FOCUS ON MOBILITY - Issue No. 6
Focus on Mobility
"FOCUS ON MOBILITY"
ISSUE NO 6, MAY 2006
This is the electronic news bulletin of the Mobility desk within the Social Development Division of SDC. We are sending this message to people who we believe are involved in transport related subjects and initiatives. Subscription issues for this half-yearly mailing are handled at http://www.trans-web.ch/news.htm.
This medium lives through interaction. You are invited to send us your articles, requests and information flashes to mailto:transweb@.... The editors are grateful for any contributions received!
10th TransNet event on "Rural roads maintenance and financing" held on 19.05.06
Rural transport infrastructure performance is often poor and the context is characterised by the absence of a proper market to supply and maintain infrastructure. Frequently there are confusions over responsibilities - e.g. different authorities are involved and planning becomes inconsistent. Further financial and management resources are generally scarce and inadequate, and too often infrequent, over designed, and investment is accompanied by inadequate maintenance. Transport improvements will bring positive developments only if appropriate framework conditions exist. Better opportunities for sustainability are observed in programmes that promote decentralised decision-making processes and place great emphasis on the mobilisation and use of local resources and capabilities. It is particularly important to achieve a balance between investments for new construction, rehabilitation and maintenance work, institutional development and capacity building. Only more intensive interaction, achieved through more international exchange of opinions and co-ordinated approaches, ensures efficiency. Against this backdrop and in response to the changing frame conditions (decentralisation, sector reform, PRSP) in many countries, the main objective of the 10th TransNet event was to provide a broad overview on the state-of-the-art in "rural roads maintenance and financing" and to pinpoint critical issues and unmet challenges. For getting there, the event saw inputs for discussion regarding the subject at various levels:
- A general outline of current knowledge on approaches, options and relevant experiences in "Managing and Financing Low Volume Road Networks and their Maintenance" provided by John Hine, Rural Transport Advisor in the transport anchor of the World Bank
- An outlook on major ongoing, DFID funded, "Initiatives at global (gTKP) and at regional level (Community Access Programmes SEACAP / AFCAP)" presented by Peter O'Neill, Deputy Head of DFID's Central Research Department and member of the gTKP governing board
- Examples of how the maintenance issues are dealt with in a rural roads programme at local/national level: "Financing Rural Road Maintenance - Evidence from Bangladesh" brought in by Farhad Ahmed (Director of I.T. Transport Ltd) and "How rural communities can mobilize funds to implement and sustain a rural road project by adopting the EIIP methodology - Experiences from Burkina Faso" demonstrated by Salam Yameogo (Programme Coordinator PrEst, Helvetas)
- A technological side glance at the "Drysoil - System: hydrophobic impregnation of poor quality soils in road construction" developed by Baver GmbH (Roland Gilgen, Victor Wetterwald).
The inputs can be downloaded from http://www.trans-web.ch/transnet/transnet10/default.htm and further information can be obtained from the TransNet event organizers mailto:transweb@...
Since 2003, the Mobility desk within the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) issues the present electronic news bulletin "Focus on mobility". The "Focus" provides half-yearly information on relevant news, current issues and trends, SDC project milestones, recommended reading, upcoming events as well as relevant web pages in the transport sector. Together with the 5th edition of the "Focus" (Oct. 2005), the editorial team launched a web-based survey aimed at sensing the reader's satisfaction and gaining better insight on the audience's needs in order to tailor further the concept of the newsletter. 41 of the subscribed readers have responded to the survey, resulting in a response rate of 17%. Cordial thanks to all those of you, which took some of their precious time to take part in this, for us, very precious initiative.
The outcomes show that the "Focus" deals with readers typically screening the content of the mailing and doing selected reading and use of the information provided - information that is only in a limited way shared with others. The audience is widely made up of practitioners from NGO-type organisations, consulting companies and SDC assisted programs / projects having a close link to fieldwork, strongly South-based and Africa focussed. The readers believe in general that the content closes and important information gap. The length and quality of the "Focus" - and its articles - is commonly considered as adequate and good. Major suggested modifications of the "Focus" concept are to include job opportunities, to go beyond SDC specific activities, to get the readers more involved (open the platform for them), to provide more practical information (e.g. about IMTs, bicycles and road initiatives from a broad range of countries) and to adopt a higher frequency for the mailing. Those suggestions will be explored in forthcoming "Focus" editions and action is partly taken in this issue already - e.g. through an article on a Danida financed and Helvetas implemented rural roads programme in Benin (see below). The frequency of the mailing will be handled more flexibly (as news occur) and it will eventually allow including selected job opportunities whenever available. And finally, yes, readers - get more involved, the "Focus" is there for accommodating your articles and concerns!
