STEP 5: DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS
The main objective of the field work is to collect and analyze data and prepare a preliminary assessment of scores for each assessment dimension and indicator while at the same time also prepare the ground for reform dialogue. The field work also helps to identify and fill any gaps in the information required to score the dimensions and to complete all parts of the draft report, including recommended tables and narrative content.
If the assessment is the first to use the 2016 Framework, it is necessary also to score each of the dimensions and indicators by also applying the previously used framework (ie 2005 or 2011 as the case may be). I is more efficient to collect the additional data for this in the same interviews as for the assessment using the 2016 framework. Time should be allowed for this.
5.1 In-country data collection
Data obtained prior to the field work will always need to be supplemented with additional in-country data collection. In-country data collection includes any relevant legislation, rules and regulations and documents that were not provided in advance of the field work. Data collection also involves interviews and meetings with members of the oversight team, senior government officials and other key stakeholders such as members of the legislature, development partners and civil society organizations/ representatives. Interviews and meetings are useful for accessing data and for validating and cross referencing other data or information that has been provided. It is important to corroborate the information that has been collected from the government with non-government stakeholders. For example, interviews with taxpayers’ organizations, business associations, chamber of commerce, etc. can help verify whether rules and regulations governing access to information or appeals practices are carried out in practice.
Assessors will need to ensure that there is sufficient data to address all aspects of the scoring requirements and content of the report (as per the report template available at pefa.org and Volume III of the PEFA handbook). If not, it will be necessary to issue a follow-up data request. This request should explain why additional information is needed. Details of the data requirements and sources for each indicator and dimension are included in volume II of the PEFA handbook. Details of additional requirements for the PEFA report tables and narrative are explained in volume III of the PEFA handbook.
There should be a clear cut-off date for the collection of information, otherwise the report will always be a work in progress awaiting further information. The cut-off date is normally the date by which comments on the draft report are due to the assessment team. This should be specified in the CN/TOR.
5.2 Data analysis and initial scoring of indicators
Data analysis and the scoring of dimensions and indicators are recorded in tables and spreadsheets during the field work phase. If time permits it is also useful to commence initial drafting of the report during this phase. In particular, introductory sections and report annexes relating to data can be drafted at this point. More detailed analysis of the implications of results for groups of indicators, referred to as pillars in the PEFA framework, the budget outcomes and internal control elements usually takes place after basic scoring and narrative explanations are well advanced.
It is important that assessors also verify that all necessary information has been collected. Experience indicates that it often takes considerably longer to obtain additional information if a request is submitted after the conclusion of field work, particularly if the assessment team is not based in the country.
Guidance for assessors on measuring the indicators and dimensions is provided inVolume II: PEFA Assessment Fieldguide . Guidance on report content is
PEFA Handbook Volume 1: The PEFA Assessment Process – Planning, Managing and Using PEFA