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Part III: Developing the Impact Measurement Strategy

In this section you will learn about aspects of developing the system for measurement, such as information and knowledge management, partnerships in measurement, and sourcing data.

Measuring the Theory of Change

Systems should align to support the following good practices for measuring the theory of change:

  • Focusing attention in evaluations away from merely achieving positive impact to how you are facilitating social change.
  • Making use of gender-disaggregation in all measures and this should extend to all programs within the CO. Gender-disaggregated data helps reveal unequal access and control (to opportunities, resources, assets, choice) but should be informed by underlying cause analysis of vulnerability so that the level at which the problem is addressed remains at the deeper level of social change.
  • Measuring the changes in behaviors, attitudes and beliefs of a wide array of actors. While measuring impact relates to changes in and for the impact group, other levels of the TOC must be able to capture change amongst other stakeholder groups.
  • As old habits die hard, avoiding the tendency to privilege indicators as the "source of all knowledge." Developing a sensitivity to a social change process will require more effort and more focus on reflection processes and the inclusion of methods that capture stories of change at individual and group levels (e.g., processes of social cohesion). Indicators that furnish statistical information are useful but must be complemented by qualitative, narrative data.

An important assumption in this work is, to measure change over time, you must have pre- and post-data collection points. Over a 15-year timeline, you are likely to have a minimum of 4: baseline, year 5, year 10, and year 15.

Aspects for preparing and planning the measurement of your theory of change is discussed in this section. While there is no strict sequencing, the order of the themes generally follows the practice of the WEIMI COs.