Key findings: UNDP guidance recommends a two-tiered management structure for electoral assistance programmes. One tier provides policy oversight and is normally referred to as a Steering Committee; the other tier consists of a Project Management Unit (PMU) and is responsible for implementing the project on a day-to-day basis. In addition, the UNDP recommends coordination structures to facilitate consensus amongst donors and to help minimise duplication. These coordination structures could exist at the donor level (e.g. a donor coordination mechanism) and at the stakeholder level (e.g. a stakeholder forum that includes all national stakeholders).
Key lessons gleaned from the reviewed literature are:
- Management structures should avoid the over-centralisation of responsibilities.
- Management and coordination structures should contain sufficient senior policy and operational representation from relevant stakeholder bodies.
- There should be sufficient linkages and information flows between the management and coordination structures to minimise duplication.
- Donors need to strengthen their own governance and oversight of UNDP managed programmes.
- Management arrangements can vary depending upon the context. Programming within peacekeeping contexts differs from that in more stable environments.
- Local ownership of management and coordination structures should be encouraged where feasible and appropriate.
- Risk management and monitoring was found to be neglected in many of the reviewed case studies.