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Moldova

Public Sector Evaluation (MD0067)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Not Attached

Action Plan Cycle: 2016

Status: Inactive

Institutions

Lead Institution: State Chancellery

Support Institution(s): Central Public Authorities

Policy Areas

Public Participation

IRM Review

IRM Report: Moldova End-of-Term Report 2016-2018

Starred: No

Early Results: Did Not Change

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information Civic Participation , Technology

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion:

Description

Ensuring transparency on performance data for public authorities, streamlining monitoring and responsiveness in the public sector
5.1. Developing a Scorecard and periodically updating it to allow monitoring and evaluation by the Government, citizens, donors, etc. the progress and efficiency of reforms in the various branches of public administration, the performance of public authorities, the level of fulfillment of the commitments assumed in the policy documents
5.2. Launch of the Public Sector Scorecard for three areas of central public administration reform - 5.2.1. Drafting and approving a governmental decision on institutionalizing the responsibilities of public institutions related to data provision and periodic review of progress
5.3. Launch of the Scorecard for the public and updating it periodically
5.4. Regularly updating the Scorecard and managing the assessment processes, at least quarterly, for the reform areas included in the fiche and for those to be included
Responsible institution: State Chancellery
Supporting institution(s): Central Public Authorities
Start date: 1st quarter 20171 End date: 2nd quarter 2018

IRM Midterm Status Summary

5. Public sector evaluation

Commitment Text:

Title: Ensuring transparency on performance data for public authorities, streamlining monitoring and responsiveness in the public sector

5.1. Developing a Scorecard and periodically updating it to allow monitoring and evaluation by the Government, citizens, donors, etc. the progress and efficiency of reforms in the various branches of public administration, the performance of public authorities, the level of fulfillment of the commitments assumed in the policy documents

5.2. Launch of the Public Sector Scorecard for three areas of central public administration reform

- 5.2.1. Drafting and approving a governmental decision on institutionalizing the responsibilities of public institutions related to data provision and periodic review of progress

5.3. Launch of the Scorecard for the public and updating it periodically

5.4. Regularly updating the Scorecard and managing the assessment processes, at least quarterly, for the reform areas included in the fiche and for those to be included

Responsible institution: State Chancellery

Supporting institution(s): Central Public Authorities

Start date: 1st quarter 2017[Note172: In the action plan the timeline and completion dates are inconsistent. According to the plan - http://lex.justice.md/index.php?action=view&view=doc&lang=1&id=368355 – the development of the scorecard was planned for the 1st quarter 2018, however, the institutional launching and the public launching were planned for the first 6 months of 2017.]............ End date: 2nd quarter 2018

Context and Objectives

In the past decade, Moldova has made significant progress in reforming its public administration.[Note173: Public Administration Reform, http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/406511503626440012/pdf/Moldova-MGSP-PAD-08032017.pdf] However, challenges remain especially with regards to the high level of corruption in the public services sector. In 2016, Moldova received a score of 30 out of 100 (0 being highly corrupt) on Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index. According to the US State Department, bureaucratic red tape stretches out the duration of procedures, such as receiving permits (construction, refurbishment works, etc.) and registering businesses, and creates opportunities for government officials to take discretionary decisions, thus creating more room for abuse and corruption.[Note174: US State Department (2017). Investment Climate Statement https://www.state.gov/e/eb/rls/othr/ics/investmentclimatestatements/#wrapper]

This challenge of corruption in the public services sector is further compounded by a general lack of trust in government in Moldova. According to the 2016 Global Corruption Barometer on Europe and Central Asia, two thirds of Moldovans rate corruption as a major problem in their country.[Note175: US State Department, https://files.transparency.org/content/download/2039/13168/file/2016_GCB_ECA_EN.pdf] Similarly, a 2017 Institute for Public Policy Public Opinion Poll[Note176: Institute for Public Policy, http://ipp.md/old/lib.php?l=en&idc=156] found that 45 percent of respondents stated that they do not trust the government at all.

