Are agency-level global indicators enlightening or constricting?

February 26, 2021
A snapshot of Pact’s publicly accessible Global Indicator dashboard.

There is an endless tussle between the divergent needs of data users in the international development sector. Program stakeholders need tailored measurement systems that provide concrete evidence for making adaptive management decisions and assessing progress against the program’s criteria for success. These criteria are often highly contextualized to ensure the program is implemented in a manner that contributes to sustainability and ongoing relevance for communities.

On the other hand, the larger agency within which the program sits – be it a funder or an implementation organization or a larger consortium of such organizations – often needs data that are aggregable across multiple geographies, demographics, program goals, and even technical sectors. Such data respond to a very different set of criteria, one that combines common denominators with top-down goals to produce a sense of an agency’s reach, impact, and effectiveness.

Read the full article on USAID's Learning Lab blog