[from AusAID website, 11 May 2012]
Foreign Minister Bob Carr has announced the establishment of an Independent Evaluation Committee (IEC) to strengthen the independence and credibility of the work of the Office of Development Effectiveness (ODE).
Chaired by Jim Adams—a former Vice President of the World Bank—the Committee will oversee ODE in assessing the effectiveness and evaluating the impact of the Australian aid program.
In its policy statement, An Effective Aid Program for Australia, the Government committed to establishing an IEC in response to a recommendation from last year’s Independent Review of Aid Effectiveness. This is part of the Government’s commitment to improve the aid program’s evaluation function in order to deliver more efficient and effective aid.
The IEC will be an advisory body with a whole of government mandate, providing independent expert evaluation advice to the Development Effectiveness Steering Committee, which provides advice to government on Overseas Development Assistance priorities and effectiveness.
It will also oversee the work of ODE in planning, commissioning, managing and delivering a high quality evaluation program. The IEC will provide advice on ODE’s evaluation strategy and work plan. It will also oversee ODE’s preparation of an annual evaluation summary and quality assurance report.
The IEC will meet four times a year, with the first meeting of the IEC scheduled for June 2012.
Who is on the IEC?
The Independent Evaluation Committee has three external members (including the chair) and one senior AusAID representative. External members are appointed by the Minister for Foreign Affairs, while the Director General of AusAID appoints the AusAID representative. Given the IEC’s whole of government mandate, a representative from the Department of Finance and Deregulation will be invited to attend meetings as an observer.
The external members are Jim Adams (Chair), Professor Patricia Rogers and Dr Wendy Jarvie. They contribute a mix of solid international development and aid effectiveness experience, high-level evaluation expertise and strong public sector experience to the IEC.
How will the IEC work?
The IEC will oversee the work program of ODE and reports to the DESC. The terms of reference for the IEC set out its mandate, roles and responsibilities. The terms of reference were endorsed by the DESC before being approved by the Minister.