Over the last 16 years, Dasra developed a robust, continuous IA framework using Balanced Scorecard with IRIS and other indicators. Its process is also marked by close collaboration with and empowerment of grantees in the evaluation process. Dasra also champions gender transformative evaluation
Dasra’s work spans three buckets – Capacity Building, Fundraising, Research. They work with philanthropists, foundations, corporate CSR programs and international aid agencies to channel funds via leveraged funding, giving circles and collaborative funding to organisations. Dasra constructs Logic Models for each bucket and shortlists indicators. These are integrated into the Balanced Scorecard, quarterly reports and Dasra’s external communication on its impact. Activities are reported as outputs/contributions.
Measuring attribution remains a challenge. A few key indicators are aggregated across buckets, and then across sectors. Overlaps are called out. Specific program indicators are captured for specific donors (e.g. girls’ health and empowerment indicators for USAID).
Theory of Change, Outcome mapping, OECD DAC evaluation criteria, Logic Model, Standardised (IRIS) and customised indicators, balanced scorecards. Dasra’s engagement with bilaterals and foundations like USAID, the Gates Foundation etc has pushed a gender transformative evaluation agenda.
5-6 months to develop the logic model and 2-3 months for data collection. For organisations, first results are seen within 3 months of implementation. Results on outcomes can take up to 3-5 years. IA is done by a team of two at the Dasra level and by another specialist at the portfolio level, leadership and entire organisation aligned and involved.
Dasra facilitate organisations’ engagement from design over management and communication to use of IA and encourage benchmarking results. Grantee challenges are budgetary and capacity. Dasra encourage grantees to allocate around 15 percent of the budget for IA and help hire IA staff.
Results are communicated quarterly to donors, internally via a management dashboard and externally in annual reports. Dasra support organisations to disseminate findings, systems and processes as briefs, blogs, conference presentations for building credibility, learning and reflection.