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This month we catch up with Professor Marcel do Nascimento Botelho, who undertook a PhD with CIDT back in 2003. This was made possible through a DFID-funded partnership between CIDT, University of Wolverhampton and the Federal Rural University of Amazonia (Portuguese: Universidade Federal Rural da Amazônia, UFRA) a Brazilian public University located in Belem, Pará state, Brazil.
In 2017, after an election process, Marcel became Rector of UFRA. Since then, he has put into practice all the knowledge acquired from the Pro-UFRA project and his PhD course at CIDT-University of Wolverhampton, to establish UFRA as a key player in the sustainable development of the Amazon Region.
Leadership of higher education responses to combat COVID-19 in Pará state
Under Marcel’s leadership, UFRA has implemented important COVID-19 research initiatives and is now leading a research group conducting a series of analyses on COVID-19 to support state government in its decision-taking process. UFRA’s contribution has helped to reduce the number of deaths in Para state by 45%, and positively impacted upon the wider Brazilian economy. Through a single two-week period UFRA interventions reduced state death rates in Para’s population of 8 million by 14%. The research team are using Artificial Neural Nets to predict new cases, deaths and hospital infrastructure, using data in different ways for each region to help optimise use of resources.
In a recent letter to the UK Secretary of State concerning the success of COVID-19 initiatives, Marcel commented,
“Back in 2001 your Department generously supported a project run with the University of Wolverhampton and Harper Adams University College to support the strengthening of the Federal Rural University of the Amazon (UFRA) in Belem-Para-Brazil, of which I am the current Rector. As a consequence of that support our institution has become a key player in the development of the Amazon region.
“As I write, we are providing vital scientific advice to the local and state governments about the Corona Virus (Covid19) outbreak in our region. Our ability to do this is in no small part due to the support which we received from DFID, and I would wish to acknowledge this contribution and express my thanks for it once again.”
When did you attend CIDT and what you were studying?
I was a University Lecturer at UFRA when I was selected to attended CIDT for the MPhil/DPhil programme.
I started my course at CIDT in 2003 and returned to Brazil to conduct my field research at Universidade Federal Rural da Amazonia (UFRA). Essentially I studied several aspects of institutional and professional development applied to institutional strengthening, comparable to the ‘Rural Extension’ field of research.
I completed modules in: Development in practice; Effective Communication; Project Management; Research Methods; Advanced Research Skills; Social Perspsctives in Development Practice; and Research Methods and Project Design.
The following photos show Marcel during his time at CIDT
How did you find your time studying with us?
During my studies in CIDT I was exposed to an environment of International Development focused on building professional capacity for change. Thus, all classes, discussions with my professors and classmates and of course, the findings from my PhD research, helped me to understand the need to address change as a process that must be based on internal motivation rather than external factors and that the time for it to occur depends on the level of success in creating this internal motivation.
How has your career developed?
Following my studies, I returned to Belém, the capital of the state of Pará in Brazil in order to resume my work as a university lecturer at UFRA. In 2007 I was invited to be the International Advisor of UFRA when I supported two international agreements with the United States and France.
In 2009 I was elected Director of the Socio-environmental and Hydro Resources Institute (at UFRA) for a four year mandate. During those years I implemented a participatory management strategy to develop the actions and projects within the Institute. As a main result of this management strategy it was possible to triple our research and extension budget with high impact upon the academic community and civil society. Some of our professors earned local, regional and even international prizes for their work during this time. The use of action research, which I had introduced as part of my PhD studies as a tool for professional development, allowed our professors to enhance their classes with clear benefit to our students.
Following this I was appointed Teaching Pro-Rector from 2013 to 2017, with a focus on implementation of a course assessment and development program, and an academic control system. The first, was a huge success so that our undergraduate courses were, for the first time, ranked level B according to the national exams. The second, brought an accurate control to academic activities, but more importantly, brought the tools for online interactions amongst professors and students.
During this time, I was elected President of Teaching Pro-Rectors of all the Federal Universities of the Amazon region and Vice President of the National Group of Teaching Pro-Rectors. These two groups were focus on developing strategies to strengthen undergraduate course policies.
