprogramme strategy;
Coordinate substantive inputs by project managers into UNEP responses to calls for proposals
and other ad hoc funding opportunities, in close cooperation with DPC, Regional Offices and
Division Directors
Support development of major cooperation agreements and advise DPC on resource needs
and opportunities;
Guide the Subprogramme coordinators under the Division in the development and execution
of the Subprogramme resource mobilisation strategy
Guide project supervisors and project managers on resources mobilization activities in
collaboration with the Subprogramme coordinators;
Identify and authorize allocations from source of funding within their delegation of authority;
Monitor use of resources and takes management actions to ensure that resources available are
used in the most efficient way across projects and Subprogrammes.
Regional Offices
Provide DPC and Subprogramme coordinators regular information on funding opportunities
and donor priorities. The UNEP office in Brussels provides strategic advice and support for
partnership building with the European Commission, and on related funding instruments
related to (see section E);
Coordinate resource mobilization and engagement on specific regional funding opportunities,
which Subprogrammes cannot access because the scope is regional and not global;
Provide information and guidance on country-level priorities to help shape Subprogramme
priorities and fundraising strategies, as well as access to country-level ODA funds. Help
coordinate fundraising efforts at national level with relevant partners;
Facilitate outreach to governments, as well as to civil society and the private sector in their
respective regions in connections with DPC, Subprogramme coordinators and project
managers’ efforts;
Help to shape a response to funding opportunity from donors in the region, and assist in
responding to them by providing a more precise understanding of what kind of work a donor
is looking to fund, what kind of partners the donor would welcome, etc. This understanding
allows all colleagues involved to determine whether responding to a given proposal is likely
to be worth the time and effort involved.
Project Managers
The Project Manager has the primary responsibility for fundraising at the project level and are
expected to actively raise funds for their projects as they normally know the potentially interested
donors for their specific project requirements.
However, as shown above, Project Managers can count on the guidance, support and
collaboration of a wide network of colleagues at different levels to design and implement their
own resources mobilization strategy at project level and secure funds for their projects.
As mentioned in chapter 4, UNEP projects must have secured funding for 25% of the total budget,
or a minimum of USD 200,000 (whatever is larger), before a fully detailed project document can
be submitted for review and approval to the UNEP PRC for review and approval. The project
manager is therefore encouraged to identify sources of funding as soon as possible following the
approval of a project concept. S/he should work with his/her supervisor, relevant Subprogramme
Coordinator, relevant Regional Office Director, and DPC to develop a fundraising strategy for the
project. It is his/her responsibility to make the best use of the UNEP internal network and to keep
the network informed on resource mobilisation actions taken. Prior to developing a resource
mobilisation strategy, Project Managers will want to take the following preliminary steps:
Step 1: Produce and resource project preparation budget - Moving from the project
concept stage to the development of a full project proposal may require resources. If a project
preparation budget is needed (this is not compulsory), the Project Manager should submit a
request for funding to his/her Division Director for approval. The Director may authorize an
allocation from an internal source of funding, if available, and/or the project manager may
contact one or more donors willing to support the development of the project.
 Step 2: Identify co-financing needs - In developing the fully detailed proposal and defining
the project approach (see Chapter 3, Section G: Defining the Project Approach), the Project
Manager should try to quantify the amount of resources, whether cash or in-kind, that can be
certainly or likely mobilized through the partners in them of co-financing, if any.
 Step 3: Prepare project budget - Having in mind the overall financial needs of the project
and the amount covered through co-financing, the Project Manager shall be able to prepare a
realistic project budget, quantify the amount of resources which need to be mobilized by
UNEP and identify possible sources of funding. This may include resources already available
within the Organization (such as the EF, Cooperation Agreements, etc.; more details are
provided in the following section) or additional resources which need to be solicited from
potential donors.
The resource mobilization efforts will often continue throughout the cycle of the project, if funds
secured during the design phase and the early stage of implementation are not sufficient to fully
cover the project budget.
A GEF project must have evidence of commitment of 100% of GEF financing and co-financing,
and the likelihood and strategic value of expected co-finance is one of the review criteria at the
IPI stage. GEF Grants are set aside by the Trustee as soon as the project is endorsed / approved,
and therefore are 100% guaranteed for the life of the project. Similarly, if some or all of the cofinance is agreed to be channelled through UNEP accounts by the donor, then this is subject to the
UNEP donor agreements (as with other UNEP projects) and considered 100% secured. Other cofinance (in cash and in kind) needs to be monitored and tracked on a regular basis. This is done by
the project manager and Task Manager who report on an annual basis on achievement of the cofinance targets. In the event that some of the co-financing does not materialize, then the Task
Manager is responsible for: i) seeking other sources of financing to replace the lost financing, ii)
reporting the lack of delivery of co-financing in the annual Project Implementation Reports, and;
iii) working with the Project Steering Committee to adjust outputs and outcomes as relevant.
General Principles for Resource Mobilization
In the context of the federated UNEP-wide resource mobilization efforts, there are both general
principles that project managers and all the key players above identified should observe when
engaging with donors, as well as specific requirements associated with the different categories of
funding sources. Generally:
 All staff members should remember at all times when interacting with donors, that the
priority for UNEP is to increase contributions to the Environment Fund;
 All efforts to mobilize extra-budgetary resources must involve, at a minimum, one
Subprogramme Coordinator, one Regional Office, and DPC.
 Any staff engaging in resource mobilization efforts should inform, and on a regular basis
update, DPC to ensure adequate support and coordination of resource mobilization
approaches. Staff members must ensure that any project submitted to a donor for funding has
been PRC-approved and that the responsible FMO and the OfO Legal Team have reviewed
the funding agreements as early in the process as possible.
 Staff members should initiate outreach to a donor only after having discussed their strategy
with the relevant Subprogramme Coordinator, Regional Office and DPC, to confirm that the
project is a UNEP priority for outreach to that specific donor. Each Subprogramme should
produce a coordinated set of fundraising strategies for each biennium that identifies, for
every staff member managing a programme, which extra-budgetary resources must be raised
and which donor(s) to approach for which activities during a given biennium.
 Where a previously unidentified possibility for fundraising surfaces, staff may pursue it if a
new proposal does not jeopardize agreed plans on resource mobilization. This should be
determined in consultation with the Subprogramme coordinator, relevant regional offices
and DPC.
 Staff members must also liaise with the Regional Office corresponding to the donor’s
geographic area (i.e. the Regional Office for Europe if the donor is a European country or
the European Commission) to ensure that there is coherence in UNEP’s outreach to that
donor, and this is consistent with any relevant development cooperation strategy.
 In addition, the staff members shall liaise first with the Regional Offices where an effort is
made to mobilize resources at country level, to ensure that outreach is conducted after
consideration of how ODA in that country is negotiated and agreed upon at the country level,
as this can vary from country to country. It is important that all UNEP’s engagements at the
country level harmonize with existing UN efforts in the country.
 When approaching a non-governmental entity, it is imperative that staff members read and
follow the rules identified and set forth in UNEP’s Partnership Policy and Procedures. DPC
can provide guidance, as needed.
Sources of Funding
As UNEP is an inter-governmental organization, its primary funding, exceeding 90% of its
available financial resources, comes from the governmental sector. Additional extra-budgetary
resources may be mobilized through various governmental and non-governmental channels. The
funding sources can be grouped within the two main categories of Core Funding and Extrabudgetary Funding:
 UN Regular Budget (RB): The Regular Budget is the core budget of the UN system funded
by assessed contributions from Member States. It provides limited funding support to UNEP.
The UN Secretariat informs the Executive Office and Office of Operations of funds allocated
to UNEP for the biennium.
 Environment Fund (EF)22: The Environment Fund is the principal funding mechanism for
UNEP’s programme of work. All UN Member States are invited to contribute to the
Environment Fund on a voluntary basis. The seventh special session of UNEP Governing
Council in Cartagena (2002) approved the use of a Voluntary Indicative Scale of
Contributions to the Environment Fund (VISC), which set the basis of contribution for each
UN Member State. All UN Member States are encouraged to make regular contributions to
the Environment Fund using VISC or another basis identified by a UN Member State. DPC,
working closely with the Regional Offices and the Executive Office, takes the lead in
mobilizing contributions to the EF. {Contributions to the environment fund and extra
budgetary resources}
Additional contributions are secured by UNEP in the form of earmarked funding for specific
UNEP projects or Subprogramme activities, which are commonly referred to as extra-budgetary
resources. They are mobilized through:
Cooperation agreements with donor countries and inter-governmental organizations in
support of specific Subprogrammes or the whole UNEP Programme of Work. These are
usually negotiated by DPC, in close collaboration with the Executive Director, Regional
Offices and Divisions (e.g. Programme Cooperation Agreement with Norway and
Earmarked Contributions to support specific projects, which are usually negotiated by
project managers in close collaboration with the relevant Subprogramme coordinator and
Division Directors. Earmarked contributions include the Strategic Cooperation
Agreement with the European Commission under the Environment & Natural Resources
Thematic Programme (ENRTP), as well as contributions under other European
Commission funding instruments.
Calls for proposals by UNEP strategic partners, including the EC, UN Development
Account (UNDA), the private sector, foundations and other potential donors.
Access to Country-level Official Development Assistance (ODA) provided by the
national Development Agencies of donor countries and relevant national recipient
Governments. Access is usually facilitated, in coordination with DRC and regional
22 Please note that the UN Secretariat in New York does not consider the Environment Fund as core funding.
offices, through the One UN process and direct dialogue with national Development
Agencies of the main donors and the Governments of the relevant recipient countries.
Fund Raising Initiatives, such as events and campaigns in support of major UNEP
initiatives and non-governmental sources of funding, such as partnerships with potential
private sector donors or partners (e.g. the UNEP Finance Initiative).
GEF contributions;
In-kind contributions, such as Junior Professional Officers and UN Volunteers
The allocation of UNEP’s financial resources is guided by biennial programme of work (PoW)
and support budgets in the PoW approved by the Governing Council. These budgets provide
overall resource planning for UNEP over the biennium, including: EF allocation by
Subprogramme and estimates for XB contributions by Subprogramme.
GEF funding is currently not included in the biennial budgets of the PoW, as it is not subject to
approval of the UNEP Governing Council. Starting in 2014-15, however, PoW budget will
include GEF funding in an indicative manner, to allow for greater synergies between portfolios
and more opportunities for “blending”23 projects. GEF funding will still not be subject to approval
of the UNEP GC.
Processes to mobilize resources
Environment Fund
As previously mentioned, DPC, working closely with the Regional Offices and the Executive
Office, takes the lead in mobilizing contributions to the EF. All staff members should, at all times
when interacting with donors , remember that the priority for UNEP is to increase contributions to
the Environment Fund to support the approved Programme of Work. {Management of donor
funds under a strategic cooperation agreement}
UNEP allocates the resources from the EF in line with the appropriations approved by the
Governing Council for the biennium. Not all of the EF funds are available at the beginning of the
year; therefore the Executive Office issues the funds to Divisions in instalments throughout the
biennium. Division Directors, in collaboration with Subprogramme Coordinators, are called to
allocate the EF funds at the divisional level to deliver specific EAs across the Subprogrammes.
Each Subprogramme Coordinator then informs the relevant project managers of the EF allocation
available for their project to cover costs related to staff and activities.
It is in the best interest of the project managers to keep the relevant Subprogramme Coordinator
and his/her Division Director fully and continuously informed about the project’s needs, so they
will be able to clearly assess priorities for the allocations of funds. It is also important to show
23 These are defined as projects that contain a packaging of GEF, UNEP-administered and other financing. They must:
a) Ensure that the GEF project is directly linked to at least one UNEP PoW Output; ii) UNEP co-financing is clearly
indicated and includes both cash and in-kind, and: iii) the same Project Officer is overseeing the GEF and UNEP
financed components.
that a project is delivering as scheduled, and shows a satisfactory expenditure rate in order to be
able to receive additional funds during the biennium.
The UN regular budget
The UN Regular Budget is not distributed at the project level. It covers only executive and
management functions.
Extra-budgetary funding
Extra-budgetary funding can be mobilized from both governmental {Approval for donor
agreements with government entities} and non-governmental donors, including businesses, notfor-profit organizations, foundations and individuals. Some governments provide the bulk of their
extra-budgetary resources through cooperation agreements which are negotiated at the corporate
level. Alternatively, a project manager or any other staff member might identify a potential donor
that is interested in financing specific projects. It is also possible for UNEP to launch a special
fundraising initiative to finance high profile initiatives.
Fundraising efforts are generally encouraged at all levels, but, as already stated, it is important
that all staff members mobilizing resources at the project level work in cooperation with the
relevant Subprogramme Coordinator, Divisions and Regional Offices, and inform DPC of the
funding opportunity, so that UNEP’s efforts overall are well coordinated and focus on strategic
priorities. {Process for resource mobilization commencing from the project manager}
The processes to secure and allocate extra-budgetary resources are detailed below based on the
mechanisms through which the funds are mobilized:
(i) Cooperation agreements
DPC, in cooperation with the Regional Office for the donor country, leads the negotiations to
develop multi-year cooperation agreements at corporate level (i.e. Programme Cooperation
Agreement with Norway and Sweden). During these negotiations, the Executive Office
determines UNEP’s preference for the distribution of resources across Subprogrammes, based on
an internal consultation. This distribution is then negotiated with the donor, in order to reflect the
priorities of the Government in line with their aid development strategy. Each agreement is
funded through a trust fund and specifies the level of financing for particular Subprogramme areas,
and/or specific project/activities, and sets forth other rules and policies that must be followed
when using resources.
Donors, such as Norway and Sweden, simply provide resources to each Subprogramme and allow
UNEP to determine which projects will be funded. Following the signature of the agreement and
the receipt of funds, usually through annual or biannual instalments, DPC requests the
Subprogramme coordinators to consult with project managers and Division Directors, and provide
the breakdown of allocations at project level. The allocations are authorized by DPC, and
reflected in IMIS only if in compliance with the criteria agreed in the donor agreement and with
any additional requirements established by the OfO to ensure optimum use of resources.
DPC Project managers who are interested in accessing these types of resources are welcome to
contact DPC and/or their Subprogramme Coordinator to receive information on on-going
corporate agreements, disbursement schedules for the next months, as well as criteria and
processes for allocations.
(ii) Earmarked contributions at project level
Earmarked contributions in support of special initiatives and activities are usually negotiated with
governmental and non-governmental donors directly by the project manager or relevant Divisions,
although often donor countries engage in discussion on the funding of specific projects directly
with the Executive Office or DPC.
As noted earlier, project manager are encouraged to work with their Subprogramme Coordinator,
the relevant Regional Offices and DPC to identify key potential donors from an early stage of the
project design process. Potential donors may be identified through various means, such as the
Internet, media, partnerships and other working contacts. When developing a fundraising strategy,
project managers should analyse the development strategies of donor countries and their priorities,
including thematic and regional country focus. This basic information will be set out in country
profiles updated by DPC and the Regional Offices on a regular basis which will be made available
online. Additional information can also be obtained from the supervisor, the Division Director, the
relevant Subprogramme Coordinator, Regional Offices and DPC.
It is important to keep in mind that the contact with the donor should be initiated only after having
discussed the strategy with the above-mentioned colleagues to confirm that the project is a UNEP
priority for outreach to that specific donor and to facilitate a more informed and strategic contacts
with potential donors. The initial contact may be formal (through for example submission of an
official letter) or informal (through calls, emails, informal discussions during official event, etc).
Once the donors have expressed an interest in financing the initiative through extra-budgetary
contributions, the donor may submit an official pledge letter where it is stated its decision to
support the project. This is possible only if the donor has no specific requirement or condition.
Following receipt of the pledge letter, the project manager has to inform the relevant FMO, who
will then request the OfO Contribution unit to issue an invoice to the donor. It is however
preferred to formalize the cooperation with donors through a donor agreement, in order to specify
and agree on terms and condition concerning the funding, the programmes areas or
projects/activities to be funded, use of interest funds, reporting, audits, the use of the UNEP logo,
It is strongly recommended to use the UNEP standard template for donor agreements. Any
deviation from the standard template will require clearance and approval from the OfO Legal Unit,
prior to finalizing the document. For more information on the donor agreement template, see
Chapter 7: Partnership management.
For collaboration with the European Commission, please refer to section F.
(iii) Calls for Proposals24
24 European Commission related funding mechanisms (incl. call for proposals) are tackled in section F.
Governmental and non-governmental donors often provide funding through calls for proposals
(i.e. call for proposals by the Director General for Research of the European Commission,
KOICA, the German Climate Initiative, etc.). {Calls for Proposals under UNDA (or any other
source of funding)}
a) Calls specific to a UNEP activity or project
Where the call is very specific to a UNEP activity or project (for example intervention following a
natural disaster, etc.), the relevant Subprogramme Coordinator, or a designated UNEP staff
member under the direction of the relevant Subprogramme Coordinator, will coordinate the
response and inform DPC.
Usually the response will require the preparation of a concept proposal of 2-3 pages in a format
specified by a donor. The response shall be drafted in consultation with the Lead Division
Director and the relevant Regional Offices.
It is important to underline that the concept proposal prepared for submission to the call has to be
based on an already approved PRC-project, or refer to a project concept approved within the
Framework Agreement. In this case, the Subprogramme coordinator may clear the submission,
following consultation with the responsible Division Director. In the exceptional case where the
proposal prepared for the submission does not refer to any approved projects or concepts, the
project manager must submit the proposal both to the Subprogramme coordinator for his/her
review, and to QAS for PRC approval. For more details, please refer to Chapter 4: Review and
Approval. The rationale behind this is that all funding opportunities shall be used to mobilize
resources for PRC-approved projects, or at least for projects which clearly show their contribution
to the PoW EAs. Resources shall not be dispersed to support stand-alone activities which are not a
priority for UNEP and do not contribute to the delivery of the EAs against which UNEP
performance is assessed.
It is also strongly recommended to consult DPC and the OfO legal team before starting the
preparation of a response to make sure that the conditions applying to the call are acceptable to
DPC will be ready to provide guidance and support in the negotiations with a donor, following the
submission, as requested. However, it will be primarily the responsibility of the concerned project
manager and/or Subprogramme coordinator to follow-up with the donor until the project is
approved and the donor agreement is signed.
b) Calls on broader topics
When the call for proposal has a broader scope of intervention, it is important that UNEP is able
to respond to such potential funding opportunities from a corporate perspective that reflects
agreed priorities and inputs from all relevant parts of the organization, while remaining fully
consistent with UN rules and regulations. To do so, UNEP needs a corporate process that will
maximize its ability to secure resources to engage in priority activities. In specific:
1) Once such a funding opportunity has been identified, DPC will undertake an initial review of
the funding opportunity, to ensure that, at a minimum, it fits within the UNEP Programme of
Work and to identify the relevant Subprogrammes and regions potentially concerned.
2) DPC will next send by email the information on the call for the proposal(s) to the relevant
Subprogramme coordinator(s) with a cc to all the Divisions and the relevant Regional
Office(s). DPC will request recipients to identify themselves, or a member of their team, if
they are interested in participating in further exploration of this funding opportunity.
