PROJECT Strategy & Policy

Evaluation of Norwegian Cooperation

Assessing the contribution of Norway to Afghanistan from 2001 to 2011.

Afghanistan Map


Norway has provided substantial development assistance to Afghanistan during the period 2001 – 2009.

The Norwegian assistance amounting to NOK 4.6 billion has focused mainly on three sectors – education, community development and good governance including the judicial system’s ability to enforce rule of the law. In addition, the health sector also attracted some funding.

The purpose of the evaluation is to assess the contribution of Norwegian development cooperation with Afghanistan from 2001 to 2011. The object of evaluation is all direct bilateral and multilateral development cooperation assistance from Norway to Afghanistan during the period 2001-2011, consisting of more than 800 agreements. Therefore, scoping was essential after a broad analysis of the policy and portfolio.

The main partners in the Norwegian assistance portfolio are the multilateral organization, followed by Norwegian NGOs, and Norwegian government to government twinning projects implemented by the Norwegian Ministry of Justice and the Norwegian Police Directorate.

The current Norwegian engagement has been anchored in the UN mandate, the Bonn Agreement 2001, the Afghanistan Compact that emerged from the London Conference on Afghanistan in 2006 and later conferences. A salient feature of the Norwegian engagement is the separation between the military and the developmental assistance components, although there is consensus about the mutual interdependence among the results of these two components.

The evaluation analyses the Norwegian foreign policy including the linkages to development and humanitarian policy against the background of the political, socio-economic and security developments in Afghanistan during the evaluation period. 

The military policy and interventions were only addressed in direct relation to the foreign policy. A representative selection was made of the interventions to be analysed in more detail covering the most important sectors and themes for Norwegian assistance (governance, education, community development, gender), the most important channels (the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund- a multi-donor mechanism to support the Afghan government, multilateral programmes by UN agencies and bilateral programmes by NGOs and a series of other actors) and a specific field study in the province of Faryab, for which Norway has developed a comprehensive strategy.

The main purpose of this evaluation was to assess the contributions of the Norwegian development assistance to promote socio-economic conditions and sustainable peace through improvements in the capacity of the Afghan state and civil society to provide essential public services. The main focus shall be on education, community development, health and governance. Included herein is also an assessment of the coordination and coherence efforts made to deliver assistance to Afghanistan. 

The evaluation shall cover all Norwegian development assistance to Afghanistan, both through the bilateral and the multilateral channels.

The evaluation was conducted in accordance with the prevailing DAC Evaluation Quality Standards. In addition, the evaluation relay on the 2005 Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness, and the 2007 OECD guidelines for engagement in fragile situations where relevant.