PEACE II Overview

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Programmes

PEACE II Programme (2000-2006)

Background

In March 1999, the PEACE II Programme was introduced to build on the success of PEACE I. It became mainstreamed as a Structural Funds Programme[1] (formerly a Community Initiative) leading to the setting up of a Northern Ireland Community Support Framework (CSF) with two Operational Programmes – the Transitional Objective 1 Programme (known as Building Sustainable Prosperity) and the PEACE II Programme.

PEACE II investment was for the period 2000-2004, including an EU Contribution of €531m, and national contribution of €304m totalling €835m. A two-year extension, along with additional funding of €160m was awarded to bring the programme in line with the seven-year Structural Fund cycle, known as the PEACE II Extension (2004-2006). Overall, the seven-year investment totalled a significant €994.5m i.e. 61% (€609m) from the EU Structural Funds and 39% (€385.5m) from National Contributions.

 

PEACE II

PEACE II Ext.

Total

EC Contribution

€531m

€78m

€609m

National Contribution

€304m

€82m

€386m

Total Value

€835m

€160m

€995m

The four EU Structural Funds involved include: The European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) (60% of funds), The European Social Fund (ESF) (32%), The European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF) (7%) and The Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance (FIFG) (1%).

In terms of focus, there was a move from economic development and rebuilding infrastructures in PEACE I to a focus on targeting social need, creating new cross-community linkages, strengthening existing relations, and extending the promotion of reconciliation and respect for difference in a post-conflict area in PEACE II.

 

Aim & Objectives

The Strategic Aim of the PEACE II Programme remained as with PEACE I which was: 'To reinforce progress towards a peaceful and stable society and to promote reconciliation by increasing economic development and employment, promoting urban and rural regeneration, developing cross-border co-operation and extending social inclusion.’

The Strategic Objectives of the Programme were reframed as:

  • Strategic Objective 1: 'Taking opportunities arising from peace to help promote a stable and normal society where opportunities for development can be grasped.’
  • Strategic Objective 2: ‘Addressing the legacy of the conflict to assist the return to a normal, peaceful and stable society’.

 

Logic Model

Programme Structure

Priorities

The PEACE II Programme had five ‘distinctive’ Priorities (in addition to Technical Assistance) which formed the backdrop to the specific objectives of the entire Programme.

Priority

Priority Objectives

1. Economic renewal

To realise the economic opportunities which peace brings while meeting the challenge of replacing employment which will be lost in traditional sectors and assisting individuals employed in those sectors in making the transition to other sustainable employment.

2. Social integration, inclusion and reconciliation

To promote social integration, inclusion and reconciliation by targeting opportunity and need in both urban and rural areas across Northern Ireland and the Border Region of Ireland, paying particular attention to vulnerable groups, areas most affected by the conflict, areas where community infrastructure is weak and interface areas.

3. Locally-based regeneration and development strategies

To consolidate the distinctive approaches to local needs developed under PEACE I through locally-based regeneration strategies led by Local Strategy Partnerships and County Council-led Task Forces which are sensitive to local needs and which will support new working relationships which cut across traditional sectarian and social divides thereby contributing to a process of trust building and prejudice reduction.

4. Promoting an outward and forward-looking region

To make Northern Ireland and the Border Region of Ireland a more forward and outward looking region by encouraging a more constructive dialogue with other EU regions on economic, social and environmental matters; and promoting abroad the positive image of a more peaceful society.

5. Cross-border co-operation

To promote economic, social and cultural cross-border co-operation, and to provide a strategic framework for support to cross-border initiatives and projects across a variety of sectors and organisations – public, voluntary and private – that will make a positive contribution to peace building, reconciliation and greater mutual understanding.

6. Technical Assistance

To address the information and publicity requirements of the programme and address the programme management, monitoring and effective evaluation needs.