3) Upon receipt of this email, the relevant Regional Office(s) would be expected to put together
any information they can gather on what, more specifically, is being looked for by the
potential donor(s) and how likely it is that UNEP might be favourably considered under the
call for proposal or other funding opportunity, including if they believe there is a good reason
not to pursue the opportunity in question.
4) The relevant staff member of each UNEP Division/Section/Office which would like to pursue
the funding opportunity will prepare a brief concept note that sets forth the basic outline of a
potential project. The concept note must explain a rationale for submitting the proposal based
on its relevance to the UNEP PoW and Strategic Framework, the requirements and priorities
of the donor(s) in question and the priorities of the relevant UNEP Subprogramme(s).
5) DPC will next set up a conference call to bring together the Subprogramme coordinator,
Regional Office(s) and other colleagues identified through responses to the initial email. The
purpose of the conference call will be to:
 Determine if this funding opportunity is worth responding to, taking into account the
workload and costs involved for preparation of the proposal, the relevance to UNEP’s
priorities and on-going or planned work and the likelihood of success; and if consensus is
there to respond to the funding opportunity;
 Identify general concepts for proposals – or already approved proposals – and determine
whether the project approval process must be engaged;
 Consider potential partners to be involved;
 Determine if there may be special legal, financial, and audit requirements;
 Agree on any further role for DPC or the Regional Office(s) in additional intelligence
gathering to get a more specific sense of the interests and priorities of the donor(s);
 Agree on a process for securing project approval, if necessary;
 Agree on which individual(s) and Division(s) will be responsible to prepare the proposal;
 Agree on a timeline for providing the drafts to QAS and/or the UNEP Legal Officer, if
applicable, as well as to DPC for review and editing;
 Agree on the deadline and modality for final submission to the potential donor(s).
6) Where the project(s) under preparation will require QAS project approval, QAS will arrange
for a meeting of the PRC to coincide with the timeline set during the call. Similarly, the legal
team will liaise with the individual(s) preparing the proposal(s) to ensure that all aspects are
covered simultaneously.
7) When the call for proposal requests that UNEP presents only a limited number of project
proposals, DPC will request the Subprogramme Coordinator(s) to prioritize the proposals
prepared. DPC will submit only the top priority project(s) that best match with the donor’s
criteria. The Executive Office may step in to select the top priority proposals from across the
whole of UNEP, or to determine broadly the relative percentages to be allotted to each
Subprogramme. DPC will follow up with a donor up to the last stage when a project is closed.
A call for proposal by the United Nations Development Account (UNDA) may serve as an
example of a centralized fundraising activity. UNDA informs DPC of the call for proposals, and
DPC invites the Subprogramme Coordinators to coordinate the preparation of concepts/ project
proposals for two-year tranches, corresponding with the UNEP PoW biennium. Subprogramme
Coordinators prioritize these proposals within their area, and the Executive Office prioritizes the
final menu of proposals. DPC then submits the final list of prioritized proposals from UNEP to the
UNDA, and follows up with them on the approval/revision/submission of the full scale proposals.
DPC also manages the progress reporting by the relevant programme units, in close collaboration
with OfO and the relevant project teams.
(iv) Country-level Official Development Assistance (ODA)
Country-level ODA is another major potential source of funding. Tapping into it is not easy, as
UNEP often does not have country level presence. UNEP has, nevertheless, succeeded in several
countries, which have agreed to make payments to the EF or to projects/activities in support of the
UNEP PoW from ODA country-level funds. These include major donors such as Sweden,
Belgium, Norway and Australia. Country level ODA can also play an important role in generating
funding for other entities to implement the environmental priorities that UNEP has worked to
integrate into country strategies.
Getting access to regional and country level ODA funds requires close collaboration between
UNEP and National Governments, as well as the regional/country representatives of the
Development Agencies from major donors, usually based in the national embassies.
The UNEP Regional Offices of both the donor and recipient countries will be the primary UNEP
focal point for identifying and pursuing country level ODA funding opportunities, although DPC
may learn of such opportunities through contacts at the Embassies in Nairobi or at the Ministries
in the capitals.
Following consultations with the government authorities, the Regional Office and substantive
UNEP staff (project managers, Subprogramme coordinators and/or Division Directors) will, in
coordination with DPC, contact the ODA focal points of the major donors based in the relevant
country/region and negotiate allocations of ODA funding towards a particular activity carried out
by the government. Please note that the original request for ODA must come first from a
government authority and only then may UNEP officially step in as a partner facilitating access to
the ODA funding.
Another way of getting access to ODA funding at the national and regional levels is to collaborate
closer with other UN agencies through the One UN process and within the UN Development
Assistance Framework (UNDAF).
Project managers who are interested in learning more about ODA funding opportunities are
encouraged to contact DRC for information on the UNDAF projects, and the respective Regional
Offices for further details on ODA funds. DRC, Regional Offices and DPC will work together to
provide periodic update on ODA funding.
Fundraising Initiatives
Fundraising initiatives and campaigns may be organized by DPC, DCPI, relevant Divisions and
project managers. These may include on-line contributions, although past experience shows that
resources mobilized through this channel has been limited. A special fund/account may be
established for such contributions and managed by OfO. The accumulated funds could be then
forwarded to a relevant project account
These initiatives or events may also involve the participation of one or more donor, usually a nongovernmental entity (i.e. private sector, foundation, NGO, etc.). Given that negotiation with non76
governmental donors and especially private sector may be time-consuming, it is required to enter
in a partnership with a donor only if the expected contribution exceeds US$10,000. In other cases
any donor is free to make a donation, including personal contributions, directly to UNEP.
The staff member reaching out to the private donor must inform DPC and may seek its assistance
and advice. DPC may also assist in identifying colleagues within the organization who have
additional experience with private sectors’ partnerships and can provide further suggestions based
on lessons learned.
It is once again recommended to prepare a donor agreement using the UNEP standard template in
order to clarify the terms and conditions of the partnership. It is also important to note that, before
a partnership with a governmental or non-governmental donor is concluded, the potential
partner(s) must undergo a review process in compliance with the UNEP Partnership Policy and
Procedures, and when the partnership involves the private sector with the Guidelines on
Cooperation between the United Nations and the Business Sector (2009). For more details on
partner selection and review process, see Chapter 7: Partnership Management.
(vi) GEF financing
The rules and procedures for accessing GEF financing are spelled out in various documents
available on the GEF and UNEP/GEF websites. GEF financing is available for six thematic areas
(called Focal Areas):
Biodiversity (implementation of the Convention of Biological Diversity)
Climate Change Mitigation (implementation of the United Nations Framework
Convention on Climate Change )
Adaptation to climate change, through the LDCF/SCCF (implementation of the United
Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change)
Land Degradation (or Sustainable Land Management; implementation of the United
Nations Convention to Combat Desertification)
Chemicals (implementation of Stockholm Convention and Montreal Protocol; as well as
support to the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management and Mercury
International Waters (implementation of regional treaties and protocols)
Cross-cutting capacity development (supporting synergies)
These funds are managed through a “System for Transparent Allocation of Resources” (STAR)
that is approved by the GEF Council and Assembly once every 4 years. The STAR nominally
allocates about 70% of GEF funds in the Biodiversity, Land Degradation, and Climate Change
Mitigation focal areas to recipient countries, based on a formula derived from combining
parameters on governance, with environmental stress. The GEF also has additional windows of
financing that are not subject to the STAR system (30%):
Global Set Asides in Biodiversity, Land Degradation and Climate Change Mitigation, that
are used primarily for financing Enabling Activities (helping countries meet their
obligations to the MEAs), global normative projects, and “top up” incentives for regional
projects. This includes a small window for Sustainable Forest Management.
Nagoya Protocol Implementation Fund, which is a separate fund, set up as a pilot in GEF5 – and it is administered by the GEF in the same manner as the GEF Trust Fund.
Earth Fund, which is a separate window within the GEF Trust Fund that aims to motivate
the private sector to engage in environmental projects.
Investing in donor relations
The relationship with the donor does not end once an agreement is signed and funds are received.
Close collaboration with donors at various stages of implementation, evaluation, completion and
closure of the project are important elements in building trust and partnership with them. Success
in fundraising also depends on the donor’s previous experience with UNEP. Regular information
sharing, involvement of the donor in various outreach activities and continuous interaction can
improve the resource mobilization climate and the image of UNEP.
It goes without saying, that timely and adequate reporting is extremely important. The project
manager has the primary responsibility to ensure that the reporting is provided within the agreed
deadline; that the information provided is accurate, comprehensive and exhaustive, and; that
results and impact achieved are clearly described. The financial reporting is prepared by the
relevant FMO.
Reporting may be done in different formats. The donor agreement may specify the use of an adhoc format, or may refer to the UNEP standard reporting template. It is recommended to clearly
negotiate the reporting requirements and try to minimize them, as reporting represents a cost for
the Organization. Under the corporate agreements with Norway and Sweden, UNEP has, for
example, negotiated to use for reporting purposes the annual Programme Performance Report
prepared for the Governing Council, in line with the Paris Declaration which calls for
streamlining and harmonising reporting to donors and reducing aid transaction cost. DPC and
OfO coordinate the reporting where a consolidated submission is requested by the donor, in
preparation, for example, of a donor consultation.
Official reporting, although critical, may not be sufficient. As previously mentioned, regular
information sharing, involvement of a donor in various outreach activities and continuous
interaction are recommended. In general, it is also always best to alert the donor of possible
changes and/or delays in project implementation, including the redeployment of funds among the
budget lines, rather than provide this information at the reporting or evaluation stages.
Many donors, in addition, would appreciate being invited to the sites of projects and/or to take
part in launching ceremonies or meetings with stakeholders. This is usually a positive experience
contributing to further strengthening of collaboration, unless a donor (especially private sector)
would like to use such an opportunity for advertising its services and self-promotion. Such
intentions should be immediately discouraged, as UNEP cooperation with business should not
provide exclusivity in its collaboration, or imply endorsement or preference of a particular
business sector entity or its products or services. It is also a good practice to invite to this type of
events the Permanent Representative to UNEP of the donor country, as well as of the beneficiary
country and to regularly copy him/her on major correspondence on the project. The project
manager is also requested to inform the responsible Regional Directors for the donor and the
beneficiaries’ countries, and copy them to any major correspondence concerning the project.
Showing coordination across the different office in UNEP will improve the image of UNEP in the
eye of the Member States.
In the case of the GEF, the GEF Coordination Office is responsible for coordinating donor
relations at the level of the GEF Council. Task managers seeking donor co-financing for GEF
projects should identify possible donors as early as the IPI stage.
European Commission
The European Commission (EC) is a strategic partner of UNEP both on policy and resource
mobilization. The EC contribution to UNEP extra-budgetary and earmarked funding has increased
significantly over the last ten years. These contributions are extra-budgetary, given that the EU is
not a UN Member State and can thus not contribute to the EF.
The UNEP Liaison Office in Brussels is the internal focal point for securing and expanding
funding possibilities with the EU institutions, in collaboration/supervision with the Regional
Office for Europe and DPC. The UNEP Liaison Office in Brussels provides strategic advice and
support to facilitate partnership building for resource mobilization with the European Commission
under the different funding instruments.
The programming cycle of the European Commission is as follows. For each multi-financial
framework (7 year period), a set of thematic and geographic funding instruments is established
(See Box 10). For each funding instrument, a seven year strategy - a Thematic Strategy Paper or
Regional/Country Strategy Paper25 - is being defined by the European Commission, together
with the European External Action Service and the EU Delegations, in close collaboration with
partner countries. On the basis of these strategies, the European Commission produces MultiAnnual Indicative Programmes (3 years). On the basis of the Multi-Annual Indicative
Programmes, the European Commission is preparing Annual Action Plans which include
budgetary commitments.26 As such, for each funding instrument, the EC programming process
offers three windows of opportunities for partnership building for resources mobilization.
Box 10 - European Commission funding instruments for the period 2014-2020
Geographic instruments:
 European Development Fund – Africa, Caribbean, Pacific ;
Development Cooperation Instrument - Asia; Central Asia; Latin America; Middle East;
European Neighbourhood Instrument– Eastern Europe & Southern Caucasus and Southern & Eastern
Mediterranean countries;
Instrument for Pre-Accession – Western Balkans and Turkey;
Partnership Instrument – Industrialized and emerging countries;
EU Cohesion and Structural funds – EU countries;
Thematic instruments:
Development Cooperation Instrument , in particular : Environment and Natural Resources Thematic
Programme (ENRTP); Investing in People; Migration & Asylum ; Food Security; Non-state Actors and
Local Authorities;
subject to a mid-term evaluation and refined for the second half of the 7 year period.
 These
26 The programing phase of an Annual Action Plan – from identification to implementation - usually takes
Aid Instrument;
one year.
It starts with an identification phase (incl. for example, dialogue/exchanges with partner
with main
meetings, commissioning of a scoping study performed by
for Human
and Democracy;
consultants, etc.) that leads to a “project identification fiche” (also called “concept note”) that is then further discussed
with Horizon
2020 - Framework Programme for Research and Innovation ;
partners, before producing the “Action Fiche” (which is the programming document).
Competitiveness and Innovation Programmes (EU and close neighbours);
Life – Environment & Climate Change (EU and close neighbours).
The European Commission is working under 3 main funding mechanisms:
a) Direct Grants - As international organizations are becoming important partners for the
European Commission, channelling a significant part of external aid funding, a specific
management mode under “Joint Management”, after direct negotiations and in the frame of
long-term partnership.
Under this type of financial mechanism, the European Commission and UNEP are
collaborating on:
 Direct grants regrouped under an umbrella agreement (e.g. Environment and Natural
Resources Thematic Programme Strategic Cooperation Agreement with DG Environment
and DG DevCo);
 Direct grants for individual projects.
b) Call for proposals (CfP) - CfP are competitive bids that invite candidates to present, within a
given deadline, a proposal for action according to the objectives pursued by the EU in the
framework of identified development priorities, which are specified in the “CfP Guidelines”.
They are used under all European Commission funding instruments. Related “Funding
Alerts” are disseminated by the UNEP Liaison Office in Brussels, in close coordination with
There are 2 types of call for proposals, one-step calls and two-step calls:
 In the case of “one-step calls for proposals”, participants are requested to submit a fullfledged proposal (incl. project description, logical framework, budget and partnership
statements) for evaluation by the European Commission;
 In the case of “two-step call for proposals”, in a first phase, only concept notes are
required. On the basis of the screening of concept notes, selected organizations are invited
by the European Commission to submit a full-fledged proposal.
UNEP is eligible as main applicant for the call for proposal, only if there is a specific
reference to “international organizations”, UN organizations” or “Financial and
Administrative Framework Agreement (FAFA)” (See Box 11) in the specific guidelines of
the call. However, UNEP should in principle not participate as “partner” if the main applicant
is not a UN organization, because in this case the FAFA would not apply to the contract. On
exceptional basis, UNEP may be considered as a partner, under the condition as defined by
Box 11: Financial and Administrative Framework Agreement
The Financial and Administrative Framework Agreement (FAFA) between the UN and the European
Commission is the contractual framework of legally binding rules and procedures applying to European
Commission funding allocated for implementation by UN organizations.
However, not all the European Commission funding instruments are covered by the FAFA (e.g. Research,
Life+ and EU internal funds), neither are all calls for proposals. The programme officer has thus to
systematically check FAFA compliance beforehand engaging in dialogue with the EC for a direct grant or
applying to a call for proposal.
Special cases: In the case of DG Research, FAFA is not applying but specific clauses have been agreed
between the UN and DG Research to facilitate UN participation. Clauses are addressing: Arbitration;
Certificates on the financial statements and/or on the methodology; Controls and audits; Governing Law;
Privileges and immunities. Regarding liability issues related to “consortium” or “partnership
agreements”, specific clauses might be foreseen in the SSFAs or other partnership agreements between
UNEP and its partners.
In any case, FAFA compliance has to be checked by the programme officer, with the support of OfO (DPC
and Legal Office), Administrative Services Centre and the Liaison Office in Brussels if needed, before
submitting a proposal to the EC.
Call for tenders - Call for tenders are a competitive bidding process for private organizations. The
FAFA do not apply to call for tenders. As such, UNEP should never apply to call for tenders.
Process to mobilize resources with the European Commission
There are two main avenues to mobilize resources with the European Commission:
Programmatic partnership building for direct grants
This resource mobilization process requires a long-term investment in partnership building at
policy and technical level, both with the EU institutions in Brussels (European Commission and
European External Action Service) and with the EU Country Delegations.
1A) The ENRTP Strategic Cooperation Agreements
Main priorities for collaboration have been defined through a strong policy dialogue and are
summarized in the Strategic Cooperation Agreements which address all 6 UNEP Subprogrammes.
Specific projects are then selected at a subsequent stage by a joint steering committee. Each
Subprogramme coordinator, following consultations with Project Managers and Division
Directors, submits to the OfO a prioritized list of project/concept proposals, already approved by
PRC, for onward discussions with the European Commission.
The OfO is in charge of the overall management and coordination of the ENRTP, supported by a
Programme Management Unit, which is a joint UNEP – European Commission unit based in
Brussels tasked with the development and implementation of these cooperation agreements.
If a programme officer is interested in this avenue of collaboration, he/she should coordinate with
the relevant Subprogramme coordinator and contact the Programme Management Unit in Brussels
for further information.
1B) Individual projects, under other funding instruments then the ENRTP (see Box 9)
Direct grants are a consequence of a strong policy dialogue and consistent partnership building, so
as to be involved in the programming process of the European Commission. Continuous policy
dialogue and information sharing is meant to enhancing awareness on UNEP policy and
programmatic work, and advocating for supporting funds. The objective is to take part to the
European Commission internal programming process, and thus progressively position UNEP as a
potential partner, based on institutional comparative-advantage.
If a programme officer is interested in these avenues of collaboration, he/she should coordinate
with the Subprogramme coordinator, Head of Branch and/or Director of Regional Office. The
UNEP Liaison Office in Brussels, in close coordination with DPC can provide support and advice
on which funding instrument to target and on how to build partnership for resource mobilization.
Ad hoc resource mobilization though call for proposals
Calls for proposals are competitive bids launched by the European Commission. For external aid,
they are managed either directly from Brussels or by EU country Delegations and they are
published on DG DevCo’s website and EU country Delegation web site:
Given the tight deadlines for call for proposals (usually less than three months), the procedure is
the following:
1) Call for proposals of relevance for UNEP are identified and analysed by the Liaison Office in
Brussels, so as to ensure that they fit within the UNEP Subprogrammes. In case of legal
issues, DPC and QAS are contacted for legal advice and clearance.
2) The Brussels office sends the “funding alert” and the related CfP documents for
dissemination to relevant Subprogramme coordinators and regional offices, with a cc to all
Divisions and in close collaboration with DPC;
3) Interested Subprogramme coordinators (and related programme officers) and regional offices
contact UNEP Office in Brussels, cc DPC to express interest. In case different UNEP parties
are interested in the call for proposal, DPC will define the proposal to be given priority;
4) The UNEP Office in Brussels is available to provide advice and quality support anytime in
the course of the project development, and can perform (at request) a first quality check on
logical framework and project description, minimum 4 weeks before the deadline and an
overall check, minimum 1 week before the deadline;
5) After submission to the European Commission, internal submission to PRC through QAS is
organized. If the proposal is rejected by the PRC, the programme officer will not submit the
full-fledged proposal (in case of two-step call for proposal) / renounce to the funding
opportunity (in case of on-step call for proposal).
