The Global Fund's new Partnership Strategy includes an accountability framework to enable the Global Fund and its partners to assess the effectiveness of their partnerships by measuring the ability to deliver results on the ground.
The Global Fund Board approved the new Partnership Strategy at its meeting last month in Addis Ababa.
The development of the new strategy is in response to a key finding in the Global Fund Five-Year Evaluation, which stated that that "while the Global Fund partnership model has opened up space for the participation of a broad range of stakeholders and set a new standard for inclusiveness and participation, the roles and responsibilities of the Global Fund Secretariat, Global Fund Board and Global Fund partners have not always been clear, strategic or systematic." (GFO reported on the results of the Five-Year Evaluation in Issue 106, available at www.aidspan.org/gfo.)
The Partnership Strategy, a 37-page document, is a mix of (a) what has been done, (b) what is currently being done, (c) what the barriers and challenges are, (d) what should be done, and (e) what the Global Fund plans to do.
With respect to what the Global Fund plans to do, the following are some of the highlights:
- The Global Fund will provide better support for the implementing constituencies on its Board to promote greater participation in deliberations and decision-making.
- The Global Fund will attempt to strengthen its governance ties with UN agencies and other key international partners to enhance joint collaboration.
- To promote greater engagement of civil society at country level, the Global Fund will (a) update and promote guidelines to ensure that the inclusion of vulnerable populations in CCMs is understood; (b) support civil society networks to build capacity; and (c) develop an accountability structure to measure the extent to which civil society representatives on CCMs are meeting their responsibilities.
- The Global Fund will complete a number of activities already underway to enhance access to technical assistance (TA) - including a joint public database (with UNAIDS, Roll Back Malaria and Stop TB) that captures useful feedback on TA; an analysis with technical partners on the cost of services to provide TA; and work with bilateral and multilateral partners to clearly define roles and responsibilities related to TA provision.
- Also on TA, the Global Fund will conduct, with its partners, targeted studies at country level on planning, accessing and financing TA. A separate paper on TA provision will be drafted for consideration by the Global Fund Board. This paper will seek to address the role of the Global Fund in the facilitation, funding and utilisation of TA by countries.
- The Global Fund will develop more systematic, streamlined, coherent and consistent communication flows with each group of stakeholders.
- The Global Fund will complete a review, already underway, of the role of Fund Portfolio Managers (FPMs) in country-level partnerships, with a view to improving and standardising communications with country partners.
As part of the accountability framework, called the Partnership Performance Framework, the Global Fund has identified seven service delivery areas (SDAs), has established an objective for each SDA, and has provided 10 indicators to measure performance.
The ten indicators are as follows:
- Percentage of requests for funding to the Global Fund that succeed
- Percentage of successful rounds-based proposals that had been peer reviewed
- Percentage of countries with costed TA plans developed in coordination with partners
- Percentage of Global Fund grants whose ratings have improved or remained level compared to the previous year
- Percentage of CCMs that have implemented (in an inclusive manner) at least 50% of planned activities with documented participation of the entire CCM
- Global Fund disbursement rate during the past year
- Percentage of grants that are aligned to the national M&E
- Percentage of grants that include distinct Community Systems Strengthening (CSS) and Health Systems Strengthening (HSS) elements
- Percentage of countries that undertake and publish joint annual reviews
- Percentage of countries with agreed national health / disease strategies that include assessments of key HSS elements (procurement, human resources, finance, M&E), gender and vulnerable populations.
The Partnership Performance Framework is designed to measure the collaborative efforts of all Global Fund partnerships.
Coordination of the Partnership Strategy will be the responsibility of the Partnership Unit in the Secretariat's External Relations and Partnership Cluster. The Secretariat will develop an implementation plan for the Partnership Strategy by March 2010. The implementation plan will define the roles and responsibilities of all partners and the time frame for implementation, and will detail how the plan will be monitored, evaluated and reported. The implementation plan will also elaborate on the role of the CCM in strengthening the partnerships at country level and strengthening the role of civil society within the partnerships.
The Partnership Strategy is contained in the "Report of the Policy and Strategy Committee Attachments 1-4," which should shortly be available at www.theglobalfund.org/en/board/meetings/twentieth/documents. The Strategy is in Attachment 2.