Concept Paper: The Development Monitoring Center

PHONE-BASED MONITORING SYSTEM FOR INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN, RECONSTRUCTION & DEVELOPMENT ASSISTANCE IN AFGHANISTAN
January 2011

© International Development Innovations

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January 2011

TADBEER Consulting. We hope that you are as excited in reading this proposal as we are in writing it. intervention-wide and global learning and improvement. For every one dollar invested in this concept. will represent the single greatest increase in aid effectiveness since the Paris Declaration. potentially. As such. violence. LLC Mohammed Mohammed Ehsan Zia Chief Executive. development assistance would itself reflect principles of effective and transparent governance commonly promoted by international actors in Afghanistan. donors and. donor countries. It may also prove integral in ensuring that international assistance genuinely helps international and governments actors to win the popular support of the local population while minimizing the corrosive influence of ineffective forms of assistance. if implemented effectively in partnership with the Afghan government. As a result of enhanced responsiveness and accountability provided through the DMC. By making the concern or complaint known to key stakeholders. multilateral institutions and implementing agencies. Steven A. or embarrassing evaluation reports. The Development Monitoring Center (DMC) utilizes a phone-based. Furthermore. Inc © International Development Innovations 2 of 17 January 2011 . This concept. donors and government institutions. by ensuring that beneficiaries’ concerns are addressed.January 2011 To Readers. We look forward to discussing this concept with you in person. the DMC system is not just a monitoring and accountability mechanism but also a tool which may facilitate institutional. Supporters and Prospective Funders: This concept paper outlines a compelling yet elegantly simple means of providing beneficiaries with a greater “voice” within internationally-financed humanitarian. the benefit to the beneficiaries will be ten-fold or more. Sincerely. implementing agencies. Donor governments could understand where their activities are generating anger and frustration long before such sentiments boil over into public demonstrations. while other responses could entail a form of institutional learning whereby beneficiaries’ concerns are taken into account during the design of future programs. International Development Innovations. Together we can establish a system which will not only enhance accountability but which will make development assistance more responsive and more effective. donor governments and institutions can more genuinely promote a “peace dividend”. In this respect. others would be enabled to respond if needed. reconstruction and development projects and programs in Afghanistan. call centerorientated system to enable beneficiaries to anonymously and safely report concerns with ongoing projects to the relevant implementing agencies. the DMC is an early warning system applicable to all sectors of intervention and particularly suited for unstable contexts. Zyck Director. Such responses might be immediate in some cases.

and a wide network of contacts at various levels and in all key institutions. According to this same logic.development-innovations. the metaphorical crashing of the ship upon the rocks. please contact International Development Innovations (IDI). regional and global levels. The lighthouse reflected a technologically simple means of providing mariners with advance warning that danger lay in their path. _______________ THE DMC LOGO The Development Monitoring Center’s (DMC) logo is that of a lighthouse. International Development Innovations (IDI) is a vibrant start-up providing research. and development communities. IDI operates with humanitarian values but with an entrepreneurial spirit.CONTACT INFORMATION For further information regarding the Development Monitoring Center (DMC) concept.com +1 757 652 2474 http://www. donors and host-nation governments with warnings about small problems and challenges in internationally-financed assistance programs before they lead to disaster. Each member brings a deep understanding of developmental issues facing the country. It was created by academics and practitioners disappointed with the high costs and mediocre products of many development consulting firms. the DMC uses prevalent technologies – the telephone – to provide implementing agencies. national. © International Development Innovations 3 of 17 January 2011 . a deep commitment to ensuring Afghan ownership and leadership of the development process.com _______________ ABOUT IDI & TADBEER The DMC reflects a partnership between International Development Innovations (IDI). and TADBEER Consulting of Afghanistan. TADBEER is an Afghan consultancy firm with strong links to reliable expertise at the grassroots. e-mail: phone: website: zyck@development-innovations. TADBEER’s management is drawn from development professionals with backgrounds in high-performing institutions within and outside the Afghan government and the region. advisory and training services to the humanitarian. which is located in the United States. reconstruction.

