Document - AI@50 global project evaluation: Management response

AI@50 GLOBAL PROJECT EVALUATION

AI@50 Global project evaluation

Management Response

Introduction

Amnesty International welcomes the evaluation of the AI@50 Global Project while noting that much about it was unique - the project was an opportunity to align briefly several existing global campaigns under a short term scheme of work, with stronger communications and supporter engagement at the centre of its objectives. That said, there are still important lessons which have emerged from this evaluation. Some of these support current and ongoing improvements to global planning, capacity building, prioritization and alignment. Others are superseded by larger organizational change processes. Details of Amnesty International’s response and planned or current actions are outlined below.

Management response

Key Recommendation

Management response

Action undertaken | follow up action required | owner

1. Major surprises, successes and inconsistencies identified should be followed up (allocating extra time and resources if necessary, so that the organisation understands why these occurred and can build on or address them in the future (for example, mixed success with global moments, new audiences in the global south, an in-depth analysis of objectives and outcomes at section level, but particularly the contribution to human rights impact). This global communications project was extremely successful in breaking down internal and external barriers and removing stigma for issues such as sexual and reproductive rights. The movement should consider other human rights issues which could benefit from inclusion in future global projects.

Partially agree

The organization has recently undertaken a process to identify human rights issues to take forward in two global campaigns beginning in 2014. AI has considered a wide range of potential issues falling under the Integrated Strategic Plan, and using a set of agreed criteria within a widespread consultation process with AI sections and structures, has identified two issues to take forward, including one focused on women’s sexual and reproductive rights issues.

Further dissemination of the findings of this evaluation will take place once the management structure in support of the two global campaigns is in place. Any commitments to further investigation into questions raised by the evaluation, particularly considering the unique nature of the AI@50 project, will be taken at the time.

Status: Ongoing

Owner: Campaigns and Communications Directorate

2. Global project planning capacity should be built. SMART outcomes should be developed with clear signs of success at the development stage of projects and serious effort should be put into limiting the scope of project and deliverables based on this. Baseline data and data from existing campaigns on issues of awareness raising, contributions to impact, membership and fundraising, should be used to set and review indicators. In particularly clear Key Performance Indicators and definitions for membership recruitment and retention, and tracking and reporting this data (all of which are the process of being developed) must be agreed upon at the beginning. Finally all future global plans should include a risk analysis –so that potential negative impacts from increased visibility, interest and awareness can be identified

Agree

A Steering Group of sections and Campaigns from the IS has developed a clearer methodology for the development of AI’s global campaigns, building on the lessons from the global AI@50 Campaign Communications project. This includes clearer work streams, roles and responsibilities and objectives for each stage of the project. Risk mitigation has been included as a deliverable within our Campaign strategies. In addition, there is scope to build in clearer Key Performance Indicators and Data needs from the beginning, working across other programmes including Strategy and Evaluation, Digital Communications and Activism and organizational functions. This is being considered as part of the M&E work stream for the campaigns.

Status: Ongoing

Owner: Campaigns and Communications Directorate

3. Ensure that the campaign area, peak activism period and associated ‘ask’ or ‘call to action’ is clearly defined to maximise the impact of global campaigning. However, build in the flexibility to respond to current and global and national events within the campaign perimeters (both in terms of human rights and growth outcomes). For example a mini ‘crisis and opportunities’ response element could be included within global project plans to ensure that such opportunities are not missed in the future, this could also be built into any risk assessment.

Agree

The Campaigns agenda is being clarified – from a confusing range of broad campaigns/programmes of work to two distinct global campaigns that are narrower in focus than previous incarnations of campaigns. A calendar that maps peak periods of global activity and global moments has been further developed, and helps the organization see where there is flexibility across global campaigns and other global projects. Campaign actions have a clear expectation of clear asks and calls to action. Campaigns should develop key criteria that help to identify which events / crises / opportunities will be taken up within the Campaign framework and which will not.

Status: Ongoing

Owner: Campaigns and Communications Directorate

4. Ensure project team members have sufficient authority, outside of direct authority, and there is a clear and transparent approvals and decision-making process. Include as much of the global project work into existing projects identified within current operational plans to avoid competing priorities.

Partially Agree

AI@50 was a unique project, in that it was an attempt to overlay a communications-driven project on top of 6 distinct campaign themes. A global campaign project should not be added to existing projects in a current Operational Plan as suggested in this recommendation. Global Campaigns strategy, informed by sound regional, national and audience analysis, must drive which projects are taken up by the organization in the subsequent Operational Plan to ensure integrated planning and delivery, adequate resources and buy-in across the organization.