Each Priority was further cascaded into individual Measures with specific aims to enhance the attainment of overall Programme requirements. Some Measures were sub-divided into specific operational Sub-measures. Overall, there were 36 Measures and 24 Sub-measures, as per the table below:

Priority

Measure

Sub-measure

Fund

1.Economic renewal

1.1 Business competitiveness and

development

1.1a Economic revitalisation

ERDF

1.1b Trade development

ERDF

1.1c Financial engineering

ERDF

1.1d Business competitiveness and Development

ERDF

1.1e Business competitiveness and Development in the border region

ERDF

1.2 Sustainable tourism development

1.2a Water based tourism - Sustainable Tourism Development based on Cultural Resources

ERDF

1.2b Natural resource rural tourism - Sustainable Tourism Development based on Natural Resources

ERDF

1.3 New skills and new opportunities

N/A

ESF

1.4 Promoting entrepreneurship

N/A

ESF

1.5 Positive action for women

N/A

ESF

1.6 Training for farmers

N/A

EAGGF

1.7 Diversification of agricultural activities employment

1.7a Obtaining alternative employment

EAGGF

1.7b Part-time employment

EAGGF

1.8 Technology support for the knowledge networking-based economy

1.8a Innovative Technology Networking

ERDF

1.8b Information age

ERDF

1.9 Investment in agricultural holdings

N/A

EAGGF

1.10 Basic services for the rural economy and population

1.10a Retail services

EAGGF

1.10b Basic services for rural economy

EAGGF

1.11 Rural Reconciliation and Regeneration

N/A

EAGGF

2. Social

integration,

inclusion and

reconciliation

2.1 Reconciliation for sustainable peace

N/A

ERDF

2.2 Developing children and young people

N/A

ESF

2.3 Skilling and building the social economy

N/A

ESF

2.4 Reconciliation of victims

2.4a Pathways to inclusion

ESF

2.4b Integration and reconciliation

ESF

2.4c Inclusion of target groups in border region

ESF

2.5 Investing in childcare (NI)

N/A

ESF

2.6 Promoting active citizenship

N/A

ERDF

2.7 Developing weak community infrastructure

N/A

ERDF

2.8 Accompanying infrastructure and equipment support

N/A

ERDF

2.9 Renovation and development of villages and protection and conservation of rural heritage

2.9a Conservation of the rural heritage

EAGGF

2.9b Village pride

EAGGF

2.10 Encouragement for tourist and craft activities

N/A

EAGGF

2.11 Area-based regeneration

N/A

ERDF

3. Locally based regeneration and development strategies

3.1 Local economic initiatives for developing the social economy (NI)

N/A

ERDF

3.2 Locally based human resource, training and development strategies (NI)

N/A

ESF

3.3 Building better communities (border region)

N/A

ESF

3.4 Improving our rural communities (border region)

N/A

EAGGF

4. Outward and Forward-Looking Region

4.1 Outward and forward-looking region

N/A

ERDF

4.2 Marketing

4.2a Marketing the region as a tourism destination

ERDF

4.2b Enhancing the region as a tourism destination

ERDF

5. Cross-border cooperation

5.1 Increasing cross-border development opportunities

N/A

ERDF

5.2 Improving cross border Public sector cooperation

N/A

ERDF

5.3 Developing cross-border reconciliation and understanding

N/A

ERDF

5.4 Promoting joint approaches to social, education, training and human resource development

N/A

ESF

5.5 Education, cross-border school and youth co-operation

N/A

ESF

5.6 Agriculture and rural development co- development operation

5.6a Cross-border community

EAGGF

5.6b Cross-border diversification

EAGGF

5.7 Fishing and aquaculture

N/A

FIFG

6.Technical assistance

6.1 Programme information and publicity

N/A

ERDF

6.2 Co-ordination

6.2a Management, Monitoring and Evaluation of the Programme and Co-ordination with other programmes

ERDF

6.2b Internal Co-ordination and Coordination with other programmes, Evaluation and Studies

ERDF

 

 

Distinctiveness Criteria

A fundamental shift in the PEACE Programme occurred when a definition of reconciliation was agreed as part of the PEACE II Extension. Prior to PEACE II, the term ‘reconciliation’ was not well understood nor developed in the context of Northern Ireland’s evolving peace process. To overcome this, research[2] was carried out to help formulate a working definition of ‘reconciliation’ which could be applied as a framework.

