31 de maig 2014

Working at a high level takes discipline, knowledge... and time

Less Micro-management more Meso-management: Some interesting reports about Boards:

Report 1: McKinsey: High-performing boards: What’s on their agenda? Survey Results
The survey revealed dramatic differences in how directors allocated their time among boardroom activities and, most tellingly, in the respondents’ view of the effectiveness of their boards. More than one in four of the directors assessed their impact as moderate or lower, while others reported having a high impact across board functions. So what marks the agenda of a high-performing board?

Report 2: Position paper about High performance boards by Canadian Coalition for Good Governance
Guideline 1. Facilitate shareholder democracy
Guideline 2. Ensure at least two thirds of directors are independent of management
Guideline 3. Separate the roles of Board Chair and Chief Executive Officer

Guideline 4. Ensure that directors are highly competent and bring the requisite knowledge and experience to the board
Guideline 5. Ensure that the goal of every director is to make integrity the hallmark of the corporation
Guideline 6. Establish reasonable compensation and share ownership guidelines for directors
Guideline 7. Evaluate board, committee and individual director performance

Guideline 8. Establish mandates for board committees and ensure committee independence
Guideline 9. Adopt well defined board processes and procedures that support board independence.
Guideline 10. Oversee Strategy
Guideline 11. Oversee risk management
Guideline 12. Assess the Chief Executive Officer and plan for succession
Guideline 13. Develop and oversee executive compensation plans

Guideline 14. Report governance policies and initiatives to shareholders
Guideline 15. Engage with shareholders

Photo: Alfred Eisenstaedt—Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images. Mansfield, Ohio June 1941

9 de maig 2014

The rights of the Child. Nothing more to say about child poverty

20.2 % of children under 16 years of age are poor in Europe. 25% in SPAIN (2012)

"Child poverty, probably the most visible effect on children of the economic crisis and fiscal austerity measures, has a potentially devastating, long-term impact, given that it tends to be one of the major root causes of poverty and social exclusion in adulthood".

Some reports to think about the children poverty in Spain, Europe.
  1. Comissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe (2013) Report after the Spain Visit
  2. Save the children (2014) Pobreza infantil y exclusión social en Europa
  3. Creu Roja (2013) 4rt estudi Observatori Vulnerabilitat: Infància i entorn escolar
  4. Inequality Watch (2012) Poverty in Europe
The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union Article 24: The rigths of the child
  1. Children shall have the right to such protection and care as is necessary for their well-being. They may express their views freely. Such views shall be taken into consideration on matters which concern them in accordance with their age and maturity.
  2. In all actions relating to children, whether taken by public authorities or private institutions, the child's best interests must be a primary consideration.
  3. Every child shall have the right to maintain on a regular basis a personal relationship and direct contact with both his or her parents, unless that is contrary to his or her interests.
2014: 25 years of the Convention on the Rights of the Child United Nations

Something more to say?
photo: (*) Photosolde

2 de maig 2014

how to avoid innovation policy evaluation simply end up on shelves unread or ignored

New World Bank-OECD 214 publication.Making Innovation Policy Work: Learning from Experimentation

This book explores emerging topics in innovation policy for more inclusive and sustainable growth, building on concrete examples. It develops the notion of experimental innovation policy – which integrates monitoring and feedback at the policy design stage, and occurs continuously to improve impact and implementation. This approach should help improve the quality and efficiency of public expenditures supporting innovation policy.

Special mention to the chapter 8 (by Eric Oldsman): Making evaluations count: Toward more informed policy: Read online

The chapter explores the role and the difference of monitoring and evaluation and its influence on policy design.

Recognising the importance of innovation, governments around the world have launched policies aimed at accelerating the development and application of technology. In many instances, the allocation of resources has been accompanied by calls for meaningful measurement of results and greater accountability. This is particularly true in an era of tight budgets and fiscal austerity.

Organisations are therefore placing greater emphasis on trying to measure their performance. Reciting the mantra – “what gets measured gets done” – more and more organisations are picking particular aspects of performance to measure and then devote significant resources to collecting data and reporting results. However, there is evidence that much of this effort may be wasted. To be useful, the right things need to be measured in the right way.

As importantly, data need to be turned into information, information into insights, and insights into action. This implies that performance measurement should be embedded in a broader evaluation system, which fosters critical thinking and continuous improvement as part of a policy cycle.

Organisations need to make sure to count what is important and count it correctly. However, while necessary, organisations need to go well beyond simply measuring performance. They need to focus attention on determining the factors that underlie performance, diagnosing the root cause of any identified deficiencies, in order to take appropriate corrective action. They also need to consider a broad range of issues that do not lend themselves easily to measurement. More generally, critical thinking – an ability to state questions clearly, marshal valid and reliable information, weigh evidence, assess the strength of arguments, recognise implicit assumptions and values, and draw reasoned conclusions – needs to be encouraged throughout the organisation.

Formative evalutions are critically important. They provide an opportunity for organisations to examine accepted truths, questioning the justification for specific claims and calling attention to unstated assumptions.

Clearly, organisations need to establish the technical capacity to undertake evaluations successfully. As importantly, to realise the full promise of using evaluations to inform policy, senior managers must actively support the process and cultivate a culture of learning.

photo: NASA
After launching on March 3, 1969, the crew of Apollo 9 spent 10 days in low Earth orbit. On the fifth day of mission, Jim McDivitt and Russell Schweickart separated the Lunar Module from the command ship and flew it for the first time — 145 miles over the Atlantic Ocean.