Griffith University government experts are helping Mongolian officials plan for their country’s future, at a time of rapid economic and social development.
After participating in an intensive two-week program in Brisbane, 20 senior officials from agencies including the offices of the President, Prime Minister, Cabinet Secretariat and Ministry of Finance have returned to Mongolia with new ideas on monitoring and evaluation planning.
The Monitoring and Evaluation Planning program was funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s (DFAT) Australia Awards Fellowships and implemented by Griffith’s International Business Development Unit through the School of Government and International Relations.
The program has equipped the officials with the capacity and skills to monitor the activities of government agencies and to ensure that government policies, processes and regulations are providing an appropriate framework for Mongolia’s accelerating needs at central and provincial levels.
A more comprehensive understanding of monitoring and evaluation methods will assist Ms Munkhzul Zandankhuu, Principal Advising Officer for the Cabinet Secretariat of the Government of Mongolia, in sharing her newfound expertise.
“I am now more confident to measure performances in a more complex world,” Ms Zandankhuu said. “I will evaluate the current status of monitoring regulations and investigate what could be bettered in the short term.”
The program included site visits to the Department of Energy and Water Supply, Logan City Council, Department of Human Services and Office of the Auditor General of Queensland, as well as guest presentations by Queensland government officials and Griffith University academics.
One of the highlights was a networking lunch at which mid-level to senior Queensland public servants and the Mongolian officials shared insights gathered from three days of the Graduate Certificate in Policy Analysis program, delivered annually by Griffith.
An expert in public policy processes and the program’s lead academic, Griffith’s Dr Cosmo Howard said the monitoring and evaluation program came at an important time in Mongolia’s development.
“Like other post-Soviet republics, the country is reforming its political and public management systems to improve flexibility, performance and democratic accountability,” he said.
“Mongolia currently faces special pressures as a result of heavy fiscal dependence on mining royalties, extraordinarily rapid economic growth and shifting relations with assertive neighbours.”
Dr Howard will travel to Mongolia in 2015 to follow up on the implementation of performance measurement and management practices taught during the program.