After becoming Rector of the Federal Rural University of Amazon via an election process, some achievements in Marcel’s tenure so far are:
- The second best university in the region according to Ministry of Education
- The best university in the use of public funding in the Amazon
- 80% of the undergrad courses classified at B or A rank
- The best Agronomy degree course in the Amazon
- Permanent member of most boards of Agrobusiness in Para
Individually, and as a result of the performance of UFRA, he received recognition including:
- Agronomist of the year in 2017
- Personality of Agribusiness in 2018
- Commendation Order of Merit Cabanagem 2017
- Commendation Honor to Merit of Education 2018
- Commendation Merit of Civil Defence 2019
The following photos show Marcel in his role as lecturer and Rector, as well as receiving an agronomy award:
You can view some of Marcel’s publications using the links below:
- Rocha, J. E. C. ; Souza Junior, G. N. ; Brito, S. R. ; Folador, A. R. C. ; Ramos, R. T. J. ; Braga, M. B.; Botelho, M. N. . Redes Neurais Artificiais Na Previsão De Contágio E Óbitos Por Covid-19: Um Estudo No Estado Do Pará, Brasil. International Journal Of Development Research, V. 10, P. 35416-35421, 2020.
- SOUSA, Adriano Marlisom Leão De; ROCHA, Edson José Paulino Da ; Vitorino, M. Isabel ; Souza, Paulo Jorge De Oliveira Ponte D ; BOTELHO, M. N. . Variabilidade Espaco-Temporal Da Precipitação Na Amazônia Durante Eventos Enos. Revista Brasileira De Geografia Física, V. 8, P. 13-24, 2015
- Sousa, Adriano Marlison Leão De ; Vitorino, Maria Isabel ; Castro, Nilza Maria Dos Reis ; Botelho, M. N.; Souza, Paulo Jorge Oliveira Ponte De . Evapotranspiration From Remote Sensing To Improve The Swat Model In Eastern Amazonia. Floram – Revista Floresta E Ambiente, V. 4, P. 1-9, 2015.
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In January and February 2020, CIDT staff and associates conducted the first annual survey for the Somaliland Development Fund Phase 2 programme. This has included research design, developing survey materials, conducting enumerator and researcher training of local staff and providing logistical support for survey implementation. The project moves into the analysis and reporting stage in March 2020 when data from 6 regions will be synthesised and analysed for emerging trends.
With no current national census data in Somaliland, the survey represents a national socio-economic and livelihoods dataset for the Government of Somaliland and other stakeholders.
Over an eight week period 78 people – forming five qualitative research teams, twelve teams of quantitative enumerators and five vehicle count teams- were trained and deployed to six regions in Somaliland to conduct quantitative questionnaires and collect qualitative information on socio-economic, environmental, infrastructure and delivery service impacts on daily lives.
The scope of the survey is national, targeting Somaliland citizens at household level, consumers and producers from urban, rural and nomadic areas (the three main settings of the SDF project) and the project focus areas of roads, water and productive livelihoods (fisheries, livestock and agriculture).
The first annual project survey collected baseline qualitative and quantitative data for selected indicators in the SDF programme results framework; findings will be used to update targets, milestones and assumptions for future programming and provide further evidence to substantiate the SDF theory of change.
The design of the survey is quasi-longitudinal with a cohort of households selected at baseline, and GPS coordinates are recorded in order that these households may be tracked every year to estimate the causal impact of the SDF intervention on the target population over the course of the phase two programme life (2018-2022).
The Somaliland Development Fund was established to provide a single vehicle through which development partners could support Somaliland’s development goals.
Phase 2 of implementation focuses on inclusive economic development: supporting the Government of Somaliland in delivering sustainable infrastructure that encourages job creation and fast growth, while laying the foundations for long-term resilience and development for a more stable and peaceful Somaliland.
SDF activities are being led by BMB Mott MacDonald, contracted by DFID as the Fund Manager who coordinate with the Ministry of Planning and National Development (MoPND) Government of Somaliland, particularly with the Somaliland Central Statistics Department. CIDT provide four technical specialists to support SDF.
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The Somaliland Development Fund (SDF) support the Government of Somaliland in implementing service delivery projects aligned to the Somaliland National Development plan. The Fund provides a single vehicle through which donors can support Somaliland’s development goals. Since independence in 1991 and after one decade of relative stability, Somaliland is in transition from a humanitarian and recovery status towards reconstruction and development.