A detailed analysis of the "Focus on Mobility" survey can be found at http://www.trans-web.ch/news.htm
The "25 Basic Publications" available at http://www.trans-web.ch/links/25BP.htm provide an entry point into the topic of mobility and transport by gathering brief summaries and ordering / downloading details of 25 selected reference publications in the field. The selected resources - essentially "established" and "trend-setting" publications - are structured along six categories: General literature; Transport infrastructure; Means of transport; Planning & management; O&M, PPP and Cross-sectoral concerns. The publications included in this structured hit list have been selected in an attempt to cover the widest possible range of essential mobility & transport topics in just 25 titles. Skat has elaborated and regularly revises / updates this list within the SDC Support Mandate in Mobility in collaboration with the TransNet and the IFRTD - and is therefore keen in receiving your feedback and your suggestions for new publications at mailto:transweb@....
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"Networking Myths and Trends" - abstract of a discussion paper presented by Jürg Christen (Skat) at the IFRTD Executive Committee Meeting 2005
Knowledge is a basic precondition for the development of countries in the East and the South. Although donors invest heavily in knowledge transfer and sharing to alleviate poverty in developing countries, improvements in the living conditions remain scant. Communities of practice and networks linking individuals and organisations are powerful ways of sharing knowledge and experience, and hence of learning. Skat participates in many communities of practice and networks in both the North and the South - in some networks Skat plays a coordinating role, in other cases it supports the establishment of new networks.
During Skat's long-standing networking activities, the organisation has learned that many assumptions and expectations were wishful thinking. Many think that networks are democratic, culturally competent and non-hierarchical. This is often not the case, as often only a few are doing the work in networks and/or one or a few organisations are dominant. The English language dominates largely - although knowing that local languages are necessary for true knowledge sharing. Further there is the belief that Southern leadership of networks can be expected if an established secretariat (with Northern mind set) is shifted to the South. It appears very often that it is not possible and that if networks are to be led by southern partners they have to be built up in the South. Networks are considered as the platform to share knowledge and information - but do we really share the relevant information, or do we often prefer to share our own concerns? It is also only partly true that networks are supported by committed members who work voluntarily - often networks work because there is a member that has a vital interest in the purpose of the network and is paid for its efforts. In addition, networks are often not able to count on donors for long-term support as donors change frequently their strategies. Finally it is a common belief that networks are economical because ICTs make face-to-face encounters unnecessary, because networks solve problems faster and because they fund and maintain themselves. Indeed ICTs facilitate contacts; but for conflict resolution or complex planning, f2f meetings are still necessary. It is also found that networks produce often negotiated solutions that lack conceptual clarity and that core funding is necessary, as the secretariat plays a crucial role.
It is foreseeable that networks will face in the next years some new trends and challenges. Donors and stakeholders will increasingly pay attention to sustainable outcomes and impacts - just networking is not enough and the number of hits on the website, of published reports or participants at conferences will not be sufficient indicators for success. Further the integration and usability of ICTs will become prominent issues - networks will have to invest and use up-to-date ICTs. The growing number of networks will increase the need for knowledge mapping to prevent duplication. Requirements for the quality of products and services delivered by networks will increase and the introduction of quality management systems is necessary. Achieving outcomes and impact needs understanding each other (addressing language problems and intercultural exchange) and requires better coordination of the network members, common standards and systems. At the same time a regionalisation of networks with regional networks, speaking local languages will be required - only in this way the local levels can be reached. Further unexpected new players with new agendas and management styles are entering the "market" with corporate giving as a new trend (e.g. Google launching one of the largest foundation working in development cooperation or Microsoft supporting vaccination campaigns that exceed those of development programmes by far). Finally systematic monitoring and evaluation systems become necessary for the management of the network and to meet the expectations of stakeholders and donors related to transparency and accountability. In conclusion it can be said that:
- Networks operate in a rapidly changing environment with new unforeseen challenges. They have to adjust dynamically following global trends in a proactive way with high professionalism and flexibility;
- Networks in developing countries have developed positive self-confidence, but management capacities for networking in the North and the South must still be strengthened;
- Networks have to improve their fundraising capacity and capability to tap new funding sources;
- "Glocalisation" of networks should be promoted, including global coordination to achieve economies of scale and impact as well as regional and local networking in local languages to reach and actively involve actors at the local level.
