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Published on: 01/05/2017

In 2016 Bert van Woersem and Ken Caplan, at the request of DGIS, undertook the End of Programme Evaluation of IRC's 2012-16 Business Plan. The evaluation was an invaluable input into developing our new strategy and theory of change.

We are sharing the evaluation both in the spirit of transparency, and because we think that this excellent and detailed piece of work is relevant for others attempting to deliver systems change and systems strengthening in the WASH sector. We are also sharing it because we are proud of the overall finding that IRC succeeded in achieving its most important Goal: contributing to the change in sector emphasis from delivering hardware to delivering services (adopting a Service Delivery Approach).

We have also taken note of the areas for strengthening identified by the evaluation, most important among them the need to better define the impact pathways by which we achieve our high level goals; the need to improve our monitoring of systems strengthening and change; and, the need to ensure that systems strengthening is indeed leading to improved service delivery. To address the former we have included a high level theory of change in our new strategy that explains how the different activities that we intend to undertake contribute to our overarching Goals. This theory of change and the monitoring, evaluation and learning framework that we are developing based upon it will address the second major finding and will serve as the basis for our monitoring going forward. Finally, our new strategy includes the adoption of partner districts in our focus countries, thus ensuring that we are able to track systems strengthening activities to our ultimate goal of people’s access to improved services.

“IRC has become an important player in changing the sector’s focus. The Service Delivery Approach (SDA) is strongly embedded in the sector, while the global level’s understanding and debates around costing, service levels and sustainability are strongly influenced by IRC through its programmes ….”


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