Introduction M&E

Learn from experiences!

A sports organisation carries out a sport project in a developing country, organising a regional football competition and football tournaments for boys and girls. The sports organisation wants to involve as many boys and girls as possible, because every child has the right to play. In addition, the organisation uses football to educate the boys and girls about HIV/AIDS. The organisation wants this education to act as a positive influence on the behaviour of both athletes and the community and to lower the infection rate.

It sounds like a good and valuable project, but how do you know whether the educational activities have been carried out well and efficiently? How do you know if your project is successful, whether it has indeed influenced behaviour and lowered the rate of HIV infections? And how do we know that it is your interventions that have influenced the change, not the school, church or the parents?

It is important to learn from experiences: it expands the existing knowledge base and helps to make the programmes even more effective. Monitoring and evaluation (M&E) of projects and programmes plays an essential role in this process. M&E gives an organisation insight into the effectiveness and efficiency of its activities, projects and programmes. An organisation can use the results of M&E to adjust its activities.

M&E is not simple. Enquiries with sport development organisations make it clear that many organisations have a hard time setting up and carrying out M&E activities. This is contrasted by the great need to expand our knowledge. This chapter will take a bird's-eye view of the theme. It will explore opportunities for future M&E projects.

Documents and links

  • A manual has been published by UK Sport specifically for the monitoring and evaluation of projects in the field of sport and development cooperation (F. Coalter, 2006, A Monitoring and Evaluation Manual, Sterling University and UK Sport). The manual, based in part on experiences in four case studies in Africa and India, was written in collaboration with Unicef and Magic Bus. It offers a framework for the design of effective projects in the field of sport and development cooperation and for the monitoring and evaluation of the results (pdf). 
  • F. Coalter, (2006) Sport in development: process evaluation and organisational development. In: Y. vanden Auweele, C. Malcolm & B. Mulders (eds). Sport and development. (word)
  • Evaluation the impact of development projects, a handbook for Practitioners, © 2000 The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Judy L. Baker (pdf) (link)
  • The Measuring Volunteering Toolkit is a practical guide on the study of volunteer behavior, UN and Independent sector (pdf)
  • A.O. Hauge and K. Mackay (2004) Monitoring and Evaluation for Results: Lessons from Uganda. Capacity Development Brief 3, World Bank (pdf).
  • L. Morra-Imas and R.C. Rist (2006) The Capacity to Evaluate: Why Countries Need It. Capacity Development Brief 17, World Bank (pdf)
  • African Evaluation Association (AfrEA) (link)
  • International Program for Development Evaluation Training (IPDET) (link)
  • International Organisation for Cooperation in Evaluation (link)
  • Nigerien Monitoring and Evaluation Network (Réseau nigérien de suivi et évaluation, RéNSE) (link)
  • South African Monitoring and Evaluation Association (SAMEA) (link)
  • UN Evaluation Forum (link)
  • UNDP Southern Africa Capacity Initiative (SACI) (link)