|Organizational Performance and Change Management - Workshop proceedings - October 1-3, 1997, International Institute of Rural Reconstruction (IIRR), Philippines (IIRR, 1997)|
|Case 3: Planning, monitoring and evaluation - The PhilDHRRA experience|
"Bottom-Up" vs "Top-Bottom". Members are clamoring for improved participation in the program/project conceptualization, implementation and assessment.
"Commitments in memorandum of agreements (MOAs) vs. Innovations"/"Standardization vs. Diversion". These are project-related and a common dilemma among project managers and implementors.
"Indigenous Knowledge vs. External Expertise". Should consultants always be there, or should they try to develop from within and rely on the wealth of experiences of internal people who are more grounded and whose is what may be called moral authority.
"Simplicity vs. Complexity" or "Generalist vs. Specialist" But over and above all these, beneath these debates, one basic concern remains: how can PhilDHRRA say that it has done something? This will again lead to many other questions. Who can say that it has accomplished something? What has so far been its impact to the over-all struggle for social change? And so on and so forth, questions that mean similar things with impact, accountability and focus.
This is where social auditing comes in. It is not a totally new tool for performance or impact evaluation, nor, a reinvention of the existing planning, monitoring and evaluation processes, rather uses them to aid in drawing out the real impact of the institution through and from the perspectives of its very own stakeholders.
Social auditing as an information management tool has been gaining ground and wider publicity in Europe and North America. It has a tool that facilitates dialogue among the organization's various stakeholders and improves organizational social performance. Encouraged by the new knowledge gained and convinced of its significance to PhilDHRRA's work, PhilDHRRA has so far been engaged, and sponsored, four social audit training courses in the Philippines since 1996.
PhilDHRRA firmly recognizes that only its stakeholders could say whether it has done anything at all, or whether it has achieved its institutional goals and objectives in the first place. The principle is simple; local communities can give a true assessment of the organization's performance. It is after all only by consulting all the stakeholders that a comprehensive, multi-perspective and relevant assessment can be produced.
The principles and processes of social audit act as the leavening agent because it shall supply the integrating framework of the network's PBME processes. By capturing the views of its stakeholders in the process of setting social objectives, indicators system, strategies and targets, and evaluation of their impact and relevance then the network has an identity that is so much its stakeholders' who, after all, is its substance and system. Then and only then, PhilDHRRA could say that it is what it is and no longer disintegrated from what constitutes it (the stakeholders) nor be accused of violating its essence as it becomes, though not deliberately, heavily secretariat-identified.
How can this integration be arrived? What follows are draft plans: