Guidance for designing, monitoring and evaluating peacebuilding projects: using theories of change

CARE, June 2012. Available as pdf

“To advance the use of theory-based inquiry within the field of peacebuilding, CARE International and International Alert undertook a two and a half year research project to develop light touch methods to monitor and evaluate peacebuilding projects, and pilot these in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Nepal and Uganda. This document, Guidance for designing, monitoring and evaluating peacebuilding project: using theories of change emerges from the efforts of peacebuilders who field tested the processes to define and assess the changes to which they hoped to contribute.

The main audiences for this guide are conflict transformation and peacebuilding practitioners, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and donor agencies. Other actors in the conflict transformation and peacebuilding field may also find it useful.”

Contents page

1. Overview
1.1 The problem we seek to address
1.2 The research that developed the guidance
1.3 Definitions
2. Theories of change
2.1 What is a theory of change?
2.2 Why is it important to explicitly state theories of change?
3. Using theories of change for project or programme design
3.1 Carry out a conflict analysis
3.2 Design an intervention
3.3 Develop a results hierarchy
3.4 Articulate the theories of change
4.  Monitoring and evaluating of a project or programme based on  its theories of change
4.1 Identify / refine the theories of change
4.2 Assess a project or programme’s relevance
4.3 Decide what you want to learn: choose which theory of change
4.4 Undertake outcome evaluation
4.5  Design a research plan using the monitoring and evaluation grid to assess  whether the theory of change is functioning as expected, and collect data according to the plan
4.6 Data collection methods
4.7 Helpful hints to manage data collection and analysis
4.8 Analysis of data
5.  Present your findings and ensure their use
Annex 1: Questions to ask to review a conflict analysis
Annex 2: A selection of conflict analysis tools and frameworks
Annex 3: Additional resources


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