While international humanitarian. and others. In short. Once the monitoring function has been established. will then be posted on a secure site accessible only to the relevant implementing and donor agencies and to the relevant host-nation government agency or ministry. and audio-formatted concerns will be uploaded for users with limited literacy skills. In each case. It will instead serve only as an information gathering and reporting system. investigating. handouts. In short. which are only able to uncover the most egregious and rampant of problems long after they have occurred. Existing systems of evaluation and auditing have proven unable to capture operational. mechanisms. individual water hand-pumps which cease functioning after a month of use. reconstruction and development assistance in Afghanistan has benefited millions of people. THE PROPOSED SOLUTION. from poor-quality materials to corruption and nepotism. Issues reported to the DMC. The DMC will have no role in adjudicating. the call centers and websites will disseminate information regarding development projects and issues which they receive from government agencies. which will be staffed by men and women familiar with Dari and Pashto. international organizations. (All inputs will also be translated into English to ensure accessibility by international actors. community members who perceive problems within projects. or concerns that aid is being misappropriated or wasted through corruption or procurement irregularities. © International Development Innovations 4 of 17 January 2011 . the DMC can become a monitoring system as well as an information source which allows beneficiaries to feel more in control of the assistance they receive. may not know how to express their concerns safely. Might they face retribution from fellow community members or implementing agencies if they lodge complaints? Are managers at the implementing company or NGO – to whom they might complain – also likely responsible for the mistake? Do they even know how to contact those managers if they were interested in doing so? Such concerns have limited beneficiary-centric monitoring of projects and programs and led to the use of capable but remote and disconnected mechanisms such as the US government’s Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR). and development activities free of charge.SUMMARY & OVERVIEW THE CHALLENGE.) These actors would then be responsible for responding to the concerns in coordination with one another where deemed necessary. it also commonly lacks accountability to those people who it aims to serve – the beneficiaries. day-to-day issues such as weak trainers providing technical assistance. or responding to any complaints made by beneficiaries. or time to closely monitor implementation and beneficiary perspectives on an ongoing basis and to respond effectively to gaps when and where they are discovered. the phone-based system may be expanded to also include a twoway information flow. Evaluations are commonly too late and reflect narrow sample sizes Furthermore. and other items such as project signboards. equipment. NGOs. donors. the DMC will involve a national call centers within Afghanistan which beneficiaries and others may call in order to anonymously report concerns regarding humanitarian. the reporting individual will reference a project identification code (PIC) which corresponds to the project and which the national government (and/or donor agencies) will require development actors to put clearly on all visibility materials. Donor agencies and implementing agencies may not have the motivation. This concept note reflects a viable and elegantly simple approach to overcoming this challenge in Afghanistan and elsewhere – the Development Monitoring Center (DMC). reconstruction.

THE DEVELOPMENT MONITORING CENTER (DMC) PROCESS The process shown below demonstrates how the DMC would begin with a beneficiary’s concern about a development assistance project and. Pashto and English). provinces or regions) or sectors to guide their future policies and programs..g. Only relevant stakeholders from the donor institution. by relaying it to the relevant stakeholders. implementing agency. Issues brought to the attention of the DMC would never be publicly released. though they would periodically be consolidated in generic terms in order to provide development stakeholders with analytical reports on major challenges facing particular locations (e. and relevant government body would have access to the description of each issue in multiple formats (text and audio) and languages (Dari. enable a timely response. Beneficiary Has Concern About Development Program in His or Her Community STEP 1 Beneficiary’s Concern Is Resolved by Implementing Agency Beneficiary Calls the DMC Hotline to Anonymously Report the Concern STEP 6 STEP 2 STEP 4 Implementing Agency and Donor View Concern Online or via E-Mail or Text/SMS Stakeholders Stakeholders Take Corrective Action in Response DMC Makes Concern Available in Local Language and English in Electronic System STEP 5 Note: Note: The electronic system discussed above would be password protected. © International Development Innovations 5 of 17 STEP 3 January 2011 .

They have been sheltered from genuine oversight by the good intentions and aims which underlie their important work. Something is. particularly in Afghanistan. power imbalances discourage reporting. 1. they are likely to remain silent. Implementing agencies also tend. often accidentally. or even 50 percent. While comprehensible. In most situations the implementing agency has a significant degree of discretion in identifying communities in which to work and in identifying particular beneficiaries to assist. and other information-centric processes. reconstruction. deliver. nongovernmental and private sector entities – from improving the quality of services they provide to many of the world’s most impoverished and vulnerable populations.THE PROPOSAL International humanitarian. and honest feedback on the assistance which they receive. While progress has certainly been made in more fully involving beneficiaries in the delivery and even selection of internationally-financed assistance. better than nothing. this lack of accountability prevents humanitarian actors of all stripes – including intergovernmental. the Development Monitoring Center (DMC) is intended to function in nearly every context. The system outlined in this proposal would provide beneficiaries the right to voice concerns about the assistance they receive in a manner which is likely to impel a response among those who finance. If an individual believes – even mistakenly – that he or she (or his or her community) will receive less aid if a complaint is lodged. What is wrong with the current approach to monitoring and accountability of international development projects? Simply stated. and oversee assistance programs in Afghanistan. A logical person would not risk future access to aid simply in order to improve the impact of an aid program by 10. to perpetuate such fears by informing communities that they should act grateful and highly satisfied during donors’ and evaluators’ field visits. 20. beneficiaries remain on uncertain ground when it comes to reporting problems with or concerns regarding aid. awareness-raising. and economic opportunities in developing countries such as Afghanistan have few. While individual implementing agencies could © International Development Innovations 6 of 17 January 2011 . the DMC would form the backbone of a potentially wider system which could be expanded and built upon in order to facilitate needs assessments. and development actors currently operate in an environment which lacks appropriate and necessary levels of accountability. By design. from urban areas in relatively stable provinces to highly insecure districts. First and perhaps most notably. after all. millions of people who receive food. THE PRESENT LACK OF BASIC MONITORING One is likely to ask why a new system is necessary. water. healthcare. Finally. This document outlines a critical first step in instituting a higher level of accountability: providing an accessible and safe means through which project beneficiaries may provide feedback and raise concerns regarding the assistance that they receive in a manner which will not put their material wellbeing or safety in jeopardy. and sporadic opportunities to provide genuine. open. program evaluations. uneven.

nepotism. The © International Development Innovations 7 of 17 January 2011 . one marked by more NGOs and the arrival of private sector and even military implementing agencies). Hence. or host-nation government officials. particularly directly and in person. an international humanitarian community currently faces power imbalances.theoretically establish ‘feedback systems’. While varied throughout the country. openly registering a complaint might be perceived as – and very well may be – highly risky. Third. In a highly insecure context such as Afghanistan which is marked my insurgency and myriad local and tribal conflicts.. even where beneficiaries feel comfortable to lodge complaints or concerns. financial interests. doing so many put them in physical danger. When issues such as corruption. THE DEVELOPMENT MONITORING CENTER Based on the problem analysis above. Finally. and closely related to the first point. Thus. implementing agencies. The Development Monitoring Center (DMC) would overcome these in a simple manner: by establishing a national call center which would record. standardize. A donor agency must look good lest the American Congress or the British Parliament allocate less money for foreign aid in future years. implementing agencies and the donors want to keep problems as quiet as possible lest official development assistance (ODA) dry up. 2. Second. cultural issues also play a key part. donors. beneficiaries’ cultures impel them to smile and express gratitude despite the fact that they may have suggestions for how assistance may be improved or rendered more effective in the future. many of the most egregious errors or forms of misappropriation (particularly corruption) may continue to go unreported or under-reported. nearly every culture in Afghanistan believes to some extent that it is inappropriate to complain. consolidate. and report beneficiary concerns in Afghanistan to donors. or factionalism are involved. and host government institutions in as close to real time as possible. the complainant may very well find him or herself not only cut off from assistance but also in physical danger. The United Nations (UN) agency. waste. or non-governmental organization (NGO) delivering assistance likewise needs the donor agency or country to perceive that it is performing strongly lest it lose funding to a rival institution in what is an increasingly competitive aid industry (i. international stakeholders and implementing agencies have a material interest in glossing over problems in the aid which is disbursed.e. Consider the case of a project beneficiary in a rural part of Afghanistan. private contractor. and security concerns which prevent them from reporting concerns about assistance or recommendations for improving aid projects. Such forces are exceptionally difficult to overcome. Without a buffer between the complainant and the implementing agency to mitigate such concerns. He or she had been promised improved-quality wheat seeds and 100 kilograms of fertilizer in time for the next growing season. to someone who is generous or who is attempting to provide assistance. cultural issues. the concerns/comments reported by beneficiaries may never make their way to program managers.

