Making Social Audit work for Viet Nam: Key Findings and Lessons Learned from a Pilot of Four Social Audit Tools
A pilot involving four social audit tools was implemented in Viet Nam in 2010. Led by the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI), and supported by UNICEF, it aimed at building capacity for the social audit of the Socio-Economic Development Plan (SEDP) to enhance the its social performance, as expressed in its ability to deliver continued improvement in the living standards of Viet Nam’s population in general and of vulnerable groups in particular. This focus was on achieving this through improved Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) of social dimensions of the 2006-2010 SEDP, particularly focusing on poverty reduction, health services for children under six years old, and gender.
The Central Institute for Economic Management (CIEM), under the authority of MPI, implemented the pilots with technical support of the UK-based Overseas Development Institute (ODI). CIEM also conducted a capacity assessment of government staff in using participatory methods for planning, monitoring and evaluation. Based on this and the lessons learned from the social audit pilots, a capacity development strategy has been developed. ODI has also developed a SEDP Social Audit Toolkit with detailed information on the four tools, based on the experience gained from piloting the tools in the Vietnamese context.
This report should be of interest to national and sub-national government officials in Viet Nam who are in charge of designing, implementing, monitoring and evaluating public policies, programs and services. It should also be of interest to UNICEF and other multilateral and donor agencies that assist the government of Viet Nam in meeting its development objectives, and interested in methods/tools that allow for greater participation of citizens in assessing public policies and programs.