Monitoring & evaluation (M&E) is an integral part of the life-cycle approach underlying RBM (see Figure below). M&E provide invaluable information for decision-making and lessons learned for the future (United Nations Development Group 2011).

iMENTORS team for Platform customization and integration has been working on the method for performing 'what-if' analyses in the context of e-infrastructure projects as well as on a method for following-up on ongoing projects relative to the expectations outlined in its early proposal stage.

The method is generalized into a method for project risk-opportunity analysis monitoring the state of expected threat to project success and expected favour to the project given that external factors develop in different ways (factors such as mobile internet speed, analphabetism, Internet dissemination).

 

Contextual factors enable or restrict the conversion of a resource or opportunity into a development benefit. These factors specifically determine an evaluators ability to choose to exploit the opportunity in order to realise a given development benefit (Sen 1999). The concept of impact of contextual factors has been extended, so it is not binary, but can be measured in degrees.

iMENTORS further bridges the concept of contextual factors with the assumptions and risks in the RBM terms. Within the iMENTORS framework, contextual factors are interpreted as external sources of uncertainty, which might affect project outputs both in positive and negative ways. A contextual factor that might have a negative (positive) impact on the project outputs are referred to as a threat (favour). The assumption in terms of RBM is merely interpreted as a particular magnitude of a contextual factor assumed in a given ICT4D project proposal. Thus, the contextual factor concept embraces and generalises the risks and assumptions concepts in order to enable further operationalization of contextual factor analysis.

Having quantified the contextual factors, the analysis can be then approached with contemporary risk analysis techniques. Talantsev et al. (2014) suggest a design of a tool for contextual factors analysis for ICT4D projects, which has been implemented as an integral part of the iMENTORS DSS.

 

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