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Monitoring and Evaluation
DIG is committed to expanding the frontiers of monitoring and evaluation (M&E) through innovative programs that help poor families and entrepreneurs around the world increase their income and build their asset base. Illustrative of this point, we have utilized our expert program management and advisory services on a variety of successful endeavors. These key programs include:

Global Program for Inclusive Municipal Governance (GPIMG) (2010-2015): The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation awarded DIG a contract to support the management of a five-year, USD 25 million municipal governance program. GPIMG focuses on supporting city leadership and community-based partnerships to develop inclusive urban policies so that more and better resources reach the urban poor. Specifically, the program is funding improvements in the delivery of basic services, notably water and sanitation, to the poorest populations in 13 African cities: Lilongwe, Malawi; Monrovia, Liberia; Luanda, Angola; Harare, Zimbabwe; Cairo, Egypt, and eight Ethiopian cities. DIG is helping the foundation achieve its goal of promoting inclusive cities grantees by providing technical assistance and capacity building support, brokering government-civil society relations, monitoring and evaluating program outcomes, and helping grantees comply with their grant agreements. For more information on GPIMG, please click here.

Urbis: Urban Capacity Learning Laboratory (2007-2010): The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation awarded DIG an USD 8.5 million contract to implement a three-year global learning initiative. Urbis strengthened the capacity of community organizations to increase their influence over the decision-making and planning processes that affect the lives of the urban poor. The focus of the Urbis program included slum improvement, provision of basic services (water and sanitation), land tenure regularization, and financing for the urban poor, with advocacy as a cross-cutting theme. The program’s learning agenda was designed to help practitioners in the field of urban poverty alleviation understand how to amplify the voice of the poor to improve poverty reduction strategies. DIG selected eight cities (Sao Paulo, Brazil; Phnom Penh, Cambodia; Casablanca, Morocco; Dhaka, Bangladesh; Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire; Luanda, Angola; Durban, South Africa; and Mombasa, Kenya), based on the needs of the poor and opportunities to reduce urban poverty. In Abidjan, for example, DIG worked with a pro-poor network to increase slum dweller access to potable water and influence over a water subsidy. In all of the cities, DIG developed and applied methodologies that supported the capacity and strategic growth of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) serving the urban poor. Capacity building efforts included training, technical assistance, study tours, publications, toolkits, and a community of practice website (www.urbisnetwork.com). The Urbis program partnered with organizations managed by slum dwellers, NGOs, MFIs, private firms and government agencies. These partners were all focused on successfully improving the lives of the urban poor and were just a step away from unlocking new opportunities for themselves and for the populations they serve. By the end of the program, the Urbis team conducted 677 training events and provided 5,053 days of technical assistance to 19,847 individuals, enabling 547 organizations to grow and represent and/or serve the urban poor more effectively.

Housing Finance for the Poor (HFP) (2006-2009): Funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, HFP was a three-year, multi-country contract to test and explore innovations in the field of housing finance for the poor. Through action research, the program endeavored to provide donors, policy makers, and development finance practitioners with a tangible and comprehensive blueprint for prioritizing future investments and efforts toward the promotion of housing finance globally. DIG developed and tested groundbreaking housing finance products and approaches for servicing poor individuals in a variety of development contexts through partnerships with more than a dozen institutions (including MFIs, microfinance banks, commercial banks, and apex institutions).

Through HFP, DIG developed and tested numerous housing finance products, services, and methodologies including but not limited to:
  • Mortgage products targeting the poor
  • Varying approaches to housing microfinance
  • Housing finance subsidies for the poor
  • Housing finance in conjunction with slum improvement
  • Housing finance in post-emergency settings
  • A credit scoring model for housing finance
  • Technological innovations related to housing microfinance
Through our comparative analysis of HFP activities in India, Pakistan, Indonesia, South Africa, Morocco, Angola, and Mexico, we assessed key products and potential markets for housing finance for the poor, and conditions needed to enhance its scale and sustainability. To better understand the contexts in which these markets operate, DIG also conducted research on policies and regulations impacting access to housing finance for the poor.

Over the course of the HFP program, DIG provided extensive technical assistance and training to 230 financial institutions. Notable successes included: providing extensive technical assistance and training to commercial banks and service companies to design and deliver housing finance products for the poor – both as asset-building and consumption loans; assisting housing microfinance institutions working to achieve scale; linking housing finance to subsidy products; developing innovative financial tools for slum improvement; and launching an on-line community of practice website (www.housingfinanceforthepoor.com) to disseminate program findings and serve as a platform for knowledge sharing among partners, donors, and practitioners.

Dakar Municipal Finance (2013-2015): The city of Dakar, Senegal, hired DIG to help it launch its first municipal bond. DIG is providing technical and monitoring assistance to the municipality, which expects to raise a maximum of USD 40 million through a five-year bond scheduled to be offered in 2015. With the funds, the city will implement projects to improve the quality of life of the urban poor. DIG is working closely with the mayor and senior municipal officials to set the Senegalese capital on its course to become the first local authority in the French speaking West African monetary zone to raise funds through a bond offering. The City of Dakar will not only serve as a model for other municipalities in Senegal, but for the region as a whole.
Sustainable Water and Sanitation in Africa (SUWASA) (2009-2013): Under USAID’s Water II IQC, SUWASA aims to promote innovative reforms and sustainable financing for water and sanitation. As a subcontractor to Tetra Tech ARD, DIG serves as the primary partner on innovative financing for water and sanitation services. To date, DIG has conducted missions to design projects in Kenya, Senegal and Mali to facilitate innovative partnerships among banks, utility companies, small service providers and CBOs. Under SUWASA, DIG has achieved the following:
  • In Kenya, DIG implemented the first long-term project to be funded under SUWASA: the SUWASA Kenya Initiative. SUWASA Kenya was a two and a half-year project promoting innovative financing for water and sanitation in two primary cities in Kenya. Under this initiative, DIG helped utilities access USD 255,720 in capital, which enabled them to expand their water and sanitation services to informal settlements. Based on this success, USAID is providing funding to scale up the innovative model to up to six additional cities in Kenya. (For additional information on the SUWASA Kenya Initiative, please refer to the Financial Services section.)
  • In Senegal, DIG helped to identify sustainable solutions to fecal sludge management by examining stakeholder roles and capacity, current sanitation practices, and existing disposal facilities. DIG analyzed existing challenges and potential opportunities to improve the efficiency and sustainability of the fecal sludge management system. To achieve this objective, DIG built stakeholder consensus at the national government, municipal, and service provider levels to establish public-private partnerships between the local government and fecal sludge haulers ( vidangeurs) to promote affordable as well as safe fecal sludge extraction, transportation, disposal, and treatment.
  • In Mali, DIG recommended the design of a sustainable sanitation framework that builds on and reinforces decentralization reforms and that maximizes available resources to increase access to adequate sanitation.
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