Programme design

How to formulate strong outputs

Outputs are arguably not the most important level of the results chain. It is outcomes that should be the focus of a good plan. Ultimately, that´s what counts. However, outputs still matter. Just to be clear: Simply put, outputs refer to changes in skills or abilities, or the availability of new products and services. In plain lingo: Outputs are what we […]

Theory of Change

7 principles of a Theory of Change

A good theory of change (ToC) is based on seven principles: 1. Repeat doing it until you get it right, 2. links are as important as expected changes, 3. risk and assumptions are key, 4. it must be scalable, 5. it is not a results chain, 6. organisations often already have ToCs in place which […]

Planning Results Based Management

A Theory of Change

Probably as an inevitable result of the buzz in the past few years, many Theories of Change are often useless. One reason for that is – is my feeling – that they are typically not developed in a logical sequence: without a thorough problem analysis, with a possible intervention already in mind, just as the […]

Adaptive programming Innovation

Stop overthinking: Minimum Viable Product

MINIMUM WHAT?!? Ok. What are we talking about? A minimum viable product – MVP in short – is a product with just enough features to gather validated learning about a possible intervention or product. It is deliberately imperfect; any additional work on it beyond what was required to start learning is waste, no matter how important it might have […]

Innovation Planning

Innovative programme design

It has always been clear to me: Monitoring and Evaluation depends to a large extent on how development or government programmes are planned and designed. That is why good M&E is strongly linked with good planning and design. In a way, programme design is a natural extension of our skill set in M&E. That is why this blog […]