Partnership Management
The term “partnership” is used to describe the relationship between UNEP and external entities
with whom UNEP has a formal alliance, collaboration or association (such as governments; major
groups and stakeholders including business and industry, academia and research institutions,
NGOs, local authorities; and intergovernmental organizations including UN entities). More
specifically in UNEP’s programme delivery, partnership refers to the programmatic relationship
between UNEP and the entities that UNEP collaborates with in delivering its PoW. Partnerships
may involve two or more parties.
The value of partnerships in UNEP is recognized in the MTS, which refers to the critical
importance of engaging with various partners in delivering on UNEP’s broad environmental
mandate. The modes of partnerships in UNEP’s programme may range from implementation
agreements on specific issues (e.g. delivering a specific output or activities of a project) to longerterm collaboration for specific purposes (e.g. an institutional engagement with a scientific
research institution). Acquisition of goods and/or services do not fall within the purview of
partnership, in which case the UN procurement process must be applied.
The “UNEP Partnership Policy and Procedures” elaborates how to determine suitable types of
partnerships, work flow and responsibilities in developing partnerships, and details of due
diligence and screening processes. Please note that that the Partnerships Policy does not apply to:
 Partnerships with Governments or Governmental Bodies
 Partnerships with United Nations Organizations
 UNEP’s cooperation with National Committees
 Partners for GEF funded projects
As regards partnerships with Governments or Governmental bodies, UNEP is bound by the UN
rules and regulations, and adheres to the sanction list adopted by the UN Security Council
(including for terrorist groups). In case of partnerships with for-profit entities, Project Managers
should ensure compliance with the Guidelines on Cooperation between the United Nations and
the Business Sector in addition to the UNEP Partnership Policy and Procedure and the Revised
Guidelines to Use UNEP’s Standard Legal Instruments.
Also GEF financed projects are subject to UNEP’s Partnership Policy and Procedures. The Policy
states that GEF projects are exempt from going through the Partnership Committee because they
already go through a separate due diligence process within the GEF. However, Task Managers are
encouraged to use the tools developed by UNEP to strengthen their assessment of capacities of
project partners, including the Harmonized Approach to Cash Transfer (HACT) questionnaire
GEF projects are typically undertaken through partnerships with external parties. GEF recognizes
two sets of partners: the GEF Agency, who is accountable to the GEF Council for the effective
delivery of projects and the “Implementing Agency” functions, and the Executing Agency, who is
normally different from the GEF Agency and who carries out the day to day execution of a
project. The GEF requires an adequate fiduciary and accountability segregation between these
two types of partners. Executing Partners could include governments where UNEP engages
directly with by disbursing funds directly to relevant national entities, or they may be a collection
of national and regional or global institutions.
Other UN and multi-lateral agencies may also be executing partners for GEF projects. In the case
of UN entities that are also GEF Agencies (e.g. FAO, UNIDO), the GEF Coordination Office has
developed harmonized templates between the agencies for: project documents, PIR, and
evaluations. These should be used and adapted to each project.
Only some of the MEA Convention Secretariats may be executing partners for GEF projects.
Those MEAs for which the GEF is a financing mechanism cannot be executing agencies.
Decision to accept MEA Secretariats as executing partners should be cleared with GEF
Coordination Office because the GEF policy evolves frequently.
In exceptional cases, a project may be directly executed by a UNEP division, in which case the
UNEP Policy on Accountability for Internally Executed Projects will apply.
Partnership Analysis
Project outcome and output often require collective efforts of several partners to be achieved. In
planning and design of a project, the Project Manager needs to consider whether a partnership is
required for execution of the project. Project Managers are encouraged to seek out and utilize
partnerships to maximize synergies, leverage additional resources, and increase efficiency.
Successful partnership with local institutions can also greatly enhance capacity building activities
and increase the sustainability of outcomes. As an organization with limited presence at countrylevel, utilization of partnership is essential for UNEP’s programme delivery. (See UNEP
Partnership Policy and Procedures for detailed guidance on partner scoping).
Evaluation of potential partnerships should take into consideration the following:
To what extent in-house capacity of UNEP versus external resources can be utilized;
Efficiency gains of implementing the project by partner(s);
What type of external resources are required; and
Potential value of partnership in long-term impact of the desired results.
A thorough analysis of stakeholders (e.g. the interests of stakeholders, their roles in project
delivery, and how best to work with them) can provide a basis for this assessment and
identification of potential partners (See Chapter 3, Section D for more details on stakeholder
analysis). Selection of partners should also consider evaluation of other organizations already
working on similar programmes and projects in the targeted geographical or thematic areas.
Relevant Regional Office(s) and Subprogramme coordinators should be consulted for their input
on partners at the regional and country level. Priority should be given to organizations that have
been reviewed by Harmonized Approach to Cash Transfers (HACT). The HACT micro
assessment questionnaire can also be used to screen qualified partners.
Due Diligence
Any partnership that UNEP enters into should be formalized in an agreement, and UNEP
recommends the use of the standard legal instruments for this purpose.
Once a few partners are identified, the Project Manager should carry out due diligence process.
The process provides an opportunity to review the proposed partnership, and manage potential
risks and opportunities. It also helps to address audit issues by examining the credentials of the
partners and review potential conflicts of interest.
UNEP has two-track approach for due diligence depending on the type of partners: for-profit and
not-for-profit. The details of due diligence process also depend on whether UNEP is giving or
receiving funds (See UNEP Partnership Policy and Procedures for detailed checklist). UNEP may
partner with a private-sector entity (for-profit partner) with some exclusionary criteria if UNEP’s
role is to help improve their processes. If so, the partnership must be bona fide, and risks must be
carefully managed. Criteria used in the process to check for-profit partners are consistent with the
Guidelines on Cooperation between the United Nations and the Business Sector and the UN
Global Compact principles. The process for not-for-profit entities does not apply to government
entities, including line ministries and its subsidiary bodies.
While each category involves different set of criteria, both follows the sequence of: A) Exclusion
Screening, B) Caution (decision by Partnership Committee), and C) Positive Screening (eligibility
criteria). If the partner does not qualify to pass the Exclusion Screening, the partnership cannot be
considered. When the partner satisfies the Exclusion Screening, the Project Manager needs to
examine the issues under the Special Caution. Due diligence of the proposed partner is further
confirmed by the Positive Screening.
To perform the due diligence check, the Project Managers need to collect relevant information on
the proposed partner including:
Legal status of the partner institution;
The potential partner’s performance during previous experience with UNEP;
Evaluation by other organizations; and
Audit reports or financial statements from previous years (required of external partners
implementing subsets or whole projects with UNEP funds).
Legal Instruments
Operational details and relevant terms of a partnership should be agreed with the partner in a legal
instrument. {Approval process for PCA/SSFA/LOA with funds transfer obligations} {Approval
process for partnership agreements (SSFA/PCAs) with non-governmental, not for profit
organisations} {Approval process for concluding donor agreement with all parties}
Legal instrument is a legally binding and enforceable agreement that helps project management
in the following areas:
Transparency: specifies rights and obligations of both parties;
Accountability: states reporting requirements and due dates, provides templates, and
places responsibility on the partner to report on (and be accountable for) how project
funds have been utilized;
 Deliverables: project outputs are clearly defined;
 Minimum fiduciary standards: may require a partner to be audited by an independent
audit authority (a recognized firm of public accountants or, for governments, a
government auditor);
 Exit strategy: provide exit clauses (cancellation, suspension, termination) for nonperformance.
The first step is to choose the correct legal instrument for the collaboration, based on the results of
a partnership analysis. UNEP has a set of standard legal instruments to facilitate different types of
partnerships. The table below summarizes UNEP standard legal instruments. More details on how
to use these legal instruments can be found in the Guidance for the use of UNEP’s Standard Legal
Agreements. Project Managers should consult their FMO as early as possible to select the most
appropriate legal instrument for a proposed partnership. OfO may be consulted for further
guidance if required.
Table 8: Summary of UNEP standard legal instruments
When to use
Letter of Intent (LOI)
To express UNEP’s intention to act upon or to have
relationship with partner when detailed commitments
cannot by articulated yet (no financial, legal or other
commitments can be made). LOI does not require a
response from recipient
Exchange of Letters
Declaration of interest to use as point of entry for
cooperation which will lead to formal/legal
instrument. EOL itself does not incur financial, legal
or other commitments. EOL requires reply.
Letter of Agreement
a) used for partnerships with other UN organizations
without project document where no resources are to be
transferred (political/programmatic collaboration or
common enterprise)
b) used with project document where resources are to
be transferred between the parties (cooperation for
project/programme implementation and sharing
responsibilities in joint programming)
UN Organizations
Memorandum of
Understanding (MOU)
Used when UNEP does not intend to transfer funds to,
or receive funds from, its partner (If resources are to
be transferred, MOU requires relevant implementation
agreements to detail financial and
programmatic/administrative arrangements). MOUs
are well suited to define strategic alliance between
UNEP and its partner, declaring agreement on areas of
common interest, spheres of cooperation and mutual
operational engagements.
implementing partners
Small-Scale Funding
Agreement (SSFA)
Used when UNEP assigns project implementation
activities to partner, and transfers less than USD
200,000 (or its equivalent). SSFA must indicate the
Not-for-profit non-UN
implementing partners
Subprogramme to which it is contributing. SSFA
should not be used as substitute for Conference
Project Cooperation
Agreement (PCA)
Used when UNEP assigns implementation of set of
activities to partner and transfers more than USD
200,000 (or its equivalent). This may require a
procurement process. An approved project document
or implementation plan must be attached. PCA should
not be used as substitute for Conference Agreements
Not-for-profit non-UN
implementing partners
Donation Agreement
Used when resources are provided to UNEP. Donors
may require use of their own agreement templates.
Donors, including
private sector and
international financial
All of above agreements maybe modified by invoking
clause on amendment stipulated therein.
Partners with which
original agreement
While legal agreements facilitate disbursement of funds to partner organizations, legal
instruments are not a substitute for procurement of goods and services from consultants and
contractors. If the proposed partnership involves the acquisition of goods and services, the Project
Manager should follow procurement processes to initiate or enter into commercial contracts.
Under no circumstances should UNEP’s standard legal instruments be used to circumvent the
UN’s procurement or recruitment processes. The Table 9 provides guidance to determine when it
is appropriate to use standard legal instruments and when to initiate commercial contracts for
procurement. However, it is to be noted that Table 9 is not an exhaustive list of instances to
determine when standard legal instruments are concluded or when commercial contracts may be
Table 9: Standard legal instruments versus commercial contracts
Use standard legal instruments when
Initiate commercial contracts when
Implementation plan developed in collaboration
with Implementing Partner
UNEP alone develops Terms of Reference for
services to be provided
Both parties jointly responsible for achieving
results of the project
Service provider’s obligation usually limited to
satisfactory delivery of outputs
Purpose of collaboration to establish “partnership”
between parties
Purpose of collaboration to establish “arm’s
length” relationship
Based on the standard template of the selected type of legal instrument, a Project Manager should
draft legal instruments in consultation with the partner. The standard templates are available on
UNEP intranet. Project Managers should use standard legal instruments in order to minimize risk
and expedite the approval process; any deviation to the standard templates must be cleared by a
27 Conference Agreement refers to the agreement between UNEP and a host government when UNEP organizes inter-
governmental meetings away from its headquarters.It should follow the UN Secretariat’s Guidelines for the Preparation
of Host Government Agreements falling under General Assembly Resolution 40/243 (ST/AI/342).
legal officer in the OfO. The OfO requires a minimum of fifteen working days to review and clear
such changes.
All requests for review of legal instruments should be submitted to OfO:
Electronically in Word format;
If there are any financial implications, from or through the Divisional
FMO/Administrative Officer or, in their absence, their alternate, with a copy to the
responsible Project Manager. Should the Project Manager wish to submit the legal
instrument directly, s/he must copy in any event the FMO, Administrative Officer or their
Copying the relevant Subprogramme Coordinator and the concerned Regional Office(s)
or the DRC FMO;
Providing the relevant context of the document, including whether there are any relevant
governing documents (e.g. umbrella MOUs), and clearly indicating the substantial
changes to the documents in tracked changes as well as the reasons therefor as comments
in the Word document itself. Project documents should be attached in annex.
For GEF-funded projects, UNEP/GEF standard legal instrument templates can be found on the
responsibility for preparing and negotiating the legal instrument and its accompanying annexes in
this case rests with the FMO, in consultation with the Task Manager. The appropriate UNEP/GEF
standard legal instrument (PDF versions only) should be forwarded to new project partners early
in the project preparation process by the FMO to inform (and obtain agreement from) partners on
their rights and obligations. For further details, please consult the GEF related staff in your
Division. A request for review of legal instruments, and exceptional amendment of the same,
should first be sent to the GEF Coordination Office, who will use precedence to advice. Should a
new case be submitted, then GEF Coordination Office will bring the matter to the attention of
--The legal instruments should provide appropriate means to UNEP and partners to effectively
manage and control the relationship towards the achievement of results. Regardless of the format,
length and/or complexity of the partnership, the legal instrument must clearly articulate the
outputs and/or outcomes to be achieved by the partnership; state roles and responsibilities of each
party; and provide adequate measures to reasonably assure achievement of results in accordance
with the schedule and other specifications (e.g., specific terms for review and acceptance of
services and deliverables).
The legal instrument should also clearly set out the budget details and implementation plan for
financial management and oversight of the partnership. It should contain sufficient details to
justify resource requirements, demonstrate cost-effectiveness, and provide a breakdown of the
resource requirements corresponding to the periods for which cash transfers will be made to the
partners. (See Chapter 9, Section A and Annex 5 of UNEP Partnership Policy and Procedures for
detailed guidance on budget formulation)
The administrative costs (e.g. managing, monitoring, preparing substantive and financial reports
etc.) associated with the partnerships agreement should normally be borne by the partner.
However, in instances where the partner’s capacity is limited, such costs may be included in the
budget. When administrative costs are included in the budget, every effort should be made to keep
them to a minimum and they should never exceed 13% of the overall budget (PSC, see box 13 in
Chapter 9).
A key consideration for the effective financial management of the partnership is the level of
funding installments and advances. Unless the nature of the activities requires significant
exception (purchase or rental of equipment, workshop or large-scale conference, etc.), lower
levels of operational advances are preferred: this allows the organization to minimize financial
loss by withholding subsequent installments in cases of non-performance. Higher initial
installments may be warranted by factors such as the partner’s satisfactory prior performance, low
overall cost of the agreement, nature of activities etc.
In general, it is recommended to keep the amount of each installment close to the total financial
obligation divided by the number of installments. The number of funding installments should be
linked to the frequency of expenditure reports required to the partner. For example, if a contract
covers 24 months and requires six-monthly expenditure reports from the partner, appropriate
number of installment will be four or five. The amount of installments should also correspond
with the resources required to achieve the agreement’s major milestones.
To minimize UNEP’s exposure to potential risks, terms and conditions of financial, legal and any
other commitment should be carefully reviewed by the Project Manager and responsible FMO or
Administrative Officer. Finalized legal instruments must be certified by the responsible FMO or
Administrative Officer. When a legal instrument is submitted to the FMO for certification, the
FMO checks whether:
there is budget available for budget line quoted;
correct bank details are included;
financing, reporting and audit requirements are clearly defined and do not contravene the
Financial Regulations and Rules of the United Nations;
duration of agreement is consistent with specifics of contribution; and
project budget tallies with financial implication of the legal instrument.
Review and Approval of Partnership
Authority for review and approval of a partnership varies depending on the type of partner,
modality of partnership, and financial implications of legal instruments. (See UNEP Partnership
Policy and Procedures) Main categories can be summarized as follows:
1. When UNEP intends to grant funds that are less than or equal to USD 200,000 to an
implementing partner in support of a collaborative partnership for shared results, review and
approval process for the partnership can be carried out within the responsible Division, with
operational responsibility taken by the relevant Project Manager.
2. When UNEP intends to grant funds that are more than USD 200,000 to its implementing
partner in support of a collaborative partnership for shared results, the partnership requires
review and approval by an interdivisional Partnership Committee, supported by the
concerned Division.
3. When UNEP intends to receive funds from for-profit entities, the review and approval process
varies depending on the result of due diligence check.
Project Managers should follow detailed steps of work flow and responsibilities within these
categories based on the result of due diligence processes. The Project Manager should refer to the
UNEP Partnership Policy and Procedures to check detailed requirements.
Once the partnership and corresponding legal instrument is approved in UNEP, the Project
Manager can proceed to the signing of the legal instrument by all concerned parties. Project
Managers should keep record of signed copy of the legal instrument, results of due diligence, and
other related documents.
All Divisions must maintain an electronic file on each partnership with the following:
signed copy of legal instruments;
results of the due diligence procedure (checklist with score results);
memo from Division or Regional Director to the Partnership Committee with
relevant supporting documents such as PRC-approved project document and partnerspecific information (e.g. annual report of the partner showing its status and mission
related audit and evaluation documents
Execution of a Partnership Agreement
Partnerships are defined by common goals and objectives. Project Managers should keep in mind
that achievement of desired project outcome is dependent on the implementation of the
partnership and delivery of an individual output or activity does not guarantee achievement of the
outcome. Therefore, Project Managers are encouraged to have the project outcome reviewed and
agreed by selected partner.
The Project Manager is responsible for ensuring that the scope, budget and duration of the
partnership are clearly defined and aligned with the project parameters. The rationale for the final
selection of partners should be carefully described in the project document, along with clearly
defined expected deliverables for each partner. The Project Manager is also responsible for
communicating to partners the details of reporting requirements and administrative procedures.
During project delivery, Project Manager needs to closely monitor the partner’s performance in
order to identify any deviations from the planned budget, timeline, of quality of deliverables (See
Chapter 9, Section E for more details on monitoring partners’ financial performance). The Project
Manager should evaluate and provide regular feedback on the partner’s performance.
In general, the implementing partners are responsible for the following:
Delivery of the activities or outputs within the agreed conditions in the legal agreement
(budget, time and modality of implementation), and in a consultative and collaborative
Regular reporting on progress according to the agreed timing and template;
Management of financial resources under the relevant legal agreement to achieve the
expected results specified in the project document;
Maintaining up-to-date accounting information to enable accurate financial reporting; and
Producing regular expenditure reports at intervals specified in the project document
(minimum every 6 months).
It is recommended for partners to retain the following documents:
Project Document;
Approved budget with all revisions;
Annual work plans;
File containing all emails or memos from UNEP project team members providing guidance or
clarification regarding technical or operational issues;
Documents of procurement, especially with high-range value (see Chapter 9, Section C: How
to process procurements);
Expenditure reports;
Cash Advance Statements;
Copies of bank statements and reconciliation reports;
Inventory of Non-Expendable Equipment purchased against UNEP projects; and
Copies of all deliverables (e.g., reports, surveys, studies, training materials, etc.)
