Support to Public Sector, Decentralization and Capacity Building Project (PSCAP)

Fast Facts:
• Project Document
Location: Khartoum
Duration: February 2008 – January 2009
Focus area: Democratic Governance
Contributions(USD): DFID:406,473.66
Partners: Ministry of Labour, World Bank
Delivery(USD): 2008: 70,620.98
Contact person in UNDP: Tomoko Noda, Programme Officer,

The provisions of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) and the Interim National Constitution (INC) recognize the necessity of improving governance as each seeks to reconfigure governance arrangements to better promote peace and development. The pursuit of capacity building for decentralized governance is a central tenet of CPA and INC and of the necessary re-alignment of central agencies to serve devolution.

Decentralization is a complex and slow process especially when implemented in a demand-driven, technical-assistance-intensive process to accompany improvement in the capacity of government to better manage economic and social development at all levels. A major challenge for any improvement process is the weak capacities of the two main national training institutes for civil servants, the Management Development Center (MDC) and the Sudan Academy for Administrative Sciences (SAAS), as demonstrated by an assessment study undertaken by UNDP in 2006.

With this in mind, a programmatic approach is envisioned to support decentralization in Sudan with initial interventions to test or support readiness in terms of institutional capacity in selected areas or model approaches which can be scaled up. Later phases could conceivably include support to develop and deepen capacity in various areas that would emerge as actionable such as fiscal management, planning, investment grants.

Against this background and to improve administrative structures and processes in light of the decentralization policy, and in order to yield measurable impact on provision of services to the citizens of Sudan, the World Bank in partnership with Government of National Unity will be implementing a Public Sector, Decentralization and Capacity Building project (PSCAP), under the Multi-Donor Trust Fund, set to begin in 2008. The Project Implementation Unit (PIU) was established by a decree under MOLPSHRD and will be responsible for daily coordination and supervision of the project.

To complement and prepare the way for larger public administration reform processes in Sudan, UNDP with the support of the UK Department for International Development launched this year the Support to Public Sector, Decentralization and Capacity Building Project. The project aims to support the process of developing job description and job specification initiated by the government as part of restructuring processes of ministries for improved decentralization; start the capacity development process of the national training institutes; and provide the needed assistance that strengthens the operational capacity of the PIU.

The objective of this project is to execute a set of pilot activities to prepare government institutions for effective implementation of some of the activities proposed under the PSCAP to ensure that these institutions are ready to effectively and rapidly implement the PSCAP first phase project. To this end, the project aims to:

a. Conduct a pilot study to support the process of job description and job specification in line with the on-going public sector reforms, including decentralization, as part of government-wide processes for re-engineering and restructuring ministries in line with the CPA mandate (the federal ministries as policy centers and state ministries as service delivery agencies).
b. Strengthen, in a targeted way, the capacity of MDC and SAAS, as part of the goal of establishing centers of excellence for supporting the training needs of a public service in transition.
c. Operationalize the capacity of the main coordination agency to assure the effective implementation of the pilots and of the eventual PSCAP in order to achieve expected results.

Snapshots of the project's major achievements
• Improved the technological infrastructure of MDC and SAAS by setting up Local Area Network in their offices;
• Assisted in setting up PIU office;
• Assisted in the recruitment of PIU staff;
• Strengthened PIU operational capacity through workshop and coaching; and
• Raised awareness on the main PSCAP programme.
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