In 2015 the United Nations Risk Management Unit – Afghanistan published a report entitled ‘Third Party and Collaborative Monitoring’. This report recognised that several United Nations (UN) agencies are currently engaging a number of companies to provide a range of monitoring services on humanitarian and development programmes and projects being implemented across Afghanistan.
In many cases, one of the primary reasons such firms are being utilised is because agency personnel cannot themselves access particular geographic areas due to insecurity and other associated risks. In contrast, some monitoring companies continue to be able to gain access to many of these areas – often using locally recruited personnel – and can collect information and data on our behalf. Experience indicates that whilst some companies provide a valuable service, others – both national and international- have been much less effective.
The purpose of the report was to identify some of the key issues associated with the engagement of private service providers or Third Party Monitors (TPMs), and to explore ways in which the greatest common benefit can be derived from the adoption of collaborative monitoring practises, through consideration of the following questions:
• Why is there a need to use TPMs?
• What services are TPMs providing to UN agencies in Afghanistan?
• What are the benefits and challenges of engaging TPMs?
• How is technology being used to support monitoring activities?
• Which approaches might support or enable collaborative efforts?
Consideration of these and other related issues will help to inform discussions and to shape efforts to identify opportunities to enable the development of collaborative approaches to monitoring and the engagement of TPMs.
The report is located here: 2015 RMU Afghanistan Third Party and Collaborative Monitoring Report.