The aim of the evaluation was to guide and improve the quality of Partnership Agreement between European Commission and Estonia and the Cohesion Fund’s operational programme with assessment and recommendations of independent evaluator. We assessed the completeness and appropriateness of the program, the evaluation and monitoring of the results, the suitability of the financing plan and the contribution to the objectives of the „Europe 2020“ .
During the ex ante evaluation the assessment was given by various priority axis, including education and preparations for labour market, services to ensure equal opportunities in employment, research and development in business and international competitiveness, the development of small and medium-sized enterprises and regional business, energy efficiency, water protection, green infrastructure, urban development, sustainable transport, ICT services and administrative capacity. The intervention logic’s clarity and appropriateness, coherence with strategic documents of EU and Estonia, following the horizontal principles, the relevance and performance framework of the indicators, sufficiency of funding volume and contribution to the objectives of „Europe 2020“ were also assessed.
„European money has to give Estonia the push to carry out major structural changes which would have positive long-term impact.“ – Katrin Pihor
The evaluation showed that:
- The major challenges are dealt in the context of partnership agreement (such as the improvement of social cohesion, faster development of the information society, focusing on science regarding the need of society etc.).
- Throughout the process the focus of activities is achieved and the most important problems and solutions are selected.
- In general the actions which ensure the development are selected.
Key issues that hereafter need special attention:
- Ensuring the implementation of horizontal principles.
- Fleshing out and managing the concept of smart specialization, and pairing it with other sectors.
- Specifying the links between continuing training and economic development.
- Increasing the harmony by planning and implementing national reforms.