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Aligning Partners through Assessment and Learning: Evaluating Network Effectiveness in a Social Franchise

Title: Aligning Partners through Assessment and Learning: Evaluating Network Effectiveness in a Social Franchise

Presenter: Simon Bailey

Function: Head of Programmes and Research

Institution: Aflatoun International

Relevance of the session for the conference theme ‘Partnering for Success: how M&E Can Strengthen Partnerships for Sustainable Development’:

Aflatoun has over 180 partners globally and has been doing network evaluation for 6 years. It has experimented with Social Return on Investment (SROI), developmental/utilization focused, and Qualitative Comparative Analysis as methods for determining how effective its work has been with those partners. We aim to bring this experience, as well as all of the challenges that are faced in working and assessing partnerships to this session.


Aflatoun provides partners with comprehensive tools to assess their specific Aflatoun programme. To date, we have received research from partners in China, Ghana, Mali, Uganda, India, the Philippines, Nigeria, Mozambique, Kenya, the Palestine territories, Thailand and the Netherlands. The studies show that, through Aflatoun’s programme, children learn about money, change their personal attitudes, and engage in enterprises.

As a network organisation, the Aflatoun Secretariat must also be responsive to the needs and demands of the partner organisations that deliver the programme to children. To do so, Aflatoun has conducted different evaluations and assessments of the programme dissemination and facilitation work. Annually, the health and vibrancy of our network is assessed through a partner survey, and these results are compared to other similarly structured organisations.

This session will provide an overview of Aflatoun’s approach to partnership evaluation through Qualitative Comparative Analysis (focusing on the factors that lead to continuation and growth of programs) and through annual network assessments (comparative with Keystone Accountability in 2 years and internally managed for 4 years). Other approaches used tried include developmental/utilization focused and Social Return on Investment. The session will ask participants to think about how evaluation tools can create organizational alignment across geographic boundaries in networks, partnerships and other decentralized organizational structures. Based on their own experiences, models for inter organizational and partnership evaluation will be fed back to the broader group.