Monitoring and evaluation
Who should be involved?
The cross-cutting nature of adaptation means that multiple actors from different sectors and administrative levels are involved in its implementation. It follows that tracking progress of these activities needs to engage multiple actors and stakeholders who hold information on the implementation activities. Deciding who takes overall responsibility for MRE, clarifying the roles of different actors and establishing mechanisms to coordinate with different actors across sectors and administrative levels are essential for effective MRE.
Overall responsibility for MRE of adaptation is usually given to one organisation or actor, such as a ministry, environmental agency or a working group bringing together multiple actors. This does not necessarily mean that the responsible actor implements MRE on their own, but rather that they are responsible for coordinating the process and reporting the results. Depending on the governance structures and administrative traditions of a country, the body responsible for MRE of adaptation can be the same as the body coordinating adaptation policies more generally at national level or an actor independent from those responsible for planning and implementing adaptation policies. On the one hand, a close connection between MRE and policy development can for example facilitate learning and uptake of MRE findings in policy development. On the other hand, in some countries independence may be desirable especially for evaluation activities.
A key part of this responsibility is to actively coordinate with relevant stakeholders who hold useful information for MRE. The first step is to reflect on the purpose of MRE and consider whose input is needed to the answer questions set out for MRE. For example broad engagement of sector ministries and experts in public agencies and research communities can provide highly relevant information on how different sectors are progressing with implementing adaptation policies. If the aim is to understand how implementation of adaptation policies on the ground is contributing to reduction in vulnerability and increased adaptive capacity, it may be important to engage more broadly local actors who are engaged with the implementation activities.
Mechanisms are needed for engaging the views of actors from different sectors and administrative levels, in order to facilitate coordination, communication and learning in the MRE process. Working groups can provide such platforms but are by no means the only way to engage stakeholders. The needs and levels of stakeholder engagement desired for MRE also influence the selection of MRE methods.