Demystifying Outcome Measurement in Community Development

Renu Madan

W07-5: This study aims to describe outcome measurement and to explore to whom outcomes matter, how outcomes are measured, and the costs and benefits of undertaking outcome measurement at the level of a community development organization (CDO). Several funders in community development began requiring outcome reporting in 2005. Outcome measurement is a way to produce important evidence about long-term outcomes in a manner that may be useful both for funders and CDOs. Its process includes articulating an organization’s longterm goals, identifying indicators to evaluate progress toward those goals, implementing a system to track the indicators, analyzing the findings, and reporting results to stakeholders. Outcome measurement is distinguished from performance measurement, which focuses on immediate outputs or short-term outcomes. Also, outcome measurement does not aim to meet the standards of academic research….