Please identify evaluations of the scaling up of programmes (at national or sub-national/regional level), prioritising those with a gender equality or social norms focus. What does and doesn’t work in the process of scaling up? Which implementing partners have been effective in taking programmes to scale?
Factors that affect the success of scaling up include:
- Politics: A number of evaluations suggest that political support is a
key success factor, and offer recommendations on how to build this
support. Demonstrating how the programme will help achieve key
government goals, as well as building personal connections with
government officials. Decentralisation can make scale up possible
where local governments were interested, but can also limit
cooperation between municipalities.
- Capacity: Capacity building appears to be key to scaling up
sustainably, and is considered a worthwhile investment despite being
time-consuming in the case of weak local governments. Where scale-up
is through government-NGO partnership, capacity and expertise is
required in both agencies.
- Implementing partners: Partnerships between government and NGOs are a
common model for scaling up. One evaluation of scaling up sanitation
across six countries found that various combinations of NGOs, projects
and governments have proven successful. Another programme involving
contract teachers in Kenya demonstrated that government-run programmes
can face implementation and political economy constraints that an
NGO-run programme may not. Others argue that in most cases, the
participation of local government is vital to manage programme
implementation, and that working with them rather than around them
will pay off in the long term.
- Leadership: Several evaluations highlight the importance of leadership
and commitment. The leadership needed for small-scale innovations is
arguably different from the type of political and managerial
leadership required for systemic and large-scale changes. Support and
involvement from national and regional leadership is considered a key
success factor. Additionally, community leaders have proven
instrumental in the success of some community-led interventions.
- Evidence: Programmes taken to scale usually involve a well-developed
strategy based on documented evidence and a pilot intervention to
adapt the programme to local context. However, political opportunity
and implementation feasibility - as opposed to a systematic assessment
of how well a programme operates - often determine what can be scaled
up in practice.
Oddsdóttir, F. Evaluations of scaling up (GSDRC Helpdesk Research Report 1097). Governance and Social Development Resource Centre, University of Birmingham, Birmingham, UK (2014) 9 pp.