Why do we Need M&E for Building Sustainable Communities?

Why do we need M&E for building sustainable communities? Determines if progress is being made towards sustainability; Demonstrates how we are making impact; Provides continuous learning opportunities for those involved and beyond; Produces unique solutions to wicked problems; Increases a community's adaptive capacity 

Consideration towards M&E for building sustainable communities is important for several reasons:

  • At the basic level, M&E can not only provide detailed information about the efficiency and success of project, it also works to provide public and internal accountability and help demonstrate impact, which are essential functions in light of current sustainability challenges (Estrella & Gaventa, 1998; Goparaju et al., 2006; Stem et al., 2005).
  • This cyclical process involving problem identification, taking action, monitoring, and reflecting and redefining the problem, inherently affords the opportunity to strengthen and deepen the contributions of primary stakeholders and rights holders, through shared learning, joint-decision making, co-ownership, etc. (Onyango, 2018).
  • Additionally, in order to achieve sustainability under conditions of socio-ecological change, continuous learning in environmental management initiatives are crucial (Armitage et al., 2008). In line with this, greater public participation and learning about the interactions between science and society has become increasingly important (Kates, 2011). Berkes et al. (2003) argue that environmental management processes can be improved by making them adaptable and flexible, so as to be able to deal with the uncertainty that complex systems inherently produce.



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Building Sustainable Communities: Monitoring and Evaluation Copyright © by Ryan Plummer; Amanda Smits; Samantha Witkowski; Bridget McGlynn; Derek Armitage; Ella-Kari Muhl; and Jodi Johnston is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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