The research, which assumes that building peace requires attention to relationships, concluded that: “Reconciliation is understood as the process of addressing conflictual and fractured relationships. This means not only reconciling broken down relationships as the term confusingly implies but building new relationships in some cases. It is a voluntary act that cannot be imposed, and it involves five interwoven strands: (1) Building positive relationships (2) Acknowledging and dealing with the past (3) Substantial social, economic and political change (4) Developing a shared vision of an interdependent and fair society (5) Significant cultural and attitudinal change.”

PEACE II took a much more ‘targeted’ approach to project selection to mobilise the peace and reconciliation focus. For the period of the PEACE II Extension, the weighting for reconciliation in the project selection was increased from 6% to 20% which placed greater emphasis on peacebuilding.

Based on the increased understanding of the term reconciliation, a set of guiding principles was introduced, known as ‘distinctiveness criteria’, which required every applicant to specify the intended reconciliation impacts i.e. applicants had to demonstrate how their project would contribute to, impact upon, peace and reconciliation in terms of two objectives:

  • Addressing the Legacy of the Conflict – Seeking to address specific problems generated by the conflict in order to assist the return to a normal, peaceful and stable society.
  • Taking Opportunities Arising from Peace – Seeking to encourage actions which would have a stake in peace and which would actively help promote a stable and normal society where opportunities could be created and grasped.

It is important to note that while projects may be primarily identified with one objective their impact generally applied across both. The distinctiveness criteria are thought to have created an environment where applicants had to think about other communities and the needs that exist there. It made a lot of recipient organisations recognise the impact of the conflict and how that might be addressed in as inclusive a manner as possible addressing the needs of other communities. The distinctiveness criteria for project selection helped to define the ‘uniqueness’ of the Programme and the targeting of areas, sectors and groups most affected by the conflict, and on projects making a real contribution to peace and reconciliation.

To help Implementing Bodies with this process, a Distinctiveness Working Group was established to provide advice on the implementation of the distinctiveness element of the Programme.

Key groups identified throughout the Programme, in terms of distinctiveness, include victims of conflict; ex-prisoners and displaced people; and local communities. Target areas included: Cross-border: Disadvantaged areas experiencing high levels of violence.

 

Horizontal Principles

The PEACE II Programme was framed by ten horizontal principles. However, it was found that the large number of principles diluted effectiveness and added an extra level of complexity to the selection process. Therefore, it was concluded that five of the principles should relate to project section and the remaining five to be know as ‘guiding principles’ to be integrated as part of the programme management.

Budget

PEACE II covers the period 2000-2004 and extension to 2006. The end date for spend is 2008 (N+2). In terms of expenditure, 15% of the Programme was devoted to cross-border projects.

Specific Objective / Actions

ERDF Budget Allocation

Central Government Match Funding

Total

% of total

Economic renewal

€ 214,749,171

€ 135,961,416

€ 350,710,587

35%

Social integration, inclusion and reconciliation

€ 142,554,082

€ 90,253,455

€ 232,807,537

23%

Locally based regeneration and development strategies

€ 96,759,417

€ 61,260,061

€ 158,019,478

16%

Promoting an outward and forward-looking region

€ 21,712,464

€ 13,746,536

€ 35,459,000

4%

Cross-border co-operation

€ 81,332,418

€ 51,492,961

€ 132,825,379

13%

Project Budget

€ 557,107,551

€ 352,714,430

€ 909,821,981

91%

Technical Assistance

€ 51,892,449

€ 32,854,007

€ 84,746,456

9%

TOTAL

€ 609,000,000

€ 385,568,437

€ 994,568,437

100%

 

Delivery Mechanisms & Processes

Programme Management

The Programme management structure is summarised below:

The two Member States that oversaw the PEACE I Programme are the United Kingdom (UK) and Ireland. The interests of the two Members States were represented by the Department of Finance and Personnel (DFP, Northern Ireland) and the Department of Finance (DOF, Ireland), responsible for designating central funding and the overall implementation of the PEACE II Programme.

In PEACE II, The Special European Union Programmes Body (SEUPB) was introduced as the Managing Authority with overall responsibility for the Programme. SEUPB, one of six cross-border bodies established after the 1998 Good Friday/Belfast Agreement, came into being just as PEACE I was coming to a close and PEACE II was agreed and in the process of implementation.

