A core function of the Caribbean Development Bank (CBD) is to “contribute to the harmonious economic growth and development of the member countries in the Caribbean … and to promote economic co-operation and integration among them” as stated in Article 1 of the Bank’s Charter. To enable this, the CDB provides policy advice, loans and grants, and technical assistance for development projects.
To support the capacity development of Borrowing Member Countries (BMCs) the CDB had provided a range of training until 2009 in Project Cycle Management (PCM) and Public Policy Analysis and Management (PPAM) to provide support at various stages of the policy and project cycle, i.e. development of national strategies and Public Sector Investment Plans (PSIPs), and identification, design, appraisal and implementation of projects.
In 2013 the CDB contracted CIDT to carry out a needs assessment of 17 BMCs to identify:
- whether there was a continuing need for training;
- if required, what training was needed and by whom;
- the structure and approach of training programmes based on international best practice;
CIDT carried out a desk review; interviews and focus group discussions with CDB staff in Barbados and with staff from government Ministries and private sector organisations through field visits to selected countries across the Caribbean; and an online survey and telephone/Skype interviews with relevant stakeholders from all BMCs.
The needs assessment identified the issues and challenges that impacted on project administration within the BMCs and CDB, including performance gaps and problems in relation to PCM and PPAM knowledge, skills and attitudes. We made recommendations on how these issues could be best addressed through training and other modalities of development support.
We also provided a training plan with details on the target audience, topics that should be covered in PCM and PPAM training programmes, and recommendations on the appropriate adult learning methodologies and best practices to be utilised based on the data collected.