How to measure the impact of advocacy

By Lisa Cornish 29 May 2017

Participants of a curriculum training in Zambia learn how to develop an advocacy campaign using non-formal educational activities. Photo by: Urjasi Rudra / U.N. Women / CC BY-NC-ND

In an era of Trump, Brexit, the global gag rule and increased spending of official development assistance domestically, advocacy campaigns highlighting the benefits and value of investing in development and developing countries are increasingly important.

It is not just an era of stagnated politics, but fake news and targeted news, with social media responsible for telling people at both extremes of politics what they want to hear. Making inroads into these groups can be very difficult.

But for advocacy campaigns to make a bigger impact, experts are urging that strategies be developed as part of the campaign to include measurements of impact. And by sharing these outcomes among the development community, future campaigns can avoid what did not work, expand on what did and be better prepared for barriers to making an impact.

Why is it important to measure the impact of advocacy?

Measuring the impact of advocacy, experts told Devex, has a range of important benefits — from justifying campaigns, supporting supporters and ensuring assumptions of the initial program of advocacy are correct.

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About the author

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Lisa Cornishlisa_cornish

Lisa Cornish is a Devex reporter based in Canberra, Australia. Lisa formerly worked with News Corp Australia as a data journalist for the national network and was published throughout Australia in major metropolitan and regional newspapers, including the Daily Telegraph in Melbourne, Herald Sun in Melbourne, Courier-Mail in Brisbane and online through Lisa additionally consults with Australian government providing data analytics, reporting and visualization services. Lisa was awarded the 2014 Journalist of the Year by the New South Wales Institute of Surveyors.

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