The Programme was supervised by a Programme Monitoring Committee (PMC), which ensured satisfactory progress was made towards the agreed objectives and targets of the Programme. The PMC was chaired by SEUPB.

The 6 Paying Authorities were responsible for submitting payment applications and receiving payments from the European Commission.

EU Structural Fund

Paying Authorities

Northern Ireland

Border Counties

ERDF

DfP

DoF

ESF

DEL

DETE

EAGGF

DARD

DAFF

FIFG

DARD

DAFF

Note: Names of departments reflect those that were in existence at the beginning of the PEACE II Programme.

A Government Department, not always the same as the Paying Authority, may be decided upon by the Paying Authority as an appropriate channel for funding and accountability. The Lead/Accountable Departments for the four Structural Funds in the PEACE II Programme were:

EU Structural Fund

Lead/Accountable Departments

Northern Ireland

Border Counties

ERDF

DFP, DARD, DCAL, DETI, DRD, DSD, OFMDFM

DOF, DCRGA, DELG, DSCFA, DTSR

ESF

DE, DEL, DHSSPS, DFP, DSD, OFMDFM

DCRGA, DES, DOF, DSCFA, DTSR

EAGGF

DARD

DELG, DAFRD

FIFG

DARD

DAFRD

Note: Names of departments reflect those that were in existence in at the beginning of the PEACE II Programme.

 

In the case where several organisations were acting within a given Priority, then a Measure Leader was appointed to co-ordinate action within the Priority and feedback to SEUPB.

 

Project Delivery

PEACE II was implemented through a number of devolved delivery mechanisms similar to that used under PEACE I. For PEACE II, there were 56 Implementing Bodies (compared to 64 in PEACE I) which included Government Departments, Intermediary Funding Bodies (IFB), Local Strategy Partnerships (LSP) and County Council-led Task Forces (CCTF). The emergence of LSPs, known as District Partnerships in PEACE I, and CCTFs built upon the partnership structures which had begun to emerge in the first programme. 

 

The delivery structure provided a helpful focus for local decision-making and respected the Programme’s horizontal principles of bringing the process as close to the citizen as possible. However, this involvement of a larger number of bodies in programme delivery gave rise to a higher level of programme management costs than would otherwise be the case under a more simplified programme structure.

 

Administration

PEACE II, as part of the European Structural Funds family of Programmes, brought with it an increased emphasis on regulatory compliance and oversight. As a result, the administration of the Programme proved to be more complex and burdensome. Projects tended to be larger and an increase in bureaucracy became a feature of the more targeted approach. This had an impact on project delivery, particularly at the early stages when the new Programme management mechanisms were being designed and implemented.

 

Monitoring and Evaluation

The Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Working Group was responsible for the Annual Implementation Reports (AIR) and worked closely with SEUPB in the commissioning of an independent Mid-term Evaluation (MTE) and follow up Post Programme Evaluation (PPE). Recommendation from the evaluations resulted in an improved evaluation plan and better use of performance indicators. The M&E Working group was also responsible for commissioning Attitudinal Surveys and Community Uptake Analysis.

The Distinctiveness Working Group looked specifically at how reconciliation could be measured and provided advice and reports on the implementation of the distinctiveness nature of the programme i.e. how projects contributed to the process of peacebuilding and reconciliation. At a project level, Implementing Bodies produced an annual Peace Distinctiveness report on the application of the distinctiveness criteria in their measure. The Distinctiveness Reports were reflective and analytical, identifying the types of actions within the Measure which contributed to peace and reconciliation objectives, and the types of issues faced by the Measure.

 

Outputs & Impacts

By the end of the PEACE II Programme 13,503 project applications had been received. Of those applications 7,103 (53%) had been successful within the following Structural Funds:

Structural Fund

Total Projects per Fund

%

ERDF

4,059

57%

ESF

2101

30%

EAGGF

941

13%

FIFG

2

0.03%

TOTAL

7,103

100%

 

PEACE II Programme achievements:[3]

PEACE II (2000-2006)

Outputs

Programme participants.

