United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)

1. What decisions or new strategies has the governing body of your organization taken to guide the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs? Please provide a brief summary below, including the overarching vision of your governing body for the Decade of Action on the SDGs.

IFAD’s 2016-2025 Strategic Framework situates the Fund in the evolving global context and articulates its contribution to the 2030 Agenda. The Strategic Framework is at the centre of IFAD’s system for managing for development results. Performance is measured through the results measurement frameworks (RMFs) agreed with Member States in the context of IFAD’s replenishment consultations. Progress will be reported annually to the Executive Board and its Evaluation Committee in the Report on IFAD’s Development Effectiveness (RIDE), and the Annual Report on Results and Impact of IFAD Operations (ARRI) produced by the Independent Office of Evaluation of IFAD. During the period covered by this framework, IFAD’s overarching development goal will be to invest in rural people to enable them to overcome poverty and achieve food security through remunerative, sustainable and resilient livelihoods. This will therefore necessitate the pursuit of three closely interlinked and mutually reinforcing strategic objectives (SOs) to achieve its goal:

• SO1: Increase poor rural people’s productive capacities;

• SO2: Increase poor rural people’s benefits from market participation; and

• SO3: Strengthen the environmental sustainability and climate resilience of poor rural people’s economic activities

Achieving these strategic objectives and contributing to the 2030 Agenda will require IFAD to work bigger, better and smarter.

2. At the secretariat level, what steps has your organization taken (or will it take) in the follow-up to the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs? Please specify actions, including but not limited to the following areas:

2.1 SDG-specific strategies, plans or work programmes;

IFAD's Operational and Policy Results division is undergoing an exercise to update its development effectiveness framework to ensure that its M&E and corporate results reporting, in particular the Results and Impact Management System indicators are aligned with SDG targets at a reasonably disaggregated level. As the system allows entities to update their submissions on a continuous basis, IFAD will wait until 2021 to provide the disaggregated data based on the OPR exercise.

2.2 Aligning the structure of the organization with the SDGs and the transformative features of the 2030 Agenda, including any challenges and lessons learned in doing so;

IFAD's Operational and Policy Results division is undergoing an exercise to update its development effectiveness framework to ensure that its M&E and corporate results reporting, in particular the Results and Impact Management System indicators are aligned with SDG targets at a reasonably disaggregated level. As the system allows entities to update their submissions on a continuous basis, IFAD will wait until 2021 to provide the disaggregated data based on the OPR exercise.

2.3 Readjusting or updating results-based budgeting and management, including performance indicators;

IFAD's Operational and Policy Results division is undergoing an exercise to update its development effectiveness framework to ensure that its M&E and corporate results reporting, in particular the Results and Impact Management System indicators are aligned with SDG targets at a reasonably disaggregated level. As the system allows entities to update their submissions on a continuous basis, IFAD will wait until 2021 to provide the disaggregated data based on the OPR exercise.

2.4 Action to enhance support to the principle of "leaving no one behind" and to integrated policy approaches;

IFAD's targeting strategy is a principle of engagement in our Strategic Framework 2016-2025, based around: "the commitment to leave no one behind. In this spirit, and in line with its targeting policy, IFAD will use a variety of tools to ensure that the largest possible number of poor rural people benefit from emerging economic opportunities, and that those who cannot do so immediately – notably people from marginalized groups, in particular women, indigenous peoples19 and young people – are proactively supported in developing the skills and assets to do so in the near future."

(p.18, available at: https://www.ifad.org/documents/38714170/40237917/IFAD+Strategic+Framework+2016-2025/d43eed79-c827-4ae8-b043-09e65977e22d#page=20) IFAD's annual report is also centred around its impact, and lessons learned for the future, on reducing poverty and hunger. The 2019 version is available at: https://www.ifad.org/documents/38714170/41784870/AR2019+EN.pdf/ba495c3d-7db8-a688-08d2-1589ade15f4f

2.5 Action to address the interlinkages across SDG goals and targets;

IFAD's Operational and Policy Results division is undergoing an exercise to update its development effectiveness framework to ensure that its M&E and corporate results reporting, in particular the Results and Impact Management System indicators are aligned with SDG targets at a reasonably disaggregated level. As the system allows entities to update their submissions on a continuous basis, IFAD will wait until 2021 to provide the disaggregated data based on the OPR exercise.

