Theory of Change and Strategic Planning

Understand our contribution to social change

This course gives you the opportunity to better understand how social change happens and your contribution to it. It also provides you with innovative tools for strategic planning. The action-learning process you engage in enables you to develop a Theory of Change to support and improve your ability as a development practitioner.
If you attend this course and later attend our M&E for Results 10 day course (within a 12 month period) you will receive our Certificate in Applied Evaluation.

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Why choose this course

This is an opportunity for you to engage in a multi-cultural learning environment that allows you to collectively explore how to facilitate multi-stakeholder processes. You critically reflect on the latest thinking around Theory of Change and Strategic Planning. Where possible it is useful to have two people attend from the same organisation.

What you will learn

Innovative-teaching-learning methodologies are used to explore different dynamics and through group work you understand the key concept of Theory of Change and Strategic Planning. We critically reflect on our assumptions and their effect on influencing change. By the end of the course you are able to assess and analyse the impact you have contributed by applying participatory and other development methodologies.

Daily Course Objectives

Subject to change to reflect participants' needs.

  • Day 1
    Overview of Theory of Change and Contribution Assessment

    • definitions and key concepts
    • relationship with M&E: complementarities and innovations
    • Desired Change: understanding how change happens
    • Conditions of Change.

  • Day 2
    Developing a Theory of Change

    • assess our work: Attribution or Contribution to change?
    • Contribution Assessment versus Impact Assessment
    • explore Pathways of Change: alternative ways to contribute to change
    • the power of assumptions: how does our thinking affect our actions?

  • Day 3
    Complexity, power and learning for social change

    • stakeholder engagement: understanding complexity and power dynamics
    • develop Pathways of Change: alternative ways to contribute to change
    • Indicators of Change: How we know we are contributing to change.

  • Day 4
    Contribution assessment framework and participatory methodologies

    • assessing contribution to change
    • participatory methods and tools for contribution assessment
    • reflecting on our assessment practices.

  • Day 5
    Returning to work and integrating learning into practice

    • revisit our M&E system from a contribution assessment perspective
    • meta-skills for facilitating Theory of Change processes
    • learning synthesis and steps forward.

What our participants say

"How I loved this training so much. The trainers not only teach but they show and apply ToC during course/learning process."
Rakifa Agusriana, Head of Strategic Planning Subdivision, National Agency for Drug and Food Control, Indonesia

"The trainers were excellent, methodology was very participatory and course contents were clearly conveyed."
Elaine Wong, M&E Consultant,Ideas Inc

"Participating in this course has been the most exciting, educative, robust, insightful help, useful and rewarding experience in recent times."
Dr Ibrahim O. Yisa, Monitroing and Evaluation Advisor, PATHS2 Programme, Nigeria

"An excellent programme and very interesting. I learned a lot and I am inspired to rethink the way I plan and forecast my work. I also learnt a lot from the amazing participants too. In addition to the amazing week I had in Bangkok."
Abdirahman Isak, UNICEF WASH Program Officer, Ethiopia

"The trainers were excellent and were themselves agents of change facilitating our reflections and analysis as they unfolded and surfaced. Highly relevant to my responsibilities in my organisation."
Ahmad Khalid Farhim, Programme Director, Swedish Committee for Afghanistan, Afghanistan

"IMA reaches out to its prospective participants in a personal way. This course was particularly beneficial for my work on private sector development reforms and I will apply the principals widely."
Penias Chabwela, Programme Officer, Cabinet Office, Zambia

Quick Facts

  • Duration:
  • 5 days
  • Venue
  • Date
  • Application Deadline
  • Fee
  • Cape Town
  • 18-22 Sep 17
  • 18 Aug 17
  • £2300
  • Bangkok
  • 13-17 Nov 17
  • 13 Oct 17
  • £2300
  • Cape Town
  • 09-13 Apr 18
  • 09 Mar 18
  • £2350
  • Tailor-made:
  • We also tailor this course to organisations learning needs, most recently for PATHS2 and a women's NGO in Nigeria. To find out how our in-house training can help your organisation call us on +44(0)1273 833030 or complete the training enquiry form.
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