BERF held its first webinar on ‘Measuring Value for Money in DFID’s Business Environment Reform Programmes’ on Thursday, 29 September 2016.  The event held in collaboration with the World Bank/International Finance Corporation, attracted interest from DFID Country Officers, other bilateral partners, international development agencies that are involved in designing and implementing Business Environment Reform programmes and BERF partners and associates.

The webinar followed the publication of a BERF Evidence and Learning Note entitled ‘’How to Measure Value for Money in DFID’s Business Environment Reform Programmes, including those delivered by the International Finance Corporation’. It was aimed at sharing lessons learnt in measuring Value for Money in DFID’s and other donors’ Business Environment Reform programmes using evidence from a range of sources including the Evidence and Learning Note.

The 60-minutes event saw presentations from a number of Value for Money experts. Kamal Siblini, Senior Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist and Value for Money Expert at the World Bank International Finance Corporation spoke on the topic ‘Measuring Value for Money in Business Environment Reform and Investment Climate Programmes: Challenges and Opportunities – The World Bank’s Perspective’. His presentation provided a practical framework for understanding and applying Value for Money in Business Environment Reform programmes and drew attention to a number of challenges and lessons that can be learned from the field.

The second presentation by Itad’s Senior Consultant, Edward Hedley and Value for Money Expert and Consultant, Gulden Bayaz summarised the lessons gleaned from their consultations to develop and draft the Evidence and Learning Note. The two presenters highlighted a series of qualitative and quantitative Value for Money indicators from which DFID Country Offices could choose in designing Value for Money metrics for Business Environment Reform programmes and illustrated how each of the key efficiency and effectiveness indicators could be mapped to the International Finance Corporation Business Enviornment Reform work streams. Their presentation on ‘How to deliver value for money in DFID’s Business Environment Reform programme, including updates on efficiency and effectiveness’ also offered suggestions on how gender, one equity metric, could be measured as part of a Value for Money assessment.

The final presentation by Simon White, independent consultant and Coordinator of the Donor Committee for Enterprise Development Business Environment Working Group, explored how equity can be measured in a Business Environment Reform Value for Money assessment. In his presentation ‘Preliminary thoughts on Value for Money in Business Environment Reform and Equity – Jobs, Poverty, Skills Set and Geographic Focus in relation to Sectors’ , he suggested that in addition to gender, other dimensions to measure equity in BER could include the informal economy, geography (spatial) and sectors.

A short but lively question and answer session ensued which involved participants and presenters exchanging views on the practicality of equity measures in the context of national Business Environment Reform programmes. The meeting also raised the usefulness of Value for Money indicators to assess changes in the political economy of   Business Environment Reform implementing countries, among other issues.

For further details of the event, please see the webinar report.