Policy expertise

Financial Sector Deepening Programmes in Africa: towards a common approach to results measurement and impact evaluation

Policy Area
FSD Africa
June 2014 - March 2015
OPM contact

This project will provide guidance for measuring and evaluating the impact of financial sector development programmes across sub-Saharan Africa. The traditional approach of measuring impact against static logframes presents a number of challenges: market facilitating financial sector development programmes are inherently dynamic and there is no easy way of capture change across different levels (e.g. overall programme as well specific projects funded or financial market change as well as impacts on end users – households and businesses). The OPM team is adopting a consultative approach, working closely with Financial Sector Deepening Africa (FSDA), CGAP, DFID and stakeholders from all eights Financial Sector Deepening (FSD) programmes in sub-Saharan Africa to build a common and consistent approach to results measurement. We will use the information gathered from interviews, country visits and stakeholder workshops to develop tools and guidance for the FSD network. Over the longer-term, our work will also help build a better understanding of the links between financial sector development, economic growth and poverty reduction and how these links can be leveraged to create maximum impact for the poorest sections of society.

The Financial Sector Deepening Africa (FSDA) has been set up to leverage the FSD network and improve financial inclusion and drive economic growth across sub-Saharan Africa. The programme leverages the knowledge and expertise of the eight Financial Sector Deepening (FSD) programmes - Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, South Africa, Zambia, Uganda and Mozambique.

The traditional approach of measuring results against logframe indicators throws up a number of challenges for market facilitating programmes for financial sector development FSD programmes projects are heavily influenced by external market context as well as the need to constantly adapt to take advantage of emerging opportunities. FSD programmes are also typically complex, operating across a number of different levels from providing policy advice, creating public goods such as FinScope, to helping accelerate delivery of financial services to the poor households and small businesses. The results measurement system needs to account for impact at all these levels -capturing household-level and wider market-level changes.

The growth of this network has coincided with increasing interest in a deeper understanding of the relationships between financial sector development, economic growth and poverty reduction. In consultation with CGAP and other stakeholders, this assignment will recommend what additional research needs to be commissioned by FSD Africa and other stakeholders to improve the understanding between better access to financial services for households and businesses and wider economic growth and poverty reduction.

This project was established to support the development of a common approach to effectively measure and evaluate the impact of FSD initiatives.

Our team is working closely with FSDA, the FSD networks, CGAP and other stakeholders to develop guidance and tools for more effective measurement of FSD interventions. We will take stock of lessons learnt by the Donor Committee for Enterprise Development (DCED), the different FSD programmes and others and use these to build consensus around a common, pragmatic approach to results measurement.

We are working in a participatory way, gathering primary and secondary data through phone interviews, country visits and a series of stakeholder workshops. OPM team is also able to draw on our previous work with a number of the FSD networks especially in Kenya and Tanzania.

We will convene and host workshops for FSD network representatives, donors and other key stakeholders to explore the main challenges and opportunities for results measurement, to test early conclusions and seek feedback. We will also work closely with our knowledge partners, CGAP (The Consultative Group to Assist the Poor), to draw insights from their crucial work in the sector and draw on their engagement with the wider donor network.

The OPM team will undertake the following activities:

  • Conduct stakeholder interviews
  • Review and learn from monitoring and evaluation frameworks used by different FSDs and other market development programmes
  • Organise and leading workshops with FSD networks, donors and other stakeholders
  • Develop guidance notes/toolkits for FSD networks

This project will help improve understanding of the impact caused by interventions designed to facilitate development of financial markets. By providing a common, consistent approach to results measurement and impact evaluation that can be practically applied in the field, our work will build an evidence base to help compare interventions and inform decision-making around FSD programmes.

From a donor point of view, access to stronger evidence will help ensure greater transparency, accountability and value-for-money as funds can be targeted towards those initiatives that have the biggest impact.

Over the longer-term, better feeding-back of evaluation results into programme design improvements should translate into stronger, more inclusive financial markets across sub-Saharan Africa.

Associate Consultant
Economic Policy Programme Director
Associate Consultant
Associate Consultant