As part of the Secretary-General’s drive to focus on results-based management, emphasizing results over output and thereby aiming to enhance transparency and programme delivery, ESCWA has adopted the Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle: Plan refers to the setting of a strategic vision and operational frameworks; Do represents the implementation of the biennial strategy through annual work plans, which include ongoing performance monitoring; Check refers to the assessment of results and recommended performance improvements; and Act represents the subsequent refinement of plans and the inclusion of findings into the planning cycle.
The organs of the United Nations Secretariat operate on biennial programmes and the vision of their activities is set out in the strategic framework.
The ESCWA strategic framework reflects regional priorities and the needs of member countries. A broad array of stakeholders contribute to drafting frameworks for the seven subprogrammes, which set out strategy, objectives, expected accomplishments and indicators of achievement.
The Commission’s second core planning tool is the programme budget, in which the resources needed to achieve its objectives are calculated.
After extensive consultation with member countries, the strategic framework and programme budget are submitted to the United Nations General Assembly for approval.
The ESCWA technical cooperation strategy and extrabudgetary programmes are designed to supplement the strategic framework. ESCWA also develops yearly work plans to manage implementation of its programme of work.
Implementation and Monitoring
ESCWA reports on the implementation of its programme of work through the online Integrated Monitoring and Documentation Information System (IMDIS), used throughout the United Nations Secretariat. In addition, ESCWA is the first body of the Secretariat to develop an internal performance management system to monitor, compare and assess the level of programme performance in relation to the resources provided.
Continuous Learning and Improvement
Committed to building its reputation on its successes, ESCWA seeks tirelessly to identify areas for improvement. Programme performance information is used for accountability, knowledge-sharing and decision-making. In order to incorporate lessons learned from past experience into future working practices, ESCWA adopts formal management responses to evaluations, while the substantive programmes review recommendations and monitor agreed actions on a regular basis in collaboration with the Programme Planning and Technical Cooperation (PPTC) section.