In relation to global Campaigns, a steering group has developed a clear structure and methodology for the development of global campaigns, including roles, responsibilities and accountabilities. In addition, all staff participating in the development of the campaigns are being inducted into the process to ensure a common understanding of the process and their role within it. Learning points are being included in the project delivery to ensure good practice and challenges are being captured and resolved, where needed.

In respect to the relationship of the global communications agenda and our global campaigns, clearer prioritisation frameworks and project management frameworks being established across the Campaigns and Communications directorate will enable clearer integrated conceptualization and delivery across Campaigns and Communications in line with organizational priorities.

Status: Addressed

Owner: Campaigns and Communications Directorate

5. Continue to use the appreciative learning enquiry approach for evaluations which focus on organisational changes and developments as the organisation can really benefit from the resultant lessons. Ensure that these evaluations are adequately resourced.

Agree

The Strategy and Evaluation Unit uses a variety of methodologies to assess the relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, impact and sustainability of Amnesty International’s ways of working and its results. These methodologies combine the best approaches, including appreciative and critical inquiry in order to explore and explain what AI has done well and where it needs to improve. The SEU builds capacity, articulates and helps programmes and teams realise organizational standards (including adequate resources) and disseminates evaluation findings for the purposes of learning. As an example of the last, recommendations from all major evaluations now require a management response. SEU and senior management have started a process to review AI commitments in response to evaluation on a six-monthly basis.

Status: Addressed

Owner: Strategy and Evaluation Unit

6. Develop a common understanding of what alignment means with staff across the movement. During this process, ensure that the positive and successful aspects of One Amnesty in terms of human rights outcomes are well publicised.

Agree

There are currently several programmes of work underway which will strengthen One Amnesty by moving it from a largely conceptual to an operational stage – via processes of consultation and communication, as well as financial reporting. This work includes initiating joint planning, monitoring and reporting via the development and implementation of regional strategies. These regional strategies are informed and shaped by global thematic critical paths which move AI towards a shared vision of change, and provide a rationale for prioritization and the positioning of resources across the movement.

The Global Transition Programme (GTP) supports the implementation of regional strategies by working towards distributing appropriate strategic management and business functions to regional hubs. Elements of the GTP are already underway with time for periodic review and opportunities for learning built into its implementation schedule. These reviews will cover both human rights outcomes and impact and AI’s operational effectiveness.

Status: Ongoing

Owner: Global Transition Programme / Strategy and Evaluation unit

7. Prioritise and facilitate the exchange of knowledge, materials and skills between sections and structures. Establish structures and tools to enable sections and structures to take the lead on this process, for example by making sections and structures part owners of products and working groups.

Partially Agree

The exchange of knowledge, materials and skills between sections and structures should be prioritised, but AI should build on existing structures and tools, such as the International Campaign Coordinators meeting (ICCM), global Campaign Management Team, global Communications Team, global Fundraising Management Team, global Group on Activism, and information sharing through other specialist networks, such as the Individuals at Risk network or International Women’s Human Rights network - all of which have strong representation from sections and structures and take on responsibility for conceptualizing and delivering projects.

Practically speaking, the ICCM in 2012 was managed by a Steering Group of IS and Sections, as is the process for developing AI’s global campaigns for 2014-2015.

Status: Addressed

Owner: Campaigns and Communications Directorate

8. If the data management tool is fully delivered it will offer significant potential to understand global trends within the movement and for the movement to present itself more as ‘One Amnesty’. Resources and capacity should be aligned so that the tool can be finished and the movement can make the most of it.

Disagree

In the absence of a unified global constituency relationship management system, a system to manage the collection and redistribution of data relating to global actions was developed in 2011. Additional functionality was added for specific use by AI@50. This global data management tool is still functional, although at times can be unstable, given limited human resource in terms of maintenance. Whilst a global CRM, unifying supporter data collection and management throughout the movement, remains a longer-term and more desirable solution, the costs and logistics of implementing such a system are prohibitive, and this situation is unlikely to change without significant investment, either at a organisation-wide level or via a third-party. An alternative solution, currently under investigation within DCP, involves the development of an architectural framework to allow for the aggregation of online actions taken throughout the movement, without the express need to collect and redistribute constituent data. It is hoped a prototype can be delivered during late 2013 or early 2014, but is again dependent on available human resource and managing competing priorities.

Status: Ongoing

Owner: Campaigns and Communication Directorate

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