Study on National Systems in Cambodia
"National Structures and Systems for Aid Implementation in Cambodia"
In order to map the sue
of national systems in Cambodia 2010 a study – "National Structures and Systems
for Aid Implementation in Cambodia" – was commissioned by the development
partners of the European Union, in coordination with the Partnership and
Harmonisation TWG. The study, seen as a first step towards an assessment of
country systems, found that
The importance of core reforms in strengthening sector processes, capacities
and systems is central to the development and use of country systems.
For nearly all systems and ministries there was some use of country systems,
with some support from external partners. However the approach has been
piecemeal and is unlikely to succeed without both political will and
substantive attention to organisational development.
There is political recognition that systems are weak. Change is slow because
of: (i) resistance to change due to vested interests of both RGC and DPs;
(ii) motivation, incentives and risk aversity relating to the use of these
systems; (iii) a tacit agreement by all parties not to use established
systems. Capacity is not always seen as the most limiting factor and
managing change proves to be more than a technical challenge.
The timeframe for implementing change is an area of disagreement between RGC
and development partners. RGC has a much longer time horizon based on
national context while development partners apply their own norms and
Multiple projects and programs and the number of project implementation
units reveal a preference for control and delivery over capacity and
sustainability. PBAs represent a possible response to organise aid delivery
around the priority of strengthening country system capacity.
There is often a preference by both RGC and development partners to use PIUs
as these mitigate risk and promote (short-term) performance as well as
permitting greater latitude in human resource management. A proposed
solution is to combine a number of projects or programs under the management
of one RGC-led PIU with a common set of procedures.
The study can be downloaded
Volume 2 – an annex of the available literature – can also be
The study was presented at the
National Workshop in May
2011 and a the PowerPoint presentation can also be viewed