Original Research - Special Collection: Made in Africa Evaluation

Factors inhibiting the maturity and praxis of Made in Africa Evaluation

Takunda J. Chirau, Mokgophana Ramasobana
African Evaluation Journal | Vol 10, No 1 | a627 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/aej.v10i1.627 | © 2022 Takunda J. Chirau, Mokgophana Ramasobana | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 23 February 2022 | Published: 29 August 2022

About the author(s)

Takunda J. Chirau, Centre for Learning on Evaluation and Results Anglophone Africa (CLEAR-AA), Faculty of Commerce, Law and Management, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa
Mokgophana Ramasobana, Centre for Learning on Evaluation and Results Anglophone Africa (CLEAR-AA), Faculty of Commerce, Law and Management, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa


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Abstract

Background: Monitoring and evaluation in Africa as a practice and discipline has been dominated by Global North perspectives. There have been efforts within the monitoring and evaluation space to build a practice and profession that is informed by epistemes and axiologies which are Afro-centric. The main stream approaches currently being used in African evaluations marginalize the African knowledge systems as well as African evaluators. Reconstructing and repositioning the value of Made in Africa Evaluation is a must, rather than a necessity.

Objectives: This article documents critical factors inhibiting the deepening of the ‘Made in Africa Evaluation’ (MAE), both conceptually and practically.

Method: Based on reviewed literature, hands-on experiences and conference attendances, researchers explored critical factors that inhibit MAE from gaining enough traction in Africa.

Results: It is noted that MAE faces challenges in the region. African countries are struggling with common issues of how MAE can gain enough traction. Key factors observed are (1) the over-reliance on Western world views or paradigms, (2) the dominance of Global North donors as commissioners of African evaluations, (3) the supply chain practices of African evaluators and (4) the perceived infancy of the evaluation profession in Africa.

Conclusion: Commissioners of evaluations should consider revising procurement regulations developed to facilitate equivalent shared responsibilities between African and Western evaluation experts. More work needs to be conducted in order to develop a body of knowledge with Afrocentric paradigms, ways of knowing and methodologies that are African. Developing an African methods database is essential. This will contribute towards the ability for Africans to drink from their own wells, thereby elevating the indigenisation of evaluation practice. This article advocates for the expedience of the MAE approach and fills an important empirical gap on the approach, which feeds into contemporary literature on the institutionalisation of African approaches in evaluation practice.


Keywords

Made in Africa; evaluations; context; Afrocentric; methodologies

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