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Implementation Completion Report (ICR) Review - Agricultural Extension

1. Project Data:   
ES Date Posted:
Project Name:
Agricultural Extension
Project Costs(US $M)
 17.75  N.A.
Loan/Credit (US $M)
 15.79  15.6
Sector, Major Sect.:
Agricultural Extension,
Cofinancing (US $M)
 0  0
L/C Number:
Board Approval (FY)
Partners involved
Closing Date
06/30/1998 12/31/1998
Prepared by: Reviewed by: Group Manager: Group:  
Madhur Gautam
Christopher Gerrard Alain Barbu, Acting OEDST

2. Project Objectives and Components:

a. Objectives
Broad objectives were to address the urgent need for disease control and yield improvements, and build capacity to deliver and support effective extension services. Towards these objectives, the project sought to improve: (a) efficiency in the delivery of extension services in 16 of 38 districts; (b) skills of extension agents and farmers; (c) adoption of improved techniques by farmers; (d) efficiency in the management services in the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) to support the delivery of extension and ensure its sustainability.

b. Components
(a) Strengthening the delivery of extension services through provision of transport, equipment, rehabilitation of facilities and incremental operating costs; (b) Improvement in training capacity and skills through provision of equipment, supplies, facilities and transport for staff and farmer training at the District Farmer Institutes; rehabilitation, curriculum development and upgrading of staff capacity at the Bukalasa Agricultural College; and demonstrations at DFIs and farmer managed field trials; (c) strengthening of management systems in MAAIF through training, consultancy services for financial management, procurement and budgetary procedures, support for monitoring and evaluation, and improved equipment and facilities; (d) studies on rationalization of training institutes and colleges of MAAIF; efficiency and impact of alternative technology transfer mechanisms; Mid-term review; and design of a follow-on project.

c. Comments on Project Cost, Financing and Dates
Final projects costs are not available. IDA credit allocation among components was modified, with final contributions of IDA amounting to 98.8% of the original commitment.

3. Achievement of Relevant Objectives:

The project failed to make significant progress towards its overall objectives. It did not lead to increased efficiency or effectiveness of the extension service, nor did it have the desired impact on agricultural productivity. Some efficiency gains were made in project districts, but these have not been sustained post-project. Overall, the project had some positive impact on staff capacity through training, although the ICR notes that the training was not practical. Training of front-line staff and farmers was less than satisfactory, both in terms of the amount of training and its relevance. Outcome for all the other components was unsatisfactory.

4. Significant Outcomes/Impacts:


5. Significant Shortcomings (include non-compliance with safeguard features):

Project design was flawed in many respects, reflecting a failure to incorporate lessons which were already well known at the time of appraisal. The project was overly centralized and bureaucratic, and failed to establish an appropriate incentive and institutional framework that would enhance staff performance and accountability to the clients. The project also did not pay adequate attention to the issue of sustainability or take into account the other constraints to farmers' adoption of technologies. Despite heavy supervision (23 missions in 7 years), project supervision was similarly disconnected with reality, with supervision mission reports providing an unjustifiably positive and misleading picture.
6. Ratings:ICROED ReviewReason for Disagreement/Comments
Institutional Dev.:
    The positive aspect was the training of professional staff, many of whom have subsequently left the extension service. In all other respects, including training of front-line staff and farmers, management capacity building, and institutionalization of the unified extension service, the outcome is unsatisfactory. Thus, while Uganda has gained in terms of professional skills, the institutional development impact for extension services has been limited.
Bank Performance:
Borrower Perf.:
Quality of ICR:

7. Lessons of Broad Applicablity:

1. Approach to extension: for efficiency and effectiveness of public service delivery, it is necessary to ensure that providers are held accountable to their clients. For sustainability, a pluralistic system of providers is needed, with particular attention to issues of financing and cost-sharing. To achieve the desired impact, it is also necessary to properly identify and address constraints that prevent farmers from adopting new technologies.
2. Scaling up: Program expansion should be phased to fully take account of the pace of capacity development and resolution of emerging problems. Too rapid an expansion, as in this case, can lead to potentially insurmountable management, financial and technical problems.
3. Management capacity building: Priority should be given to the establishment of sound financial management, internal control and progress monitoring systems.

8. Audit Recommended?  No


9. Comments on Quality of ICR:

The ICR provides an excellent in-depth discussion of the key issues, uses an extensive array of available data and information, and provides an objective assessment of all aspects of the evaluation. This is in stark contrast to the Borrower's ICR.

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