In order to address perceptions of corruption in the public services sector, the State Chancellery committed to developing, launching and regularly updating a Public Sector Scorecard. The development of a scorecard was originally set out in the Public Administration Reform Strategy 2016–2020[Note177: The law, http://lex.justice.md/UserFiles/File/2016/mo459-471md/plan_1351.doc] and further elaborated upon in this commitment. The Scorecard is intended to be a tool for monitoring government agencies on their progress and efficiency in (1) implementing administrative reforms in 'three central areas,' (2) implementing policy documents, and (3) rating the performance of public authorities.

The specificity of this commitment is medium: it outlines the steps needed to launch the Scorecard, including getting the necessary governmental approval to institutionalize data provision and periodic review of progress. However, the commitment text does not identify the 'three central areas' for administrative reform to be evaluated in the Scorecard, nor is it clear which government authority will be responsible for the Scorecard assessments and updates.

As written, this commitment is relevant to Access to Information and Technology and Innovation for Transparency and Accountability because it aims to increase transparency of public authorities’ performance and activities by developing a technology (the Scorecard) that makes their assessment publicly available. The commitment text includes reference 'to allow monitoring and evaluation by the Government, citizens, donors, etc.' of the Scorecard, which will be accessible through a dedicated website as well as through discussions organized by the State Chancellery with civil society representatives. The Scorecard methodology itself also provides for the organization of annual meetings with representatives of civil society to provide feedback.

Provision of public administration activity reports for corruption-prone areas is not a new development in Moldova. Public administration bodies provide activity reports on areas that have been specifically targeted and criticized by the media, CSOs or the donor community.[Note178: Ibid.] Additionally, some opportunities already exist for citizens to provide complaints and feedback to ministries through particip.gov.md and the main webpage of the State Chancellery[Note179: Government of the Republic of Moldova, http://cancelaria.gov.md/ro] which lists a 'hotline' number for complaints. However, the extent to which those are received and/or incorporated is unclear because ministries are not obligated to respond to citizen comments.[Note180: Rusu, Constantin. (Legal Services Consultant), in discussion with IRM staff, 14 May 2018.] If fully implemented, this commitment could have a moderate potential impact on improving the transparency of public administration reforms and public agencies’ performance because the commitment activities include a provision for institutionalizing responsibilities for data collection on performance and committing resources to providing regular and publicly accessible updates via the Scorecard. A more transformative commitment, however, would utilize this new information to create a mechanism for initiating change or instituting consequences for public authorities that ‘fail’ the Scorecard criteria.

Completion

Overall, the completion of this commitment is limited. The implementation of the Scorecard-related activities was delayed due to a re-assignment of institutional ownership for commitment implementation from the State Chancellery to another agency and then re-assigned back to the Chancellery. According to the World Bank short-term consultant[Note181: V.Cretu, Open Government Institute, personal communication, 13 December 2017] working on this project, the Scorecard platform was developed and simulated toward the end of 2017. Internal, one-pager reports were provided to the Government and data was collected as part of a Scorecard platform simulation exercise in the second part of 2017.[Note182: While the IRM researcher was aware of these reports, she did not have access to them.] When launched, the Scorecard will include indicators covering three priority areas: business environment, social issues and public administration reform, and will include additional areas in the future. The launch of the platform is planned to take place in May 2018.[Note183: V. Cretu, Open Government Institute, personal communication, April 2017.]

Most civil society stakeholders, as well as governmental stakeholders interviewed by the IRM researcher between November 2017–January 2018 were not aware of the development of the Scorecard, nor the expected launch date. Additionally, the timeline in the action plan lists the end date for the Scorecard’s launch before the end date of the Scorecard’s development, making it difficult to assess whether the commitment is on schedule.

Finally, the IRM researcher would like to note that the government published an information note and a related legislative proposal in February 2018 explaining the aim, methodology, and responsibilities of different institutions in the Scorecard evaluation process. Since these documents were published well outside the scope of this report, they will be assessed as part of commitment implementation in the Year 2 report.

