USAID Learning, Evaluation, and Analysis (LEAP III) Project

USAID Learning, Evaluation, and Analysis (LEAP III) Project

Integra is currently implementing the $19 million LEAP III Project, a mechanism for United State Agency for International Development (USAID) field missions and bureaus to easily and cost-effectively access rigorous, independent, and high-quality analytical services to support economic and policy analyses, strategy and project design, monitoring and evaluation, training, and knowledge management.

LEAP III provides field support for analytical staff when specialized expertise in an area of analysis is required. It also provides a vehicle for USAID to support capacity building for USAID staff, partner governments, and civil society counterparts. Assistance can be provided across all sectors, including economic growth, agriculture, education, women’s empowerment, environment and infrastructure. Under LEAP III, missions can request a range of analytical services, including:

  • Cost-Benefit and Cost-Effectiveness Analysis;
  • Macroeconomic and Public Financial Management Analysis;
  • Performance Evaluations;
  • Impact Evaluations;
  • Policy Analysis Matrix Methodology;
  • Inclusive Growth Diagnostics; and
  • Political Economy Analysis.

Since the inception of the project, Integra has provided analytical services for twelve distinct activities including:

Activity 1: Performance Evaluation of USAID’s/Vietnam’s Environment Remediation of DA Nang Airport

Activity 1 is a performance evaluation of the “Environment Remediation at Da Nang Airport” Project. The Project is a joint effort between USAID and the Vietnam Ministry of National Defense (MND). The evaluation has three main objectives: 1) Obtain independent, third-party review and evaluation of the overall effectiveness of the project in addressing legacy dioxin-contaminated soil and sediment; 2) Document the benefits of USAID/MND cooperation on remediation of Da Nang Airport to the region, and extent the work is a model for future collaboration; 3) Develop recommendations for future cooperative efforts addressing legacy dioxin contamination at Bien Hoa Airport.

Activity 2: Evaluation of USAID/Zambia’s Community Forests Program

The Performance Evaluation of USAID/Zambia’s Community Forests Program (CFP) has three main objectives: 1) Document the overall effectiveness of the project in reducing deforestation of biologically significant forest landscapes; 2) Identify lessons learned from the project—specifically, the strengths and weaknesses of the design and implementation of the CFP, and how they contributed to the project’s successes and challenges; and 3) Assess the sustainability of CFP results related to forestry conservation.

This activity used a mixed-methods approach, consisting of document review, qualitative data review, KIIs, and focus group discussions (FGDs). Following weeks of desk research, Integra’s evaluation team, alongside Zambian data collection firm, RuralNet, conducted a three-week long field visit in October 2018. To answer the Evaluation Questions, Integra conducted 50 key informant interviews (KIIs) and 88 focus group discussions (FGDs) across the provinces of Lundazi, Mambwe, Nyimba, and Rufunsa, and the team provided an exit briefing to the USAID/Zambia.

Activity 3: Azerbaijan Agriculture Sector Assessment

The Azerbaijan Agriculture Sector Assessment will provide recommendations that will guide the USAID/Azerbaijan mission in improving its existing agricultural activities and designs for future activities in this sector. This assessment focuses on three key tasks: 1) Gauging the effectiveness of USAID’s current Azerbaijan agricultural activities, with an emphasis on the Agricultural Support to Azerbaijan Project (ASAP), implemented by Cultivating New Frontiers in Agriculture (CFNA); 2) Assessing opportunities for the Mission to achieve U.S. government strategic objectives in Azerbaijan in the agriculture sector, including countering Kremlin influence, creating U.S. business linkages, and building community resilience to prevent violent extremism, and 3) Developing recommendations for future technical assistance in the agriculture sector.

This assessment used a mixed-methods approach, consisting of document review, quantitative data review, KIIs, and FGDs.

Activity 4: Mali Cost Benefit Analysis and Cost Effectiveness Analysis Training

LEAP III provided a cost-benefit analysis (CBA) and cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA) training to USAID/Mali Staff in Bamako, Mali in October 2018. One training consisted of a four-day CBA course, while the two-day CEA course focused specifically on health. This course is part of EP’s suite of training courses for USAID staff to learn the fundamentals of CBA and CEA and how to apply these economic methodologies to their own work. The training consisted of teaching modules in both courses, assisted with applied Excel exercises throughout the full course, and answer questions and providing professional insight based on prior CBA/CEA experience.

Activity 5: Vietnam Energy Strengthening

The goal of this Activity is to support USAID/Vietnam’s efforts to promote Vietnamese energy security within the context of the USG Indo-Pacific Strategy under the ITAN pillar. Under Phase I, Scoping, the LEAP III team will, based on desk research and field work in Vietnam, identify: 1) Vietnam’s energy and gas sector status and needs, 2) key current reform efforts, 3) donor engagement in the sector, and 4) private sector perspective and initiatives. This phase will help to identify LEAP III assistance efforts to be implemented during the second phase of this activity.

