A conceptual model for a programme monitoring and evaluation information system
Thesis (MPhil)--Stellenbosch University, 2013.
ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Literature on monitoring and evaluation acknowledges the complexity in the field. Many evaluation studies require empirical evidence to be integrated with decisions on standards and values to reach robust evaluative conclusions. In this context, organizations face a number of difficulties in attempting to develop computerized software for monitoring and evaluating their programmes. The situation is exacerbated by the lack of literature on how various concepts used in programme monitoring and evaluation could be arranged into a coherent pattern of concepts upon which the development of monitoring and evaluation software could be contingent. The aim of this thesis is to present a conceptual model for a programme monitoring and evaluation information system that can guide programme agencies in the procurement, design and development of software for programme monitoring and evaluation. The conceptual model is based on an assessment of several key concepts that characterize programme monitoring and evaluation: programme goals and objectives; programme activities; programme providers; administrators; funders; community stakeholders; macro-environment and relationship between them; personal goals and objectives; existing conditions; targeted individual (s); family friends, and community; macro-environment and relationships between them; programme participation and programme outcomes. Using purposive techniques, 15 relevant monitoring and evaluation documents were selected from within 3 large-scale programmes implemented in Uganda. These documents were used to identify and describe the features and attributes associated with each of the key M&E concepts. The findings reveal that only eleven of the key concepts listed above were used by the three case study programmes. In particular, their use was geared mainly towards the collection of empirical evidence to demonstrate programme accountability requirements. The study arranged the eleven distinctions into a framework comprising of three dimensions: (1) programme design; (2) programme implementation plan; and (3) programme implementation result. The programme design dimension comprises of five key concepts used to capture the essential information on programme design. The implementation plan dimension comprises of three key concepts used to capture the essential information on the actions that have been planned by each programme. The implementation result comprises of four key concepts that capture the essential information on the outcome of both routine and terminal monitoring and evaluation activities.