When there is a major issue with the partner’s performance, the Project Manager should seek
advice from, and discuss options with, his/her supervisor and preferably also with project steering
committee. In case the intended progress can no longer be achieved through the partnership,
suspension or termination of that partnership can be considered. The Standard Legal Instrument
Templates web-page (on UNEP intranet) includes specific clauses on suspension and termination
in this regard.
Closure of a legal instrument is an integral part of the contractual life cycle. Once the Project
Manager is convinced that all contractual requirements have been fulfilled by the partner, request
for final payment can be sent to responsible FMO (See Chapter 11: Project Completion and
Closure for details of related tasks during project completion and closure).
Audit of Partners
The objective of an audit is to provide UNEP with assurance that its resources are being managed
in compliance with three criteria:
Expenditures have been incurred in accordance with the objectives outlined in the project
All project expenditures are supported by voucher and adequate documentation; and
Proper books of account have been maintained;
Although certified financial statements provide some assurance of authenticity, ideally, financial
statements should also be independently verified by an external auditor. The agreements
exceeding a value of USD 200,000 are required to be audited at the end of their implementation.
The audit may be performed as part of the partner’s external audit process when the agreement
explicitly says that UNEP’s funding is included in the audit. If this is not applicable, the cost of
the audit may be covered in the budget of the implementation agreement. While the audit
responsibility would be left with the partner, it should not preclude the audit of the partnership by
the Office of Internal Oversight System (OIOS) according to UNEP policies.
The audit provision in the revised Project Cooperation Agreement (PCA) template clearly
stipulates the obligation of the partner to submit either a consolidated audited financial statement
(where UNEP funding is clearly mentioned) or a project specific audit report by an independent
reputable audit firm. Generally the partner is responsible to submit the audit reports within 6
months after the end of the partner’s fiscal year. Notwithstanding the above, the implementation
agreement provides UNEP with the right to review and audit the records of the partner.
Where the amount is less than USD 50,000, or the implementing partner cannot easily or cost
effectively provide an audit certificate, the FMO must first confirm that the project manager is
satisfied with the implementation of the agreed activities and then review the financial report. In
reviewing the financial report, the FMO should, on a sample basis, request proof of payment
(payment receipts) from the implementing partner to verify that the partner incurred the
expenditures as per the financial report.
Standard audit report may consist of the following sections:
Introduction: This section presents the contractual basis leading up to the engagement of
the auditor. It identifies the project document and any other binding documents such as
approved budget, and work plans that establish compliance requirements. It also describes
the partner’s participation in the project and the nature of its relationship with UNEP.
Scope and Process of Audit: This section provides a listing of all categories of
documentation examined and activities (such as interviews with staff) required to form an
opinion on the audit criteria. It also describes the process employed to implement the
Overall Opinion: The auditor expresses its overall opinion with regard to the partner’s
compliance in meeting the audit criteria.
Executive Summary: This is a brief summary of the main findings and recommendations.
Observations, Findings and Recommendations: This is a detailed description of the
main findings and recommendations presented in terms of standards, condition, and
recommendations. Findings focus on situations where there is a variance between the
standards and conditions, thus the need for a recommendation to close the variance.
In the case of GEF financed projects, the costs for audits should be contained in the project budget.
Furthermore, an assessment should be made during project preparation as to the capacity of the
executing partner to prepare and submit audits on the timely basis required by GEF standards.
Should it be necessary, and agreement should be reached with the executing agency, the audits
will be conducted by an independent firm.
Risk Management
A risk is an uncertain event or condition that might occur, and which - if it did - would have an
adverse effect on results. Risks bring negative impact when they take place. In rare instances
some risks can have positive impacts, in which case UNEP regards to them as “opportunities”.
The potential impacts of the risks can be anticipated, monitored and managed.
Risk management is an integral part of Results-Based Management, as risks are closely linked to
project results. For example in implementing a capacity building project for local governments, a
major turnover of local government after an election can result in a withdrawal of political
support, and have negative impact on the achievement of a project outcome. Therefore, effective
management of risks is a precondition for achievement of results, and a well-planned risk
management strategy is crucial. Risks differ from drivers, which are still external factors on
which the project can exert an influence. The detailed Theory of Change prepared in the design
phase of a project is a useful tool to identify risks in the first instance.
While identification and assessment of risks should be addressed at an early stage of project
design, overall risk management should be considered an iterative process given that potential
impact of anticipated risks may change, and new risks can emerge throughout the project lifecycle.
Project Managers can prepare and implement risk management strategies at the project level
based on the following steps:
Specify the context and nature of risks.
Estimate risk values based on the likelihood and severity of the impact
Plan specific management responses to risks identified
Monitor project risks and assess if management response is required
Execute the prescribed management responses to the risk
GEF projects are subject to a detailed Project At Risk system, that assesses and mitigates risk in
four areas: financial, performance, impact, and milestones.
Identification and Assessment of Risks
Project risks can involve both external and internal factors. External risks are those that may occur
outside the control of the programme or project, and they represent factors of the project
environment including political, economic, environmental, and social conditions. Internal risks
are those that may arise from the management of the projects, such as inadequate human
resources, lack of clarity in accountability, and corruption in a partner organization. The UNEP
Risk Analysis Table can be used as a reference to illustrate different types of risks.
As a first step of planning for risk management, a Project Manager needs to identify potential
risks in a project. This requires the Project Manager to obtain comprehensive information on the
project environment and to understand factors which may affect the project. To acquire a
thorough understanding of potential risk sources and characteristics, Project Managers should
involve stakeholders, project team members and implementing partners in a risk analysis process.
(See Chapter 3, Section C on Planning Project Interventions and Section D on stakeholder
engagement during planning and design) A number of techniques can be used for risk
identification, such as interviews, brainstorming, and a review of lessons learned from similar
For each identified risk, the project manager needs to assess the likelihood (possibility of an event
to occur) and the potential impact severity (how the event would affect the achievement of
outputs). (See Figure 14 below for a matrix of likelihood and impact severity) This assessment
will guide prioritization in risk management and provide basis for selecting suitable management
responses. Project Managers are encouraged to use quantitative analyses wherever possible for
objective evaluation of risk values. Using the expected monetary value of risks is one of the
standard techniques in risk analysis.
Figure 14: Likelihood and impact matrix of risk analysis
The risk has low
likelihood but severe
impact when it happens
(Need to be monitored)
High likelihood and
severe impact expected
(Require extensive
monitoring and
Low likelihood and mild
impact expected
(Considered low priority
in risk management)
High likelihood but low
severity of impact
expected (Need to be
Project Managers should document all identified risks and associated information in the Risk
Assessment Table, which is an integral part of the UNEP Project Document.
Table 10: Project risk assessment table in UNEP project document
Risk Description
1 Description
Risk Management
Strategy &
High/Med/Low High/Med/Low Brief text
By When/
The Risk Assessment Table requires the following information:
Risk Description: What is the nature of the risk? (Describe the characteristics)
Category: What is the type of the risk? (Economic, political, organization, financial,
environmental, or social)
Impact Severity: If it happens, how severely would the risk affect the project?
Likelihood: What is the possibility of the risk to occur? (High/Medium/Low)
Risk Management Strategy and Safeguards: What are the means to mitigate the risk?
(Refer to the management responses described above - avoid, reduce, fallback, transfer, or
By when and whom: when or how frequently the risk will be monitored, and who is
responsible? (Clear roles and responsibilities in management of the risks should be
determined. Stakeholders cannot be given such responsibilities.)
Based on the risk analysis and management responses identified, the Project Manager can create a
Risk Log keep track of the identified risks.
Planning Management Responses to Risks
Once the potential risks are identified and assessed, the Project Manager needs to take proactive
decisions and develop plans for management responses to minimize the likelihood and impact of
the identified risks. Management responses to risks can be characterized as follows:
Avoid: Change some aspects of project so that the threat can no longer occur or have an
impact (E.g., when holding a workshop that can be threatened by political unrest in the
host country, the video conference can be used or the workshop can be re-scheduled to
avoid disruption)
Reduce: Decrease the probability of the event occurring or reduce the impact of the event
should it occur (E.g. to reduce the likelihood of adverse effect from fluctuations of
exchange rate between different currencies, funding can be installed in separate
Fallback: Prepare contingency plan to reduce the impact of the threat should it occur (E.g.
if a technical expert is only available for limited period, alternative experts can be
identified to reduce the impact)
Transfer: A third party takes on responsibility from some of the impact (E.g., in case the
project can have significant financial impact from any delays by a contractor, relevant
clauses can be included in the legal instrument so the contractor bears the cost)
Accept: A conscious and deliberate decision to accept the risk (E.g., when other options
for management response to the risk are not feasible due to budget increase or quality
issues, the project can make a choice to do nothing and accept the risk. It is strongly
encouraged to develop a contingency plan if this type of management response needs to
be adopted.)
In planning management responses for each risk, the costs of the management responses should
be examined against the cost of not managing (accepting) the risk. The Project Manager may want
to set aside part of the project budget for a risk management response. Project Managers can refer
to the UNEP Risk Analysis Table for different types of risks and relevant assessment and
mitigation measures. FMOs can be consulted to identify suitable management responses to
financial risks.
Monitoring Risks
Project Managers need to monitor and analyze project risks on a regular basis and implement the
management responses as the risks emerge during project implementation. The Risk Log provides
a basis for monitoring the risks and associated management responses. Project Managers should
maintain and update Risk Logs throughout the project cycle.
In monitoring risks, the Project Manager needs to review:
If the identified risks have changed or become outdated;
If the planned management responses need to be modified; and
If new risks have emerged or become known.
When the risks are re-assessed or additional risks are identified in the risk monitoring, the Project
Manager needs to capture the information in the Risk Log and prepare relevant management
responses. Frequent communication with partners implementing a project can be useful to better
inform the risk monitoring process.
Whenever a risk occurs during project implementation, the project team should refer to the risk
management strategy developed during the planning stage and execute the prescribed
management responses. If a high-impact risk occurs, the Project Manager is responsible for
bringing the issue to the attention of the responsible Director and project steering committee for a
decision on a response. When risk management action is taken, the Project Manager should
update the risk log.
Project-at-risk System
UNEP maintains an electronic Project-at-Risk system in PIMS to enhance performance
management and risk monitoring at the project, Subprogramme and corporate level. Within the
Programme Information Management System (PIMS), projects that exceed any of six specific
thresholds are considered to be “at risk” until the project is managed to go back to within the
thresholds. The system helps identify systematic issues that require corrective actions by project
and senior management.
The risk thresholds are:
 Overspending: Projects with accumulative expenditure 5% over the current year’s
accumulative allotment (exclude first six months as project is starting up)
 Underspending: Projects with accumulative expenditure less than 50% of the current year’s
accumulative allotment (exclude first six months as project is starting up)
 Insufficient Funds: Projects with secured funds being less than 30% of the approved budget
 Off track: Projects with a red (off-track) project performance rating (less than 60% of
milestones met in the last 6 month reporting period)
Project Cycle Management
 Slow Maturing Projects: More than 6 months have passed from the PRC review meeting and
the projects have not been approved yet (fully signed ProDoc) (this measures corporate
efficiency, not projects)
 Ageing Projects: Projects are ongoing more than 6 months past approved project completion
 Unclosed Projects: Completed projects pending administrative closure
Based on the automated data generated by PIMS, the ED holds monthly meetings with Division
Directors to review the projects at risk, and relevant management actions. It is the responsibility
of the Project Manager to ensure that data in PIMS reflects the latest information on the project
Procurement Risks
There are risks in each phase of the procurement process, and there are organizational and
commercial measures that can be taken to mitigate those risks. Risks to successful procurement
can come from several types of sources, namely:
external factors
project complexity
project planning
procurement process
fraud, corruption and unprofessional conduct.
External factors can include political, economic, and even nature. Among the more frequent
external factors are the UN organization and partner government decision making processes that
are used to approve activities and their budgets. While political and budgetary factors are
generally outside the control of the procurement officer, to reduce the risk of late supply, it is
appropriate to begin the procurement process with sufficient lead time, and include appropriate
caveats to potential suppliers when a solicitation is issued in advance of authorization, ensuring
that it will not lead to binding commitments until and if such authorization is received.
Project complexity may lead to objective difficulty in specifying requirements, either because
conditions are not fully known or the requirement is subject to change for political or other
reasons. Risks can be reduced by early involvement of procurement officers in the project team,
and by regularly reviewing the requirement.
Where project planning not properly carried out, this can contribute to each of the negative
outcomes referred above, as well as to friction in relations among colleagues. The risks can be
best reduced through early involvement of procurement officers in planning respective activities
to ensure that requirements for and of procurement are properly integrated.
The procurement process contains in each of its stages, multiple specific risks and consequences.
Managing these risks is part of the professional responsibility of each procurement officer.
Fraud, corruption and unprofessional conduct can enter into any stage of the procurement process,
producing the risk of loss of organizational resources and budget for inappropriate supply, with
corresponding great damage to the image of the organization.
For a detailed list of common procurement of typical risks, possible consequences and what to do
at each stage the reader is invited to consult the UN Procurement Practitioner’s Handbook at
section 4.1 Risk Management. Further indications can be found in the UN Procurement Manual at
section 11.27 (Risk Evaluation) and 9.9.16 (Quality assurance).
Financial Management
Financial resources are essential to the delivery of programme and projects and should be
properly managed throughout the programme and project cycle. At the corporate level, the OfO
leads UNEP’s management of financial resources. In the management of each project, financial
management forms a functional area which falls within the overall responsibility of the Project
Manager. Therefore, a Project Manager holds the primary responsibility to ensure that the desired
results are achieved within the project’s budget. The FMO in the Division managing the project is
responsible for providing support to the Project Manager in this area.
GEF projects are subject to the same rules and procedures as UNEP ones, as well as the GEF
Fiduciary Standards. Moreover, the FMO - in consultation with Task Managers, and subject to
review by the PRC and GEF Coordination Office - has to ensure that the fees obtained for GEF
Agency functions are not mixed with the project management costs allowed in the project budgets.
Finally, the budget set aside for independent evaluations (mid-term and terminal) is not disbursed
to the executing agency, but held back and allocated directly to the UNEP Evaluation Office who
undertakes such evaluations. The PCA of GEF projects will also stipulate the disbursement
schedules and pathways.
At each stage of the project cycle, the Project Manager needs to perform related tasks on financial
management, as summarized below:
Understand UNEP’s funding structure and how the project can be funded. Estimate
cost for project delivery and develop a budget breakdown based on results hierarchy
of the project and the projection of available funding.
Ensure the project has at least 25% of total budget, or USD 200,000 (whatever is
larger), secured for PRC review28. Once the project is approved, initiate a project
accounting process in IMIS with the responsible FMO.
Facilitate payments for expenses and procurement for necessary goods and services
to deliver activities in accordance with project delivery plan. Monitor project’s
financial performance and take necessary management actions (e.g., budget revision
or adjustment).
Make sure the project is operationally completed within budget, and finalize
administrative processes for formal completion and closure. For detailed tasks, see
Chapter 11: Project Completion and Closure.
28 This applies also to projects subject to revision
How to develop a project budget
In RBM, the desired results of project design drives budget formulation process, which is
described in the figure below, and the financial performance can be later measured against the
results. Budgeting at output level should be aligned with budgetary analysis and human resource
requirements of total project budget, and linked to expenditure items. Once the budget has been
decomposed to the unit cost level, it can be re-packaged through the logic of project intervention.
Based on the detailed breakdown of budget, the Project Manager can aggregate the budget by
project outputs and activities.
Figure 15: Budget Planning for Results
Outcome to achieve
To achieve this outcome what outputs need to be delivered?
To deliver these outputs what activities need to be carried out?
To carry out these activities what type of resources do we need?
How many unit of each type of resources do we need?
What is the unit cost of each type of resources?
The Project Manager is responsible for developing detailed project budget based on cost estimates
for delivering output and activities planned in project. In this process, the Project Manager should
actively engage with the responsible FMO to ensure compliance with Financial Regulations and
Rules of the United Nations. The Project Manager should also consult the relevant Subprogramme
Coordinator who provides guidance on consistency with the Subprogramme budget.
The UNEP project budget format guides the process with classification of costs by nature (what
UNEP is paying for). In case a partner organization uses different budgeting approach, a crossreference table should be developed still in UNEP project budget format. FMOs can provide
guidance for budget estimates based on standard unit costs.
UNEP uses the Integrated Management Information System (IMIS) for processing and accounting
project budget, and the expenditure items in project budget should be recorded in accordance with
IMIS budget code (See Table 11). FMOs hold main rights to access and manage information on
IMIS. If necessary, a Project Manager can request viewing rights for IMIS.
Table 11: UNEP Project Budget Format and IMIS Budget Code
Budget by Project Output
UNEP Budget Categories
1100 Project personnel
1199 Subtotal
1200 Consultants
1300 Administrative Support
1399 Subtotal
1600 Travel on official business
1699 Subtotal
1999 Component total
2100 Subcontracts (UN organizations)
2199 Subtotal
2200 Subcontracts (Non-UN organizations)
5199 Subtotal
5299 Subtotal
5300 Sundry
5100 Operation and maintenance of equipment
5200 Reporting costs
4299 Subtotal
4199 Subtotal
4999 Component total
3399 Subtotal
4200 Non-expendable equipment
3299 Subtotal
3999 Component total
4100 Expendable equipment
3200 Group training
3300 Meetings/Conferences
2399 Subtotal
2999 Component total
2299 Subtotal
2300 Subcontracts (for commercial purposes)
1299 Subtotal
Budget by calendar year
5399 Subtotal
5400 Hospitality and entertainment
5499 Subtotal
5500 Evaluation
5599 Subtotal
5999 Component total
Project Personnel (1100): Each post should be identified by- a post number and recorded on a
separate budget sub-line. Full job descriptions should be attached. (The title of the post and grade
should be indicated). Budgetary provision should be expressed in USD equivalent, and in work
months for each year of the budget; the minimum unit for posts is a half-month. Actual salary
costs should be used where known, with the addition of an estimate for travel on recruitment,
separation, home leave, and education grant – common staff costs. Where these are not known,
standard costs by grade should be used, as amended from time to time. Standard salary costs
include provision for travel on recruitment, home leave and repatriation, as well as education and
separation grants. Travel on official business should not be budgeted under 1100. Staff training
costs can be budgeted under 1100. (Note: The approval of the ED is required for all new posts.)
Consultants (1200): Consultants' services (covered by Special Service Agreements (SSA))
should be budgeted on a separate budget sub-line (one consultant per line). Terms of reference for
each consultant should be attached. Standard costs, as revised from time to time, should be used
to calculate costs. These include provision for fees, travel and per-diem. Where actual costs are
known, these should be used instead of standard costs. For projects executed by a cooperating
agency or a supporting organization, this subdivision excludes consultants hired directly by
UNEP (they should be budgeted under line 1281). Only individuals can be offered SSA; firms are
offered contracts (see sub-component 20 for subcontracts)
Administrative Support (1300): Administrative support personnel include: a) Administrative
assistants (as distinct from professional administrative officers), secretaries, typists, clerks, drivers,
and; b) Translators, revisers, interpreters and conference typists (recruited for meetings). Full job
descriptions for each of the above should be attached, including the title of the post and grade.
Items such as temporary assistance and overtime should also be budgeted under this subdivision.
The above rules for budgeting for 1100 also apply (Note: For internally implemented projects and
costed work plans, approval of the Executive Director is required before a new post is included).
Travel on official business (1600): All mission costs (travel costs and per-diem) relating to the
travels of project personnel on official business (other than travel for recruitment, home leave and
repatriation which are budgeted under 1100 and 1300) must be included under this budget subline. For internally implemented projects - other than those implemented by a UNEP regional
office or units outside Nairobi which are budgeted under 1681 - travel undertaken by UNEP
personnel, including travel to meetings, should also be budgeted under 1600. Travel of UNEP
staff under 1600 should be project activity oriented and reflected in the project work plan.
Subcontracts (20): Where external organization(s) have been subcontracted, the project budget
should include each organization’s name, indicative budget, specific activities and outputs, and
timelines for delivery. The following contracts should not be included under this budget sub-line:
Personnel contracts – lines 1100;
Consultancy contracts – lines 1200;
Repair and maintenance of equipment – lines 5100;
Equipment purchases – lines 4100 or 4200;
Printing and publishing contracts - Lines 5200.
Group Training (3200): This item should be used for budgeting participation in training courses,
seminars, workshops, study tours, and so on. The cost of travel and per-diem should be separately
estimated for each training course or workshop.
Meetings or conferences (3300): Budgetary provision should be made for the total estimated
costs of participation in meetings, conferences, and so on. The approximate number of
participants should be indicated together with tentative dates and venue. UNEP staff participation
(travel and per-diem) in meetings and study tours should not be included under any of the above
lines, but under lines 1600 as appropriate.
Equipment and Premises Component (40): See section C: How to process procurements for
more details.
Operational and maintenance of equipment (5100): Operation and maintenance of office and
computer equipment; repair, maintenance and insurance of vehicles; purchase of petrol, and rental
of meeting room and equipment can be budgeted under this line.
Reporting Costs (5200): Estimated or standard costs should be budgeted for editing, translation,
printing, and distribution of reports and publications, and shown under separate budget sub-lines.
Sundry (5300): This item covers expenditures such as: freight and port clearance charges,
postage and communications costs.
Hospitality and Entertainment (5400): This item covers the hospitality expenses incurred in
connection with receptions given in honor of participants in conferences, seminars, and so on,
held under the project. Where hospitality or entertainment costs are involved, the reason for, the
type of hospitality, and the numbers invited should be indicated precisely. Expenditures should be
incurred in accordance with the official hospitality guidelines (see ST/AI/192/Rev.2 dated March
Evaluation (5500): Project budgets should include a separate budget line for mid-term
evaluations (if the project extends over the duration of the MTS)29 and terminal evaluations (all
projects) to be assigned to the Evaluation Office to conduct independent evaluations.
29 Mid-term evaluations are conducted by the Evaluation Office only if: a project is of key strategic importance to
UNEP and at risk. Mid-term evaluations are otherwise only mandatory for projects that extend for the duration of the
Medium-Term Strategy or longer. For projects of a shorter duration, the mid-term examination of a project’s
performance is viewed as an internal project management tool and is referred to as a mid-term review. For those
projects, the responsibility for mid-term reviews rests with project/programme managers.
The currency of reference for UNEP is the United States dollar (USD). Budgeting with partners
should be also established in USD. Where necessary, the value of budget items in other
currencies can be determined by applying the UN operational rate of exchange in effect.
Project Managers should also keep in mind the following issues when developing project budgets:
Project Preparation: Project Managers can use a portion of available EF resources or
XB resources (not exceeding 10 percent of the total project budget) to strengthen project
quality (e.g. stakeholder consultations). If the Project Manager wishes to use funding for
project preparation, it should be approved separately using UNEP Project Preparation
Proposal Template.
Environment Fund: Any EF contribution to the project should be deducted from the
total resource requirement. However, EF resources (both cash and in-kind contributions)
should not be included in the budget table.
Communication: All projects should include provisions (generally 5% of the total
budget) for communication and outreach activities. DCPI should be consulted in
identifying their specific roles and responsibilities for the communication of the project.
Monitoring: Project budgets should include provisions for data collection and
monitoring, determined by the Project Manager in consultation with his/her supervisor
and the project steering committee.
Evaluation: Projects with total budget more than USD 500,000 should have a separate
budget line assigned to the Evaluation Office for project evaluation, and this evaluation
budget cannot be adjusted or moved to a different budget line without consulting the
Evaluation Office. If a project has a total budget less than USD 500,000 then 1) the
evaluation budget lines might be lumped with other smaller related projects to undertake
an ‘umbrella’ evaluation; or 2) the project itself might undertake a review as the
Evaluation Office does not conduct individual project evaluations for projects with a total
budget lower than the threshold of USD 500,000. The following rule of thumb can be
used to estimate an appropriate evaluation budget: all project evaluations require a
minimum budget of USD 25,000, while evaluations’ budgets will exceed USD 100,000
only in very exceptional circumstances. The budget can be constructed by estimating the
number of consultants required to carry out the evaluation, and the number of sites or
countries to be visited for evaluation. In general, a good estimate is USD 20,000 per
consultant and USD 5,000 per country in the evaluation. Where key partners and
stakeholders do not read/speak English, and additional $5,000 should be budgeted for
translation. After receiving the request for conducting the evaluation, the Evaluation
Office will verify whether an adequate evaluation budget is available, and might request
the managing Division to mobilize additional funding to increase the evaluation budget to
an adequate level. Budgeting for evaluation can therefore best be done in consultation
with the Evaluation Office.
Auditing: For project externally executed and PCAs, the executing partner needs to
provide UNEP with yearly financial audit reports, including at the time of the project’s
closure considering the project’s entire duration and its corresponding transactions. The
costs of these audit requirements are to be borne by the project budget.
Retention: UNEP retains 10% of the project value given to implementing partners until
such time when it is in receipt of 90% of the financial expenditure reports (Audited
expense reports from non-UN entitles) from the implementing partners. Once the
condition is met, the remaining balance required to complete the project will be issued.
Box 12: Co-Financing in UNEP
For non-GEF projects in UNEP, co-financing refers to cash and/or in-kind contributions committed by
governments, other multilateral or bilateral sources, the private sector, NGOs, and project beneficiaries, who
are partially contributing to the delivery of project activities or outputs. However, these resources are not
channeled through UNEP, which means UNEP does not manage or monitor the resources.
Co-financing is not a mandatory requirement for non-GEF UNEP projects, but strongly encouraged to
strengthen commitment of partners, increase long-term sustainability of the project, leverage additional
resources from other donors, and improve economic effectiveness of the project. Co-financing information
is important in understanding the overall resources available for the project delivery. However, funding
administered directly by the partners, and not channelled through UNEP, should not be part of the total
project budget calculation. Although co-financing is not included in the total planned budget in UNEP,
Project Managers are encouraged to provide relevant information in budget table (as footnote), project
document and progress reporting. If possible, the project steering committee can be used to review
commitment, compliance, and expenditure of co-finance.
For 'GEF projects', co-financing means project resources (cash or in-kind) committed from non-GEF
resources to meet the 'GEF-project' objectives. It is mandatory for UNEP and executing agencies to provide
or generate co-financing, and the sources of co-financing can include, but are not limited to, the following:
UNEP’s own financing; government financing as counterpart commitments (e.g. for baseline or foundational
activities in the project countries upon which the project would build, or without which the project could not
be implemented); contributions mobilized for the project from other multilateral agencies, bilateral
development cooperation agencies, NGOs, the private sector and beneficiaries, etc. GEF is not a donor
organization and it only tops-up existing initiatives to achieve 'a global environmental benefit'. As such, the
ratio GEF funding and funding from other sources for a project is at least 1:1, sometimes reaching 1:4 in
UNEP projects (and higher in projects led by the multilateral banks). This however, strongly depends on the
country and the type of intervention which is proposed. For detailed guidance, see GEF Council Document
on Co-Financing (GEF/C.20/6/Rev.1)
How to access secured funding
Project Managers should submit projects to QAS for review by the PRC when the proposed
project has secured funding of at least 25% of total budget with a minimum of USD 200,000.30
This includes EF contributions and staff costs. It should be noted that funding secured by Trust
Funds or Earmarked Contributions include Programme Support Cost (PSC - for more details
please see the box below).
When only a partial amount of project budget is secured, Project Managers should develop a
budget table for the particular amount of secured funding. For example, if the total project budget
is USD 3 million and only USD 1 million has been secured, the Project Manager should develop a
budget table for the USD 1 million in addition to the budget table for total USD 3 million. Project
Managers are encouraged to design a phased approach to roll out the project when challenges are
expected in securing project funding in full. Project Managers should at all times share up-to-date
information on secured funding with the responsible FMO.
30 This applies also to projects subject to revision
In the case of GEF projects, the GEF Trustee issues, on a monthly basis, a Letter of Commitment
(LoC) for the projects approved/endorsed by the GEF Chief Executing Office in the preceding
month. The LoC is a confirmation that funds are available for spending by UNEP/GEF. Funds for
projects are then drawn down from the GEF Trustee, through a request submitted by the GEF
Coordination Office on a regular basis. The request for funds is triggered by the fund balance in
IMIS, reducing below threshold agreed with the GEF Trustee. Note that the request is against
cumulative GEF project budgets approved/endorsed, and not on a project-by-project basis. As
such, the total project grant is not available upfront for disbursement. Project funding is accessible
only after the legal agreement (PCA/SSFA) is signed off between UNEP and executing partners,
and the project account created in IMIS. For UNEP executed projects, funds can be accessed once
the project is approved (i.e Decision Sheet signed off) and project account created in IMIS
{Process for project creation in IMIS}. The interest income earned on the project finance is
reported and returned to the GEF Trustee on a six month basis.
Box 13: Programme Support Costs and GEF Fees
Programme Support Cost (PSC) is a term used in the UN for the charge expressed as a percentage of direct
costs that UN collects on extra-budgetary expenditures. PSC rate for XB funds should be 13%, unless
otherwise formally agreed to, and approved by, the ED. The rate of 13% was decided in the General
Assembly resolution A/RES/35/217 and applies to UNEP as a programme of the UN.
The PSC revenue is used to ensure proper funding of corporate services in operational management, and that
the indirect costs of supporting activities for XB contributions (project appraisal, administration,
recruitment, etc.) is not borne by the core resources of UNEP. Administration and management of PSC is
subject to UN policy set out in administrative instruction ST/AI/286.
For all secured funding, the PSC rate and amount should be listed in UNEP project document (duration and
cost table). The rate should be indicated separately per funding source unless they all have the same rate.
The PSC rates should be calculated only from the direct costs for the project implementation (the costs that
can be clearly attributed to the operation of the project).
GEF Implementing Agencies also receive fees (10%) to cover costs related to: a) the fulfilment of corporate
responsibilities related to institutional relations, policy and program development/management/coordination,
outreach/knowledge management/external relations, management and finance and M&E, and; b) the
provision of project cycle management services, including: due diligence management, quality assurance
and oversight of a project through the entire project cycle (development, preparation, supervision, and
evaluation. GEF projects are allowed to budget Project Management costs up to a maximum of 9 % as part
of the project budget. Specific rules apply to what can be included in Project Management costs and what
not. Please refer to the “Proposal for a Fee-Based System for Funding GEF Project Implementation, April 7,
1999 – GEF/C.13/11.)
Main and sub-projects
Once the project document is approved by the PRC, the FMO (of the Division managing the
project) requests for the creation of a Counterpart project number in IMIS, which will serve as
umbrella. The main project is an empty shell under which a tree of sub-projects and sub-account
will be anchored. Once the main project is created, the FMO will initiate the "pink file" process in
the UNEP information system, on the basis of the elements approved by the PRC and mentioning
the financial contributions already secured for the project.
Depending on the installment of secured funding and on the project’s legal instruments, FMOs
can create subprojects and subaccounts in IMIS under the main project, and link them to the
project account. FMOs can create sub-projects for specific funding sources, initiate sub106
allotments when a different Division needs to deliver some outputs under the same funding
source, or create a sub-account when a significant share of the funding source (over and above
200,000 USD) is to be sub-contracted to a third party. It should be noted that “subaccounts” for
legal instruments or “subprojects” for partial activities within a main project cannot be considered
a “project.” Any project involving operations at the regional or country level should include a
budget line for the relevant Regional Office(s).
Whenever an additional contribution is being secured within the limits of the PRC approved
project, the contribution is reflected in the next budget revision. In case secured contributions are
over and above the budget of the initial PRC approved project, the increase is approved by either
the Division Director or the PRC (over 500,000 USD), depending on the respective Delegation of
Authority. However, QAS needs to be consulted at all times, to make sure that the project will be
registered in PIMS.
Allotments are approved to the maximum level of funds actually received. FMOs should ensure
that the EF allotment in IMIS is aligned with the EF allocation for the Division within the
Subprogamme, and that XB allotments in IMIS are based on funding already received by UNEP.
If secured funding is to be received in separate installments, project should incorporate this in a
project delivery plan with a phased-approach.
To make sure that the financial data are accurately reflected in project reporting via PIMS, FMOs
should apply the following principles:
Only link accounts in IMIS that are relevant to the main PRC-approved projects once agreed
by the Project Manager of the main project (not the manager of individual subprojects or
In those exceptional cases where a portion of subaccounts from projects from the previous
biennium needs to be linked to a new project account, the FMO should get the consent of the
Project Manager of the previous project account before creating any linkage. However, FMOs
are strongly encouraged to only link new secured funding for that IMIS account of projects,
and financially close the accounts of the older projects.
Box 14: Roles and Responsibilities of Certifying, Approving, and Authorizing Officers
In accordance with the Financial Regulations and Rules of the United Nations, to ensure checks and
balances, financial management processes involve different functions performed by:
Certifying Officer: Certifying function means the authority to determine that funds are available in line
with their programmatic purpose for a specific commitment, obligation or expenditure within the duly
defined process. Typically the FMOs are nominated as certifying officers in UNEP. For more details on the
roles and responsibilities of certifying officers, see Rule 105.5 of Financial Regulations and Rules of the
United Nations
Approving Officer: Approving function means the authority to establish obligations and the recording of
expenditures, after having verified that they are in order and have been certified by a duly designated
certifying officer. Approving authority and responsibility is assigned on a personal basis and cannot be
delegated. An approving officer cannot exercise the certifying functions or the bank signatory functions. In
general, approving function rests with UNON. For more details on the roles and responsibilities of
approving officers, see Rule 105.6 of Financial Regulations and Rules of the United Nations
Authorizing Officer: Authorizing function refers to the mandate to initiate a transaction for the purpose of
achieving an output in line with an approved project. Usually Division Directors hold the authorizing
responsibility, but it may differ depending on the delegation of authority. As an authorizing officer, a
manager can authorize procurement requests for goods, services and facilities in line with the UNEP
Procurement Manual.
How to process procurements
The procurement of goods and services for UNEP projects is subject to Financial Regulations and
Rules of the United Nations, and should follow the policies and procedures outlined in the UNEP
Procurement Manual (2012). Within the terms and conditions of applicable legal instruments, the
implementing partners may procure goods and services according to their own procurement
policies and procedures, but should ensure that the external procurement process meets
international standards.
When there is a need for procurement, Project Managers should engage FMOs to develop generic
specifications to fulfill such needs. FMOs are responsible for verifying availability of funds for
the required procurement and making a formal request to a Procurement Officer in UNON or an
alternate organization depending on the arrangements of the field missions.
All UN organizations have agreed on the following four principles in procurement:
Promotion of UN objectives; which includes maintaining the highest image and reputation of
UNEP, promoting public good and the specific objectives of the Organization.
Fairness, integrity and transparency through competition; this requires guarding against
collusion and ensuring competitive processes are conducted on the basis of clear and
appropriate regulations, rules and procedures that are applied consistently to all potential
Economy and effectiveness; this means providing an appropriate solution to the
Organization’s need with regards to quantity, quality and timeliness at the right price and
conducting the procurement action efficiently.
Best value for money; does not necessarily mean the lowest initial price option, but rather
represents the best return on the investment.
The UN R&R define the following types of methods of solicitation:
1. Low Value Procurement; for UNEP the threshold is USD 4,000
2. Informal method:
a. A Request for Quotation (RFQ) shall be used for the procurement of simple,
uncomplicated goods of standard and firm Specifications (very clearly defined and
continuously used deliverables) of total estimated value not exceeding US $40,000
3. Formal methods:
a. An Invitation to Bid (ITB) shall be used for the procurement of goods and services of
standard and firm Specifications (very clearly defined or continuously used deliverables)
of the total estimated value in excess of US $40,000
b. Request for Proposal (RFP) shall be used for procurement of deliverables that cannot be
quantitatively or qualitatively expressed in sufficient detail to allow use of an ITB at the
time the Solicitation Document is issued, such as for professional services or similar
Each of the methods defined above has a unique set of standard operating procedures, roles and
responsibilities and standard documents that are required in order to successfully carry out the
procurement exercise.
In general the procurement process follows steps that are:
Prepare the requisition: requirement definition involves defining and describing what is needed
and will be procured, collecting information, specifying appropriate solutions in specifications for
goods and equipment, terms of reference (TOR) for services, or statement of works (SOW) for
works. Specifications, TOR and SOW constitute the technical basis for the solicitation and the
evaluation of offers to determine if they satisfy the requirements as stipulated in the solicitation
documents. They become the “heart” around which the eventual contract is written and later
administered. They have an effect on the procurement that lasts its entire lifetime - from planning,
through bid evaluation, award and contract performance up to completion and post-contract
evaluations. A clear and appropriate definition and description of the need is of utmost
importance. The requirement definition is formally the responsibility of the requisitioner. It
requires Project Manager’s professional assessment in consultation with FMOs. Generic
specifications should be developed to define the minimum requirement.
Prepare Source Selection Plan (SSP): the SSP is an internal and collective document, under the
leadership of the procurement officer, which describes critical components of the acquisition
process and provides justification for sourcing and procurement decisions in order to achieve the
Best Value for Money principle. Depending on the complexity of the procurement, the SSP may
be summarized in a few lines, or consist of long and precise descriptions of the steps necessary for
the evaluation. The Procurement Officer and the Requisitioner are jointly responsible for
preparing the SSP before the solicitation documents are issued.
Sourcing / Solicitation and Evaluation: There are three different solicitation documents:
Low Value Procurement (less than USD 4,000): Offices Away from Headquarters have
delegated authority for purchases of amounts less than USD 4,000. Please refer to the
UNEP Procurement Manual Section [insert] for the detailed procedure
Informal method of solicitation ($4,000 to $40,000): preliminary examination and
evaluation of the quotes received and considered to be valid, to assess their
responsiveness to specifications and requirements as defined in the solicitation documents,
analysis of their costs and benefits, and determination of their price and value. (UN
Financial Rules and Regulations 105.16 (a)(x)) Please refer to the UNEP Procurement
Manual Section [insert] for the detailed procedure
Formal method of solicitation (in excess of $ 40,000):
 An Expression of Interest (EOI) needs to be posted on the UN Global Market Place
for all procurement actions in excess of $40,000.