CIDT have recently started to work with the second phase of the BMB Mott Macdonald managed Somaliland Development Fund (SDF2) as part of the SDF Secretariat support staff.
The change SDF2 aims to achieve after four years is ‘Service delivery and governance improved as a result of rehabilitated infrastructure that is operational and maintained’. This will take place through a range of projects run through the Government of Somaliland designed to provide opportunities for inclusive economic development.
Learn more about the projects funded under SDF phase 1 in this video including clean safe water, road rehabilitation, access to education, agriculture, livestock and fish production, and access to healthcare.
As part of the Consortium, which also includes PricewaterhouseCoopers, CIDT’s responsibilities include Rachel Roland as CIDT lead and Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) Technical Assistance (TA) , Rufsana Begum as Gender Equity and Social Inclusion (TA) and Mary Surridge as Conflict Sensitive Programming TA. We also work with CIDT’s partner Development Data Ltd (Zimbabwe)https://www.developmentdata.info/ who provide quantitative surveying expertise.
At present, the three CIDT staff are developing the relevant frameworks as part of the inception period of the project. The four-person TA team will continue to support the project until its conclusion at the end of 2022.
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The Secretariat of the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC), hosted by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), has developed a Phytosanitary Capacity Evaluation (PCE) tool for countries to self-assess their capacity to implement the Convention and the application of International Standards for Phytosanitary Measures (ISPMs). The Secretariat of the IPPC has been supporting countries worldwide to use the PCE tool to appraise their particular situations, identify about five major sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS)-related problems to be addressed, then develop a Strategic Plan for addressing those priority issues. This process involves a stakeholder analysis, a Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats (SWOT) analysis and development of a Logical Framework (“LogFrame”).
As part of the training of certified “PCE Facilitators,” the IPPC Secretariat at FAO contracted CIDT to provide access to its existing online course on the Logical Framework Approach (LFA). Completion of this online training was a pre-requisite to the face-to-face (F2F) training provided by IPPC/FAO. Completing the online training before the F2F training ensured that the participants came to the workshop already equipped with the basic knowledge that is foundational to the course. This way, they could jump right into hands-on application of the concepts and delve deeper into practical details, with only limited time spent reviewing or clarifying the basic information covered via the e-learning.
A total of sixty-six (66) participants from Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America completed the online training between August and November 2016. According to the post-training survey, the course was very well received by users. Here are a few quotes articulating their general impressions:
- It is more impressive than other online courses.
The sequence of the material was excellent; and the flow of information from one module to the next made learning easy.
It is clear and concise, easy to understand and apply.
I liked the examples, case study and illustrations that helped cement the key points.
When asked about the main benefits of the training and how they will apply it, users said:
- From this training, I am in a position to develop a competitive fundable proposal.
This training will help me to design a project using LFA.
By learning to do a problem analysis and the crafting of outcomes, outputs and activities, I can assist in developing my department’s strategic plan and work plans.
After this training course, I will definitely conduct the stakeholder analysis and consult them for each project.
Prior to offering the online training to the PCE Facilitators, CIDT had also conducted a Training of Trainers (TOT) on LFA for IPPC/FAO staff in Rome in early 2016.
CIDT’s online training programme on Results-Based Management (RBM) Thinking Tools, including the Logical Framework Approach (LFA).
This online course provides basic training on a range of ‘thinking tools’ which facilitate RBM. It is not purely academic or theoretical. Rather, it was designed to support development practitioners with simple practical approaches and advice for designing, managing and assessing results-oriented projects, programmes and organizational performance. A major component of this training is the LFA, because the LogFrame is a key tool for RBM. This e-learning programme consists of ten modules, which provide an overview of RBM and cover the ‘seven steps’ of designing and planning for new projects or programmes in a results-oriented manner. It introduces key tools that can be used at various steps, including Stakeholder Analysis, Problem and Objectives Trees, Risk Analysis, LogFrames, Workplans and Budgets. Most of the modules include interactive exercises and scenario-based quizzes, including a case study, to help participants check their knowledge and learning. It is a self-paced programme that takes, on average 8 to 12 hours to complete.
