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AfDB Group Results Measurement Framework: Reinforcing Development Outcomes for Africa


On 22 September 2010, the Board of Directors of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group approved the institution’s Results Measurement Framework (RMF).

The document will play a key role in making the AfDB more efficient in pursuing its mission. The objective is to increase the development impact of AfDB’s operations for poverty reduction in Africa.
The framework is a streamlined result-reporting mechanism designed to provide periodic information on the Bank’s performance vis-à-vis programmed results and create opportunities for timely corrective actions.

“The RMF is a device to further management efforts to spread a results-culture across all levels of the institution,” says Thomas Hurley, AfDB Quality Assurance and Results Department Director. “It will focus attention and shed light on key issues, giving the Bank an additional lens through which it can focus on its strategic priorities,” he added.

The RMF will help the Bank’s management and board members carry out a number of functions:

  • Reviewing progress in improving the quality, performance, and effectiveness of projects at entry, during implementation and at completion;
  • Analyzing trends in performance; exploring the relationship between enhanced organizational effectiveness and improved development effectiveness;
  • Identifying areas that appear to underperform.

The Bank first adopted a Results Measurement Framework for the African Development Fund (ADF) during the Mid-Term Review of the ninth ADF replenishment in 2003.

Since then, the Bank has continuously improved its results frameworks, incorporating good practices and adjusting its strategic priorities.

The Results Measurement Framework is the latest novelty in the effort. “It incorporates important innovations, the main one being that it is now a Bank Group RMF rather than focusing exclusively on ADF operations. This reflects the increasing strategic focus of Bank operations, emphasizing the needed coherence of purpose of the various funding instruments for achieving development effectiveness,” Mr Hurley explained.

The new RMF also builds on good practices among MDBs, introducing a four-level measurement of results such as development outcomes in Africa; the Bank’s contributions to development outcomes; the Bank’s operational effectiveness; and its organizational efficiency.

“This approach is simpler and more effective at communicating the links between the Bank’s activities and development results. It also creates scope to focus on a broader set of institutional reforms (decentralization, business processes, etc.) that are integral parts of the Bank’s agenda on quality and results,” he added.

The Framework enhances the first approved edition by:

  • Proposing a more robust results framework by helping AfDB better understand  the complicated linkages between inputs, organizational performance, portfolio performance and results on the ground;
  • Enabling the AfDB to systematically measure outputs and outcomes for operations in all the Bank’s key areas of activity;
  • Improving qualitative reporting to complement quantitative analysis, focusing on the Bank’s contributions to development in specific areas such as gender, regional operations, governance and operations in fragile states;
  • Developing more effective tools for reporting more rigorously, transparently and systematically on all AfDB operations, and the extent to which they achieve the intended development results.

As part of the RMF, a new Annual Development Effectiveness Review (ADER) will be presented to the AfDB Board of Directors on an annual basis.

A summary of the ADER, the Results Scorecard, will present cumulative progress toward results to AfDB’s senior management on a quarterly basis.

In addition, quantitative reporting on operational results will be complemented with qualitative Results Briefs on areas of growing strategic importance.

“The ADER will be the AfDB Group’s primary corporate results reporting tool. The ADER acts as a milestone report on the AfDB’s commitment to managing for development results and increasing its accountability on results to stakeholders and the public at large,” Mr Hurley said.

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