2.6 Others.

3. What normative, analytical, technical assistance or capacity building activities is your organization providing to support the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs? Please provide a brief account of the activities you have organized or intend to undertake, including but not limited to the following areas:

3.1 Enhancing national implementation including by supporting the mainstreaming of the SDGs in development plans and policies or through national sustainable development plans/strategies;

The IFAD11 period has been one of ambitious acceleration in response to the significant opportunities and challenges presented by the 2030 Agenda. Member States underlined that IFAD has a unique contribution to make to the achievements of the SDGs. The resource increase via IFAD11 has enabled the Fund to achieve greater impact across a range of SDGs – from improved incomes, resilience and nutrition to increased agricultural production and market access. Member States have also agreed to work towards realizing the vision of a bigger, better, smarter IFAD, to maximize the Fund's contribution to the 2030 Agenda. IFAD Management has implemented important reforms to enhance IFAD's capacity for delivery.

3.2 Mainstreaming the SDGs in sectoral strategies, including specific SDG/target strategies;

IFAD's Operational and Policy Results division is undergoing an exercise to update its development effectiveness framework to ensure that its M&E and corporate results reporting, in particular the Results and Impact Management System indicators are aligned with SDG targets at a reasonably disaggregated level. As the system allows entities to update their submissions on a continuous basis, IFAD will wait until 2021 to provide the disaggregated data based on the OPR exercise.

3.3 Supporting the strengthening of national institutions for more integrated solutions;

In line with aid effectiveness principles and given that the country programmes IFAD supports are nationally executed, strengthening the capacity of national stakeholders (government agencies in particular, but also non-governmental organizations (NGOs), private-sector service providers, or organizations of poor rural people) to formulate, manage, implement and evaluate national policies and programmes for smallholder agriculture and rural development is critical. An important element of IFAD’s work with government institutions will be to promote transparency, responsiveness and accountability in the planning, financing and provision of public-sector services. IFAD may also assist governments in redefining the role and the core functions of public-sector institutions for agriculture and rural development and promote an environment of learning through careful evaluation of programmes. IFAD will further support government efforts to develop an enabling institutional framework for poor rural people to organize into groups or associations, and to create space for a dialogue with them on key rural issues.

IFAD's decentralization will help to optimize efficiency and complementarity of functions, service delivery and knowledge flows between ICOs and headquarters, ensuring a more country-based approach to the provision of day-to-day programme support. Layers of approval will be reduced and the accountability and delegated authority of decentralized offices enhanced.

IFAD's country strategies provide the basis to assess the instruments, approaches or thematic areas most appropriate or most demanded by each country and to ensure full alignment with national priorities and strategies. IFAD's operational procedures on country strategies were strengthened during IFAD10 (2016-2018), and further steps are being taken to make it a fully-fledged transition strategy to accompany countries in their development journey.

3.4 Data and statistical capacity building;

IFAD is currently collaborating with FAO, the World Bank, USAID and others to implement the 50x2030 data initiative that was launched at the UNGA in September 2018 to improve country-level data and statistics, linked to the agricultural components of SDG2. IFAD is in charge of the data use component of this initiative.

3.5 Harnessing science, technology and innovation for the SDGs;

IFAD continues to demonstrate its commitment to harnessing science, technology and innovation in an effort to achieve the SDGs. While the Fund is contributing to the HLCP’s workstreams on Artificial Intelligence and predictive analytics, IFAD is also leveraging SSTC as a key mechanism for delivering relevant, targeted and cost-effective development solutions to partners across the globe. It will play a more significant role as a knowledge-broker for SSTC by facilitating opportunities for sharing relevant innovations, technologies, methodologies and lessons between policymakers, development practitioners and the private sector.

3.6 Multi-stakeholder partnerships;

Partnerships – both global and within countries – are key for achieving Agenda 2030. Given the magnitude of IFAD’s agenda and the investments required for smallholder agriculture development and rural transformation, partnerships will continue to be central to its work. In addition to strengthening successful existing partnerships and developing new ones, especially with partners with complementary areas of expertise, IFAD will continue to engage with the international development community to build support around global issues affecting rural communities. It will facilitate multistakeholder partnerships between governments, the private sector and small-scale rural producers, including through South-South and Triangular Cooperation. Collaboration with the Rome-based agencies will be of strategic priority.

Agenda 2030 brings the critical importance of partnerships – both global and within countries – into sharp relief. IFAD fully recognizes this reality, given the magnitude of the agenda and the investments required for smallholder agriculture development and rural transformation. Partnerships will be crucial for IFAD to promote synergies among its own and other sources of finance, knowledge and expertise and create more enabling environments for poor people in rural areas to build their pathways out of poverty.

