When we started the CoP, we were few. At that time it was not clear what the CoP was supposed to do. We agreed on certain principles that have guided us through this first year of existence. We need to understand clearly what our function as a community is going to be and what value we are going to add into the entire sweetpotato research system. This is now emerging. I wouldn’t say that we have done it perfectly, but we are learning. (Clesensio Tizikara, M&E Specialist – Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA), Ghana)
Monitoring, Learning and Evaluation Community of Practice (MLE CoP) started in 2015, with 16 members, drawn from five different organizations. Since then, the membership has grown to 35. The CoP members have diverse backgrounds: agricultural economics, value chains, gender, M&E, public health and agronomy. Its activities and discussions have emphasized building the collective capacity of the members, harmonizing members’ approach to monitoring, evaluation and learning and standardizing M&E methods. The 2016 CoP meeting held on 27- 29 April 2016 in Kigali, Rwanda, focussed on harmonizing strategies for household and yield data collection and the use of digital/mobile devices for data collection.
Christine Bukania spoke with some participants of the meeting to find out how their participation in the CoP was helping to build their MLE capacity.
These individual voices were echoed by the very positive collective evaluation of the meeting by the participants. Majority of participants identified learning and networking, in their end-of-meeting evaluation, as two of the aspects they liked most about the 2016 meeting and requested that more time be dedicated to the next MLE CoP meeting.