UN Common Country Assessment
Thailand,
1997-1998

 

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Annex 1: Methodological Aspects of the CCA

The Common Country Assessment (CCA) is the first step in the development of a United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) and, as such, is designed to highlight a countryís principal development challenges. The CCA is a common assessment by the United Nations and its specialised agencies of the development situation and issues facing a country. A common approach within the United Nations system will provide a more integrated framework for the provision of development assistance and avoid duplication and omission in the work of the various agencies and specialised funds. The CCA is thus not simply an assessment of development challenges but the establishment of a process through which that assessment can be made. By bringing together the various members of the United Nations family in common purpose, the CCA is thus an integral part of the Secretary Generalís reform of the United Nations system.

Methodology

There are many ways to try to identify the principal development challenges facing any country. Assessment could be made by sector, agriculture, industry, and so on, or by specific agency mandates. In this case of Thailand, it was decided to use the framework adopted for monitoring in the Eighth Five Year Economic and Social Development Plan on "Components of Well-Being" as the basis in which to consider which were the key development challenges facing Thailand. This approach did not mean that the issues as identified by the Royal Thai Government were adopted by the CCA. In fact, the specific development challenges, as identified through the CCA, differed considerably from those identified in the national plan. Nevertheless, the fact that the CCA adopted the same general framework should make the specific issues identified through the exercise more directly comparable with national goals and bring a greater degree of congruence between national and United Nations assessments.

The basic framework adopted for the identification of the development challenges consisted of the following seven clusters:

Given the mandate of the United Nations, the issue of human rights was added to the cluster on governance.

Seven small working groups (called "cluster groups"), made up of subject specialists from all relevant and concerned United Nations agencies, were established that reported back to the main inter-agency Working Group for the CCA chaired by the Resident Co-ordinator for Thailand. Each cluster group met three to four times during the preparation of the CCA, with the main Working Group meeting six to seven times. The division into seven clusters made the assessment of the development challenges more focussed and more manageable. Detailed and at times quite technical discussions of development issues were impractical in the context of a large group of people who had very different interests and specialities. A facilitator was appointed to co-ordinate the various meetings in order to ensure uniformity of approach and avoidance of overlap and omission.

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Dated: 26Jan1999