 A Source Selection Plan (SSP) needs to be signed by both the requisitioner and
Procurement prior to issuance of the solicitation documents. The technical evaluation
criteria need to be put in the SSP and cannot later be changed.
 A Public Bid Opening is required.
 An Invitation to Bid (ITB) is used for the procurement of goods where the
specifications are clear and concise. Procurement evaluates the bids and award the
contract is granted awarded to “the qualified bidder whose bid substantially conforms
to the requirements set forth in the Solicitation Documents and is evaluated to be the
one with the lowest cost to the United Nations” (, UN Financial Rules and
Regulations 105.15 (a))
A Request for Proposal (RFP) is used for the procurement of goods, services and works
when the specifications are functional that cannot be quantitatively or qualitatively
expressed in sufficient detail to allow use of an ITB at the time the solicitation documents
are issued. An RFP shall also be used in the case of outsourcing non-core activities and
services, or for purchase of complex goods using a functional specification when
proposals from the invitees are preferred. Steps in the process include: preparation of a
short-list; preparation of RFP solicitation documents; sending out the RFP; receipt of
bids; bid opening, technical evaluation, and; submission for approval. A two-envelope
system is used where the technical and financial proposals are submitted separately. A
technical evaluation committee evaluates the technical proposals, while Procurement
evaluates the financial proposals. Only the financial proposals of the technically
compliant proposals are opened. Normally the technical evaluation represents 60% of the
final combined score and the financial represents 40%. The award is granted to “the
qualified propose whose proposal, all factors considered, is the most responsive to the
requirements” (UN Financial Rules and Regulations 105.15 (b)).
Please refer to the UNEP Procurement Manual for the detailed procedure.
The basis of award for every purchase order or contract is indicated in the Statement of Award.
The vendor needs to countersign the purchase order or the contract, and the General Conditions of
Contract need to be attached to all contracts. The contract manager needs to monitor the
expenditure of the contract to ensure that it does not exceed the Not-To-Exceed (NTE) amount
stated in the contract. It is also the responsibility of the contract manager to ensure that the vendor
performs in accordance with the contract. The Procurement Section should get involved when
there are performance issues which cannot be settled by the contract manager.
How to make advance payments
If the project has component(s) implemented by a partner, payments are made to the partner in
accordance with the relevant legal instruments. Cash advance refers to an advanced payment
made electronically for activities to be carried out by partner. To process a cash advance, the
partner must prepare “cash advance statement” with the information on opening balance, date and
amount of previous cash advances, total cash advances to date, cumulative expenditures incurred,
and cash requirements forecast. How interest income earned by executing agencies is treated will
be determined in the project document.
To facilitate a payment to partner, the following steps apply:
Except for the first installment which is bound to the signature of the contract, all subsequent
installments are based on the receipt and acceptance of a financial report and forecast
submitted by the Partner. To request payment or cash advance, partner organization prepares
a cash advance statement and submits it to the Project Manager as the basis of the request.
Cash advances and reporting should be recorded in USD even if the payment is made in
another currency. No disbursement of budget should exceed the approved budget of the
project in USD;
Project Manager review the cash advance statement in line with the performance and
obligations of the partner. If the Project Manager concludes that the cash advance statement is
acceptable, (s)he authorizes the payment and sends a request to the responsible FMO to
process the next cash advance or payment;
FMO reviews the cash advance statement against project expenditures to date, expenditure
forecast, and liquidation of previous advances (disbursement of cash advance is subject to
liquidation of at least of 70 percent of the previous cash advances);
If the cash advance statement is acceptable, the FMO requests UNON to process the payment
or cash advance;
Accounts Service Unit (ASU) of UNON approves the FMO’s request, instructs bank transfer,
and records payment in the IMIS against matching third-party ID and project ID.
If the project is executed by UNEP, Project Manager may need to pay for expense (such as
consultants, meetings, etc.) directly from UNEP’s account. This is called direct payment in
UNEP’s financial management, and Project Managers should ask for guidance from responsible
FMO to process direct payment.
Small-scale funding agreements (SSFAs)
The FMO reviews the total global receivables outstanding from the partner
(executing/implementing agency/organization) to determine if the partner has other overdue
accounts not reported to UNEP. The FMO may consult the relevant Divisional FMOs
regarding the identified unexpended receivables to determine if the partner is problematic in
the submission of periodical financial reports;
SSFAs with a contractual period exceeding 12 calendar months should be disbursed as cash
advances, as opposed to outright expenditures of each installment payment against obligation.
The value of the initial/first payment to the partner should not exceed 50% unless the SSFA
relates to the organization of a workshop, training, seminar or meeting where the initial
payment should not exceed 75%. The balance or final payment of the SSFA in this case
should only be payable upon submission of the deliverables stated in the SSFA (final
technical report, final financial report (and final audit report – for all PCAs).
How to monitor financial performance
Based on the planned budget and the installment schedule of secured funding, Project Manager
can measure and monitor financial performance of the project. Figure 16 below shows conceptual
illustration of how to use the planned budget as baseline, and measure the actual expenditure
against it. While budgets should be as accurate as possible, it should be recognized that a budget
is essentially a plan and that variances will occur during implementation. Depending on the
project’s progress, actual expenditure can be either higher or lower than planned at given time.
It is the responsibility of Project Manager to analyze the gap between the actual expenditure and
planned budget on regular basis, and review the financial analysis against programmatic
performance of the project (i.e. output delivery, attainment to milestone, etc.) Based on this
review and analysis, Project Manager should direct the project to be delivered within the
threshold of total budget. For example, if the financial data shows over-expenditure of budget
when output is not delivered on schedule, the Project Manager needs to carefully review the
relevant factors and take corrective action.
Figure 16: Project expenditure and financial performance
Total Approved Budget
Variance of actual
expenditure against
planned budget
Managing and recording relevant expenditure information is critical for monitoring financial
performance, especially when the project involves implementation by partners. The expenditure
report is the main tool to monitor the project expenditures. It should be reviewed in tandem with
progress reports. The frequency of requirements for expenditure reports should be defined in
planning stage in consultation with FMOs. The minimum requirement is the submission of
expenditure reports every six months, one of which should be issued 31 January of each year (as
cut off for previous year reporting). Quarterly expenditure reports can be requested if necessary.
FMOs also initiate regular budget revisions when there is a need to reconcile project expenditure.
FMOs are responsible for initiating budget revisions when appropriate, but at least once a year.
All expenditure reports should be certified by an authorized official from the partner institution
attesting the accuracy of expenditures reported, that resources have been used in accordance with
budget provisions and the implementation agreement’s terms and conditions, and that all
expenditures are supported by relevant documents. The partners should also maintain record of all
expenditures supported by receipt and/or a document that includes the amount, description of the
cost, the date of payment, and the name and address of the person or vendor receiving the money.
UNEP will only accept expenditures that are in line with the approved budget. In general, a 10%
variation in actual expenditure on budget lines by implementing partners can be considered
acceptable, provided the expenditure does not exceed the overall allocation to the implementing
partner. Variations in budget lines exceeding 10% should be reflected in an amendment to the
relevant legal instrument.
Detailed tasks and responsibilities in monitoring expenditure by partners with the expenditure
reports are distributed as follows:
Partner organization prepares and submits expenditure reports to the Project Manager using
UNEP template;
Project Manager reviews expenditures for programmatic consistency with planned activities,
and checks the consistency between the plan, the deliveries and how it translates into financial
terms. Once the Project Manager is confident that the report reflects the truthful picture of the
reality of the project and it is in line with the obligations of the partner, (s)he issues a written
authorization to FMO who records expenditures in IMIS;
If the expenditure report is considered acceptable, FMO provides UNON with financial
information and expenditure reports, and request approval by UNON through IMIS;
UNON ASU liquidates the OBMO to record expenditures and offset any outstanding cash
advance balance against third-party ID and project ID.
In the review of expenditures, the Project Manager and FMOs should make sure that the cost is in
accordance with the approved budget and that it incurred for an approved activity as per annual
work plan. Expenditures should not exceed the approved budget and should be within a
reasonable cost, which means:
The cost is ordinary, in that it is required in the normal course of project activities (e.g., office
supplies) or it is necessary for a project activity (e.g., special software or bus rental);
The cost is processed with sound business practices;
The cost is free of either a real or perceived conflict of interest with respect to any project
team member or partner organizations;
The cost does not present a significant deviation from the UNEP’s established practices or
procedures; and
The cost is in compliance with local legal and regulatory requirements.
PIMS provides automated data from IMIS in finance section. Project managers can thus use the
system to access up-to-date data on project’s financial performance and variance of project
expenditure against planned budget. For more details on how to access the data and generate
reports, see PIMS tutorial. A summary of UNEP’s reporting requirement is available in Chapter 5,
Section E: Monitoring and Reporting.
f. Financial Management of Equipment
In the management and inventory control of property, UN divides equipment into two types: NonExpendable Equipment (NEE) and Expendable Equipment. Detailed definitions of NonExpendable and Expendable Equipment are available in Administrative instruction on Property
management and inventory control at UN Headquarters [ST/AI /2003/5].
Property or equipment valued at USD 1,500 or more per unit at the time of purchase and
having a shelf life of one year or longer (e.g. generators, kitchen equipment, major
equipment and vehicles);
Special items, which are property items considered to be of an attractive nature and easily
removable from the premises because of their size, costing USD 500 or more per unit at the
time of purchase and with a serviceable life of three years or more (e.g. computers, cameras,
televisions, facsimile machines and tape recorders);
Group inventory items (e.g. furniture and modular workstations) with a serviceable life of
five years or more, irrespective of value.31
In order for assets to be recorded as assets in the UN accounting records they must be controlled
by the Organization. This is particularly relevant to project assets. Professional judgment should
be exercised to determine if the entity has control over an asset. The following checklist assists in
determining the existence of control:
The act of purchasing the asset was carried out (or resulted from instructions given) by the
Legal title is in the name of the UN;
The asset is physically located on premises or locations used by the UN;
The asset is physically used by staff employed by the UN or staff working under the UN
The UN can decide on alternative uses for the asset;
The UN can decide to sell or dispose of the asset;
The UN can decide to replace an asset, if it had to be removed or destroyed;
A UN representative regularly inspects the asset to determine its current condition;
The asset is used in achieving the objectives of the UN;
The asset will be retained by the UN at the end of the project.
Expendable equipment:
31 With the introduction of IPSAS in 2014 the following criteria/rules will be in place:
a) Total cost consists of the asset purchase price, generally the invoice price (less discounts), import duties and nonrefundable purchase taxes, and any directly attributable costs (such as the cost of site preparation, initial delivery and
handling costs or installation costs) of bringing the asset to working condition for its intended use. Total cost does not
include any refundable taxes or other similar refundable costs.
b) Where an asset is acquired at no cost (gifted, contributed or donated) or for a nominal cost, then the fair value of the
asset as at the date of acquisition is used.
In addition to the above, all of the following conditions must be met to capitalize a UN asset: i) The asset has a useful
life of more than one year; ii) the asset meets the minimum established cost threshold of USD 5,000 or more per unit for
all reporting entities other than Volumes I & II. For example, purchasing ten chairs at a cost of $500 each will not
Control over assets arises when an entity can: use or otherwise benefit from the asset in pursuit of its objectives, and
exclude or otherwise regulate the access of others to that benefit
Equipment valued at USD 1,500 or less per unit at the time of purchase (e.g. toner
cartridges and consumables).
Depending on the type of equipment, Project Manager should follow different procedures for
procurement, management, and/or disposal of the equipment. Issues and procedures may vary
depending on whether the project is internally executed or externally executed.
Management of NEE
Project Managers should obtain guidance from FMO on whether UNEP or its partners are
responsible for the procurement of NEE, and they should ensure that an explicit provision on
procurement is included in the legal instrument and project document. For more details on
procurements, see Section C of this chapter on how to process procurements.
All NEE with a unit value of USD 1,500 or more should be listed in the Inventory of NEE. The
inventory is an ongoing register for recording data on newly purchased Non-Expendable
Equipment, and also serves as a permanent record of all NEE purchased with project budget. The
inventory may also include a list of “items of attraction”, which means the items with purchase
value in excess of USD 100 that Project Manager or partner wants to keep track of (e.g., desks,
office chairs, file cabinets, printers, etc).
For projects implemented by UNEP:
The Procurement Section of UNON is responsible for procurement of NEE using project
funds. These items are considered property of UNEP.
The inventory focal point of the managing Division is responsible for maintaining the
Inventory of NEE.
For projects implemented by partners:
The partners can procure goods and services according to their own procurement policies
and procedures.
The partner is accountable to maintain the Inventory of NEE purchased against the UNEP
At the end of a project, the ownership of NEE should either be transferred to a partner or recipient,
or disposed. Disposal of NEE includes the repair, transfer, destruction, re-use of parts, discard,
sale or trade-in of NEE.
For projects implemented by UNEP:
Proposals for the disposal of NEE purchased with project funds should be reviewed by the
Local Property Survey Board (LPSB) in accordance with its terms of reference;
The minutes of the LPSB should be appended to the final Inventory of NEE during project
closure. If the recommendation of the LPSB is to transfer the NEE to an external partner,
the duly signed letter of agreement or transfer should also be attached;
In case of transfer from the project to a follow-up project, the case does not have to be
presented to the LPSB. However, the final Inventory of NEE will still be required for the
closing revision, and the follow-up project should be revised to include the list of NEE that
has been transferred.
For projects implemented by partners:
In the case of disposal of NEE, transferring ownership of the NEE should be reviewed at
the end of the project. A letter of agreement or transfer signed by the Chief of OfO and the
representative of the partner should acknowledge the formal transfer of the equipment to
the executing agency, with the final Inventory of NEE attached.
Management of Expendable Equipment
Procurement of expendable equipment can be undertaken only during project implementation (not
before) and should be carried out in accordance with the approved budget. Procurement needs to
be cleared by OfO, if the item is not specifically listed in the approved budget and the item costs
more than USD 1,500. For more details on procurement, see Section C of this chapter.
10. Evaluation
Evaluation is an integral part of the programme and project management, which enables UNEP to
improve programme management and performance, and provides substantive accountability to
UNEP’s Governing Council, donors and the general public.
The main benefits of conducting evaluations are to:
Enable senior management to demonstrate and measure performance;
Identify where improvements can be made to design or delivery methods;
Identify good practices and lessons for the future;
Provide feedback for adaptive management and positive learning;
Assess how UNEP’s activities have impacted environmental policy-making and
management at the national, regional and global levels; and
Provide a means, through disclosure, for transparency in the way the organization
implements its programme activities and uses its resources.
Evaluations within the UN system are designed “to determine as systematically and objectively as
possible the relevance, efficiency, effectiveness and impact of the organization’s activities in
relation to their objectives32”. They provide the basis for assessing the relevance, sustainability,
quality and usefulness of outcomes of programme and project activities undertaken by the
Evaluations in the UN system are guided by a number of principles and standards outlined in the
Norms and Standards for Evaluation in the UN System. For more information see: Secretary
General’s bulletin on Programme Planning, the Programme Aspects of the Budget, the
Monitoring of Implementation and the Methods of Evaluation (ST/SGB/2000/8)
GEF projects are subject to the GEF M&E Policy and an Agency’s own policies and procedures.
UNEP’s Approach to Evaluation
UNEP conducts evaluations of programmes and projects implemented by UNEP and financed by
the Environment Fund (EF), related extra-budgetary funding, and the GEF. UNEP does not
conduct evaluations of the MEAs Secretariats. The evaluations enable UNEP’s senior
management and Member States to systematically review project and programme performance
and implement changes to increase effectiveness. In addition to evaluating results and impacts
emanating from projects and programmes, evaluations also examine the validity of programme
orientation, and determine whether there is need to change their direction.
Within UNEP, the Evaluation Office is responsible for conducting evaluations of the
Subprogrammes and projects, as well as other thematic evaluations and management studies.
32 ST/SGB/2000/8, “Regulations and Rules Governing Programme Planning, the Programme Aspects of the Budget,
the Monitoring of Implementation and the Methods of Evaluation
UNEP’s Evaluations focus on the planned and actual achievements towards EAs defined in the
PoW. Project-level evaluations inform EA evaluations, which in turn inform performance
evaluations of the Subprogrammes, and finally overall evaluation of the MTS. In addition,
evaluations undertaken jointly with QAS may asses the quality of UNEP project management and
supervision. Evaluation reports are “evidence-based” and all findings and recommendations
should be supported by verifiable sources of information.
As stated in the UNEP Evaluation Policy, the Evaluation Office works independently of UNEP’s
operational Divisions and reports directly to the Executive Director, an arrangement that ensures
“organizational independence.” The Evaluation Office ensures that UN system and international
evaluation standards are maintained, and - where appropriate - conducts joint evaluations together
with UNEP partners and donors. The UNEP Evaluation Policy states that the Evaluation Office
shall be free to conduct evaluations and prepare clear, accurate, objective, uncompromising and
uncensored reports without undue interference from any part of the organization.
An evaluation plan and adequate evaluation budget are mandatory elements of UNEP projects.
For more details, please see Chapter 9: Financial Management, Section B: How to develop Project
Types of Evaluation in UNEP
Project Level
Project level Mid Term Evaluations: Mid-Term Evaluations are undertaken approximately halfway through project implementation and analyze whether a project is on track, what problems and
challenges the project is encountering, and which corrective actions are required. Mid-Term
Evaluations are usually conducted by the Evaluation Office only when a project is: 1) of key
strategic importance to UNEP; and 2) the project is “at risk.” (See Chapter 8, Section D for
Project-at-Risk System) Project Mid-Term Evaluations should ideally be undertaken before the
mid-point of project implementation. For projects that will not undergo Mid-Term Evaluations,
the Project Manager is encouraged to conduct a mid-term review. The products of a mid-term
evaluation are: a mid-term evaluation report, and an implementation plan for evaluation
recommendations. The agreed evaluation implementation plan specifies whether a
recommendation has been accepted/partially accepted/not accepted, how the recommendation will
be implemented, who is responsible for its implementation, the date by which the implementation
of the recommendation is expected to be completed, and actions already taken. The Evaluation
Office subsequently monitors compliance regarding implementation of recommendations. Levels
of compliance are reported, by Division, to the Executive Director.
Project level Terminal evaluations: Terminal Evaluations are undertaken by independent
evaluators contracted by the Evaluation Office to review a project, ideally within six months after
its completion. Terminal evaluations assess overall project performance and determine the actual
and potential results, their sustainability, and the operational efficiency of implementation.
Terminal evaluations also identify lessons of operational relevance for future project design and
implementation. The evaluation reports are publically disclosed on the UNEP website.
Programme Level
EA Evaluations: EA Evaluations determine and verify UNEP’s performance in achieving higherlevel results defined in a specific EA. They aim to measure the change that can be attributed to
UNEP’s activities. EA Evaluations utilize monitoring data from Subprogramme Coordinators and
QAS. Findings from EA Evaluations inform the design of subsequent Programmes of Work.
Subprogramme Evaluations: Every Subprogramme undergoes an evaluation in each MTS
(every four years). Subprogramme Evaluations examine results achieved, as well as the
sustainability, efficiency and efficacy of the Subprogramme’s activities. Because the thematic
Subprogrammes transect UNEP’s Divisional structure, coordination and cooperation among
Divisions and Regional Offices, as well as the complementarily of GEF financing, is also
examined and evaluated, along with partnership arrangements with other UN bodies,
intergovernmental organizations, international, regional and national non-governmental
organizations, scientific and environmental centers, private sector organizations, networks and
Impact Evaluations: Impact evaluations are a particularly useful assessment of the overall
performance of a project or programme which measures the impacts and sustainability against
stated objectives. Impact evaluations determine the entire range of effects including on people or
environments beyond the scope of the project or programme. Impact evaluations are often
expensive and are conducted on a selective basis typically two or more years after project’s (or
portfolio of projects’) completion, to evaluate UNEP’s success in sustaining benefits in line with
UNEP’s strategic objectives.
Management Studies: Management studies examine cross-cutting issues of special relevance to
the entire organization. They focus on management processes result in recommendations for
improving management practices, processes and tools. Specific areas for study may include
operational policies, strategies, collaborative and partnership arrangements, funding modalities
and networks.
Quality of project management and supervision reviews: Quality of Project Management and
Supervision Reviews are carried out jointly by the Evaluation Office and QAS to examine and
evaluate the quality of project management and supervision throughout UNEP. The reviews
assess: the adequacy of project management and supervision plans, inputs and processes; outcome
monitoring (results-based project management); the quality and validity of project reporting, risk
assessments and progress reviews; the quality of documentation of project management and
supervision activities; and the adequacy of financial, administrative and other fiduciary aspects of
project implementation and supervision.
Meta-Evaluations and special studies: At the end of each biennium, the Evaluation Office
prepares a Biennial Evaluation Report which evaluates overall organization performance through
the syntheses of results from all types of evaluations conducted over the biennia. The report
presents recommendations and lessons for consideration by UNEP Senior Management. The
report is disseminated to the GC, CPR, Member States and UNEP staff.
Processes of Evaluation
Detailed tasks in conducting an evaluation are described below as a ten-step process. The roles
and responsibilities of different members of the project team and the Evaluation Office are
summarized in Table 13 at the end of this section.
Step 1: Determine the focus of the evaluation - The Evaluation Office decides, with input from
the Project Manager, details such as: the objective and scope of the evaluation; the evaluation
questions and areas of investigations; the evaluation approach and methodology (e.g. desk study,
interviews with key stakeholders, field visits, full participatory evaluation involving meetings and
interviews with direct beneficiaries at a number of different sites); the evaluation’s team and its
qualifications; timing of the evaluation; budget, and; and target audience.
Step 2: Draft the Terms of Reference - The Evaluation Office drafts the Terms of Reference
(ToR) for the evaluation, in consultation with the Project Manager and others, as appropriate. The
ToR sets out expectations and requirements and serves as the basis for any contracts with
evaluators. Evaluation criteria and standards are clearly documented in the ToR. In addition, the
ToR should be limited to what is realistic and feasible within the given time frame and budget in
order to avoid overly ambitious evaluations. While evaluations can point to problems and make
certain recommendations, it is unrealistic to expect that they can solve all issues related to a
project. Click to view an example of ToR for a terminal review of a UNEP project.
Step 3: Draft the budget - Project budgets normally include a provision for a Terminal
Evaluation. Projects with a planned duration of more than three years should also have a budget
for a Mid-Term Evaluation or review. The initial evaluation cost estimate is calculated and
compared with available financial resources. Where available funds fall short, the Project
Manager should attempt to secure additional financial resources, or the scope of the
evaluation/field visits conducted/consultancy fees offered may be reconsidered to bring the cost
estimates in line with available resources. If sufficient resources for the evaluation are not
available, the Evaluation Office will not undertake the evaluation. Such decisions will be
communicated to UNEP’s Senior Management.
The following elements are considered when developing an evaluation budget:
Consultant evaluators’ fees: An estimate is made based of the number of consulting
days required and the daily consultant evaluator’s remuneration rate. In case of certain
complex evaluations, or in joint evaluations, the services of one consultant/evaluator may
not be adequate, and a team of two/three consultants will need to be hired. See Chapter 9:
Financial Management for more details on budgeting for consultants.
Travel: Mode of transport and DSA should be factored in. For an initial budget estimate,
the point of origin for travel by the consultant evaluator(s) is assumed and airfares
Communication and dissemination: Editing, translation (where stakeholders and
partners do not speak / read English), printing, postage, telephone calls, interpreters for
field missions and translation services are included in the estimate.
Step 4: Select the evaluation team - When the ToR and budget are agreed, at least three suitable
consultant evaluators are identified. The Evaluation Office screens and makes the final decision
on the consultant evaluator(s). However, it is general practice for the evaluation staff to ask the
Project Manager and other UNEP colleagues and institutions for suggestions regarding possible
When selecting evaluation consultants, it is important to ensure that:
They have not been involved with the project/programme design or its implementation;
They have the technical and language skills required;
They have the necessary country/regional and evaluation experience.
In the case of complex evaluations for which more than one evaluator is needed, a team leader
will normally be recruited to assume primary responsibility for the evaluation. The duties of the
team leader require a combination of technical skills in the area of evaluation and good
interpersonal, management, writing and presentational skills.
The team leader’s responsibilities include:
Work closely with the Evaluation Office and the Project Manager throughout the process
to ensure expectations are met;
Manage the team to ensure that all conditions of the ToRs are fulfilled;
Oversee preparation of the evaluation work plan;
Oversee data collection, in compliance with the UN Evaluation Group (UNEG) norms
and standards;
Facilitate agreement among the team on findings, conclusions and recommendations;
Prepare and present the draft report, and facilitate feedback;
Produce the final report, amended in response to comments received.
Step 5: Prepare final detailed evaluation cost estimate - Once the evaluation team has been
selected, the agreed consulting fee rates and travel costs are finalized, DSA costs calculated, and
the final evaluation cost estimate prepared by the Evaluation Office. The final cost estimate is
reflected in the terms and conditions specified in the Special Services Agreement (SSA) prepared
by UNON, which forms the contract between UNEP and the evaluation consultant.
Step 6: Organize logistics - The Evaluation Office facilitates logistics, in collaboration with the
Project Manager and any other relevant organizations. It is important to bear in mind that
organizing logistics, including UNON’s preparation of contracts for consultant evaluator(s), can
be very time consuming. Normally, two to three months are required to prepare the evaluation
from the development of ToRs to the inception of the evaluation.
The Project Manager and the FMO are responsible for the following:
Inform project staff and key stakeholders / partners about the evaluation scope, focus and
Assemble key documents for the consultants to review, e.g. progress reports, financial
reports and technical outputs, etc.;
Provide evaluators with contact details for key project staff and stakeholders;
Coordinate with the implementing partner(s) to make logistical arrangements for any
evaluation field visits, e.g. local transportation to access any field sites, and/or set up
meetings with key project stakeholders;
Prepare any letters of invitation that may be required for the consultant evaluator(s) to
obtain a visa/required travel authorization.
Step 7: Brief the evaluation team - The Evaluation Office holds an initial briefing session with
the evaluator(s) and the Project Manager. At the briefing session, the Evaluation Office clarifies
expectations and points out areas requiring special attention. A list of contacts for key issues is
presented to the evaluation team. Throughout the evaluation fieldwork and write-up period, the
Evaluation Office and Project Manager remain in contact with the evaluators at regular intervals.
Table 12: Contact points for communication on key issues during an evaluation
Contact points
Project finances
Project staff, FMO
Technical /substantive
Project staff, Project Manager
Logistical issues
Project staff, Project Manager, UNEP Evaluation Office
Evaluation ToRs, issues and methods
UNEP Evaluation Office
Preparation / submission of evaluation
UNEP Evaluation Office
Contractual issues
UNEP Evaluation Office
Step 8: Receive and review the draft report - Before starting the actual implementation of the
evaluation process, the consultant will submit to the Evaluation Office an Inception Report for
review. The inception report lays the foundations for the main evaluation. Its purpose is to
develop an evaluation framework that includes: i) a review of the quality of project design to help
identify how project design impacts on project implementation and performance; ii) an analysis of
the project’s theory of change, creating a baseline which can be used to assess the actual project
outcomes and impacts (expected and unexpected) during field visits and interviews, and; iii) a
detailed plan for the evaluation process. For larger and more complex evaluations, the consultant
evaluator(s) may also prepare interim reports, for example at the end of each phase or activity.
Interim reports may be presented at stakeholder workshops to feedback and verification of
findings. Interim reporting is particularly useful to prepare stakeholders for potentially
unwelcome findings, and for encouraging interest in the final reports and acceptance of the
Consultant evaluator(s) report primarily to the Evaluation Office, and draft reports are sent to the
Evaluation Office for initial review. The Evaluation Office assesses the usefulness of the lessons
learned and recommendations presented, and it provides feedback on the methodology, soundness
of findings and ratings, and the overall logic of the report.
For Terminal and Mid-term Evaluations, the Evaluation Office rates the reports against specific
criteria to ensure that the conditions of the ToR have been fulfilled, and that the performance
ratings are substantiated. If the draft report meets the Evaluation Office’s minimum quality
standards, the draft report is then shared with the Project Manager and key project stakeholders,
who provide comments focussing, in particular, on any factual errors and (if applicable) verify
that implementation of the recommendations would be feasible. The Evaluation Office collates all
comments on the draft report and provides consolidated feedback to guide the consultant
evaluator(s), and distributes consolidated comments to stakeholders. Where feasible, the
Evaluation Office meets in person with the evaluation team and key stakeholders to discuss the
draft report and its findings.
Step 9: Receive and Approve the Final Report - Once the Evaluation Office is satisfied that the
report conforms to the ToR and all comments have been adequately considered, the final payment
is authorised. A good evaluation report communicates findings, lessons learned and
recommendations clearly, accurately and appropriately, and while being an objective presentation
of the project, ensures that the concerns and comments of the involved parties are correctly
The report elements presented below are standard and applicable to all evaluation reports:
Executive summary: The executive summary should be short, easily digestible, and provide
a summary of the report, including the purpose, context and scope of the evaluation, methodology
used, main findings, lessons and recommendations.
Introduction or background: Provides a brief overview of the evaluated project for
example, project logic and assumptions, status of activities, objective of the evaluation, and
questions to be addressed.
Methodology: This section describes the methods used to collect and analyze information
and data, (use of questionnaires, official data, interviews, focus groups and workshops) and
discusses the limitations and problems encountered during the evaluation such as key people not
available for interview or documents not available.
Findings: This section describes what actual results were achieved in relation to those
intended, positive and negative impacts (intentional and unintentional), and problems and issues
encountered by the project/programme. Root causes of successes and failures should be
documented, and all findings should be supported by evidence.
Conclusions: This section provides as assessment and ratings based on the analyses, using
evaluation criteria and standards defined in the terms of reference. The conclusion provides
answers to questions about whether the project is considered successful or not.
Lessons: This section presents general conclusions that have the potential for wider
application and use in other projects/programmes. The context in which the lessons may be
applied should be clearly specified, and lessons should always state or imply some prescriptive
7. Recommendations: This section presents actionable proposals for stakeholders to rectify
poor existing situations. Each recommendation should be preceded by a clear description of the
issue(s) or problem(s) to be addressed. Recommendations should be feasible to implement within
the timeframe and resources available, commensurate with the available capacities of project team
and partners; specify who should to what and when; and include a measurable performance target.
A trade-off analysis should be included when implementation would require utilizing significant
resources that would otherwise be used for competing purposes.
Annexes: Annexes may include ToR, lists of interviewees, documents reviewed etc.
Dissident views or management responses to the evaluation findings may later be appended in an
Step 10: Dissemination and Disclosure of the Final Report - To ensure transparency, full
disclosure will be a key guiding principle in UNEP evaluations. To that end, all evaluation
reports prepared by the Evaluation Office are made public on the UNEP Website. Immediately
after completion of the evaluation process, key evaluation stakeholders are provided with copies
of the Evaluation Reports and ‘Evaluation Commentaries,’ usually via electronic means.
Table 13: Summary of Roles and Responsibilities in Evaluation
Focal point
 Determines the focus of the evaluation – consults with Project Manager and
Implementation Partners
 Responsible for development of Terms of Reference, consults with Project Manager
and Implementation Partners
 Delivers Terms of Reference (ToR)
 Prepares a Cost Estimate for the evaluation
 Screens potential evaluators from suggestions received and from the Evaluation
Consultant Roster. Makes the final decision on evaluation consultant(s)
 Contracts the evaluation consultant(s)
 Facilitates the completion of the evaluation with the Project Manager, including but
varying by evaluation type: Appropriate logistics, Evaluation team initial briefing,
and Regular contact with evaluator on progress status
 Reviews draft report for quality and accuracy
 Disseminates draft report to key stakeholders for comment and, where possible,
convenes a meeting to discuss the draft evaluation report with key stakeholders
 Receives and reviews all comments from key stakeholders on the draft evaluation
 Provides consolidated feedback from key stakeholders on the draft report to the
consultant evaluator(s)
 Reviews final report for quality and accuracy
 Authorizes final payment once satisfied with Final Report.
 Determines final ratings for the project
 Prepares draft implementation plan for recommendations (if applicable)
 Disseminates the final report
 Discloses the report on the Evaluation Office web site
 Tracks implementation of evaluation recommendations
 Thinks about the focus of the evaluation in close collaboration with Evaluation
Office and the Implementing Partner
 Provides input to Evaluation Office on the draft Evaluation Terms of Reference
 Verifies the budget allocation is correct and available for the type of evaluation
required – liaises with FMO on this matter
 Provides input to Evaluation Office for their development of an initial cost estimate
 Suggests a possible consultant evaluators for the Evaluation Office selection
 Provides comments on the draft evaluation report focusing on errors of fact or
conclusions / findings based on such errors
 Assists Evaluation Office in identifying the recipients list for the final report
 Completes the draft implementation plan if recommendations are made for the
project to implement – within two weeks of receipt
 Provides progress updates on compliance with the evaluation implementation plan.
(Three six-monthly follow-up reviews)
on Partner
 Ensures that information is made available upon request to: Project Manager,
Contracted evaluation consultant(s), and Evaluation Office via Project Manager
 Assists with evaluation logistics if receiving an evaluation mission
 Comments on the draft Evaluation ToRs to ensure the focus
 Comments on the Draft Evaluation report and sends comments to the Evaluation
Focal point
Checks compliance with corporate standards
Clears that budget is available for the appropriate evaluation
Clears that budget is available for selected consultant(s)
Checks the financial information presented in the evaluation report at draft and final
Carries out the evaluation in accordance with the ToR
Liaises with Evaluation Office and Project Manager on progress
Delivers draft Report in accordance with contract and ToRs
Revises draft evaluation report after consideration of consolidated comments from all
parties (provided by Evaluation Office)
 Delivers Final Report in accordance with contract and ToRs.
Management Responses and Recommendations
Following the completion of a formal project or programme evaluation, management considers
the recommendations contained therein, and the responsible officer (e.g., a Project Manager)
prepares a management response and an implementation plan for accepted recommendations.
Findings from EA and Subprogramme evaluations are discussed and approved by Senior
Management, who is also responsible for the management response. Any discordant views are
appended to the evaluation report and fully disclosed to the public.
For each recommendation, an implementation plan should be specified: whether it has been
accepted; how the recommendation will be implemented; who is responsible for its
implementation; the expected completion date; and what actions have already been taken (if any).
Where a recommendation is rejected, an explanation must be provided as to why the
recommendation cannot be implemented, and where appropriate an alternative course of action
should be specified.
The Evaluation Office uses a compliance procedure to track the progress of recommendation
implementation compliance. Project Managers are required to report the status of
recommendation implementation to the Evaluation Office at six month intervals (September and
March). The Evaluation Office makes regular compliance status reports to the Executive Director
and these are routinely discussed with Division Directors.
The Evaluation Office uses the following classifications when assessing the progress of
recommendation implementation compliance:
Fully implemented = Compliant
Partially implemented = Partially Compliant
Not implemented = Not Compliant
No further action required
Recommendations are kept ‘open’ until they are deemed to be ‘Compliant’ or until three
assessment points have been completed (whichever the sooner) at which point they are formally
Table 14: Types of compliance status in implementation of evaluation recommendations
Compliance Status
Open & Not Compliant
Open & Partially Compliant
Closed & Compliant
Closed & Partially
Closed & Not Compliant
Closed & No further action
The project has made no substantive progress in implementing the
recommendation and less than three ‘compliance reviews’ for the
recommendation have been completed by the Evaluation Office
The project has made some progress in implementing the recommendation
but it is not yet complete. Less than three ‘compliance reviews’ for the
recommendation have been completed by the Evaluation Office
The project have fully implemented the actions required by the
The project has made some progress in implementing the recommendation
but it is not yet complete. Three ‘compliance reviews’ for the
recommendation have been completed by the Evaluation Office.
The project has made no substantive progress in implementing the
recommendation and three ‘compliance reviews’ for the recommendation
have been completed by the Evaluation Office
The Evaluation Office has closed the recommendation. The need to
implement the recommendation has been overtaken by events or changed
project circumstances.
It is important to note that when a recommendation reaches the third assessment point (i.e. after a
maximum of 18 months) it will be automatically “closed”, and the recommendation
implementation status (‘compliant’, ‘partially compliant’ or ‘not compliant’) will be permanently
recorded with no further changes to the status allowed. If the Evaluation Office does not receive
an updated implementation plan prior to the compliance assessment process, any remaining
recommendations are ‘closed’ with the level of compliance unchanged from the previous
assessment point.
11. Project Completion and Closure
All projects have a definite end and must be formally closed. It is the responsibility of Project
Manager to complete the project according to the schedule. A project may be brought to
premature closure (See Chapter 5, Section G: Project Revisions) if the project is no longer viable,
or the business case of the project is no longer valid. Regardless of the reason for closure, the
Project Manager is accountable for finalizing all administrative procedures for project completion
and closure, and should work with the FMO to complete the necessary project revisions and to
ensure compliance with the Financial Regulations and Rules of the United Nations.
During this stage of project cycle, the Project Manager needs to first confirm completion of the
project activities and outputs; to provide the FMO with the necessary information and
documentation to finalize the process for administrative completion of the project using Project
Completion Revision; and then, as a final step, finalize the financial and administrative closure
of the project with a Project Closing Revision. It should be noted that project completion is a
prerequisite for project closure. FMOs are responsible for preparing Project Completion Revision
and Project Closing Revision, while Project Managers are accountable for submission of
necessary documentation and recovery of any unspent cash advances. Figure 14 is an illustration
of the overall process.
Figure 17: Process of Project Completion and Closure
STEP 1 (by project
STEP 2 (by FMO with info
from PM)
STEP 3 (by FMO)
of the project
administrative completion
of the project
administrative closure
of the project
Confirming Completion of the Project
A project is considered completed when all planned activities and outputs listed in the project
document have been delivered. If the project is implemented by partners, the partners should
notify the Project Manager when they complete the delivery of planned activities and/or outputs.
In case the project has a steering committee, the Project Manager should obtain confirmation of
project completion from the project steering committee.
