The CSSF is a global fund that provides programmatic support to countries at risk of conflict or instability. It is the only government fund to deliver a range of HMG priorities as well as providing support to security, defence, peacekeeping, peacebuilding and stabilisation activity. The CSSF annual spend is close to £1.3 billion around half of which is discretionary programmes, and the Fund has expanded to deliver around 90 programmes across a range of challenging, sensitive and high-risk environments.
The CSSF has purposefully taken a decentralised approach to Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL), and has established a variety of MEL contracts to support it. However it is recognised that existing systems and capacity to perform MEL functions vary greatly across the network (both across departments and agencies, and across programmes and portfolios) and comprehensive investment in MEL capacity is required, commensurate with the Fund’s size, risk and ambition level to deliver against HMG strategies, that address the demands of decision-makers and programme managers.
LTS and Integrity are supporting the set-up of a sustainable and embedded global MEL framework designed to bring the CSSF to a level of evaluability, as well as enabling rigorous evidence-based programme decisions. LTS and Integrity will assess the existing MEL infrastructure and the capacity and capability across the CSSF network to deliver and embed a global MEL framework. Bespoke training, priorities and activities will be identified with an emphasis on understanding how the CSSF uses evidence and learns as an organisation.
The overall contract focuses on MEL strengthening in 3 main areas (interlocking): Workstream 1 (WS1) – Systems, Tools, and Processes: Strengthen and/or create result management systems, tools, and processes centrally to provide a framework and supporting mechanisms through which results across the Fund can be synthesised, supporting wider MEL functions for flexible and adaptive programme management. The scope of these systems encompasses monitoring, evaluation and learning for the purposes of accountability, and conflict and gender sensitive, adaptive programme management in FCAS. The contracted Supplier will implement an extensive systems assessment to identify stakeholder requirements and gaps across these three functions (inception phase). In addition, the Supplier will help the JFU embed these systems into the CSSF’s accountability and reporting structures.
Workstream 2 (WS2) – Capacity and Capability Support: Bring the capacity of all programme teams to a level to capably produce, manage, and communicate results in a credible, timely and harmonised manner, aligned with the systems and processes developed in WS1, through a comprehensive and blended approach to learning and development for MEL. This workstream will aim at raising minimum standards of capacity and capability for MEL functions across all programmes.
Workstream 3 (WS3) – Knowledge & Learning: Develop innovative mechanisms to support the generation and sharing of knowledge and learning for effective, flexible and adaptable interventions in FCAS in collaboration with the CSSF network, HMG departments (including policy colleagues) and the SU. This workstream will generate and consolidate Fund-level evidence, in order to 1) promote understanding of what works in FCAS across the network and beyond, and 2) to translate that knowledge into enhanced programme effectiveness and future policy development through evidence-based programme adaptation and policy decision-making.