Next Steps

The IRM researcher recommends this commitment be retained in future action plans until it is fully complete. However, the government should be more transparent about the scorecard development process and inform society on how the instrument functions, and its added value.

Also, it should invite feedback from the public, creating a feedback mechanism to allow collecting input and track government follow ups. Since the scorecard will include only three priority areas, the public should be given the opportunity to propose other priority areas to be included in the future.

IRM End of Term Status Summary

5. Public sector evaluation

Commitment Text:

Title: Ensuring transparency on performance data for public authorities, streamlining monitoring and responsiveness in the public sector

5.1. Developing a Scorecard and periodically updating it to allow monitoring and evaluation by the Government, citizens, donors, etc. the progress and efficiency of reforms in the various branches of public administration, the performance of public authorities, the level of fulfillment of the commitments assumed in the policy documents

5.2. Launch of the Public Sector Scorecard for three areas of central public administration reform

  • 2.1. Drafting and approving a governmental decision on institutionalizing the responsibilities of public institutions related to data provision and periodic review of progress

5.3. Launch of the Scorecard for the public and updating it periodically

5.4. Regularly updating the Scorecard and managing the assessment processes, at least quarterly, for the reform areas included in the fiche and for those to be included

Responsible Institution: State Chancellery

Supporting Institutions: Central Public Authorities

Start Date: 1st quarter 2017 [152]

End Date: 2nd quarter 2018

Commitment Aim:

The commitment sought to ensure transparency of public authorities’ performance related to priority governmental reforms through the development of an online reporting and monitoring Scorecard. The initial version of the Scorecard would include three areas of reform, the aim being to update it regularly with more priority areas.

Status

Midterm: Limited

In the first year of implementation the completion of this commitment was only limited, though the launch of the Scorecard, as written in the action plan, was foreseen for 2017. Though the platform itself was developed and tested with the support of the World Bank, the process did not move forward towards implementation. When launched, the Scorecard had to include indicators covering three priority areas (business environment, social issues, and public administration reform), and potentially include additional areas in the future. [153] At the end of 2017 and the beginning of 2018, the IRM researcher interviewed civil society and other stakeholders, noting that they were not aware of the development of such an instrument.

End of term: Limited

The government published an information note and a related government decision draft approving the Scorecard’s methodology in February 2018 [154] with a public commentary deadline of 1 March for the draft decision. The documents contained context information and elaborated on the aim, methodology, and description of responsibilities for different institutions during the Scorecard evaluation process. The Scorecard’s launch and transfer from the World Bank, which developed the instrument, to the State Chancellery was planned for June 2018, but this was cancelled and the project delayed by the government. [155] According to discussions conducted from September through October 2018 between the World Bank and the State Chancellery, the government is inclined towards an internal launching of the instrument, which would not require approval of the Government Order, [156] or a public launch. [157]

The Scorecard was developed for the Government of Moldova by the World Bank within a technical assistance project financed by the Good Governance Fund of the United Kingdom. In the context presented above, during the writing of the report, the instrument was not yet transferred to the government and the donor insists for the Scorecard to be launched at a public event. Initially, the launch of the platform was planned for May 2018. Potential reasons for stalling the launch were the sensitive indicators which it contains in reference to trust in the government and corruption, [158] and how this might reflect on government’s activity during the elections (February 2019). [159] In November 2018, when this report was drafted, donors were awaiting feedback from the government on next steps. Furthermore, when the Scorecard is launched, it will require an update of the indicators.

By April 2019, the Scorecard was being transferred to the government. [160] According to the government, it was agreed that it would be used as an internal tool. [161]

Did It Open Government?

Access to Information: Did Not Change

Civic Participation: Did Not Change

Though the scorecard was developed and tested internally, and a public information note as well as the government decision draft approving the Scorecard methodology were published for public comment, other activities and debates linked to the scorecard were conducted only internally, and the instrument was not publicly launched. This commitment did not contribute to the opening of the government with no change in practice.

Carried Forward?