Farmers become concerned that the aid may arrive too late or may have been misappropriated..g. donor(s). Any identifying information provided by the caller. donors. These automated translations will then be reviewed and refined by a human translator to ensure accuracy. Following the supervisor’s approval and revisions. They would have the option of speaking to an operator. or forthcoming). district. who is fluent in Dari or Pashto. Audio recordings of each complaint – likely in the local language but also possibly in English – would also be made by the operator or a supervisor. Under this system. The concern would be inserted by the DMC operator and would be categorized. the beneficiary would provide a Project Identification Code (PIC) which would have been conveyed to all community members at the start of the project and which would be written clearly on all visibility materials. and donor(s). In order to ensure that the concern is linked to the correct project or program. important. implementing agency.growing season is now three weeks away. such as local officials. The availability of issues in the local languages and in English will enable the broadest possible access. Phone calls to that NGO’s office go un-answered. and an adequate reply is never received. specific descriptions of their families or household locations. either a man or a woman. Following the receipt of a complaint by an operator. information boards. farmers in the area will be free to call the DMC in order to register their concern and request clarification. implementing agency. Furthermore. and government institutions to access DMC concerns via their mobile phones while away from the office or during power outages. © International Development Innovations 8 of 17 January 2011 . would be removed by the operator and by a supervisor who would carefully review the entry before it is made visible on the computer system. operators would be methodically trained on producing reports which are accurate and comprehensive yet brief (usually 3 to 5 sentences except in highly technical situations) and that the language used it free from idioms which might delay translation. audio recordings of concerns would make it relatively easy for representatives of implementing agencies. semi-urgent. who have limited levels of literacy. Operators would be encouraged to ask questions in order to ensure that the nature of the problem is clear and would potentially ask the caller to provide suggestions regarding a potential solution/recourse. each piece of feedback would also be categorized with regards to its severity (e. (The DMC operator could look up the code if the beneficiary does not know it. and no word has been received from the implementing NGO.. critical. it is estimated that no longer than three hours would be required for review and translation. The PIC would automatically prompt the DMC’s computer system to note the details of the project: sector and activity. the complaint will be run through an electronic translation system which will render the description of the issue into English. or informational) and timeliness (e. To facilitate this process. and province).g. The audio recordings would be particularly useful for DMC users. and related project equipment. urgent.) This code would ensure that the concern/feedback is clearly matched to the correct project. upcoming. and location of the project (village. such as names.