In November 2018, the LEAP team traveled to Vietnam and met with a number of key stakeholders including officials with: USAID/Vietnam, central and provincial governments, the private sector, donors, and civil society to better understand the current state of energy policy, PPPs and related communications needs.

Activity 6: Sudan Inclusive Growth Diagnostics Support

The Sudan Inclusive Growth Diagnostic (IGD) is designed to help inform strategic decisions on USAID/Sudan mission engagement. The objective of an IGD is to identify the most critical (“binding”) constraint(s) to economic growth that is both rapid and inclusive and, when possible, to prioritize these binding constraints for development planning purposes.

Integra has provided a Senior Country Expert to support the USAID team undertaking the IGD. The Senior Country Expert has offered his expertise and analysis, worked on the collection of background data, helped set-up meetings, prepare for fieldwork, and was planned to join the USAID team for fieldwork.

Activity 7: Middle East Bureau Monitoring and Evaluation Support

At the request of the Middle East Bureau, LEAP III staff met with USAID on August 28, 2018 and September 14, 2018 to discuss the possibility of LEAP III providing knowledge management and M&E in Libya, Tunisia and/or Yemen. A third meeting was also held with USAID on October 12, 2018, where it was decided that support would focus on M&E in Tunisia at this time.

Activity 8: Support for Power Africa

The purpose of the Support for Power Africa Activity is to provide drafting and compilation support, as well as qualitative data collection and analysis, to the United States Government (USG) Power Africa Initiative. The Learning, Evaluation and Analysis Project (LEAP) III will provide draft project descriptions in preparation of the Electrify Africa Act Report. Utilizing the Most Significant Change (MSC) methodology, LEAP will also assist the Power Africa Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (ME&L) team to gather evidence for the purpose of understanding how assistance provided has affected development outcomes to date.

The Integra team provided support towards the Electrify Africa Act Report, summarizing the progress of over 200 Power Africa initiatives. To help further understand the effects of the Power Africa, the evaluation team is slated to conduct data collection fieldwork to Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, and Nigeria in March 2019. Alongside the fieldwork, phone interviews and online surveys will be employed by Integra to reach Private Sector Power Africa stakeholders.

Activity 9: Kyrgyzstan Inclusive Growth Diagnostic

The Kyrgyzstan IGD is designed to help inform strategic decisions on USAID/Sudan mission engagement. The objective of an IGD is to identify the most critical (“binding”) constraint(s) to economic growth that is both rapid and inclusive and, when possible, to prioritize these binding constraints for development planning purposes.

USAID/Kyrgyzstan plans to carry out an IGD and has requested support from USAID/E3/EP, which will lead the analysis and provide three experts to work on it. LEAP III will round out the team by providing two additional members who understand the IGD methodology and have experience implementing it via IGDs. Working closely with other members of the IGD team, LEAP III experts will: 1) carry out IGD-related desk research on the Kyrgyz economy; 2) undertake in-country data collection and analysis in March 2019; and, following the fieldwork, 3) contribute to the drafting of a final IGD report.

Activity 10: Bureau For Global Health Cross-Bureau Analysis

The purpose of this Activity will be to document the cross-bureau budget process and provide recommendations aimed at improving transparency, evaluation, accounting control, and performance of that process. The assessment will involve analyses of funding and spending within the cross-bureau budget. Data sources will include bureau- and office-level fiscal data and reports; program descriptions; staffing data; interviews; observations; and anecdotes, among others.

Activity 11: Evaluation of OFDA/LAC Regional Disaster Assistance Program

This activity is a performance evaluation assessing the Regional Disaster Assistance Program, the cornerstone (RDAP) OFDA program in the LAC region. The evaluation will assess the usefulness of RDAP’s structural model in ensuring OFDA’s ability to respond to disasters and document the overall effectiveness of the program in improving regional preparedness for disasters and capacity building. The Activity also includes identifying lessons learned and providing recommendations for future programming.

Activity 12: Feasibility Study of the Chunga Ranger Training in Kafue National Park

The purpose of this Activity is to undertake a detailed and independent feasibility study of the Chunga Ranger Training Center to inform USAID/Zambia’s decisions concerning potential future support for the Center. The assessment will determine if a business case can be made for the continued operations and sustainability of the Center, as well as recommend the most cost-effective option(s) for improving and maintaining the physical infrastructure. The Activity will involve a desk review and benchmarking study, KIIS, FGDs, stakeholder roundtable, financial sustainability and cost-effectiveness analysis, and a feasibility assessment report.

Integra is implementing LEAP III with a number of partners, including Bixal Solutions, Limestone Analytics, and Palladium International. It is being lead by Dr. Mark Gellerson, Chief of Party; Juan Belt, Research Director; and Dr. Ben Wood, Monitoring, Evaluation, and Analysis Specialist.

For more information including points of contact for services provided, please see our LEAP III 2-pager.

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