This commitment was not taken over to the next action plan. According to the OGP point of contact for the Republic of Moldova, the World Bank and State Chancellery agreed to transfer the tool and use it internally. [162] The next steps regarding this commitment are pending the decision of the government regarding the implementation of the monitoring instrument, and the extent to which it will be used to ensure transparency of government performance. If the instrument will be used only for the internal reporting purposes of the Chancellery its impact will be limited if at all.

[152] In the action plan the timeline and completion dates are inconsistent. According to the plan - http://lex.justice.md/index.php?action=view&view=doc&lang=1&id=368355 – the development of the Scorecard was planned for the 1st quarter of 2018, however, the institutional launching and the public launching were planned for the first 6 months of 2017.
[153] Veronica Cretu, Open Government Institute, consultant in the World Bank Scorecard project, personal communication via chat, April 2017.
[155] Veronica Cretu, Skype communication, 14 November 2018.
[156] Natalia Bejenar, OGP contact point, State Chancellery, written communication, 6 November 2018.
[158] Veronica Cretu, Skype communication, 14 November 2018.
[159] Parliamentary elections were finally organized on 24 February 2019.
[160] Veronica Cretu, Facebook Messenger interview, 4 April 2019.
[161] The IRM received this information during the pre-publication review of this report from Natalia Bejenar, Senior Consultant, State Chancellery of the Republic of Moldova, 4 June 2019.
[162] The IRM received this information during the pre-publication review of this report from Natalia Bejenar, Senior Consultant, State Chancellery of the Republic of Moldova, 4 June 2019.

