Determining Priorities and Sequencing Evaluation Work
Workplans are not developed in isolation, but in the context of an on-going programme of evaluation work and temporal variations in available financial and human resources. These factors are critical in converting an evaluation ‘wish list’ into a feasible operation work plan. From a consultation process, a ‘long list’ of possible evaluations is collated and the available budget / funding required for each evaluation is specified or estimated. Budgets for project evaluations usually reside within project budgets. The allocation of available financial resources across higher level / strategic evaluations requires careful consideration as resources must be sufficient to deliver high quality evaluations in a form that promotes use by their target audiences.
Human resource availability is a principal limiting factor in the evaluation plan; the volume of evaluation work exceeds the available capacity to complete it. Smaller projects with a total operational budget of less than 1 million dollars (US) are excluded from consideration to avoid deploying a large proportion of evaluation staff time on many evaluations of small-scale initiatives (unless deemed to be of key strategic importance to UN Environment). Priorities must be clearly set. A number of principles / criteria are applied to score and rank the prospective evaluation activities in the rolling work plan. The 'attractiveness' and 'feasibility' scoring criteria include: