RE: A lack of learning in the monitoring and evaluation of agriculture projects | Eval Forward

[Original contribution posted in Spanish]

Thanks for sharing Daniel, I agree with much of what you have shared, I think your contribution is very important. I have been involved in M&E for years in development projects - in urban areas -, and I agree that instead of bringing the different stages of the project cycle closer together, in an attempt to separate and specialise - I don't quite understand why -, specialisations such as "learning" (which is part of Monitoring) and accountability (which is part of Monitoring and mainly of Evaluation) have been "added", the latter because if we are talking about development, improvement of production and living conditions, it is necessary to "give back" to the target group everything that has been done.

I would like to add that - in my opinion - there is a step that may be overlooked: the intervening team must know what is going to be done, how it is going to be measured and when it is going to be measured, not only as actions and activities that can be seen in isolation, but as contributing to the value chain. This is where monitoring begins, this is where learning takes place (on the implementers' side), this is where accountability is learned. 

We have theorized too much in a continuous improvement effort, but I think it does not help. I agree that it is more important to know the perception of the target group, because then we can know if we have contributed to the sustainability of the project (I know that this is measured after the intervention), but qualitative studies tell us about the reception, acceptance and appropriation of the project at the end of the project, this information will tell us what we should do?

This sometimes clashes with donors, who fund for certain periods that do not always allow for the cultural appropriation of the intervention (this is another issue).