Regional Cooperation on Knowledge Management, Policy, and Institutional Support to the Coral Triangle Initiative (TA 7307-REG)

Name of Client:
Asian Development Bank (ADB)

Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Solomon Islands, and Timor-Leste

Length of Consultancy Assignment:
Start Date:  May 2010
Completion Date: July 2013

Detailed Narrative Description of Project:

The CTI is a six-country program of regional cooperation aimed at the sustainable management of coastal and marine resources in the Coral Triangle (CT) region. RETA 7307 was Component 3 of the Global Environment Facility’s (GEF’s) International Waters Learning Exchange and Resource Network (IW:LEARN) Project, “Portfolio Learning in International Waters, with Focus on Oceans, Coasts, and Islands and Regional Asia/Pacific and Coral Triangle Learning Processes.” The development objective of the GEF Project was: “Coastal and marine ecosystems, especially in the Coral Triangle, are managed sustainably, with equitable outcomes for all communities that depend on these resources for their livelihoods and with long-term protection of the globally significant biological diversity in coastal and marine ecoregions.” The overall impact of the RETA and the goal of the full GEF IW:LEARN Project was “improved management of coastal and marine resources in the Coral Triangle,” and its expected outcome was strengthened cooperation among the CT6 countries and the establishment of policies, institutions, and associated investments to realize the sustainable management of CT coastal and marine ecosystems. The four main outputs of the TA were: (i) strengthened CTI regional cooperation; (ii) establishment of regional learning mechanisms; (iii) implementation of a communication and information dissemination plan; and (iv) establishment of sustainable financing schemes. These four outputs ultimately contributed to “strengthened cooperation among the six CTI countries (CT6) on information exchange and decision making on coastal and marine resource management,” which, in turn, contributed to the “strengthened management of coastal resources in the CTI.

PRIMEX served as RETA Project Manager, on behalf of ADB, the Executing Agency, and as Technical Adviser to the CT6 in RETA implementation. The PRIMEX Team collaborated closely with their designated counterparts in the CT6 to produce the RETA’s expected outputs with focus on knowledge management/communication and policy/institutional support in three technical subject matter areas, namely: (i) sustainable finance; (ii) economic studies in support of policy and sustainable financing, including PES, coastal resource valuation, and economics of climate change; and (iii) the preparation of six national and one regional State of the Coral Triangle Report (SCTR). Among the outputs of the Team were training and information materials focusing on climate change impacts in the coastal areas, with focus on coastal dwellers, their assets and livelihood, fisheries, and other coastal ecosystems, based on vulnerability assessments and climate change adaptation (CCA) training modules already developed by ADB USAID, and other international and regional organizations. The PRIMEX Team was well accepted by the CTI national coordinating committees (NCCs) and development partners (DPs) and was fully engaged in CTI processes, including participation in Senior Officials’ Meetings (SOMs) as observers and in DP meetings as full participants. Considerably a lean team, the Team delivered more than what was expected of them due to the technical knowhow, rich experience, working relationships, and linkages of many of the team members, which enabled the development of synergies between the RETA Team, the CT6 NCCs, and the other DPs. The Team was also very strategic in its planning and was concerned with issues of partnership, country ownership, and sustainability of project initiatives and benefits. As a result, the ongoing ADB CTI projects picked up some of the RETA’s outputs, including the use of the online KM system, decision support tools, and the institutional arrangements forged with the countries (notably the writing group for the State of the Coral Triangle Report (SCTR) and the KM focal points. As knowledge generation was the main focus of the RETA, the Consultant Team benefitted from young university researchers with innovative ideas, while at the same time, learning from more senior team members who had a wealth of experience, especially in the Pacific.