Workforce Inclusiveness Program For People with Disabilities (aka “Pacto de Productividad”).

Workforce Inclusiveness Program For People with Disabilities (aka “Pacto de Productividad”).

Funded by IDB’s Multilateral Investment Fund, with a number of other Colombian partners, and executed by Fundación Corona, the Program of Workforce Inclusion for People with Disabilities, also called Pacto de Productividad” was a $3.2 million, five year-long project aimed to improve workforce inclusiveness for people with disabilities as a mean to increase their social and economic opportunities. The project was carried out in the Colombian cities of Bogotá, Medellín, Cali, and Pereira.

Luis Bernal, working as an independent, individual evaluation consultant was charged with carrying out the Program’s Final/Impact evaluation which comprised a quantitative and qualitative assessment of its relevance, effectiveness, impact on its beneficiaries, and future sustainability. Likewise the evaluation assessed the extent in which the program achieved its social and economic objectives.

Carried out between September and November, 2014, the evaluation is based on an extensive document review, traveling, site visit, case studying, benchmarking, quantitative data analysis, as well as focus groups and interviews with near 200 people including people with all kinds of disabilities, business owners and staff, institutions working on people with disabilities inclusion, as well as policy makers and other program stakeholders at local and national levels.

Beyond analyzing past performance, the evaluation also included a comprehensive analysis of project’s financial, technical, organizational, and political sustainability.

For Luis Bernal working on this final evaluation was kind of a privilege as he has known the program for years since he was charged of its mid-term evaluation back in 2011.

A presentation of the program’s evaluation results was scheduled to be made by the evaluator at a large international conference on workforce inclusion for people with disabilities to be held in April 2015 in Bogotá, Colombia.




Final Evaluation: Bolivian Productivity and Competitiveness Project

Final Evaluation: Bolivian Productivity and Competitiveness Project

Luis Bernal, MPP, working as an expert on small business development as well as an evaluation specialist, carried out the final performance evaluation of the Bolivian Productivity and Competitiveness Project. Other members were: team leader Milton Núñez-Garcés, and local organizational development specialist Sergio Villaroel Böhr, all working for International Business & Technical Consultants, Inc (IBTCI) a Vienna VA based company that, in turn, was hired by USAID.

BPC Evaluation Cover

The framework criteria applied by the evaluation, in accordance with USAID Monitoring and Evaluation directives, looked into the following project performance parameters: (1) Relevance, (2) Effectiveness, and (3) Sustainability.

The evaluation included a review of each of the project objectives: (1) Improve the competitiveness and productivity of selected value chains (2) Strengthen local institutions that support the development of MSMEs -Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises-; (3) Promote dialogue between key stakeholders to improve the business environment and competitiveness of value chains and MSMEs; and, (4) Leverage funding from the private sector, other donors and public institutions using a Global Development Alliance (GDA)  funds and other sources of funds.

A country-wide project, BPC worked in the cities of La Paz, Cochabamba, Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Tarija and Chuquisaca, focused in the following sectors: Textile and Apparel, Wood Manufacturing, Processed Foods, Bio-products and Handicrafts.

BPC provided assistance to artisans, micro enterprises, small and medium businesses, as well as trade associations with services such as technical assistance, trade support, workforce development, business round tables, and manufacturing systems improvement.

Funded by USAID in 2009, The BPC project was executed by Chemonics International, Inc. with a total estimated budget of US $ 9,771,913; for a period of four years. However, due geopolitical conditions related to the relations between the U.S. and the Bolivian governments, the project was reduced in time (only 3-1/2 years) and budget reductions of approximately 18%. Overall USAID programs dealing with MSME promotion had an early close-out; in the case of the BPC it ended it in January or February 2013.