Independent evaluation of the ILO's Decent Work Country Programme Strategies and Activities in North Africa 2010-2013

This high-level evaluation (HLE) is the first cluster evaluation of the ILO’s decent work strategies and activities in the North African sub region. The evaluation assesses the Office’s support to the Governments and social partners in Algeria, Egypt, Eritrea, Libya, Morocco, South Sudan, Sudan and Tunisia in their efforts to address decent work deficits. This has involved the evaluation of sub regional strategic priorities, country strategies and “roadmaps,” technical cooperation (TC) projects and technical assistance (TA) activities carried out during 2010–13. The overarching question of the evaluation is whether ILO strategies and actions have effectively supported national constituents’ priorities and efforts to fill decent work gaps.

Within the Arab Spring context, ILO was strategically positioned with a mandate and services that were expected to be in high demand. This, in turn, required the Decent Work Team/Country Office and Country Office (DWT/CO-Cairo) and the Country Office in Algeria (CO-Algiers) to be adequately resourced and flexible, and the Regional Office-Africa and HQ to be sufficiently responsive to resource gaps emerging during the exponential growth of opportunities and operations. These could not be met effectively with the same level of resources available to these offices before the uprisings. It also demanded agility and flexibility at both COs and other operational levels. ILO’s interventions have responded to decent work deficits by facilitating entrepreneurship programmes, policy formulation to realize international labour standards (ILS) and Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work (FPRW), and strengthening social dialogue. Unfortunately, the sub region’s demands exceeded most efforts, but the relevance of ILO strategies and activities in the sub region is beyond question. The aftermath of the uprisings in North Africa required urgent assistance from the ILO, and presented new opportunities for work both at national and local levels. These new opportunities focused on activities to provide informal work in both urban and rural areas. Such action is still the norm for many economies in the sub region. Thus, ILO’s strategies and programmes are in line with the future country programme outcomes (CPOs) concentrating on rural and informal employment envisaged during the Programme and Budget (P&B) for 2016–17, including also the areas of critical importance (ACIs) for 2014–15.