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When drafting the Action Document, if there are no major changes in the context requiring modification of the analysis already performed, public policy analysis will be validated. Only in the case of budget support, more detailed assessment of relevance and credibility of the policy is requested. The outcomes of further feasibility studies and analysis - e.g. gender analysis, environment/climate change screenings -  will be presented in the Action also be developed at this stage. In countries listed by OECD as fragile and/or in conflict situations (see OECD list States of Fragility Reports), the analysis performed should be regularly updated. This should be done  on the basis of the latest validated risk management framework or other type of risk assessment (where applicable) - and/or the latest conflict analysis, situational risk analysis, fragility assessment, vulnerability assessment, risk and resilience assessment, post-disaster needs assessment, recovery and peacebuilding assessment, etc. References to specific resilience-building strategies, peacebuilding frameworks, peace accords, ceasefire accords, reconciliation processes and early signs of emerging or escalating violent conflict should also be included (see EU guidance on conflict and early warning systems).

Evidence is collected to support those aspects of public policies that are critical to the sustainability of the benefits the intervention is expected to produce. The absence of such evidence or its lack of credibility is a clear indication of the unfeasibility of the intervention: the project lacks the political commitment required for outcome sustainability. Whenever possible, the evidence should be complemented by work agreements with partners regarding the sustainability strategy of the intervention in aspects such as maintenance plans, recurrent costs, etc.

Similarly, stakeholder analysis during the second step of the design  phase will progress from general to specific stakeholders directly linked to the chosen intervention. This will allow the following to be defined:

  • indirect/final beneficiaries: those rights holders who benefit from the intervention's outcome or impact in the long term at the societal or sector level;
  • direct beneficiaries: those who benefit first hand and in the short term from the intervention's implementation;
  • target group(s): those whose action or change in behaviour is sought through the intervention and thus those who are therefore directly affected by it.

The behavioural patterns of the target group become the focus of the analysis. The rights-holders should be involved, directly and/or through civil society organisations, in meaningful consultations regarding the intervention to increase their ownership and the sustainability of the intervention. Evidence should be collected to confirm the willingness of target groups to use the outputs the intervention is supposed to deliver. Such willingness requires assessment of specific behavioural patterns:

  • What is the perception of the target group regarding the potential intervention?
  • Is there evidence supporting access of the target group to the products and services the intervention will provide?
  • Does the target group have the knowledge and skills needed to use the products and services, or does their ability need to be reinforced?
  • Are there any beliefs, values and/or emotional/social drivers which will inhibit their use of the products and services?

Evidence collected will support the behavioural assumptions of the intervention. Again, the absence of such evidence or its lack of credibility is a clear indication of the unfeasibility of the intervention: the willingness of the target group to use the intervention outputs is not supported by the evidence.
Evidence collected will also support the definition of specific activities (e.g. capacity development activities) to promote appropriation by the target group and final beneficiaries, thus contributing to the feasibility of the intervention.

Methodological fiche(s):

Context analysis

Public policy analysis

Stakeholder analysis

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