For instance. likely quarterly. In most cases this would involve the donor(s). and others. shame. a webbased system would provide an advantage to some – often wealthier and better educated – citizens. Finally. via e-mail. These would feed into a process of lessons learning which would greatly improve the effectiveness of humanitarian and development assistance in Afghanistan and globally. agriculture. or via text message. © International Development Innovations 9 of 17 January 2011 . provinces. one of the DMC’s strengths is its ability to enable beneficiaries to feel ‘heard’ and to provide a clear portrait of their concern through a process of dialogue with an operator. sectoral reports would enable a more consolidated portrait of problems and challenges facing projects related to micro-enterprises.The concern would. beneficiary concerns input into the DMC system will be consolidated for individual projects/PICs. after review and translation. it has been suggested that an entirely webbased system may be used to enable beneficiaries to register concerns. the stakeholders could choose to receive DMC information via a password-protected online system. international organizations. the implementing agency. Responding to the complaints would be the sole and complete responsibility of external stakeholders such as the donor. the implementing agency. Furthermore. in particular. HIV/AIDS. the relevant government agency. On a periodic basis. “critical” and “urgent” issues might be sent via text message and e-mail – in addition to being posted on the online system – while “important” and “upcoming” issues would only be conveyed via e-mail. and risk out of reporting concerns with well-intentioned but frequently imperfect aid programs funded by donors and implemented by NGOs. It would allow beneficiaries to feel empowered to provide constructive feedback on development projects and to seek redress of grievances without jeopardizing their safety or future access to assistance. WebWhy Not A Web-Based System? With expanding levels of Internet coverage and usage in Afghanistan. IMPACT The phone-based monitoring of international development projects would enable a range of benefits. The DMC would take the fear. in some cases. Furthermore. The sole function of the DMC would be to gather. 3. Similarly. and so on. it seems unlikely that many DMC users would have regular access to an Internet-enabled computer. and a government entity (e. or local governance. While certainly a possibility. process. and. and disseminate or amplify beneficiaries’ concerns. a ministry and/or provincial/district department). thus undermining the ‘equality of access’ which the DMC concept strives to enshrine. sectors. A projectspecific report would present a summary of all of the issues raised by beneficiaries across time in order to demonstrate the frequency of each. implementing agencies. A significant degree of empowerment and clarity would likely be list via a relatively more impersonal and uni-directional web-based system in the Afghan context. a provincial report might show the most common issues raised by beneficiaries within a province in order to help stakeholders to target and design future aid programs in that area.. private contractors.g. donor agencies. By adjusting settings via an online site. be directed to the relevant parties which and qualified and registered to receive notifications regarding that particular PIC.

access literacy classes. The system would also allow implementing agencies as well as donors to recognize problems far earlier than end-of-project evaluations. Where governments © International Development Innovations 10 of 17 January 2011 . it is crucial that the Center be fully independent of donors and implementing agencies. 5. Organizations would not only be able to better target and refine the type of assistance they provide. There are two plausible approaches to financing the DMC. A tentative budget is included in Annex A of this proposal. These may include. the collection of feedback would enable donors to see which implementing agencies are performing strongly and which are constantly facing constant complaints and criticism from beneficiaries. staff numbers may be adjusted correspondingly in order to diminish resource requirements without sacrificing customer service. public holidays. they would also be able to monitor staff members within and through the concerns raised by beneficiaries. However. The phone system could also. INSTITUTIONAL DEVELOPMENT What is described above may constitute the first phase of a broader process. the DMC could eventually be scaled-up to become a one-stop-shop for humanitarian and development information. become a “311-type” system in which citizens call the number to ask for clarification on government policies. seek out immunizations for their children. 4. to compare terms provided by microfinance institutions. impact evaluations and research as well as awareness raising activities. in a model currently used in New York. infrastructure will need to be established. The DMC will help to demonstrate and exemplify institutional responsiveness. Second. and other topics. FINANCING An undertaking of this importance and significance will require substantial inputs. for instance. Indeed. and staff will require training. While the DMC will require significant resources. eventually the DMC could not only receive complaints about development projects but could serve as a mechanism for implementing agencies to disseminate information about assistance. a foundation would be more likely to provide start-up capital rather than regular. The Afghan people could use the DMC to locate an agricultural extension service provider. the DMC will not only have lower basic costs but will also be able to better target its resources in order to reduce them. The first would involve private foundation financing. or learn commodity prices available at various markets in their area. In short. thus allowing it to act as the client (as is its legal right and responsibility). elections. For instance. Furthermore. Any financial strings which are controlled by a specific international development stakeholder may negatively influence the credibility of the system or may compromise its independence. the national government in a developing country may provide support for the DMC. FUTURE. particularly during the initial phases during which time expertise in information services and call centers will be necessary. annual funding. Following this initial formation process. tax procedures. the Afghan people who use the DMC are likely to feel more satisfied with assistance and more empowered. seeing what times the system is most heavily used.By allowing beneficiaries’ voices to be heard. The DMC concept would likely serve as the backbone for a broader range of information-centric activities.

