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Evaluation database

Evaluation report

2013 Brazil: Final Evaluation Report for PCU - Urban Centers Platform (Plataforma Dos Centros Urbanos)

Author: Paulo Magalhães – Sociologist - Coordinator; Michelle Bulkool – Engineer - Researcher; Rachel Albertino Rosa – Economist - Research Assistant; Frederico Amorim – Sociology student - Intern.

Executive summary

"With the aim to continuously improve transparency and use of evaluation, UNICEF Evaluation Office manages the "Global Evaluation Reports Oversight System". Within this system, an external independent company reviews and rates all evaluation reports. Please ensure that you check the quality of this evaluation report, whether it is “Outstanding, Best Practice”, “Highly Satisfactory”, “Mostly Satisfactory” or “Unsatisfactory” before using it. You will find the link to the quality rating below, labelled as ‘Part 2’ of the report."


Evaluation of the pilot phase of the UNICEF Brazil Urban Centers Platform - PCU


To evaluate the pilot phase and lessons learned, to support the expansion of the programme and formulation of the new edition's methodology.


Qualitative participatory evaluation.

Findings and Conclusions:

PCU is a program with a set of integrated activities and strategies, geared towards behavioral, legal and institutional changes, in public management and in social participation. It fosters and strengthens feelings of belonging, collective responsibility and social cohesion. The 1st cycle (pilot) took place from 2008-2012.

The Platform works through three simultaneous and complementary processes:

1. Permanent mobilization of the city's complex, including all communities enrolled in the Platform, different governmental, corporate and non-governmental actors, and the population at large.

2. Local articulation and mobilization, generation of disaggregated data for vulnerable territories, skills development, encouragement of social participation, monitoring and systemic evaluation of indicators.

3. To receive UNICEF certification, the city must fulfill 12 of 20 municipal targets; reduce inequalities in municipal districts for at least six targets; have at least 30% of the communities recognized for their local advancements.

Rio de Janeiro achieved 16 of 20 municipal targets. Reduction of inequalities could be found in a total of 8 targets achieved. Reduction of inequalities was achieved in 5 out of 8 targets (62.5%). Forty-three Local Articulator Groups (over 30% of participants) were recognized for achieving the agreed upon action targets. Rio de Janeiro was certified by UNICEF.

São Paulo achieved 18 of 20 municipal targets. Reduction of inequalities was achieved in 4 out of 6 targets achieved (66.6%). Thirty communities (over 30% of participants) were recognized for achieving the agreed upon action targets. UNICEF certified São Paulo.

Out of the 3 communities participating in the Urban Centers Platform in Itaquaquecetuba, 1 was recognized for achieving the action targets established. Itaquaquecetuba achieved 10  of the 20 municipal targets. It was not possible to measure the reduction in inequalities as desegregated data was not available.


Recommendations were divided in 6 groups:

- improve the work with Local Articulation Groups;

- clarify and strengthen concepts and methodology;

- continue to and strengthen the focus on vulnerable territories;

- strengthen UNICEF's role and presence in the implementation of the initiative;

- improve communication strategy and processes;

- strengthen partnerships.

Detailed recommendations can be found in the evaluation report.

Lessons Learned:

• Although they were the focus of the PCU, the adolescents were absent in the decision-making processes, because the "Coordination" of the LAGs was in the hands of the adults;

• The adults cannot be given the task of nominating the adolescents;

• The LAGs should undergo a training process prior to starting the PCU;

• The LAGs need to be more closely monitored;

• Relations at the PCU were made hierarchical;

• Although the approach to PCU themes in the Metro Regions is fundamental, in very large cities the action becomes scattered. While in medium-sized cities, the PCU takes on an important leading role regarding children and adolescent issues, with much more scope;

• Technical partners function as executors of tasks, which limits their action;

• The UNICEF and Technical Partner teams were insufficient to handle the 60 LAGs in each city;

• Many "predictable" conflicts occurred and were not methodologically handled. Some became chronic and highly prejudicial to implementation of the PCU;

• It is not enough for UNICEF to MANAGE to work directly with the people. It should also REMAIN working directly with the people;

• The PCU's Social Communication was not in line with the ambition of its proposal;

•  The local public actor should have had greater participation in the PCU;

• The selection of technical partners compromised implementation of the PCU;

• There was a lack of greater incentives for strategic allies to participate;

• Financial resources were insufficient for implementation of the PCU;

• There were excessive targets, both municipal as well as community targets, which made the process rigid and stuck.

Full report in PDF

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Report information




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