External evaluators certify successful civil engagement by Germany in Iraq

workers on a construction site

Reconstruction of the Court House in Mosul, © UNDP

31.03.2022 - Article

An overall good report for the Federal Government’s engagement for Iraq: an external interministerial evaluation has revealed that despite the very volatile situation, a significant contribution has been made towards stabilising the country and alleviating human suffering.

Results of the evaluation

The interministerial strategic evaluation confirms the implementation of varied, successful and exemplary programmes by both federal ministries in Iraq. These form a significant part of the Federal Government’s coordinated strategic approach. The evaluation involved an assessment of the bilateral and multilateral programmes funded by the two ministries in the fields of humanitarian assistance, stabilisation, reconstruction and development cooperation in Iraq between 2014 and 2019.

Construction site and workers
Reconstruction of the Court House in Mosul© UNDP

Despite the very volatile situation in Iraq, the Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development made significant contributions to the alleviation of the acute suffering there and to reconstruction. Their engagement was particularly crucial in creating the conditions for the return of internally displaced persons and refugees in the country. The Federal Foreign Office is certified as having played a “constructive and successful leading role in establishing Germany’s position (...) for its engagement in Iraq”. According to the evaluation, this was overall “largely successful (...), also in maintaining what from 2018 could be described as the status quo”. The evaluators noted that the Federal Foreign Office uses the right tools to implement its projects efficiently and effectively – in the areas of stabilisation, humanitarian assistance and cultural relations and education policy – and that the project goals were “achieved (...) to a considerable extent”. The Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development made “a significant contribution to restoring basic infrastructure and making services available” with an efficient combination of short, medium and long-term measures. Successfully implemented steps to strengthen the resilience of internally displaced persons, returnees and host communities show that “the engagement of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (...) was closely tailored to the priorities and requirements of the Iraqi Government and largely to the needs of the people”.

What next?

The evaluators recommend that the engagement in Iraq be continued with even more intensive cooperation between the ministries. Support for the Iraqi partner structures should also be maintained. The Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development will develop strategies to adapt our engagement to the shifting realities in the country on the basis of the recommendations and in coordination with the Iraqi Government and partner organisations in order to ensure the continued success of our civil engagement in Iraq.

Evaluation at the Federal Foreign Office

The Federal Foreign Office also deploys financial resources to pursue foreign policy goals in conjunction with various partner organisations. In 2021, funds from the Federal Foreign Office's Directorate-General S alone, responsible for crisis prevention, stabilisation, peacebuilding and humanitarian assistance, totalled more than 3.1 billion euro. Evaluation at the Federal Foreign Office is crucial in order to assess the results of these projects and – where possible – to utilise them for other regions and units. The goal of the strategic evaluation of engagement in Iraq was therefore a shared learning experience for the ministries to enable them to be even more effective in coordinating the implementation of future measures and to apply the insights gleaned to other crisis situations.

Joint ministerial evaluation of Germany’s civil engagement in Iraq


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