Evaluation of Policies and Programmes

ACZ Consulting has an extensive experience in the field of policy and programme evaluation, which is one of the most important current areas of activity, in which the company has gained experience since 2013. The evaluations carried out include ex-ante evaluation of operational programmes, on-going evaluation, ex-post evaluation, but also evaluations of the application of some principles at programme-level, such as gender equality and non-discrimination. Our evaluation services are based on both quantitative and qualitative methods, validated by previous experiences, but at the same time, adapted and improved according to the specifics of each contract. Last but not least, during the evaluations, ACZ Consulting was the promoter of the use of new evaluation methods, applied for the first time in Romania, such as the counterfactual evaluation or the Cross-Regional Sequential Difference in Difference method (method for evaluating EU thematic-objective interventions with regional data aggregated at national level). Our key achievements in this field are:

• the ex-ante evaluation of the National Rural Development Programme 2014-2020;
• the first ever counterfactual ongoing evaluation of a structural co-funded intervention in Romania (ROP 2007-2013 – impact evaluation of KAI 4.3 – Aid to microenterprises);
• evaluation of the Operational Programme Administrative Capacity 2014-2020;
• evaluation of the implementation of the Interreg-IPA Romania-Serbia Cross-border Cooperation Programme;
• ex-post evaluation of the National Rural Development Programme 2007-2013.

Development of Public Policies

In developing public policies, ACZ Consulting pays close attention to understanding and respecting the legal framework for public policy making and the field in which public policy is conducted, as well as substantiating the policy through quantitative and qualitative research and the involvement of decision makers and other relevant actors. One of the key achievements of ACZ Consulting is the elaboration of a public policy proposal regarding the development of the professional career of the local police officer, in order to increase the predictability of the career of local police officers by developing the specific regulatory framework and increasing the level of skills so that local police officers can maintain their career stability and ensure their performance-based promotion.

Studies and Strategies

For more than 10 years, through the development of various studies and specialized strategies, ACZ Consulting has contributed to strategic planning at several levels of governance. Our team of internal and external consultants covers a wide range of relevant areas of expertise, offering unique perspectives on social, economic and institutional phenomena. Thus, ACZ Consulting has drafted studies and strategies in important public policy areas such as: • Smart specialization; • Simplification and quality systems in public administration; • Promotion and development of tourism; • Local and regional economy; • Agriculture and rural environment; • Demography and social issues; • Minorities and marginalized communities.

State Aid

Our staff has developed, both in their positions within central public administration and as technical assistance consultants, a deep knowledge of the EU legislation and caselaw in the field, as well as of the national State aid related institutional and legislative systems. Also, we had the opportunity to form an established network of internal and external experts with experience in state aid specific domains (agriculture, transport, financial instruments, etc.). Among others, our expertise has previously covered the following range of activities: • assessment of the State aid relevance of a public funding measure; • procedures for the notification to the European Commission of measures representing State aid; • setting up of aid schemes and individual aids within the De minimis, GBER and SGEI EU disciplines; • State-aid related project assessment; • establishment of State aid related guidelines and manuals for Public Administration managing public funding programmes; • monitoring and control of State aid relevant interventions.

Technical Assistance for Organizational Development in Public Administration

ACZ Consulting has an extensive experience in the organizational development in public administration in Romania, providing in recent years specialized services to strengthen the various administrative / institutional components, such as: • specialized technical assistance for the Romanian Certification and Payment Authority aimed at improving human resources management (from the perspective of quality employee training and developing managerial skills and performance), improving internal functioning (developing innovative and high-performance working tools, strengthening internal cohesion) and improving the management of the external environment; • consultancy BSC implementation at the level of Gheorgheni Municipality; • implementation of the Common Assessment Framework at the level of Ialomița County Council; • development of a methodology for assessing the impact of using quality management in public administration in Romania; • analysis to identify the optimal solutions for ensuring and organizing the institutional human resources necessary for the sustainable implementation of quality management in public administration.