accountability. The pooled nature of these funds and their control by the Afghan government (and by a steering committee comprised of many donor representatives) would mean that the DMC would not be beholden to any one particular donor or narrow group of donors. host government. and implementing agencies. they may turn to the international donor community in order to pool resources for the purposes to establishing and operating the DMC. This second option is considered the most credible for initial and mid-to-long-term funding and has the added benefit of reflecting the legitimacy of the national. © International Development Innovations 11 of 17 January 2011 . reconstruction. If the DMC is supported by the government. transparency. then it could rightly be seen as a contractor helping the government to promote the effectiveness of the international development community (rather than another parallel institution).lack sufficient resources. and responsiveness by national governments. 6. For instance. the Afghan government-control Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF) could finance the DMC using a large pool of resources contributed by dozens of donors. CONCLUSION This proposal has amazing potential and would not only result in greater effectiveness of humanitarian. and development operations – it would also demonstrate a commitment to beneficiary ownership. donors.

000 $7. As such.800 $1.750 $451.000 $3.000 $1.000 $100.000 $15.000 $2.000 $2.000 © International Development Innovations 12 of 17 January 2011 .000 $10. stipend) Office rental (pre-deployment) Computer equipment Website creation/networking Telephone system/equipment Marketing and Advertising TOTAL Quantity 6 1 3 1 50 2 25 1 25 1 Unit Type Month Lump Sum Months Lump Sum Staff Member Months Units Lump Sum Lines/Phones Campaign Unit Cost $8.000 $1.000 $451.000 $122. materials.000 Sub-Totals $48.000 $2.000 Sub-Totals $25.500 $1.500 1.500 $1.800 $1. It must be noted that costs for a new undertaking such as this are difficult to correctly predict.000 $60.500 $3.000 $5.000 $10.200 $10.000 $10.500 $7.500 122.000 $35.000 $150 $150.000 $3.750 $150.750 Operating Costs (Monthly) Description Senior managers’ salaries Shift Supervisors’ salaries Quality Assurance Supervisors’ salaries Translators’ salaries Operators’ salaries IT Specialist Office rental Utilities Computer/website/network maintenance Legal services Printing and documentation Office consumables Communications/marketing TOTAL (Monthly) TOTAL (Annual) Quantity 2 2 5 6 20 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 Unit Type Staff/Month Staff/Month Staff/Month Staff/Month Staff/Month Staff/Month Month Month Month Month Lump Sum Month Month Unit Cost $12.ANNEX A BUDGET & FINANCIAL PROJECTIONS The following is a breakdown of the preliminary.500 $5.200 $2. estimated costs of establishing and operating the DMC in Afghanistan for a period of three years.000 $20.470.200 $10.400 $20.000 $3. What follow may be considered middle-of-the-road cost estimates.500 $3. a significant degree of flexibility will be required by donors and the management. OneSetOne-Time Set-Up Costs Description Support to stakeholder consultations Support for conceptual development Call center advisory services Staff recruitment Staff training (trainers.000 $10.000 $24.000 $7.000 $10. Depending on the popularity and usage of the DMC.000 $3.000 $15.000 $2. anywhere from 5 to as many as 50 operators could be involved.000 $20.000 $15.

