Factors influencing the enactment of monitoring and evaluation on effective public service systems in the small island developing state of Saint Lucia: a case of the department of external affairs
Ernest, Bynta Melissa
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The purpose of this research was to identify factors influencing the enactment of monitoring and evaluation(M&E) required for enacting effective public service systems, Furthermore, this research was carried out in order to determine whether these factors are present within the Public Service of the Small Island Developing State (SIDS) of Saint Lucia, with a focus on the Department of External Affairs. The objectives of the research were in keeping with the independent variables of the research which seek to assess whether there is management buy-in within the Department of External Affairs for monitoring and evaluation, to determine whether adequate resources are allocated for the conduct of M & E and to establish whether M & E tools are utilised in the conduct of the work of the Department. The research was guided by the Theory of Change which assisted in determining how and why a phenomenon is occurring. The research's target population was the staff of the Department of External Affairs based at Capital which totals 34. The total population formed part of the research using the census methodology given that the population is considered small. The study employed descriptive and exploratory design and solicited information from the staff of the Department of External Affairs through questionnaire which was self-administered. The questionnaire was tested for validity and reliability through the use of face validity and the test and retest method respectively. Data was analysed through descriptive analysis through the use of Excel Microsoft software and will be presented in figures and tables. The research findings revealed that staff at the Department of External Affairs overall did not agree that the independent variables of management buy-in, adequate resources and monitoring and evaluation tools were available at the Department to conduct M & E. Furthermore, respondents disagreed that the development of an M & E policy or plan was a priority for the Department. Respondents however agreed that the independent variables were necessary for the implementation of an M & E system and also agreed about the benefits in developing of an effective public service system. The study concluded that the Theory of Change assisted respondents in understanding the connection between the variables. Furthermore, the study concluded that the factors for M & E development needed to be implemented within the Department given its importance. It was recommended that the development of an M & E policy be conducted in collaboration with staff to ensure buy-in, relevance and utility of the policy. Given the exploratory nature of the study, it is imperative to determine in the absence of the factors for M & E at the Department, how does the Department conduct monitoring and evaluation of its processes and systems. Furthermore, the scope of study will need to be expanded to include the staff of the Department in overseas embassies. Ultimately, the study will be used to benefit the Department of External Affairs and by extension the Government of Saint Lucia (GOSL) by contributing to a better understanding of M & E by the management and staff of the Department.
Africa Nazarene University