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Decentralized Rural Infrastructure and Livelihood Project (DRILP) launched in Nepal - by R. Schmid (Skat) and R. Workman (DRSP)
The DRILP implements rural infrastructure development in 18 districts of Nepal with the aim of achieving sustainable access and reducing poverty. All districts are in hilly or mountainous areas; all are very poor, many have acute access problems and are suffering from the current conflict situation. The DRILP has the scope to provide new or rehabilitated roads, new trails and new trail bridges, using labour-based technology, environmentally friendly and participatory methods, with a strong focus upon employing the poorest and most disadvantaged groups within societies along the road corridor. Supplementary investments, showing a clear access benefit related to those main investments, will also be implemented. These will be selected by the community and will typically be in water supply, rehabilitation of small irrigation and micro-hydropower schemes, as well as construction or rehabilitation of community buildings, health facilities and primary schools. The infrastructure works are complemented by support for social mobilisation of workers groups and other social interventions designed to extend the benefits of the project into the long term.
DRILP implementation is funded by a US$40 million loan from the Asian Development Bank (ADB), whilst the technical assistance (TA) is partly funded through an SDC grant. The coordinating government body is the Department of Local Infrastructure Development and Agricultural Roads (DoLIDAR). FRISA / ITECO, in association with Skat, have been awarded the task of technical assistance in 8 districts, with a coordinating role for the remaining 10. This partnership has several years of experience from the SDC funded District Roads Support Programme (DRSP) in Nepal, and will wherever possible be drawing on that experience. The project duration is for 6 years and 8 months, with a lead-in period of up to one year to carry out proper mobilisation, planning, recruitment of consultants / NGOs and selection and prioritisation of sub-projects.
SDC has, in Nepal, longstanding experience in the transport sector (trail bridges, district roads, strategic road network maintenance), having led to a valuable impact on institutional development and capacity building at all levels. Synergies between the road and trail network have been maximised in the districts, particularly through comprehensive transport network planning .The success of the pilot projects has been recognised and best practices have been identified and adopted by other stakeholders, as well as by Nepali consultants and contractors. The major objectives of SDC in the DRILP cooperation are to establish a stronger influence on the country's sector strategy (e.g. decentralisation, maintenance, SWAp), as well as to influence related broader policy dialogue, to contribute to an integrated approach to strengthening the capacity of the DoLIDAR, the districts and local communities, and to engage in an optimal, efficient and synergetic use of SDC's strength and longstanding experience in technical assistance in rural transport.
For further information, contact the DRILP TA unit at mailto:drsp@... or see http://www.sdc.org.np/index.php?navID=63849&langID=1&userhash=c84dcadc0ab735368c36052be6642049
Le secteur des transports constitue la clé de voûte du développement socio-économique du Bénin, pays qui constitue un important corridor de transit pour le Nigeria, le Burkina Faso et le Niger. De plus, le secteur, et notamment les pistes rurales, joue un rôle important pour le développement des zones rurales, en particulier pour assurer aux agriculteurs l'accès au marché et, à l'ensemble de la population, l'accès aux écoles, aux services de santé de base et aux centres administratifs, surtout vers les nouveaux centres municipaux. Pourtant le réseau des pistes rurales est en mauvais état ou en état médiocre sur presque tout le territoire du pays. La coopération bénino-danoise dans ce secteur, mise en œuvre à travers le "Programme d'Appui au Secteur Routier (PASR)" est ainsi axée sur l'objectif de la construction et l'entretien d'un réseau routier reliant les pistes rurales (communales) aux routes régionales donnant accès aux routes principales, conformément à la priorité majeure de lutte contre la pauvreté et aux objectifs nationaux en la matière.
L'ONG suisse Helvetas (www.helvetas.org) a fourni l'assistance technique dans la mise en œuvre de la "Composante Pistes Rurales (CPR)" du PASR dans sa 1ère phase (2000-05). Financée pour les travaux à 90% par la DANIDA et à 10% par les usagers, la composante a permis de réhabiliter plus de 320 km de pistes dans 8 communes du département du Zou et a contribuée au renforcement des capacités des cadres de l'Administration centrale et de ses services déconcentrés, des services techniques communaux et des entreprises et bureaux d'études. Les points remarquables du programme sont notamment:
- La mise en œuvre réussie d'une approche participative et gendérisée, notamment à travers la formation et l'intégration de 40 comités locaux (de pistes) intervenant effectivement dans la planification, l'exécution et l'entretien des pistes;
- Le succès de l'application de méthodes HIMO dans les travaux de réhabilitation et d'entretien, basée sur des formations pratiques des populations et des prestataires privés, avec atteinte des délais et des normes qualitatives requises à des prix compétitifs;
- Le renforcement effectif des communes dans la planification locale et dans l'exercice de la maîtrise d'ouvrage, y compris pour l'entretien des pistes réhabilitées.