Once the Project Manager receives notification from the partners, (s)he needs to request the
partners to submit supporting documents also to the responsible FMO, and to repay any unspent
funds. The documents should be prepared in accordance with the terms of conditions of the
relevant legal instrument and project document. Unless otherwise specified in the legal instrument,
the partner needs to submit:
Final Report, which summarizes the lessons learned, accomplishments, costs, deliverables,
and activities of the project.
Final Expenditure Statement;
Final Inventory of NEE, if applicable;
Final Audited Statement of Accounts, if applicable. Whenever required by the legal
instrument (normally if the project budget for the partner exceeds USD 200,000), partners
must submit Final Audited Statement of Accounts for certification by a recognized firm
of public accountants. If the partner is a government agency, a final statement of accounts
can be certified by an authorized signatory on its behalf, and the audit report from the
government auditor may be accepted.
For projects in which UNDP is providing “Administrative Services and Reimbursable Support
Service Arrangements,” it is recommended that a financial statement of cumulative expenditures
be obtained from the UNDP Country Office concerned in order to facilitate the process of
reconciling the receivable account with the Inter-Office Voucher (IOV) received from UNDP
The Project Manager should also liaise with the Evaluation Office to initiate process for the
Terminal Evaluation of the project. The Terminal Evaluation report is one of the requirements in
project closure. For detailed guidance on evaluation and relevant process, see Chapter 10:
Administrative Completion Revision of the Project
Note: The completion revision described below is required when all the project milestones
have been achieved, and activities and outputs delivered, but the Terminal Evaluation has
not been completed or any of the reports required for project closure have not yet been
received. If everything required to close the project is available, the project can be financially and
administratively closed by a ‘Project Closing Revision’ (see Section C below) without the need
for a ‘Project Completion Revision’.
For administrative completion, the Project Manager should send the Final Report to the
responsible FMO, and request the FMO to initiate the process for Project Completion Revision,
which involves approval of financial reports and substantive reports along with receipt of any
unspent cash advances. If available, the Project Completion Revision should also be accompanied
by: the revised budget, the Budget Variances (for GEF projects); and the Cash Statement (for
GEF projects).
1. The responsible Division Director or Regional Director approves the Project Completion
Revision of the project and signs the Project Completion Revision Routing Slip for
2. The FMO submits the Project Completion Revision along with a Project Action Sheet to
Projects Reports and Databases Unit (PRDB) of OfO (Distribution Sheet is not required);
3. Based on the documents submitted by the FMO, OfO verifies that allotments are in line
with project income and that expenditure has not exceeded allotments;
4. Chief of OfO authorizes the Project Completion Revision by signing the Project Action
The progress of the completion revision can be tracked using the Project Completion Revision
Routing Slip (also called “Blue File”).
Once the Project Completion Revision is finalized, the FMO should inform the Project Manager
that the project is administratively completed, and upload a copy of signed the Project Action
Sheet into PIMS with accompanying documents listed above. When all required documents are
uploaded, PIMS will automatically update the project status as technically “completed” and show
“actual completion date”. At a later date, the financial completion will be recorded in IMIS
(through recording of the final expenditure or audit reconciliation). Projects that remain open
beyond the completion date will automatically show in the project-at-risk system in PIMS.
The Project Completion Revision should show an "expected closing date.” The actual date of
completion is entered as the official completion date of the project (not the date when the Project
Closing Revision is signed). Any expenditure made against the project budget after the
completion date will not be paid; however, expenditures incurred or committed before the
completion date, but submitted after the completion date may be paid.
Financial and Administrative Closure of the Project
Once the project is completed, a project can be closed by a Project Closing Revision {Process for
financial closure of projects}. Working closely with the Project Manager, the FMO should ensure
that all necessary documents are prepared for Project Closing Revision. Following the process
initiated upon operational completion of the project (see Section A of this chapter), the Project
Manager should obtain the Terminal Evaluation Report from the Evaluation Office for Project
Closing Revision. A project cannot be closed before the Terminal Evaluation is undertaken.
Various donors may have different requirements for project closure. For GEF related projects,
please consult the GEF specialist within your Division.
The Project Closing Revision requires following documents:
Revised Budget;
Schedule explaining variances between original and final budget;
Cash Statement;
Final Expenditure Statement from partner;
Final Inventory of NEE from partner;
Signed Inventory Transfer Agreement from partner;
Final Audited Statement of Accounts from partner, if applicable;
Copy of project deliverables (e.g., books published, report developed from a scientific
study), if applicable;
Final Report from the Project Manager; and
Terminal Evaluation Report from the Evaluation Office.
The progress of the Project Closing Revision is tracked using the Project Closing Revision
Routing Slip (also called “Green File”) and shall be accompanied by the following actions:
1. The FMO initiates the process for disposal of equipment purchased under the project, and
prepares the Inventory Transfer Agreement to be signed by the partner;
2. The Project Manager and the FMO accept all final reports submitted by the partners,
including the signed Inventory Transfer Agreement;
3. The FMO reviews all financial transactions reported by the partner, including receivables,
payables and obligations;
4. Based on the review, the FMO raises a funding document in IMIS and signs the Project
Closing Revision Routing Slip which certifies expenditures for the project;
5. The Budget and Financial Management Service (BFMS) within UNON ASU verifies that
all expenditures are correct and there are no outstanding receivables or payables in IMIS;
6. Projects Reports and Databases Unit (PRDB) of OfO verifies that expenditures are
consistent with allotments in IMIS and that all reports have been received, and updates
IMIS with closure information;
7. The responsible Division Director approves the closing revision and signs the Closing
Decision Sheet;
8. The Chief of OfO authorizes UNON to record the final expenditures and close the project
by signing the Project Action Sheet and the Inventory Transfer Agreement.
Once the closing revision is finalized, the FMO informs the Project Manager, and record the
status in PIMS with the following documents:
Copy of signed Project Action Sheet;
Final Report;
Inventory Transfer Agreement signed (see Chapter 9: Financial Management on
equipment management);
Final Audited Statement of Accounts from partner, if applicable;
Cash statement indicating return of unspent funds;
Schedule explaining variances between original and final budget; and
Terminal Evaluation Report.
Once all the required document are uploaded, PIMS updates the project status as “closed” and
show the “date of closure” which is same as the end date in IMIS. Once the project is recorded
“completed” based on the process above, PIMS will send monthly reminder to the project
manager for closure.
A project should be closed no more than 24 months after the date of operational completion
or project termination. Once the project is closed, no additional financial transactions affecting
the final status of the project accounts may be entered in IMIS. If the partner reports additional
activities and/or expenditures amounting to more than the contingency un-liquidated obligation of
USD 10,000 after the approval of closing revision, such activities and/or expenditures may not be
paid or reimbursed.
Legal documents (PCAs and SSFAs) contracted with partners to facilitate execution of a project
should not have an expiry date which is the same/similar as/ too close to the project end date. A
subproject or legal agreement cannot remain open when the main project has been closed. In
consultation with the FMOs, Project Managers need to review contractual requirements and
clauses of relevant legal instruments in terms of project termination and closure, and ensure all
legal instruments of the projects are closed in accordance with the project closure.
In the case of GEF projects, the GEF Coordination Office submits regular reports to the GEF
Trustee on the closure and cancellation of projects. The FMOs, through the Closing Revision,
inform GEF-CO of any such events.
[What if there is unspent balance from partner?]
It is the responsibility of the Project Manager to ensure that partners have settled all outstanding
financial and reporting obligations before project closure. If any unspent balance remains, the
responsible Project Manager, or the FMO with the Project Manager’s consent, requests the
partner to return the unspent funds, copying the Chief of OfO Contributions Unit. Alternatively,
the FMO, with the Project Manager’s consent, may request the Chief of OfO Contributions Unit
to send a request to the partner, in which case the FMO should provide the following information
to OfO:
Project title;
Payee name and third party ID;
Trust fund;
IMIS project ID;
Amount of the expected receipt;
Receivable number (RCTP) ID and IMIS project number to which the receipt should be
Reason for the transfer (e.g. return of unspent funds advanced to the project).
In the case of GEF projects, all unspent funds are returned to the GEF Trustee, through a system
established in the GEF Coordination Office.
Process for Refund to Donors (Project Closure)`
Process for unapplied contributions reconciliation
[What if a partner fails to submit reports?]
If a partner fails to comply with any project closure requirements such as delivery of the Final
Report and/or Final Audited Statement of Account within 60 days from the project completion
date, or 180 days from a no-cost extension of the legal instrument, the Project Managers should
send follow-up reminders to the partner on quarterly basis for a period of one year and keep the
FMO informed. Such reminders should constitute written evidence (e.g. emails and letters)
showing that all possible steps have been taken to obtain such reports (e.g. escalating the issue to
supervisor or senior managers). At the end of this one-year period, the legal instrument is no
longer valid and the project must be closed. In special circumstances, and subject to the approval
of Division Directors, this may impede future partnership agreements with the organization which
failed to submit reports. If necessary, a request for write-off can be submitted to close the project
as described above.
Write-off process
UNEP may write-off a receivable amount when it has transferred funds to a partner and the
partner is unable to account for the funds. Before requesting for a "write-off", the programme
manager should create an audit trail testifying of its due diligence in trying to either make the
partner comply with the contract terms, or alternatively recover the cash advanced and not
reported for. The audit trail should be made of, at least, a written reminder every 3 months, over a
period of 18 months, of the partner's obligations, stating UNEP's expectations vis-à-vis the
partner. The wording as well as the seniority of the signatory of the reminder should escalate
gradually to reach at the last stage the black listing of the partner signed by the Chief of OfO.
Based on this audit trail, the programme manager can request for an ad-hoc offset, in case
sufficient evidence has been gathered to be convinced that the output has been delivered but not
reported for. In case it instead appears that the cash advanced has been misappropriated, the audit
trail will serve as supporting document to request for a write-off. The write-off will consist in the
offset against a corporate reserve. The write-off is governed by the regulation 6.4, Rule 106.8 and
106.9 of the UN Financial Rules and Regulations which states that the “Secretary-General may,
after full investigation, authorize the writing-off of losses of cash, stores and other assets,
provided that a statement of all such amounts written off shall be submitted to the Board of
Auditors with the accounts.” Where necessary, the FMO can obtain guidance from the Chief of
OfO on the appropriate procedures for write-offs.
[What if a closed project needs to be amended?]
If an amendment needs to be made to a closed project, the Project Manager should consult the
FMO and obtain permission from the Chief of OfO who is responsible for approving Closing
Project Revisions. In this case, a “Revision Note to File” should be prepared as an integral part of
an amended Closing Project Revision. At the discretion of the Chief of OfO, the project may be
re-opened in IMIS and PIMS to reflect the approved amendment, after which the project will be
closed again.
1. Key Terms and Definitions
The following definitions are those used by UNEP in developing a results-based PoW. The
definitions are based on the OECD/DAC Glossary of Key Terms in Evaluation and Results-Based
Management (2002).
Actions taken or work performed through which inputs, such as funds,
technical assistance and other types of resources, are mobilized to produce
specific outputs
Executing Partner (GEF)
In GEF-funded projects, a partner directly managing the project, executing
project activities, monitoring project progress, sub-contracting, managing
project staff and funds, and carrying out other project management functions
Accomplishments (EAs)
The outcomes or results approved in the MTS and Programme of Work
under each Subprogramme to which UNEP has committed. This is the level
at which indicators measure success
Positive and negative, primary and secondary long-term effects produced by
a development intervention, directly or indirectly, intended or unintended
Implementing Partner
In GEF-funded projects, implementing partners (like UNEP) are tasked with
project identification, preparation of project concept, appraisal, preparation
of detailed project document, project approval and start-up, project
supervision, and project completion and evaluation
Implementing Partner
An external entity to which UNEP delegates responsibility for the
implementation of programme/projects and provide funds for this purpose
based on a legal agreement concluded by the interested parties
Indirect and support
These are costs incurred by the Organization that cannot be traced
unequivocally to the delivery of projects and activities to implement the
Programme of Work. They include management and administration costs
(both post and non-post items); costs associated with representational
activities and discussions with, and intelligence gathering on areas
considered of importance to, recipient governments, donors and other
partners; and costs for staff funded from the Environment Fund
The financial, human and material resources used for the development
Lead Division
The Division assigned to deliver a given Subprogramme on behalf of
UNEP. Lead Divisions are responsible for providing intellectual leadership
in achieving programmatic coherence in the design and implementation of
activities across UNEP
Managing Division
The Managing Division for a given project is the Division where the project
manager sits. The Managing Division is responsible for delivering the
project outputs and outcomes.
A milestone is a scheduled event signifying the progression or completion
of work towards a project output and ultimately the project outcome.
Milestones are key events that provide a measure of progress and a target
for the project team to aim at.
The likely or achieved short-term and medium-term effects of an
intervention’s outputs
The products, capital goods and services which result from a development
intervention; may also include changes resulting from the intervention
which are relevant to the achievement of outcomes
The degree to which a development intervention or a development partner
operates according to specific criteria/standard/guidelines or achieves results
in accordance with stated goals and plans.
Performance indicator
A variable that allows the verification of changes in the development
intervention or shows results relative to what was planned.
A system for assessing performance of development interventions against
stated goals
Performance monitoring
A continuous process of collecting and analyzing data to compare how well
a project, programme or policy is being implemented against expected
PoW Outputs
These are the outputs approved in the Programme of Work under each EA.
They are the products and services that UNEP is to deliver to achieve the
The planning and management tool that shows how inputs are converted
into project outputs and outcomes through a specific set of activities
managed by specific staff, using a specific method or design. Projects are
linked to one or more specific Programme of Work outputs under a given
Project Manager
A staff member of UNEP assigned by the Division managing the project to
have overall responsibility for implementing the project on behalf of UNEP
The outcome or impact (intended or unintended, positive and/or negative) of
a development intervention.
Management (RBM)
A management strategy focusing on performance and achievement of
outputs, outcomes and impacts.
The staff members assigned to each Subprogramme in support of the Lead
Division Director. Subprogramme Coordinators facilitate and support
Divisions and Regional Offices in the coherent design and planning for
implementation of projects across the organization, leading to the delivery
of the PoW outputs and ultimately contributing to the delivery of EAs for
each Subprogramme.
Refers to the temporary halt of project activities and financial
disbursements. Written notification between The Parties should take place.
Re-initiation of activities should also be communicated in writing.
Task Manager (GEF)
a Project Manager implementing GEF-funded projects
Refers to the termination of project activities before the expected
completion date and before all activities take place. Written notification
between The Parties is essential and should be done at least 3 months in
advance on intended termination date to allow for the orderly conclusion of
activities and withdrawal of personnel.
(Divisional and Regional)
The plans that show the full set of projects and activities, with budgets,
across all Subprogrammes for which a Division or Regional Office is
accountable. These workplans are a consolidation of a Division’s or
Regional Office’s work based on its contribution to the portfolio of projects
to deliver the results in the MTS and respective PoWs. Workplans should
include the post and non-post use of resources from the Environment Fund
and Extra budgetary sources.
2. Templates
[Planning Documents]
Programme Framework Template
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=476&Itemid=521 )
UNEP Project Preparation Proposal Template
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=479&Itemid=521 )
UNEP Project Document Template
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=478&Itemid=521 )
UNEP Project Document Supplement / Project Revision Template
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=480&Itemid=521 )
UNEP project budget format
[Legal instruments]
Letter of Intent (LOI)
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=466&Itemid=521 )
Exchange of Letters (EOL)
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=467&Itemid=521 )
Letter of Agreement (LOA)
Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)
Project Cooperation Agreement (PCA)
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=469&Itemid=521 )
Small-Scale Funding Agreement (SSFA)
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=471&Itemid=521 )
Donor Agreement
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=459&Itemid=521 )
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=482&Itemid=521 )
[Financial Documents]
Cash Advance Statement
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=457&Itemid=521 )
Expenditure Report
Audit Report
Final Audited Statement of Accounts
Inventory of Non-Expendable Equipment
Project Action Sheet
Decision Sheet
Blue File: Routing Slip for Project Completion Revision
Green File: Routing Slip for Project Closing Revision
Pink File: Routing slip for new projects
3. References
[Roles and Mandates of UNEP]
UN General Assembly resolution 2997 (XXVII) 1972 - Institutional and financial arrangements for
international environmental cooperation
202997_XXVII.doc )
Bali Strategic Plan for Technology Support and Capacity-building
( http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=417&Itemid=521 )
Cartagena Package 2002
Malmö Ministerial Declaration 2000
Nairobi Declaration on the Role and Mandate of UNEP
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=425&Itemid=521 )
Delivering as One: Report of the Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel
[Strategies and Policies]
UNEP Medium Term Strategy (MTS) for 2010-2013
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=446&Itemid=521 )
UNEP policy paper “Moving Forward with Strategic Presence 2010-2013”
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=424&Itemid=521 )
UNEP External Communications Strategy 2010-2013
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=444&Itemid=521 )
UNEP Science Strategy 2011-2013
[Programme Design and Implementation]
Integration of GEF Operations in UNEP: Accountability, structure and functions of the restructured GEF,
Integration of GEF Operations in UNEP: The revised project cycle of UNEP/GEF 2011
Operational Guidelines for Implementing the Accountability Framework for Internally Executed GEF
Projects, 2012
UNEP Strategic Framework 2010-2011
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=455&Itemid=521 )
UNEP Strategic Framework 2012-2013
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=485&Itemid=521 )
UNEP Programme of Work 2010-2011: biennial programme and support budget
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=452&Itemid=521 )
UNEP Programme of Work 2012-2013: biennial programme and support budget
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=451&Itemid=521 )
UNEP Programme Accountability Framework
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=450&Itemid=521 )
UNEP Risk Analysis Table
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=481&Itemid=521 )
[Monitoring and Evaluation]
GEF Monitoring and Evaluation Policy
UNEP Monitoring Policy
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=448&Itemid=521 )
UNEP Monitoring Plan
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=447&Itemid=521 )
UNEP Evaluation Policy
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=443&Itemid=521 )
[Budget and Finance]
Secretary General’s bulletin on Programme Planning, the Programme Aspects of the Budget, the
Monitoring of Implementation and the Methods of Evaluation
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=439&Itemid=521 )
Guidelines on Cooperation between the United Nations and the Business Sector
(http://intranet.unep.org/index.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_download&gid=421&Itemid=521 )
Administrative instruction on Property management and inventory control at UN Headquarters
Quarterly Project Expenditure for (UN) Cooperating Organizations
Quarterly Project Expenditure for (non-UN) Supporting Organizations
Final inventory of Non Expendable Equipment
Financial Regulations and Rules of the United Nations
United Nations Procurement Manual (http://www.un.org/depts/ptd/pdf/pmrev6.pdf)
Transfer of equipment
[Partnership and Legal Instruments]
UNEP Partnership Policy and Procedures
UNEP Guidance for using Standard Legal Agreements
[Human Resources]
Administrative Instruction on the Staff Selection System (ST/AI/2010/3)
Administrative Instruction on Administration of Temporary Appointments (ST/AI/2010/4)
UNEP Guidelines for Project Related Recruitment
UNEP Publishing Policy (http://www.unep.org/policy/Pub_Policy_SecondEdition.pdf)
UNEP Web Governance Document