3.7 Bolstering local action and supporting sub-national plans/strategies and implementation for the SDGs;

IFAD's Operational and Policy Results division is undergoing an exercise to update its development effectiveness framework to ensure that its M&E and corporate results reporting, in particular the Results and Impact Management System indicators are aligned with SDG targets at a reasonably disaggregated level. As the system allows entities to update their submissions on a continuous basis, IFAD will wait until 2021 to provide the disaggregated data based on the OPR exercise.

3.8 Leveraging interlinkages across SDG goals and targets;

IFAD's Operational and Policy Results division is undergoing an exercise to update its development effectiveness framework to ensure that its M&E and corporate results reporting, in particular the Results and Impact Management System indicators are aligned with SDG targets at a reasonably disaggregated level. As the system allows entities to update their submissions on a continuous basis, IFAD will wait until 2021 to provide the disaggregated data based on the OPR exercise.

3.9 Supporting policies and strategies to leave no one behind;

A comprehensive response to the question will be provided in due course

3.10 Supporting the mobilization of adequate and well-directed financing;

A comprehensive response to the question will be provided in due course

3.11 Reducing disaster risk and building resilience;

IFAD has developed the 'IFAD strategy for engagement in countries with fragile situations'. The strategy outlines the guiding principles for IFAD's engagement in countries with fragile situations. These guiding principles are: (a) risk management and resilience; (b) focus on root causes (within IFAD's mandate and comparative advantage); (c) gender mainstreaming and targeting; (d) institution-building to promote trust and social cohesion; (e) flexible and responsive resources, instruments and approaches; (f) strategic and complementary partnerships; and (g) results measurement and learning.

IFAD's use of partnerships in fragile situations is guided by the IFAD Partnership Strategy. Partnerships with the Rome-based agencies (RBAs), IFIs and other international agencies will be prioritized, as will partnerships with other development partners with strong implementing capacity, such as trusted civil society organizations. The memorandum of understanding recently established between IFAD and the World Food Programme (WFP) in Sudan is an example of such a partnership.

3.12 Supporting international cooperation and enhancing the global partnership;

IFAD will continue to engage with a broad range of partners: Member States, development institutions, farmer organizations, the private sector, foundations, and other relevant national and international stakeholders. It will strengthen successful existing partnerships and develop new ones especially with partners with complementary areas of expertise that go beyond its comparative advantage. It will continue its strong engagement with the international development community to build support around relevant global issues affecting rural communities, and facilitate multistakeholder partnerships between governments, the private sector and small-scale rural producers, including increasingly through SSTC.

3.13 Others.

4. The high-level political forum (HLPF) is the central platform for the follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs. Has your organization participated in or supported the work of the HLPF? If yes, please specify your involvement in the following areas:

4.1 Supporting the intergovernmental body of your organization in contributing to the thematic review of the HLPF;

IFAD stands ready to support it's membership in the thematic review of the HLPF, particularly in bridging rural-urban gaps in human development indicators; Leveraging new investments in infrastructure to fill rural-urban gaps; Investing in rural-specific data and in rural-urban data disaggregation; and Empowering poor rural women and men to take an active part in follow-up and review

4.2 Contributing to policy/background briefs for the HLPF;

IFAD staff continue to contribute to policy/background briefs of the HLPF through their engagement in the Forum's various thematic working groups

4.3 Helping organize SDG-specific events in the preparatory process;

A joint HLPF Special Event to launch the 2020 State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World (SOFI) report in partnership with FAO, IFAD, UNICEF, WFP and WHO took place in July 2020. The event was co-hosted by the IFAD President, FAO DG, WFP Executive Director and WHO ADG. The report looks at the most recent and authoritative estimates of the extent of hunger, food insecurity, and malnutrition around the world. This year, the 2020 report theme, “Transforming Food Systems for Affordable Healthy Diets” reports the progress towards achieving SDG2. It also includes a particular focus on transforming food systems for affordable healthy diets

4.4 Organizing side events or speaking at the HLPF;

IFAD, in conjunction with the Canadian and Finnish governments, organized a high-level side event at the HLPF in July 2020. The event was entitled Partnering with Indigenous Peoples: Leveraging their knowledge to achieve the SDGs by 2030 while recognizing the challenge to address the outbreak of COVID-19. The objective of this event was to showcase how Indigenous Peoples’ knowledge, cultural values and sustainable management systems are essential to the realization of the entire 2030 Agenda, the importance of building mutually beneficial partnerships with their communities and organizations to leave no-one behind, and recognize the specific role, rights, needs and priorities of Indigenous Peoples in addressing the global outbreak of COVID 19 and contributing to SDGs.

