07 December 2018
The aim of this evaluation was to assess the Prague Process Action Plan 2012-2016 implementation (PP AP), its quality, impact and added value and to establish causal links between existing activities and their effects, and finally to develop recommendations allowing to increase the usefulness and effectiveness of the process’ functioning in the future. This report is a result of an analysis of the outcomes of the questionnaires distributed in March 2015 among all PP participating states and partner organisations as well as an effect of desk research. The evaluation team consisted of both internal experts from the Ministry of Interior of Poland as well as invited external experts.
The first chapter outlines the features of the Prague Process as a Regional Consultative Process on the migration-related issues since its inception in 2009, the migration overview of 50 Participating States including the European Union and the Schengen Area states, Eastern Partnership countries, Western Balkans, Central Asia, Russia and Turkey, as well as the main priorities set in the Prague Process Action Plan 2012–2016 endorsed during the 2nd Prague Process Ministerial Conference in Poznan, 4th of November 2011. It also sheds some light on the activities within the Prague Process Targeted Initiative and projects implemented under the so-called Prague Process umbrella.
The second chapter describes the evaluation methodology, its purpose, and framework, and most importantly the five evaluation criteria that have been set forth to evaluate the PP AP implementation, namely: relevance, impact, effectiveness, efficiency and external coherence. Those criteria were applied during the analysis of the responses to the questionnaire distributed among the 50 Prague Process States (14 questions, both open-ended and close-ended), European Commission and partner organizations (5 questions). There were 39 answers to the questionnaires received in total.
The third, main chapter of the report discusses the Prague Process Action Plan evaluation findings. In general, the participating states find the six Cooperation Areas set out in the Action Plan as coherent with and complementary to their national migration policies and other existing international forums.
Some suggestions proposing possible changes in the PP AP were presented, notably aiming to further improve the tangibility of the results and to involve new actors. Due to the Prague Process character as a ‘soft’ form of international cooperation with a focus on its dialogue functions, it was difficult to assess the direct, practical impact of the PP Action Plan. Therefore it has been challenging for the Participating States to intercept and measure the impact of the interventions they were involved in. In general, the PP AP impact was perceived as direct mostly by non-EU participating states to which the Prague Process activities gave an important stimulus for modifications of their migration management systems and provided a useful toolkit. Meanwhile the impact for the EU states has been rather indirect – via enhancement of the cooperation with non-EU states (non-traditional, geographically distant partners), creating possibilities to exchange best practices, experiences and allowing maintaining contacts after certain projects’ closure.