Browse by Theme: Monitoring & Evaluation

The Doing Development Different (DDD) community emerged in August 2014 and advocates that (a) the barriers to development are as much political as technical; (b) international development agencies therefore need to design programmes to be problem-driven, locally led, flexible and adaptive, and politically smart. As Duncan Green mentioned in his blog on 4 August, NGOs have turned up late to the party, but we are doing plenty on the ground that fits under the DDD umbrella. Plus, much of what is supposedly “different” are things we ought to be doing anyway.

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Cash transfers have gained significant momentum over the past few years. Various studies demonstrate that cash-based responses have the potential to support longer-term gains beyond consumption. For that reason, stakeholders in the humanitarian sector are increasingly exploring new ways to measure the breadth of changes that cash can generate in people’s lives, in particular related to households’ capacities to deal with shocks and stresses, manage risks and transform livelihoods to cope with hazards and opportunities.

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CARE and other INGOs are increasingly exploring cash transfer modalities both for emergency response and other multi-component interventions. Yet public and political pressures to demonstrate results are also increasing – and are leading implementing agencies to set up comprehensive monitoring systems and rigorous evaluation cycles.

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One of the biggest challenges in achieving programme quality is to link Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability, and Learning (MEAL) systems to project management practices. Here are some proven ways to achieve this at project design, baseline, implementation and endline stages.

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Launched by DFID, Value for Money (VfM) is now a widely accepted standard in the sector. For CARE, quality assurance is determined by evidence of how monetary resources translate into long-lasting changes. It is understood as a key approach during proposal development and implementation to maximise the integration of Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability and Learning (MEAL) systems with project management practices.

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Payment upon demonstrating a set of agreed results is an emerging contractual modality that many donors are choosing to pursue. DFID together with USAID are leading this discourse and applying this funding approach to an increasing number of thematic areas, especially in health and education. So what does putting evidence at the centre of payment mechanisms mean for monitoring, evaluation and learning?

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At the end of 2016 the Doing Development Differently community held a workshop to take stock. What have we learned over the past two years? Is anything actually different?

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