4.5 Supporting the VNR process.

IFAD continues to encourage Member States to conduct regular and inclusive reviews that are country-led. IFAD supports the importance of VNRs as a means to facilitate the sharing of experiences, including successes, challenges and lessons learned, with a view to accelerating the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. The Fund believes VNRs are also important strengthening policies and institutions of governments and to mobilize multi-stakeholder support and partnerships for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.

5. How has your organization cooperated with other UN system organizations to achieve coherence and synergies in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs? In this regard, has your organization launched or intend to launch any joint programmes or projects in collaboration with other UN entities? Are there any results or lessons you would like to highlight that might help improve the design and impact of such efforts? Has your organization participated in any of the following coordination systemwide mechanisms or any other relevant platform - CEB, UNSDG, EC-ESA Plus, regional coordination meetings, UN-Energy, UN-Water, UN-Ocean, IAEG, IATT? Please specify which and indicate any suggestions you may have about improving collaborations within and across these mechanisms/platforms.

IFAD continues to work closely with other UN entities, particularly through the UNDS, with regards to the UN reform agenda. IFAD has committed to the new UNSDCF, the Multi-Country Office Review, Management and Accountability Framework, Business Operations Strategy, and the Funding Compact.

IFAD is also bolstering its collaboration with other UN agencies, particularly the Rome-based Agencies, which has been further spurred on as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The crisis has further reinforced the need for greater collaboration. RBA collaboration is built on a spectrum of work that spans from responding to emergencies and shocks, to humanitarian and development activities. Together, the RBAs collectively respond to a dual imperative: respond urgently to food security needs, while helping governments and populations build resilience and a better future. It is in this context that the RBAs continue to strengthen their collaborative efforts to transform food systems. They recognize that a holistic and systemic approach with multistakeholder partnerships, and innovative investments are needed to address the root causes of hunger and malnutrition. The RBAs share a common commitment and resolve to achieve SDG2 and have structured collaboration around four main pillars: (i) global collaboration; (ii) country and regional level collaboration; (iii) collaboration in thematic areas; and (iv) joint provision of corporate services.

Concrete Example: The Sahel region is confronted with a series of persistent challenges including persistent poverty, food insecurity and malnutrition, conflict and instability; desertification and extreme weather events including droughts and flooding, which are now exacerbated by COVID-19. The RBAs, with their shared mission to advance food security, nutrition, agricultural productivity and rural development are committed to contribute to the local, national, regional and international efforts to foster prosperity, resilience and stability in the Sahel region. The RBA can work together to advance the Humanitarian-Peace- Development nexus. RBAs have updated the existing letter of intent with the G5 Sahel Secretariat to serve as the legal framework for a regional project bringing together 6 Sahel countries (Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Senegal) that will be the first of its kind. The MOU now includes IFAD in addition to WFP and FAO with the aim to bring into effect in the 1st quarter of 2021. This MOU was discussed by the 3RBAs and endorsed by Executive Secretary of G5Sahel. In parallel, the RBAs have agreed to collective action through a joint regional project addressing three key vulnerability areas in the Sahel: COVID-19, Conflicts and Climate Change (SD3C). This regional project will scale up IFAD, FAO and WFP support in the region with an estimated budget of over US$180 million dollars. The SD3C brings together the complementarities of the RBAs and was approved by the IFAD Executive Board in December. The SD3C was designed at the request of the Governments of the governments of the G5 (Burkina Faso-Mali-Mauritania-Niger-Chad) and Senegal. The goal of the project is to strengthen the overall resilience and mitigate the impacts of the COVID-19 crisis, conflicts and climate change by: (i) strengthening the productive capacity of smallholders in border regions and cross-border markets for inputs and agricultural produce; (ii) Foster security and safety of transactions for more reliable and safer economic activities; (iii) applying food systems approaches that seeks to ensure sustainability from an economic, social and environmental standpoint. The SD3C aims to contribute to the implementation of the G5 Sahel Strategy for Development and Security (SDS) The Programme is aligned to the "Resilience and human development" axis of the G5 Sahel priority investment program (PIP) and refers to the "Resilience" pillar of the United Nations integrated strategy for the Sahel (UNISS) and to the IFAD Strategic Objectives 1 and 3, respectively on increasing production and resilience in the G5 Sahel countries.

