Review of the Agency for National Development – Timor Leste

Context: the Agency for National Development (ADN) was established by the Prime Minister of Timor Leste in 2011 to assure the integrity and value-for-money of government funded infrastructure projects As a new agency employing relatively inexperienced staff, his office was keen to undertake a review of the Agency after its first two years of operation.

What we did: Carolyn Peterken was engaged to undertake an organisational review of this newly formed agency. Using the McKinsey 7S as a Framework for the review, she spent two weeks in Timor Leste collecting quantitative data on the performance of the Agency and consulting widely with managers, staff, stakeholders in other government departments, and development agencies involved in the funding and oversight of infrastructure projects in this nascent country. The consultations took her not only to Dili but also to regional centres across the country in which infrastructure projects were taking place.

What we learnt: The process involved a wide range of stakeholders, with varying agendas, including the staff and management of ADN, development partners, and other government departments. A key challenge was to be clear on and manage the expectations in terms of the outcomes of the review, and to recognise and take into account the varying agendas around the table. Further, engaging the Agency in the process rather than taking an “expert adviser” view was critical to the Agency taking ownership of the recommendations and being prepared to put them into practice.