10 June 2019, New York, USA - UNITAR office in New York, in coordination with The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) organized a four day retreat training on Results Based Management (RBM) and Strategic Framework in the context of United Nations Reform for the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) staff from headquarters and country teams. The training started with welcoming remarks from Assistant Secretary General Mr. Alexandre Zouev, Office of Rule of Law and Security Institutions, who recognized UNMAS’ work, and hailed them for being one of the best examples of a United Nations department that has effects on all pillars of the Peace and Security, Human Rights, The Rule of Law and Development. He remarked the statistics that confirm the impact of UNMAS work, with more than 860,000 deactivated ERW, 1.2 million beneficiaries of Mine Education, and reinforced resource mobilization and communications and social media reaching millions around the world. Mr. Zouev hopes that results-based management will be a practical and useful tool of programme management work and closed the remarks by thanking UNITAR’s initiative in particular and its capacity building work in general including the latest meeting of SRSGs with a smoothly organization and insightful exchange of ideas between attending high level officials.
Representing UNITAR, Mr. Marco Suazo Head of office of New York, shared the expectations of the training including improved knowledge and skills to manage UNMAS’ mine action programmes with a keen focus on results and how they contribute to achieving UNMAS country-level and overall strategic priorities.
Secondly, he shared the importance of results-based management as one of the centerpieces of UN management reform and what are steps taken so far to implement RBM in the UN. Mr. Suazo remarked the participatory approach of the training which provides an ample opportunity for you to contribute to plenary and group dialogue.
Mr. Suazo thanked UNITAR experts Mr. Charles Downs and Ms. Christina Bierring who have worked closely with UNMAS and UNOPS staff to ensure that this training meets the needs of UNMAS Staff. Mr. Zouev continued his presentation of the importance of results-based strategic planning, resource and evidence-based performance management for Mine Action.
Next, Ms. Rebecca Jovin, Chief of Strategic Planning and Operation Support Unit at UNMAS; and Ms. Maria Vardis, Officer-in-Charge, Policy Advocacy and Public Information Section, DPOMs; went through UNMAS Strategic Plan 2019-2023—a results-focused organization-wide umbrella for UNMAS Mine Action and linkages with the UN Mine Action Strategy 2019-2023. Participants were also welcomed by Amir Omeragic, Director, Peace and Security, UNOPS; and Paul Heslop, Chief, Programme Planning Management Section, UNMAS.
The afternoon sessions continued with presentations on Cross-Cutting Initiatives and Agendas: Lessons and Challenges for UNMAS Programmes. The session on Gender Mainstreaming was given by Giorgia Depaoli, UNMAS-UNOPS PSC Global Gender Advisor; and Pehr Lodhammer Senior Programme Manager, Iraq. During this session, the presenters shared examples of how the Iraq Programme incorporates Gender Mainstreaming internally, and externally. They also presented a video on Women in Mine Action to underscore these efforts. Next, Steven Kraus, Acting Director, Business Transformation and Accountability Division; shared best practices for transitioning mission activities to government mine agencies, using field-based examples from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Then, a presentation was made by Jan-Philip Klever, Programme Manager, Colombia; on Development system reforms for UNDAF.
As Day-1 drew to a close, presentations on Key Elements of Results-Based Country Programme Strategies were shared. These sessions included topics such as SWOT Analysis, given by Alan MacDonald, Project Manager, Lebanon; Stakeholder Engagement, presented by Qurat Sadozai, Head of Programme, Somalia, and then finally, Causality Analysis, given by Gilles Delecourt Project Member, Syria. These topics were a helpful primer for the discussions and activities in the coming days.
In closing, Mr. Downs and Ms. Bierring discussed opportunities to strengthen future linkages to the UNMAS 2019-2023 Strategic Framework and outlined the agenda for the rest of conference. Mr. Helsop concluded Day-1 with words of encouragement and thanked the attendees for their participation.