IFAD is also an active contributor to both the CEB and the UNSDG, although it is not a core group member of the latter. Importantly, the President of IFAD is current chair of UN-Water

6. How has your organization engaged with stakeholder groups, both in supporting implementation at the country, regional and global levels, and within your own organization? If yes, please provide main highlights, including any lessons learned. If your organization has established any multi-stakeholder partnerships to support the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs, please describe them and how their performances are being monitored and reviewed.

IFAD engages with a wide spectrum of stakeholders at the country, regional and global level. Such stakeholders include governments, civil society groups, farmers organizations, academia, philanthropic organizations and foundations and, increasingly, the private sector.

7. Has your organization organized any conferences, forums or events designed to facilitate exchange of experience, peer and mutual learning in connection with the SDGs? If yes, please provide a brief summary, below and include lessons learned and gaps identified based on the outcomes of these events. Please also include any events you want to organize in the coming years.

IFAD, in conjunction with FAO, are leading on the UN Decade of Family Farming. Conceived as a framework for countries to develop public policies and investments to support family farming from a holistic perspective, it significantly contributes to achieve the SDGs.

The Decade now stands as an extraordinary opportunity to significantly contribute to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda, through the achievement of five objectives: develop enabling policy environment to strengthen family farming; improve socio-economic inclusion, resilience and well-being in rural households and communities; promote sustainability of agriculture, forestry and fisheries; strengthen the multi-functionality of family farmers and their capacities to promote climate change mitigation and food systems that safeguard agricultural biodiversity, environment and culture; and strengthen family farmers’ organizations and their capacities to generate knowledge and to provide inclusive services in rural areas.

In doing so, the Decade of Family Farming will strongly support youth, ensure generational sustainability of family farming and promote gender equity, especially with regards to rural women's role.

8. Is there any other information you would like to share, including annual reports of your organization and any impact assessment or evaluation reports? If yes, please use the space below and attach the document(s). Please also use this space to provide any other information, comments or remarks you deem necessary.

The Report on IFAD’s Development Effectiveness (RIDE) is the Fund’s main corporate document reporting on the organization's institutional and development effectiveness: https://www.ifad.org/en/document-detail/asset/39643063

IFAD Development Effectiveness Framework: https://webapps.ifad.org/members/eb/119/docs/EB-2016-119-R-12.pdf

9. In your view, what should strategic directions look like for the UN system in support of the 2030 Agenda and SDGs in the Decade of Action? What key elements should they include and what major challenges should they address?

 

Set clear priorities. The 2030 Agenda does not guide the setting of priorities among its goals and targets. Instead, all 17 Goals and 169 targets are presented as sustainable development priorities, making it difficult for countries to know where to begin. A concise list of key areas for fostering coherence can be instrumental in making Policy Coherence for Sustainable Development (PCSD) more than just wishful thinking – especially if supported by a clear action plan, distribution of tasks, and mechanisms to arbitrate trade-offs. Crafting shortlists of policy coherence priorities, as the EU Commission has in the past, could be a model to follow.

Second, countries need to find their own way. It is necessary to tailor methods to context by working with the grain – building PCSD from the bottom up – rather than applying a general blueprint to every country. In that sense, general checklists and the SDG indicators can be somewhat misleading: countries may be better off building on existing practices. For instance, the Netherlands set up routine government reporting to parliament on policy coherence, to provide an incentive to keep things moving. Switzerland works with universities to track its own coherence in the areas of financial secrecy and commodity trading, knowing that a strong evidence base can help outweigh the forces for incoherence.

Depending on the country’s culture, it can be best to give a positive spin to coherence efforts, by focusing on synergies rather than trade-offs. In some places, ‘mainstreaming’ is associated with heavy reporting burdens, so it makes people wary. ‘Whole-of-government’ approaches (for sustainable development overall or for a specific area like anti-corruption in the case of the UK) have worked in some places and backfired in others. Acronyms such as PCSD work better in some countries than in others, where a translation is in order. Hence turning PCSD into reality is more a matter of inventing a national model than applying international best practices.

10. Please suggest one or two endeavours or initiatives that the UN system organizations could undertake together to support the implementation of the SDGs between now and 2030.

Endeavours like the Global Evaluation Initiative, a broad partnership aimed at strengthening capacities to generate and use evaluative evidence for more effective policies hold great promise to coordinate efforts to support the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.