Message of UNDP Country Director, Mr. Toshihiro Tanaka

Dec 2, 2013

Practical Innovation: Scaling Up in Asia Pacific, RCBC Plaza, Makati City

Colleagues from UNDP APRC;
UNDP Sri Lanka;
UNDP Cambodia;
UNDP Philippines;

Magandang umaga po sa inyong lahat! (Good morning to you all)

A warm welcome to all you as we begin our Scale-Up clinic.

This is a timely event, especially for the Philippines. As you are all aware, we are currently reeling from the destruction inflicted upon us by Typhoon Haiyan, known locally here as Yolanda. We are already putting together ideas for short and long term projects to drive the recovery and rehabilitation of affected areas. It is my hope that the lessons learnt at this workshop will help formulate comprehensive plans and programmes for the Philippines.

Scaling up is not about replicating an initiative in other areas. It is about ensuring and sustaining the quality of a development impact; about reaching out to those who have been ‘left behind’. Thus, a scaled-up intervention can catalyse development in its own right; inspiring policy reforms or consolidating constituencies that will transform governance in different areas, cultures, and environments.

Not every project can or should be scaled up. We need to analyse and reflect upon initiatives carefully; assess existing capacities and resources; and give priority to those which have the most potential. Of course, we need to keep in mind the crucial role of strong political support; the need to place financial and natural resources into the hands of the people; and our continued effort to promote accountable governance structures which can help institutionalise our gains.

One last thing that I encourage each one of you to do over the next three days is to think freely and independently. When we think too rigidly, our programming can become shallow. Innovation can help us open up avenues to new ideas, new directions, new entry points, and ultimately, good results.

With this in mind, I wish you all a productive workshop. I hope that we will be able to take away innovative ideas with which to help move us forward and achieve positive results in the coming years.

Maraming salamat po!
(Many thanks)

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