Strengthening the PAF’s overall effectiveness

Lead Consultant: Silvia Hidalgo

Review of the CERF’s Performance Accountability Framework

Dahlia’s Review considers the adjustments necessary for strengthening the effectiveness of the ‘Performance and Accountability Framework’ (PAF) of the UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF).
Click here for the full Review

Background: The CERF and PAF

Established by the UN in 2006, the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) was conceived as a pool of reserve funding to enable more timely and reliable needs-based humanitarian assistance.

A CERF Performance Accountability Framework (PAF) was later developed to strengthen transparency and accountability. It aims to ensure that funds allocated through CERF are “used in the most efficient, effective and transparent manner possible.”

The PAF was also designed as a means of:

  • Shedding light on performance expectations;
  • Clarifying management and monitoring responsibilities among actors; and
  • Formalising a set of accountability mechanisms and reporting processes.
Recommendations to improve the PAF’s relevance and usefulness

Review of the Performance Accountability Framework (PAF)

Dahlia’s review of the PAF seeks to determine what, if any, adjustments are required to make it a more effective tool for managing performance and accountability around the CERF.

Overall, the PAF has achieved its main intended objectives, in terms of fulfilling a requirement and a genuine need for clarifying what the CERF is and what it intends to achieve.

In particular, PAF country reviews have been extremely useful for understanding the CERF’s support, processes and functions across different contexts.

Nevertheless, recipient agencies are often unfamiliar with the PAF and find that, at present, CERF reporting is not seen as demanding enough.

While acknowledging the delicate balance that the PAF has successfully achieved and maintained, our Review recommends measures to improve the relevance and usefulness of the framework, notably in the spheres of monitoring and reporting, while strengthening performance and accountability across the CERF.