Making Services Work for the Poor in Fragile and Conflict-affected Contexts: An Impact Evaluation of the Tuungane Community Scorecard Approach in Eastern DRC

The community scorecard, a hybrid of the techniques of social audit, community monitoring, and citizen report cards, is a widely applied tool of community-driven development designed to improve local governance and development outcomes by supplying information, encouraging engagement among actors, and fostering accountability. Despite its popularity, the nascent body of research in this area has yet to provide consistent evidence about the effectiveness of community scorecards. This impact evaluation tests whether various forms of accountability improve the effectiveness of local service provision and other development outcomes as part of the Tuungane program, a community-driven reconstruction program in the eastern DRC, currently in its third implementation phase (Phase 2+). This study is a multi-arm impact evaluation that randomizes whether communities that undertake education and health sector projects are implemented with 1) no monitoring; 2) bottom-up monitoring from communities through a scorecard approach; 3) top-down monitoring through increased line ministry intervention; or 4) a combination of bottom-up and top-down interventions. Outcomes of interest include accountability, attitudes, access to services, service performance, community participation, transparency, and social cohesion. Endline surveys were conducted between October 2017 to January 2018 in 339 communities. Qualitative methods were also used to map the mechanisms that lead to greater accountability and local development outcomes, including creating collective spaces, information provision, and oversight. Findings will be released in mid-2019

The Airbel Impact Lab at IRC is a team of researchers, strategists and innovators committed to the accelerated design, rigorous evaluation and cost-effective scaling of the most impactful solutions supporting people affected by crisis.