The complex and dynamic environments in which Africa Lead operates demand a flexible and adaptive M&E system that responds to both the accountability requirements and knowledge and learning needs of the Program. Towards this end, the Program will use both quantitative and qualitative methods to assess the contribution of our interventions to changes in behavior, attitudes, norms and performance of individuals, groups, and organizations, but also the overarching objective of African agricultural transformation.
Africa Lead’s basic premise is that strengthened institutions with more clearly articulated policy agendas and procedures will lead to better policies and programs and a stronger likelihood of achieving the CAADP and FTF goal of sustainably reducing global poverty and hunger. The success of good policies depends as much on successfully implementing the change process as it does on having a good technical solution. It is also about institutional change that is large scale and lasting. In Africa, the technical, managerial, and intellectual leadership skills critical for the agricultural sector growth are either limited or lacking. As such, the project interventions and corresponding M&E system are organized according to three anticipated results:
- Improved capacity among key institutions to achieve their mandates in developing and managing national agricultural and food security programs
- Enhanced capacity to manage policy change and reform across Africa
- More inclusive development and implementation of agriculture and food security policies and programs through greater engagement of NSAs
Promoting Change at the Systems Level
By concentrating on building capacity and strengthening processes of individuals, institutions — and networks of both — Africa Lead promotes changes in systems to formulate and implement policy changes through four routes, which provide the conceptual framework for our M&E approach.
- Evidence-based planning – The extent to which policy, legislation, regulations and programs are informed by recognizable, objectively verifiable and reliable sources and processes for gathering relevant evidence or data pertinent to agriculture and food security challenges.
- Mutual accountability – The extent to which stakeholder groups seeking to improve food security conditions clearly articulate their actions and hold themselves and each other accountable for achieving objectives and learning from achievements and mistakes.
- Coordination and inclusiveness – The extent to which government ministries, departments and agencies that play the major role in structuring and governing the agriculture sector coordinate their efforts towards broadly shared (CAADP National Agriculture Investment Plan, NAIP) goals, and the extent to which all stakeholders believe they have and actually do have a formalized and practical role in policy development.
- Policy Plans/Institutions – The extent to which policies are articulated, prioritized and widely shared and the extent to which institutions are organized, equipped, staffed and trained to implement the policies and programs that have been prioritized.