human development, social justice and sustainable social systems
Using Technology for Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning
Why is this important?
As mobile digital technologies and systems became increasingly accessible, civil society organisations sought new ways of incorporating these into their programming to achieve better outcomes (e.g.: mobile data collection software, digital complaints and feedback mechanisms). While such technologies have the potential to increase efficiency, cost effectiveness and impact, there are major barriers to realising their full potential – both in how to design them to meet programmatic knowledge needs and in how to use data to inform ongoing monitoring, adaptation, evaluation and learning once collected.
Desired Outcomes (linked to the Assessment Tool)
Digital Data/Technology is used for project or programme monitoring, evaluation and learning as well as for accountability purposes (both organisational and donor-driven).
Information obtained from digital data/technology is used to inform decision-making.
The organisation has policies on data quality checks and guidance on data collection and analysis.
The organisation presents data in formats that are easy to interpret and act on, such as data visualisations.
Feedback mechanisms are used to share insights from data which is collected amongst relevant stakeholders (including those whose data has been collected, as appropriate).
The organisation coordinates with other civil society actors and entities on the design of new systems to learn from successes and failures.
The organisation shares information, data and resources with the sector to increase efficiency and impact, and similarly, uses existing data to support programme design, evaluation and learning.
Examples of actions/practices you can implement within your organisation to use technology for monitoring, evaluation and learning
Conduct an organisational audit to find out what types of digital data are currently being used for project/programme monitoring.
Consult with managers and decision-makers to Identify what types of information they currently use – and how it is presented – to inform decision-making, paying attention to any knowledge gaps they identify.
Work with project or programme staff to improve the use of external data in project/programme design.
Assess your organisation against the nine Principles for Digital Development, linked below. These guidelines are designed to help integrate best practices into technology-enabled programs and are intended to be updated and refined over time. They include guidance for every phase of the project life cycle and are part of an ongoing effort amongst development practitioners to share knowledge and support continuous learning.
Guidance, Tools and Case Studies from Member Organisations