Exploring cutting edge thinking to improve the current M&E paradigm
Mesopartner is a knowledge firm that specialises in territorial development, competitiveness and innovation. As a development consultancy, Mesopartner is known for pragmatic development instruments and concepts. Since 2010 Mesopartner has been assessing its own methods, tools and concepts based on insights from systems theories and complexity theories. Learn more about this process at http://systemic-insight.com.
About the Interviewer
Marcus is Swiss and has been working in international development for more than seven years. He started his own consultancy in 2011. It is his goal to bring systemic approaches based on complexity theory and systems thinking principles to international development. He wants to contribute to the development of healthy systems, where poverty reduction is part of economy and society.
Systemic M&E Interview 3: Jeanne Downing
Jeanne Downing, Senior Enterprise Development Advisor, Office of Microenterprise Development, USAID talks about the discussions she and her colleagues have within USAID about the necessity of using a systemic approach in development. She mentions the need to switch away from linear approaches towards approaches that are better able to capture the complexities of real world phenomena, especially when taking into account the new focus on resilience, which puts a further layer of complexity on the work in market systems. With regard to Monitoring and Evaluation frameworks, Jeanne gives examples of work that has already been done to make them more systemic, for example the Degrees of Evidence paper. M&E in complex systems mean accepting that the route a project takes from the baseline to the projected endline cannot be planned or predicted. Projects that take a facilitation approach need to be nimble and adaptable, which ultimately translates into increased sustainability. Jeanne also stresses the importance of collaborative learning between practitioners, donors, and researchers.
Senior Enterprise Development Advisor
Office of Microenterprise Development, USAID