The Preliminaries

Before you spend a lot of time designing a monitoring program you need to reflect on what you are trying to do and how the results of the program will be used. This site has been designed to incorporate established principles for monitoring and in the belief that monitoring must be explicitly linked to management. The accompanying Monitoring for Management provides an interesting overview.

Data are not an end in themselves: they are collected for a purpose and, ultimately, need to be used for that purpose.

This section has been broken into two bits:

Setting up a program

The toolkit can only provide you with resources, it can’t tell you what to do. You can’t use these resources properly until you know why you are doing the program, what you want out of it etc etc. This page is for you to think about the “why?” and the “what?” before you get into details. When you know all the answers you have probably done the hardest part of setting up a good program.

The primary outcome from monitoring should be better management, derived from better understanding and better partnerships.

If you can’t answer these questions up front the footnotes will help you, but trying to answer them first will key you in to stuff you might want to focus on, and the preliminaries that only you can supply.

Implementing a program

Once you have a clear idea of the questions you want to answer (and all the preliminaries) you can start to design an appropriate program. A “Frequently Asked Questions?” format is provided to start you on the process of designing and implementing a monitoring program.