CGIAR Financial Concepts and Terminology
The Research Agenda. The research agenda Comprises the bulk of CGIAR Center projects and activities. Components may be executed by one or more Centers, and/or jointly with NARS, AROs, and NGOs. The Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) develops the Agenda in collaboration with Centers and recommends appropriate work programs for CGIAR financing. Projects included in the Agenda must meet four criteria. They must:
Non-Agenda is activity which a Center
is qualified to undertake because of experience, location, size,
or other factors, but which does not meet all of the criteria
for inclusion in the Agenda.
Financing the Agenda. Once endorsed by the Group, the Agenda is eligible for Member
financing, including the World Bank. The financial requirements
are approved on the understanding of their being the minimum needed
to implement the Agenda. All Centers and partners should seek
to maximize financing, and there is no disincentive to do so.
Mechanisms to ensure that the Agenda is fully financed, have
evolved from earlier unsuccessful attempts to "guarantee"
full financing solely using World Bank funds. Recently, changes
have been made in the financing arrangements whereby Members,
instead of the World Bank alone, can act to collectively fill
financial gaps arising in the course of the year. Most Members
now channel all their support to the Agenda. This is likely to
lead to a more competitive search for resources, but also higher
Financing modalities. Centers are primarily financed by annual grants provided by CGIAR Members. A modest contribution is also available from Centers' annual miscellaneous income (which includes contributions from ad hoc sources/donors who are not CGIAR Members). The nature of financing does not determine whether a project is part of the Agenda. Member financing may be directed to the CGIAR, Centers, programs and projects with different degrees of specificity:
All Members are expected to contribute
to the full cost of operations including a proportionate share
of administrative costs. The World Bank contribution is always
made available as general CGIAR support. All Members are encouraged
to provide their support in a similar manner. Members disburse
contributions based on their financial procedures, directly to
Centers throughout the year. The CGIAR Secretariat provides
disbursement services, through the World Bank, to Members who
prefer to make a single disbursement to the CGIAR.
CGIAR Agenda Matrix. The distribution of financial resources is presented as the CGIAR
Agenda matrix, with Centers comprising the rows and CGIAR activities
the columns. Activities (presently 19 in number) are aggregated
into groups -- the five CGIAR undertakings. The matrix is constructed
by fully allocating Center projects, the main Center unit of activity
with objectives, outcomes and milestones, to the CGIAR activities.
(A CGIAR project portfolio of about 300 projects, with common
definitions and concepts used by all Centers, is in effect for
1997). The CGIAR has identified several thematic areas as systemwide
programs to respond to specific challenges and to foster collaboration
among Centers and deepen it with other partners. These are presented
in a supplementary matrix.
Implementation. Centers often implement the Agenda in a partnership mode -- i.e.
joint ventures with advanced institutions, NGO's, and NARS. The
joint venture may involve shared tasks at different points on
the research continuum, i.e. upstream laboratory-based research
as well as applied field-level experimentation. Funding of such
joint ventures is financing for the CGIAR Research Agenda.
Setting the Agenda (MTM - May). At the Mid-Term Meeting, TAC proposes the research agenda for the following year based on interaction with the Centers. The Center proposals are based on the research directions agreed upon during a tri-ennial consideration of Center Medium Term Plans. (effective 1998 financial year) The Group debates TAC's recommendations, taking into consideration advice from the Finance Committee on funding prospects. The Group endorses the proposed Research Agenda and the financial allocations, with or without modification. Following MTM, the Centers and the CGIAR Secretariat solicits overall financing indications from Members.
Preparation of Financing Plans (June - September). Centers prepare their individual financing plans for the following year based on specific financing information solicited through bilateral contacts with Members and past trends. World Bank funding is included on a percentage basis of funding secured by Centers-9 percent in 1997 and 12 percent in 1998.
Confirmation of Program Content (mid-September) Centers indicate to TAC and the CGIAR Secretariat the changes in the research agenda allocations resulting from interactions with individual Members, and their implications to the program content of the Research Agenda. TAC reviews the program content and highlights any significant changes for action by the Group at ICW.
Review of Financing Plans (end-September - October) Following the confirmation of program content by TAC, the Finance Committee reviews Center financing plans, including the contribution of the World Bank, for consistency and feasibility, based on funding information solicited by the CGIAR Secretariat.
Approval of the Research Agenda and Financing Plan (ICW - October). At ICW, the Group considers the finalized Research Agenda and financing plan for the following year, leading to the Group's approval of its financing and implementation.
Disbursement and Implementation (January - December). Following approval by the Group at ICW (in the previous year) of the Research Agenda and financing plan, Centers commence implementation of the Agenda on January 1 of the current year, and Members disburse funds to the Centers. Of the World Bank funds, half are distributed in January. The remaining half are disbursed in June, following a review at the MTM by the Finance Committee of updated Center financing plans.
Accountability (Yead End). At the end of the current year, Centers prepare financial statements showing the use of funds received in support of the Research Agenda. As well, Centers confirm the use of funds provided by the World Bank and refund any overcommitted funds to the Bank.