200 $2.000 Sub-Totals $48.200 $10.500 $5.75 $1.000 $1.000 $30.000 $10.000 $35.000 $18.500 1.000 $150.000 $2.000 $7.000 $10.000 $20.470.000 $18.126.000 $1.000 $90.000 $12.000 $3.500 $1.750 $4.000 $90.000 $2.470.000 $100.800 $7.470.539.425 $4.000 $4.000 $10.750 $150.Year 1 (6 Months of Start-Up + 6 Months Operating Costs) (6 StartDescription Support to stakeholder consultations Support for conceptual development Call center advisory services Staff recruitment Staff training (trainers.186.7 $1.750 86. stipend) Office rental (pre-deployment) Computer equipment Website creation/networking Telephone system/equipment Marketing and Advertising Senior managers’ salaries Shift Supervisors’ salaries Quality Assurance Supervisors’ salaries Translators’ salaries Operators’ salaries IT Specialist Office rental Utilities Computer/website/network maintenance Legal services Printing and documentation Office consumables Communications/marketing TOTAL (Year One) TOTAL (Year Two) TOTAL (Year Three) (Years TOTAL (Years One + Two + Three) 3-YEAR TOTAL (+10% Contingency) Quantity 6 1 3 1 50 2 25 1 25 1 12 12 30 36 120 12 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 Unit Type Month Lump Sum Months Lump Sum Staff Member Months Units Lump Sum Lines/Phones Campaign Staff/Month Staff/Month Staff/Month Staff/Month Staff/Month Staff/Month Month Month Month Month Lump Sum Month Month Unit Cost $8.000 $12.200 $60.000 $10.000 $2.000 $45.500 $7.500 $3.425 © International Development Innovations 13 of 17 January 2011 .400 $20.000 $144.000 $10.126.000 $1.000 $3.750 4. materials.186.000 $15.000 $1.000 $60.000 $60.800 $1.000 $3.000 $20.539.000 $150 $150.

© International Development Innovations 14 of 17 January 2011 . Operator: Caller: Hello. While some calls are likely to be more difficult than others. regardless of the time involved. and every attempt would be made to select names which are ethnically and politically neutral. Now.1 How may I help you? Hello. This recorded message will take approximately 30 seconds and will explain some key features of the system to you. and you will never be requested to provide your name. 1 For security and neutrality purposes. please press the number “3” on your telephone in order to be connected to a supervisor. my name is Fahad. (Pause – Wait for Selection) Now. Note that all calls are processed within three hours. your phone number. and I need to know whether the seeds will be provided or whether I need to buy my own seeds. To ensure 100% anonymity. I am very frustrated. Note key details of the DMC which are reflected in the call. and thank you for calling the Assistance Feedback System. I am going to present you with some options. or if the operator does not seem to understand your issue or makes you uncomfortable. (Pause – Wait for Selection) Thank you. If the operator ever asks for personal or identifying information. Automated Message: Hello. your call will now be transferred to the next available and appropriate operator. I am calling because I was told that I would be provided with wheat seeds. please press the number “1” on your phone for a male operator and number “2” for a female operator. Names would be assigned to operators. your call will receive the same level of attention and will be entered into our system just as quickly. or any other identifying information such as an address. operators and other staff members would not use their real names when answering calls. including the language and gender options as well as the caller’s ability to refer matters to a supervisor if they feel that their concern is not being understood fully by the initial operator. but none have arrived. your call will never be recorded. Please note that you will never be charged for this call. the well-trained operators at the DMC will be prepared to extract key details from all callers while allowing them to feel that they are being genuinely ‘heard’. I have to sow my fields soon. The supervisor may handle your call or may transfer you to another operator.ANNEX B SAMPLE BENEFICIARY CALL TO THE DMC The following is an example of a relatively typical call to the DMC. Whether you speak with an operator or a supervisor. Please press the number “1” on your phone for Pashto and the number “2” for Dari.

Is that correct according to your knowledge? Caller: Yes. and it will be passed along to the organization and door involves so that they may address it. Operator: Thank you. I believe that is all of the information that I require. That way I can make sure that your issue is directed to the right organizations for follow-up. and he told them the same thing when he visited their farms. However.. Operator: What were the specific amounts and types of seeds which this person indicated you would receive? Caller: We were each told that we would receive 25 kg of good wheat seeds.. Your issue will be brought to the attention of both AAA NGO and the donors countries which you mentioned so that they can work together to resolve it. Operator: Thank you. That matches the information I have in our system. which will be sent to the NGO and donors. I will now put this information into my system. I just hope that this information may be cleared up soon. The sign says AAA NGO and mentions some flags from various donor countries. Caller: Operator: The number is 651342280. Okay. that this is an urgent matter. that is correct. I must note that our job at the Assistance Feedback Service is to provide your comments to the relevant people and that we are unable to provide any information on how others use this information to respond to your concern. and where did you hear this information? Caller: I was told three months ago by some young man from AAA NGO. I spoke with my neighbors. This number should be visible on any project posterboards or materials. He said that they would arrive soon. I see that it is the “Enhancing Rural Food Security” project being run by the NGO. Operator: I have noted in my records. I would like to make sure that I fully understand your issue. © International Development Innovations 15 of 17 January 2011 .Operator: Could you please tell me the Project Information Code about which you are calling.definitely before it was time for us to start planning. I hope that it is resolved to your satisfaction. I believe I have said all that there is to say. However. When were you told that the seeds would be provided. AAA. Is there any additional information which you would like to provide? Caller: Thank you very much. I need the seeds within a week.

