Project Strategy and Design

We help our clients design projects and programmes by supporting the development of project results chains monitoring and evaluation frameworks, budgets, visibility and communication strategies, among other services. We have supported our clients in understanding how they intend to produce change through facilitating the development of the Theory of Change. In addition, MDS has expertise in development of grant proposals and facilitating organisational strategy planning and resourcing.
MDS has the requisite capacity for designing project interventions. Our consultants are highly trained and skilled in designing projects for successful implementation, monitoring and evaluation. We also assist in developing terms of reference for project missions as well as train staff or stakeholders in project cycle management and proposal writing.

Baseline

We have geographical and language experience in several countries. Our services include mapping out of project indicators; designing research tools, training research assistance in a range of areas including ethics and working with vulnerable groups; mobilising stakeholders and ensuring field access; supervising data collection, analysis and reporting. We have extensive experience in real-time data collection techniques and our expert teams are multidisciplinary and culturally aware.

Feasibility

Our expert teams can deliver analysis of potential projects and provide advice on their feasibility. We carry our social and environmental impact assessment, analyse project risks and provide expert opinion on viable pathways for project design and delivery.

Our key services in evaluation include policy and programme reviews; impact assessment; mid and end of term project evaluation; as well as capacity assessment We have extensive experience in conducting disability and gender analysis, evaluating climate change mainstreaming, cost benefit analysis, and assessing for value for money, among others.

MDS engages with university and think tank organisations to conduct research into various development issues, informing policy and practice while providing evidence to support advocacy. We have worked on short term and longitudinal studies and can communicate research effectively to different audiences.

It has expertise in designing and implementing tailored research programs to generate data for program development, lesson learning, lobbying and advocacy. It has established partnerships with internationally renowned research institutions. This enhances credibility of our work through rigorous peer review and validation processes. Our services span across various sectors which include:

  • Agriculture, Food Security & Nutrition,
  • Health & HIV and AIDS,
  • Humanitarian Assistance,
  • Aid Effectiveness,
  • Children and youths,
  • Gender,
  • Education,
  • Disability,
  • Governance,
  • Climate Change and the Environment.

We carry out a range of surveys for diverse clients operating in government, private sector or development spheres. Our teams are competent in mixed methods approaches to data collection and analysis, ethnographic and participatory approaches. We have an in-house statistician and have capacity of putting together suitably qualified field teams and a Logistics Manager to ensure that informed consent, ethics and standards are adhered to.

On Capacity Development, we conduct capacity assessments, analyse capacity needs of individuals, organisations and institutions, and identify training needs. We deliver capacity development interventions across the project cycle, from design to evaluation. Some of our past interventions have included monitoring and evaluation, policy analysis and advocacy, strategic management, training for transformation, proposal writing, training of trainers, and organizational development. We can also provide mentorship and coaching to projects and programmes.

We also provide technical guidance in sectors which include:

  • Agriculture, Food Security & Nutrition,
  • Health & HIV and AIDS,
  • Humanitarian Assistance,
  • Aid Effectiveness,
  • Children and youths,
  • Gender,
  • Education,
  • Disability,
  • Governance,
  • Climate Change and the Environment.

Theory of Change

MDS supports organisations in reviewing procedures to encourage and accommodate more widespread focus on theories of change. This ensures adequate resources are set aside to allow appropriate monitoring of these theories throughout the life of project interventions. Our experience shows that the process of articulating and reviewing theories of change adds rigour and transparency, clarifies project logic, highlights assumptions that need to be tested, and helps identify appropriate participants and partners.

Our services in the policy category include:

  • Policy analysis
  • Policy development,development of national and sector strategies and development frameworks.

Policy analysis

We work with clients to provide evidence based policy analysis that firmly based on proven and innovative methodologies. Depending on the assignment, our principle of people centred development ensures the process of policy analysis is participatory and enriching for those involved in implementation and charged with facilitating decisions on policy direction.

Policy development

Our approach to policy development, grounded on participatory methodologies, ensures those charged with implementation are the drivers of the policy development process. Experience in policy development has shown that greater participation not only enhance relevance of the policy but its prospects for implementation as those charged with implementation will own it. In this process of approach of policy development, our teams help with providing technical assistance from their wealth of in-country and international experience and knowledge to the process. We use results based management approaches to policy development. These include ensuring the results of policies are clear and informed by a sound understanding on the
causal problems for policy intervention.