Commitments

  1. Access to Information and Open Data

    MD0069, 2018, Capacity Building

  2. Budget Transparency and Public Procurement

    MD0070, 2018, E-Government

  3. Civil Society Collaboration

    MD0071, 2018, E-Government

  4. Diaspora Participation

    MD0072, 2018, E-Government

  5. Accountability Mechanism

    MD0073, 2018, Audits and Controls

  6. Public Service Delivery

    MD0074, 2018, Capacity Building

  7. Increase Public Procurement Transparency

    MD0061, 2016, E-Government

  8. Increase Knowledge of Public Procurement Process

    MD0062, 2016, Capacity Building

  9. Ensure Budgetary Transparency

    MD0063, 2016, E-Government

  10. Open Data in Education Sector

    MD0064, 2016, E-Government

  11. Publish Government-Held Open Data

    MD0065, 2016, E-Government

  12. Participative Policy-Making Process

    MD0066, 2016, E-Government

  13. Public Sector Evaluation

    MD0067, 2016, Public Participation

  14. Ensure Quality of Service Delivery

    MD0068, 2016, Capacity Building

  15. Improving the Government Open Data Portal

    MD0048, 2014, E-Government

  16. Setting up an Action Plan for Open Data

    MD0049, 2014, Legislation & Regulation

  17. Setting up Guidelines for Publishing Open Data.

    MD0050, 2014, Open Data

  18. Raising Awareness Among Civil Servants.

    MD0051, 2014, Legislation & Regulation

  19. Civil Servant Training

    MD0052, 2014, Capacity Building

  20. Government Email System

    MD0053, 2014, E-Government

  21. Auditing Public Websites

    MD0054, 2014, Audits and Controls

  22. Evaluating e-Petition Requirements.

    MD0055, 2014, E-Government

  23. Fostering Transparency at the Local Level.

    MD0056, 2014, E-Government

  24. Improving Communication at the Local Level.

    MD0057, 2014, E-Government

  25. Adopting New Public Consultations Principles.

    MD0058, 2014, Legislation & Regulation

  26. Training Civil Servants for Improved Communication

    MD0059, 2014, Capacity Building

  27. Improving Online Participation Platform

    MD0060, 2014, E-Government

  28. Strengthening the Enforcement of the Regulation on Transparency

    MD0001, 2012, E-Government

  29. Semestrial Progress Reports on Transparency in Decision Making

    MD0002, 2012, E-Government

  30. Update the Module "Decision Making Transparency" on the Websites of the Central Public Authorities

    MD0003, 2012, E-Government

  31. Publish Environmental Open Data on Central Public Authorities Websites

    MD0004, 2012, Environment and Climate

  32. Develop Methodological Guide

    MD0005, 2012, Environment and Climate

  33. Amendment Regulation

    MD0006, 2012, E-Government

  34. Mandatory Use of Government e-Mail Account Electronic (Gov.Md)

    MD0007, 2012, E-Government

  35. Annual Report on Public Sector Information

    MD0008, 2012, Legislation & Regulation

  36. Post Information on Draft Policies and Legislations on Www.Particip.Gov.Md

    MD0009, 2012, E-Government

  37. Development of an Online Petition Portal

    MD0010, 2012,

  38. Starred commitment Draft the Law on Public Sector Information Reuse

    MD0011, 2012, Right to Information

  39. Develop Institutional Regulations for Collecting, Archiving and Publication of Data in Digital Format in Line with National Standards

    MD0012, 2012,

  40. Developing the Public Procurement Application

    MD0013, 2012,

  41. Starred commitment Drafting the Government Decision on Implementation of Law on Public Sector Information Reuse

    MD0014, 2012,

  42. Opening Priority Data

    MD0015, 2012,

  43. Publishing the Open Government Data Catalogue

    MD0016, 2012,

  44. Expanding Government Data Portal (Www.Date.Gov.Md)

    MD0017, 2012, E-Government

  45. Mapping the Location of Public Institutions

    MD0018, 2012, E-Government

  46. Develop Applications to Launch of the Innovative Applications Development Contest

    MD0019, 2012,

  47. Implementation of Selected Apps

    MD0020, 2012,

  48. Develop National Standards for Collecting, Archiving and Publication of Data in Digital Format

    MD0021, 2012,

  49. Amend Law No. 1264- XV to Make Income and Property Declarations of Senior Officials, Judges, Prosecutors, and Civil Servants, Public

    MD0022, 2012,

  50. Develop an Online Automated Information System for Public Officials to File Income Statement

    MD0023, 2012,

  51. Develop Guidelines for Using Social Media in the Public Sector

    MD0024, 2012,

  52. Harmonize Public Relations and Communication Strategy with the Guidelines on Using Social Media

    MD0025, 2012, Capacity Building

  53. Government Presence in Social Media

    MD0026, 2012, Capacity Building

  54. Social Media in Government Training

    MD0027, 2012, Capacity Building

  55. Develop Regulation

    MD0028, 2012,

  56. Publish Documents

    MD0029, 2012, E-Government

  57. Publish Projects, Plans and Budget Proposals on Websites of Authorities

    MD0030, 2012,

  58. Starred commitment Publish Real-Time Information on State Budget Execution

    MD0031, 2012,

  59. Update Annual Database on Public Spending (BOOST) and Publish Data for 2011

    MD0032, 2012,

  60. Publish Online Realtime Income and Expenditures of Central Public Authorities

    MD0033, 2012,

  61. Opening up Data and Providing Quarterly Updates on External Assistance

    MD0034, 2012,

  62. Create an Internal Integrated Information System for Collecting Information on External Assistance

    MD0035, 2012,

  63. Develop and Launch an External Web Application to Monitor Flow of External Assistance

    MD0036, 2012,

  64. Transparent Information on Public Procurement

    MD0037, 2012,

  65. Starred commitment Develop and Launch the Electronic Information System

    MD0038, 2012,

  66. Establish a Procurement Agency Assistance Center

    MD0039, 2012,

  67. Train Public Offcials

    MD0040, 2012, Capacity Building

  68. Develop Indicators and Statistical Methodology for Transparency in e-Procurement Systems

    MD0041, 2012,

  69. Starred commitment Amend Electronic Procurement Law

    MD0042, 2012,

  70. Draft and Approve List of Public Services

    MD0043, 2012,

  71. Develop and Implement Quality Standards

    MD0044, 2012,

  72. Digitize Public Service Gradually

    MD0045, 2012,

  73. Starred commitment Human Resources Management System

    MD0046, 2012,

  74. Innovative IT Tools for Primary and Secondary Education System

    MD0047, 2012,