In terms of learning objectives, it is expected that upon completion of the ten modules, participants will:
- Understand the relationship between RBM and the LFA;
- Recognize the potential use of the LFA and related tools for strategic/institutional planning, programme design and/or project proposal development;
- Understand the ‘logic’ of the results chain within Theories of Change;
- Be familiar with Results and LFA terminology;
- Be able to use a range of ‘RBM thinking tools’, including development of a basic LogFrame;
- Appreciate the LogFrame as a participatory process, rather than just an end product (i.e., a 4×4 matrix).
- It is more impressive than other online courses.
CIDT completes assignment to establish the M&E system of the Emerging Pandemic Threats (EPT-2) programmeContinue Reading
Over the past year, CIDT’s Kimberly Kane has been serving as Senior Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Advisor to the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), on phase two of the Emerging Pandemic Responses programme (EPT-2).
Funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), EPT-2 focuses on strengthening the prevention, detection and response capacities of countries in Asia, Middle East and Africa to mitigate the risk of high-impact pathogens spill over from animal to human populations. In addition to programme delivery, FAO is charged with managing the M&E component of the programme, and has selected CIDT to provide advisory and technical support services to establish the programme’s M&E system and tools.
Under this contract, CIDT worked closely with FAO and USAID to produce the following:
- Results Framework diagram;
- LogFrame, with results statements, key performance indicators and means of verification (MoV) for the programme goal, outcomes and outputs;
- Compendium containing Performance Indicator Reference Sheets (PIRS), which define each indicator, indicate how to calculate it, specify the data sources, clarify reporting roles, and discuss limitations;
- Data Collection Forms for FAO staff at relevant country offices and regional offices;
- Global Reporting Template for all partners;
- Feedback Logs and Recommendations for addressing feedback from USAID, partners (from the One Health Workforce, Predict-2 project, Preparedness and Response project) and FAO staff following piloting of the tools;
- Various presentations and briefing documents to inform partner meetings and working sessions.
Now that CIDT has completed the agreed Terms of Reference to put in place the M&E system, FAO will lead the roll-out and application of the tools with USAID.
CIDT offers online training in Strategic Planning to stakeholders of the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC)Continue Reading
The International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) hosted by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has contracted CIDT to provide online training on results-oriented Strategic Planning to professionals who will become Facilitators of the Phytosanitary Capacity Evaluation (PCE) in countries across four continents.
A total of 66 PCE Facilitators will complete the training between April and November 2016. They will all attend a workshop facilitated by IPPC/FAO, yet the online training programme is a prerequisite for the face-to-face sessions.
Blended learning – comprised of both online and face-to-face training – has been proven to be a cost-effective and efficient way to strengthen capacity. The online training will provide participants with fundamental information on terminology, concepts, tools and processes so that they come to the face-to-face workshop with a common level of understanding. This will enable them to immediately dive into practical examples and hands-on exercises during the in-person sessions.
The online course consists of 10 modules covering the use of the Logical Framework Approach (LFA) to conduct strategic planning and programme/project design. It provides case studies and interactive exercises to enable the learners to improve their understanding of key Results-Based Management (RBM) tools that can facilitate the design of both strategic plans and programmes or projects. Find out more about the online course.
Individuals can directly enrol themselves in the RBM/LFA online course, and discounts are offered to organisations that enrol their staff. If desired, CIDT can to tailor the existing generic course to an organisation’s particular situation, whether it is to use bespoke branding colours and logo or to adapt the entire content to a specific sector/context, as we have done for the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the Commonwealth Secretariat, and Rwanda’s Environment and Climate Change Fund (FONERWA). We also have the capacity to develop brand new courses from scratch in different topics to meet organization’s Capacity Development needs. Contact us today to enquire.
Feedback on the online course
- 52% of participants of the online course “liked it a lot” and 48% “liked” it.
- 100% reported that the modules followed a logical flow/progression.
Quotes on what participants appreciated most:
- “The course is a process which a learner should go through step by step. I really liked all aspects and objectives of the course.”
- “[It] was easy to follow and the examples were relevant.”
- “The practice tests within the modules were nice – made for better understanding.”
- “The course is understandable and comprehensive.”