Les interventions ont réaffirmé que le succès dans la mise en œuvre de travaux en HIMO repose sur la compréhension et l'acceptation mutuelle des différents acteurs - population, entreprises et bureaux d'études - intervenant sur un même chantier. Cette prémisse a été réalisée dans ce programme par un important travail de formation (couronnée par des chantiers-école) et d'intermédiation sociale permanente fournie par des prestataires professionnels spécialisés à l'aide d'outils adaptés de qualité. Helvetas a su capitaliser sur ces acquis et a produit des outils de travail adaptés mais également universels comme un guide technique de formation aux méthodes HIMO, des aide-mémoire sur la démarche d'intermédiation sociale et l'organisation communautaire, tout comme un manuel technique et un guide de la gestion communale de l'entretien des pistes. Le succès singulier de cette 1ère phase a motivé le Gouvernement du Bénin et le Royaume de Danemark d'étendre les interventions - géographiquement (à 4 départements) et quantitativement (à 720 km de pistes à réhabiliter) - dans une 2ème phase (2006-10) du programme.
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"When Do Rural Roads Benefit the Poor and How?" (H. Hettige, 2006)
This publication explores the ways in which rural roads impact poverty and what the determinants of these impacts are. It uses in-depth information from six case study villages through which Asian Development Bank-financed rural roads traversed. It is one of the few empirical research studies in this subject area containing in-depth quantitative and qualitative information on the process by which rural roads impact on people. The conclusions, lessons, and recommendations emanating from the study could help ADB and other development organisations to improve the design and implementation of rural roads components to achieve sustainable benefits for the poor. The publications is available for downloading or ordering at:
The manual has been produced by the Global Road Safety Partnership (GRSP) and presents six chapters each one focusing on a road safety theme where experience has proved that specific measures and actions could lead to positive outcome in the reduction of crashes and victims of road accidents. Each chapter starts with an introduction followed by an analysis of the effectiveness of actions in road safety, and then an example in countries around the world where some good results have been achieved is briefly described. Recommendations are given on how to proceed with the best implementation: Campaign and Enforcement, Awareness and Partnership, Crash Databases, Treatment of Black Spots, Road Design and Speed Management, Heath and Road Safety, Prehospital Care. The manual is available for download at:
Measuring the impact and quality of development efforts is the central theme of this collection of articles, published by KIT, IOB and Euforic. How do you measure the effects of development efforts? And what instruments are available for evaluation and quality assurance? International experts offer a varied and up-to-date view on the debate concerning evaluation and development cooperation. In an often innovative and challenging way, they identify and discuss the new trends and challenges facing evaluators and their institutions.
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SYMPOSIUM: Second International Symposium on Transportation Technology Transfer
An opportunity to learn, share and build on the latest in innovative transportation technology transfer methods. St. Petersburg, Florida, USA, 30 July - 3 August 2006. http://www.t2symposium.org
Bridging the divide between development goals, research and policy in developing countries. Port Elizabeth, South Africa, 27-30 August 2006. http://www.gendertransportconf.com
Skills, tools and concepts needed for work in specifying and implementing cost-efficient M&E systems to support more effective decision-making across the whole range of organisational and sectoral settings. July 17 - Aug. 11, 2006, ODG, Norwich, UK. http://www1.uea.ac.uk/cm/home/schools/ssf/dev/odg/prodev
For further events or event agendas you may visit http://www.trans-web.ch/links/events.htm
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New website of the Global Road Safety Partnership (GRSP): http://www.grsproadsafety.org
The GRSP website has been updated to make it easier for visitors to find and access the data they are looking for and to provide current information on GRSP. The re-looked and user-friendly site features information and news about GRSP and its activities, a knowledge base about road safety, a well furnished publications section and a wealth of links to GRSP members and partners as well as to road safety sites.
Gender, Equity and Transport Forum (GATNET): http://ecoplan.org/gatnet/
The GATNET gender and transport community grew from a research programme on mainstreaming gender into the World Bank's transport sector. It provides an independent platform for new thinking & world-wide collaborative problem-solving The network communicates via an email discussion list open to all those who are interested in improving mobility and access for poor women and men in developing countries.
The World Bank Transport Group web pages: http://www.worldbank.org/transport
The transport group of the WB assists clients to reduce poverty by improving efficiency and equity of transport policy and interventions. It works with the public and private sector and communities to enhance the capacity of transport institutions to provide sustainable infrastructure and services. The web pages provide a wealth of topical information, documents and resources and feature current topics and debates.
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-- DISCLAIMER --
The content of "FOCUS ON MOBILITY" does not necessarily reflect the official policies of SDC. Information contained may be freely used for non-commercial purposes, as long as SDC is duly acknowledged. For further information, please visit http://www.trans-web.ch/news.htm
"FOCUS ON MOBILITY" is a service provided by Skat within the "SDC Support Mandate in Mobility". More information at http://www.trans-web.ch
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