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  1. 1

    Report of the evaluation of UNFPA assistance to the National Family Planning and Sex Education Programme of Costa Rica.

    Demographic Association of Costa Rica

    [Unpublished] 1980 Mar. 89 p.

    This report of the evaluation of UN Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA) assistance to Costa Rica's National Family Planning and Sex Education Program covers the following: 1) project dimension and purpose of the evaluation, scope and methodology of the evaluation, composition of the mission, and constraints; 2) background information; 3) 1974-77 family planning/sex education program (overview, immediate objectives, strategy, activities and targets, and institutional framework); 4) planned and actual inputs and rephasing in 1978-79; 5) family planning activities (physical facilities and types of services provided, recruitment of new users, continuation of users within the program, distribution of contraceptive supplies, sterilizations, and indicators of program impact); 6) training and supervision; 7) education, information, and communication (formal and nonformal education, educational activities in the clinics, and the impact of the nonformal educational program); 8) maternal and child health (maternal health indicators, cytological examinations, and infant mortality); 9) program evaluation and research; 10) population policy; 11) program administration; 12) some general conclusions regarding the performance of the program; and 13) the program beyond 1979. UNFPA evaluations are independent, in depth analyses, prepared and conducted by the Office of Evaluation, usually with the assistance of outside consultants. The process of analysis used in the evaluation follows a logical progression, i.e., that which underlines the original program design. Evaluation assessment includes an analysis of inputs and outputs, an investigation of the interrelationship among activities, an indication of the effectiveness of activities in achieving the objectives, and an assessment of duplication of activities or lack of coverage and the effect of this on realization of the objectives. The program was able to expand the coverage of family planning activities but has been unsuccessful in having a population policy established. The number of hospitals, health centers, and rural health posts providing family planning services was tripled in the 1974-77 period. The program could not achieve its targets in number of new users, and it recruited in 1977, only 11% of the total population of the country, against the 20% planned. It has been estimated that between 1973-77 around 231,200 births or 44.4% of those possible had been averted. Training and supervision has been a weak area of the program. A large number of professors have been trained in sex education, but no evaluation has been undertaken of the likely impact of this trained staff at the school level. The information, education, and communication (IEC) program has been successful in taking information and education to the population on family planning/sex education concerns but less successful in motivating the political groups to formulate a population policy.
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  2. 2

    Assessing the demographic consequences of major development projects. Proceedings of a United Nations Workshop, New York, 1-4 December 1986.

    United Nations. Department of International Economic and Social Affairs

    New York, New York, United Nations, 1988. vi, 183 p. (ST/ESA/SER.R/81)

    Although considerable awareness of the behavioral relationships and interactions between demographic and socioeconomic processes has been established, analysis of the specific demographic impact of development projects has lagged behind. To remedy this situation, the United Nations has undertaken a project aimed at developing a practical, cost-effective methodology for assessing the demographic impact of development projects in a variety of settings and countries. The approach developed is based on available sources of data such as censuses and vital registration systems. The methodology was applied in particular to electrification and irrigation projects in selected developing countries and a workshop was convened in 1986 to review the approach developed. Background papers presented at the workshop (included in this volume) focused on both the experiences of other institutions with population impact analysis and on methodological and measurement issues. Workshop participants identified 2 types of problems in measuring the strength of the relationship between a development project input and its demographic effect: those encountered in measuring the observed relationship for a given development project, and those encountered in assessing the relative effects of different projects. It was recommended that changes at both the macro and micro levels should be compared, with an emphasis on how such factors affect demographic behavior. Ecological analysis can then be used to identify the factors that explained demographic differences between communities. There was also consensus that the ideal methodological approach should involve an experimental/control design and a longitudinal time frame. For planners, the utility of such impact studies lies no only in investment allocation or priority ranking of development projects, but in the improvement of project design as well.
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  3. 3

    The prevalence method.

    Bongaarts J

    In: Addendum. Manual IX: The methodology of measuring the impact of family planning programmes on fertility, by the Population Division of the Department of International Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations. New York, New York, United Nations, 1986. 9-14. (Population Studies No. 66; ST/ESA/SER.A/66/Add.1)

    This chapter describes and applies a new methodology for estimating the fertility impact of contraception obtained through a family planning program. This approach is called the prevalence method because the principal data required for its application are estimates of the prevalence of contraceptive use at a given point in time. It is the objective of the prevalence method to estimate the number of births averted as well as the reduction in the crude birth rate that results form the use of program contraception. A single application of the procedure produces these estimates for 1 year, but repeated applications for different years can yield a time-series of births averted or other impact measures. The procedure for calculating births averted by program users consists of 6 parts to obtain, consecutively, estimates of: natural fertility, potential fertility, fertility impact of program use, births averted, birth rate impact, and method-specific results. Each of these steps is described in some detail. This new approach provides a simple and straightforward alternative to existing methods for estimating the gross fertility impact of program contraception. In contrast to several of the other procedures, the prevalence method does not require detailed input data on numbers of past acceptors and continuation rates. Instead, estimates of the prevalence of program and non-program contraception by age and method are required as principal input data. While such data were rarely available in the past, prevalence estimates are now routinely obtained from national surveys in many developing countries, thus making the application of the prevalence method possible.
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  4. 4

    Methodological problems in evaluation of family planning impact of programmes that are integrated with other development sectors.

    Chandrasekaran C

    In: Studies to enhance the evaluation of family planning programmes by United Nations Department of International Economic and Social Affairs. Population Division [DIESA] New York, New York, United Nations, 1985. 108-110. (Population Studies No. 87 ST/ESA/SER.A/87)

    Governments of developing countries began to undertake family planning in the 1960s thanks to a sudden availability of funds for programs exaggerating an already existing cleavage between program and general demography professionals. Discussion at the World Population Conference (WPC) in Bucharest recognized social and economic factors as an important element in the use of family planning and attempted to encourage better cooperation between program evaluators and demographers. Separation of family planning effects from development effects has been difficult. The WPC's World Population Plan of Action (WPPA) reiterated that population and population policies were interrelated with and should not be considered substitutes for socioeconomic development policies. Increasingly, governments have been integrating family planning with education and health programs as recommended by the WPPA. Family planning being a relatively new venture, it is necessary to develop a theoretical framework to justify assumptions that family planning and development are productively integrable and synergistic, determining demographic effects and their causal mechanisms, whether social or program related. A careful record of program inputs must be kept. Important issues in education, which generally speaking has an inverse effect on fertility, are: in which sex and age group of the population is education most effective for fertility control allowing for lag time; and what are the intervening effects--age at marriage, better knowledge, or change of attitudes? Some of the simplest integrated programs combine family planning with educational programs in schools, health programs, and agricultural programs. Thus teachers are trained to educate pupils in population problems; health workers educate family health consumers a logical diversity of function that is however limited by the scope of the health program. The benefits of small family size may be incorporated into rural development ideology. Critical evaluation will necessitate demonstration of integration's beneficial effects.
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