- “Perfect combination of theory with practice“
(Based on survey responses)
Research paper: Differentiated legitimacy, differentiated resilience: beyond the natural in ‘natural disasters’Continue Reading
Canford Chiroro and Elizabeth Harrison (University of Sussex) have published this paper in the Journal of Peasant Studies.
Building resilience in the face of adversity is increasingly at the top of the agenda for development interventions. However, despite the growing acceptance of resilience, as both a normative goal and a unifying concept allowing for multi-sectoral collaboration, there is still a lack of clarity on how exactly resilience can be effectively promoted and assessed.
In this paper, the authors examine how a well-intended intervention aimed at building resilience to climate impacts had unintended negative consequences especially for those not targeted by this particular intervention, increasing their vulnerability to a myriad of shocks, and undermining their resource base for dealing with future shocks. This paper will appeal to anyone interested in understanding the political dynamics at play in the production of resilience.
With Support from CIDT, FAO and Partners Complete the Results Framework of the ‘Emerging Pandemic Threats, Phase 2 (EPT-2)’ ProgrammeContinue Reading
Extensive stakeholder consultation and senior-level expertise from CIDT culminated, this month, in the completion of the results framework of the second phase of the Emerging Pandemic Threats programme (EPT-2), funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
EPT-2 is a high-level umbrella programme comprised of:
- the second phase of the Predict Project (implemented by a consortium of organisations led by the University of California at Davis);
- the Preparedness and Response Project (managed by DAI), the One Health Workforce project (implemented by Tufts University and the University of Minnesota);
- various global or regional programmes (focusing on Ebola, Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza [HPAI], Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus [MERS-CoV], Avian Influenza-A [H7N9] and antimicrobial resistance [AMR], etc.) managed by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO); and
- initiatives of the World Health Organisation (WHO).
FAO is responsible for coordinating Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) of EPT-2; and they engaged Kimberly Ross, Senior Consultant at CIDT, to help develop the M&E system. CIDT’s role in the process to date has consisted of providing advisory services on M&E and Theories of Change (ToC) as well as technical assistance to develop the results chain and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), which was aligned to the United States Government’s Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) and FAO’s Corporate Monitoring Framework (particularly that of FAO’s Strategic Objective 5: Increase resilience of livelihoods to threats and crises). The work involved support to map project activities to programme outputs as well as input on the design and delivery of consultation sessions and validation workshops involving USAID, FAO’s technical staff, and other EPT-2 partners.
In the process, Kimberly offered technical advice directly to USAID and FAO. She also worked closely with FAO staff from the Animal Health Service and the Emergency and Rehabilitation Division (TCE) as well as with Regional M&E Officers in Africa and Asia, to obtain and incorporate feedback from the donor and various partners.
The next step is to establish and document EPT-2’s monitoring system. This will consist of developing Performance Indicator Reference Sheets (PIRS) and data collection tools, which will enable USAID and partners to assess and report upon the programme’s achievements.
The four-year EPT-2 programme aims to apply a One Health (OH) to prevention, detection, and response in order to reduce the risk and impact of emerging pandemic threats. This essentially means: prevention of new zoonotic disease emergence; early detection of new threats when they do emerge; and their timely and effective control. EPT-2 will build on the lessons and knowledge from its predecessors (EPT-1 and the Avian Influenza programme) and should bring heightened focus to the “places and practices” that enable not just “spill-over” of new microbial threats, but also potentiate its “amplification and spread.”
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Agricultural development is once again on the top of the agenda in delivering growth in the predominantly agrarian African economies. However, while the need appears to be urgent in the face of climate change and growing populations, land and water scarcity, this research suggests that we need to look before we leap! Agriculture needs to learn from its past and present before large-scale investments are promoted.
In this research briefing we share some findings from an ethnographic study of small-scale irrigation in Malawi. The briefing looks at some of the constraints to irrigation development and suggests areas that merit further discussion. It is our hope that farmers, policy makers, and practitioners in other countries will find these experiences and our analysis helpful in their planning.
This research brief was created by Dr Elizabeth Harrison (School of Global Studies, University of Sussex) and Dr Canford Chiroro.
- Download the brief: Small-scale irrigation in Malawi: challenges and opportunities.
- Visit the University of Sussex School of Global Studies.