Collaborating, Learning and Adapting to Build Resilience in Fragile States

Dec 11, 2017 by Joanna Springer, Patrick O’Mahony Comments (0)

Development Challenge: South Sudan is suffering from economic collapse and a man-made famine which has displaced over one-third of the population. Promoting Resilience through Ongoing Participatory Engagement and Learning (PROPEL) was launched in September 2015 to place a developmental focus on people and places subject to recurrent shocks and stresses.

CLA Approach:

  • M&E for Learning: PROPEL prepared community dashboards to inform project prioritization. As field program teams facilitated community-led, decision-making processes, the dashboards allowed them to triangulate emerging themes from community meetings with rigorous data, while sharing the results with community leaders.
  • Adaptive Management: The monitoring, evaluation, research and learning (MERL) team created a lessons learned tracker to harvest actionable learning. Senior management used the tracker to follow up with teams about the results and outcomes of adaptive decisions.
  • CLA in Implementing Mechanisms: PROPEL empowered staff to use data for decision-making by including them in research and learning rather than contracting the work. The MERL team was equally resourced to the programming team and oriented to be service providers to the field by applying learning to problem solving.

Outcomes: Preliminary endline survey data as well as anecdotal feedback from stakeholders during project close-out indicate a strong appreciation for the responsiveness of PROPEL’s approach. Specifically, beneficiaries reported more instances of inclusive and efficient consultation and decision-making mechanisms that left communities better prepared to respond to and address key drivers of conflict.

Read the full case here.

This blog post is part of a series featuring the 10 winners of the 2017 Collaborating, Learning and Adapting Case Competition. A new case will be posted on USAID Learning Lab each Thursday: October 12 - December 14.

Filed Under: 2017 Winners