Thank you for your help. as we will not be able to provide you with more information at that time. but can I call you later to see if you have passed it along to the NGO? It is very important that they understand everything immediately or we will not be able to plant our field on time. Our system sends your concern to the implementing agency and to the donors within three hours in both the local language and in English. sir.Caller: I fully understand. Once again. I do fully understand that. heave a pleasant day. Caller: Operator: Yes. There is no need to call back. and we hope that it is resolved to your satisfaction. I too hope that it will be resolve. Thank you. we greatly appreciate your sharing this issue with us. Is that clear? Do you understand? Operator: Yes. This is a crisis. © International Development Innovations 16 of 17 January 2011 .

Mr. He may be contacted at ehsan. Kenya. Mr. the World Bank. He is the author of. a private firm working to adapt. More specifically. Jordan. evaluation and training assignments in Yemen. Pakistan. Mr. governance and development issues. the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF).com. He is an Associate of the Post-war Reconstruction and Development Unit (PRDU) at the University of York. intergovernmental organisations. community mobilization/participation. Bosnia-Herzegovina and elsewhere. © International Development Innovations 17 of 17 January 2011 . Sudan. Zyck also lectures at the University of Bradford. the German Afghan Foundation (GAF). apply and spread indigenous insight for improved policy making and sustainable development in Afghanistan. Inc. He may be contacted at zyck@development-innovations. UK. Zyck has worked for international organisations and NGOs in Afghanistan. The Role of Afghan Civil Society in the Process of Peace-Building in Afghanistan. the Overseas Development Institute (ODI). Zyck earned his undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College in the United States and his graduate degree from the University of York. he has undertaken research. He served as Minister of Rural Rehabilitation and Development as part of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan from May 2006 through January 2010. the UK Department for International Development (DFID). program design. Nepal. Co-operation for Peace and Unity (CPAU) and Norwegian Church Aid (NCA). ZYCK is the Director of International Development Innovations (IDI). the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC). he held management and advisory positions for humanitarian and post-conflict programs in Afghanistan for 14 years. Sudan. Zia worked with international aid agencies and NGOs such as the Norwegian Afghanistan Committee (NAC). In addition. Mr. UK. MOHAMMED EHSAN ZIA is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of TADBEER Consulting. among other works. Zia first joined the Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development (MRRD) as a Policy Advisor in July 2002 and was subsequently appointed Deputy Minister of Programs in January 2004. the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). Mr. Afghanistan. Iraq. NGOs and the military around the world. Mr.ANNEX C ABOUT THE PROJECT LEADERS STEVEN A. participatory development theory and practice. Tajikistan. the Institute for the Study of International Politics (ISPI) in Milan and elsewhere on post-conflict security. Before joining the MRRD. Uzbekistan and the Pacific Islands.. conflict analysis and practical peace building. Kenya. Prior to founding IDI. A Fulbright Scholar. Lebanon. Zia’s areas of specialist expertise include rural and community development policy formulation. NATO and many others.org. the Institute of International Education (IIE). He has studied at the University of Birmingham and earned a Master of Arts in Post-war Recovery Studies from the University of York’s Post-war Reconstruction and Development Unit (PRDU) in 2000. Islamic Relief.zia@tadbeer. Mr. Zyck worked with universities. strategic planning for government institutions. the International Organisation for Migration (IOM). where he previously served for many years as Fellow and Manager of Applied Research. the Kuwait Foundation. These projects have been supported by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).

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