IEO conducts accountability and learning-focused evaluations that generate lessons learned for the GEF. The evaluations focus on results, impact and performance of the GEF, and address strategic issues of the partnership.
Overall Performance Studies (OPS) are undertaken every four years to inform the donors prior to the replenishment of the GEF. These evaluations provide an independent assessment of performance and results of the GEF over a GEF replenishment period. The comprehensive evaluations assess the extent to which the GEF is achieving its objectives and identify potential areas of improvement.
The eighth replenishment of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) will take place in an international context that is very difficult to predict and navigate. The global environment continues on a downward trend, and more than a decade after the financial crisis of 2008, the world economy is still struggling with slow growth and constrained government budgets. The current global pandemic will place additional pressure on budgets at all levels of country governments, possibly contributing to another global recession.
Since its inception, the GEF has provided support to its partner countries to improve the sustainability of their forestry resources. Although SFM is not a focal area, SFM/REDD+ initiatives have been supported through the GEF focal area interventions, multifocal projects, integrated approach pilots (IAPs) in GEF-6, and, more recently, designed through the Impact Programs (IPs) in GEF-7.
International Waters (2020) - Special studies in Fisheries, Health co benefits of the Chemicals portfolio
The world's marine fishery resources face critical challenges. Based on the data reported in 2018 by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), an estimated 33% of global marine fish stocks have been overexploited, while a further 60% are fully exploited. During the past three decades, the fraction of fish stocks that are within biologically sustainable levels has decreased from 90% in 1974 to 67% in 2015. Loss of coastal habitats, pollution and climate change are showing negative effects on global fisheries.
The GEF Independent Evaluation Office is collaborating with the Environmental Law Institute to assess GEF projects and programs in fragile and conflict-affected situations—in short, to determine whether and how GEF interventions are conflict-sensitive, and the implications thereof.
The Global Environment Facility (GEF) has a long history of investing in interventions to solve the environmental and health issues associated with the artisanal small-scale gold mining industry (ASGM). The signing of the Minamata Convention on Mercury in 2013 prompted an increased investment by GEF into the removal of mercury from human processes, including ASGM.
Formative Review of the GEF Integrated Approach to Tackle the Drivers of Environmental Degradation (2020)
In 2014, the GEF introduced a set of pilot programmatic approaches aiming at addressing the main global environmental challenges through an integrated approach. Three Integrated Approach Pilot (IAP) programs were launched during GEF-6. Two programs focused on urbanization (the Sustainable Cities IAP) and commodity-driven deforestation (the Commodities IAP); a third program centered on sustainability and resilience for food security in Sub-Saharan Africa drylands (the Food Security IAP).
The Agency self-evaluation systems are expected to facilitate learning and accountability across the GEF partnership. However, factors such as policy framework, quality assurance arrangements, incentives for candor in reporting, harmonization of practices, information sharing arrangements, and adequacy of resources for self-evaluation may affect the extent to which these systems meet the needs of the GEF partnership.
Within the context of GEF programming, a non-grant instrument may be understood as a mechanism to provide financing for activities that have a potential to generate financial reflows for the financer, irrespective of whether such reflows materialize. Cumulatively, GEF has provided a financing of more than $ 250 million for projects that use non-grant instruments that have yielded reflows to the GEF or were approved with an expectation of reflows. The Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) of the GEF will undertake an evaluation of the non-grant instruments portfolio of the GEF.
The GEF Annual Performance Report (APR) prepared by the GEF Independent Evaluation Office (GEF IEO) provides an overview of the performance of GEF activities and processes, key factors that may affect performance, and the quality of Monitoring and Evaluations systems (M&E). Along with regular reporting on performance of completed projects, an APR may cover issues affecting the GEF partnership that have been identified as being of current interest to GEF stakeholders.
GEF's results architecture is based on information provided by the Agencies through project documents, project implementation reports (PIRs), tracking tools, mid-term reviews and terminal evaluations. The data on results and performance of the projects and programs is aggregated for reporting. The GEF portal – including its earlier incarnation as PMIS – provides a platform to store, manage and retrieve data on GEF projects and program. This includes data related to project appraisal, implementation, performance and results, that may be aggregated.