868,420

Individuals participating in cross-border activities including those involved in the development of border region SMEs and social economy enterprises, community-based organisations leading projects on reconciliation and cultural understanding and cross-border projects focusing on skills, learning and training.

161,599

Individuals participating in 1,638 groups focused on Reconciliation.

42,772

Individuals gaining qualifications, some examples of which are Early Years Care, ICT Skills, Human Resources, Tourism, Food Production, Trauma Counselling, Farming and Community Leadership.

100,767

Individuals entering or progressing in employment, education and training.

77,652

Businesses assisted in competitiveness, training, business development, networking and cross-border/international trading etc.

10,248

Jobs created, including significant increases in the areas of business competitiveness and development, tourism, rural community development, local economic initiatives and cross-border activities.

6,148

As with PEACE I, PEACE II adopted a highly participative approach.  Both Programmes were conceived of as practical Programmes to accompany social and political change. At various points throughout that period the PEACE Programme continued to operate during the period of suspension of the Political institutions.

 

Project Case Studies

Examples of projects supported by PEACE II can be found by accessing the following ‘Case Study’ link

 

Key Programme Reports

 

Report Type

Report Title

Programme report

Operational Programme PEACE II

Programme report

Operational Programme 2000-2004

Programme report

Operational Programme 2000-2006

Programme report

Operational Programme - Programme Complement 2000-2006

Evaluation

Update of the Ex Ante Evaluation of the Northern Ireland Structural Funds Plan 2000-2006

Evaluation

Issues and Views Raised in PEACE II - Consultation Responses

Evaluation

EU Structural Funds - Building Sustainable Prosperity and PEACE II Programmes - An Equality Impact Assessment of the Programmes

Evaluation

Developing an Impact Evaluation for the PEACE II Programme

Evaluation

Mid-Term Update of PEACE II Programme

Evaluation

Update of the Mid-Term Evaluation of PEACE II 2000-2006

Evaluation

Review of the PEACE II Programme

Evaluation

Evaluation of the County Council Led Peace II Taskforces

Evaluation

House of Commons, Northern Ireland Affairs Committee, PEACE II - Seventh Report of Session 2002-03 - Volume 1

Closure Report

Final Programme Closure Report: EU Programme for Peace and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland and the Border Region of Ireland 2000-2006

Further reports can be found by accessing the Digital Library

 

 

Acronyms

 

Department of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development (DAFRD)

Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (DCRGA)

Department of Finance (DoF)

Department of Finance and Personnel (DFP)

Department of Health Social Services & Public Safety (DHSSPS)

Department of Social, Community and Family Affairs (DSCFA)

Department of the Environment and Local Government (DELG)

Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD)

Department of Culture Arts and Leisure (DCAL)

Department of Communications Marine and Natural Resources (DCMNR)

Department of Education (DE)

Department of Education and Learning (DEL)

Department of Education and Science (DES)

Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment (DETI) & Invest NI (formerly Local Enterprise Development Unit (LEDU))

Department of Regional Development (DRD)

Department of Social Development (DSD)

Department for Tourism, Sport and Recreation (DTSR)

Border Action (formerly Area Development Management/Combat Poverty Agency (ADM/CPA), now known as Pobal)

Community Foundation for Northern Ireland (CFNI) (formerly NI Voluntary Trust (NIVT))

Community Relations Council (CRC)

Co-operation Ireland

Educational Guidance Service for Adults (EGSA)

NI Pre-school Playgroup Association (NIPPA) (now known as Early Years)

Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister (OFMDFM)

Playboard

Proteus

Rural Development Council (RDC)

Southern Education and Library Board (SELB)/ Youth Education Social Inclusion Partnership (YESIP)

Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB)

Training for Women’s Network (TWN)

 


[1] European Parliament, (1999), Berlin European Council, 24 and 25 March 1999, Presidency Conclusions

[2] Hamber, B. and Kelly, G. (2004), A Working Definition of Reconciliation. Occasional paper published by Democratic Dialogue, Belfast.

[3] According to NISRA statistics, (May 2010), (Slide 6)