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EU Conducts Evaluation

A section of the participants in the EU radar evaluation workshop

Two experts contracted by B&S Europe on behalf of the European Union (EU) and local stakeholders examined salient aspects of the 4-million-euro Kearney Gomez Doppler Weather Radar project at an evaluation workshop, Friday, 7 August 2015. The radar was a joint project between the EU and the Cayman Islands Government.

The workshop, at the Government Administration Building, was the culmination of the evaluation process which also involved interviews and discussions with principal stakeholders including National Weather Service personnel and emergency responders.

National Weather Service Director General John Tibbetts explained how the weather radar works and how it might be of use to various sectors of the community. The radar unit has been fully functional since early 2013 and the public has made significant use of the radar, as indicated by the numerous phone calls whenever the radar was inoperable, he noted.

Evaluation Team Leader Murray Phillips explained that a prior financial audit of the project had gauged the non-technical aspects of the intervention and value received for money spent. "The report we will produce completes an overall assessment of the success of the project in achieving its overall objectives as envisaged by the EU Delegation in Jamaica and the Government of the Cayman Islands," he noted.

His colleague Mr. Francisco Reina Barranco, assessed the civil works aspects, including building quality and construction, time delays and to confirm that all local civil engineering codes of practice were met. Their combined report will provide the EU with a valuable insight into how to ensure top value is obtained for money, time and effort spent in future on similarly funded projects, both regionally and in other parts of the world.

The report will evaluate some seven important EU criteria: relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, impact, sustainability, coherence (compliance with local policies) and added value to the community. They also explained that the radar sited on Grand Cayman provides real-time information on weather to local, regional and international weather agencies. Importantly, the provision of this radar has successfully plugged the gap in the Caribbean regional weather coverage picture which existed in the past.

"So far from our interviews within the local community, the response to the radar project has shown great interest, knowledge and has been extremely positive," Mr. Phillips commented.

Local attendees at the workshop comprised end-beneficiaries of radar information, including personnel from health services, emergency operations, education institutions and government departments and agencies.

The final evaluation report to be produced by the experts will detail findings aligned to seven important evaluation criteria: relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, impact, sustainability, coherence (compliance with local policies) and added value to the community.

The report will among other things provide a reference for the Government of the Cayman Islands regarding capacity building in important national institutions during the course of implementing large scale national projects such as the radar project.

Additionally, the final evaluation report will provide the EU with valuable insights which will be useful in informing future similarly funded projects, both regionally and in other parts of the world.

(GIS)

For further information contact: Bina Mani




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