Goal:

Through Results Framework and M&E system, USDA sought to better understand the effectiveness and impact of the Cochran Fellowship Program. They also aimed to increase the use of high-quality data and information to make informed management decisions.

Activities:

SI conducted a comparative analysis of M&E processes of USG-sponsored short-term exchange programs to inform the development of CFP’s new M&E system.

SI then reviewed the relevance, effectiveness and efficiency of CFP’s current monitoring and evaluation practices and processes, and presented the findings to USDA staff. SI also engaged with CFP and USDA Monitoring and Evaluation Services staff to understand programs and program objectives.

Outputs from these participatory sessions informed the Results Framework and M&E system development. The M&E system includes:

  • CFP common indicators (program-level indicators)
  • methodology and tools for measuring results at the output and outcome levels
  • templates for training staff on how to request and review CFP Fellowship providers’ final reports
  • recommendations on how to capture results of Fellowships in recently and soon-to-be graduated countries

SI also conducted a two-day training with CFP and MES staff to train on using the M&E System moving forward.

Results:

  • During SI impact tracing, the majority of CFP respondents reported that the M&E system created by the SI team was extremely useful or somewhat useful.
  • Respondents also noted that the system is being used to streamline and strengthen data collection processes, improve quality of data collected, focus M&E resources on priority areas or knowledge gaps, and increase the use of data in decision making.

 Resources:

USDA Foreign Agricultural Service, Cochran Fellowship Program

Contact: [email protected]