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Increase the impact of Link NCA on programs


© 2Factory pour Action contre la Faim
To better respond to the challenges on the ground, we have done a lot of work to reinforce the program impact of the Link NCAs. A recent study was conducted to review the use of Link NCA studies and to propose practical and scalable solutions to improve the impact of Link NCA on programs.   Julien Chalimbaud, international consultant, was commissioned to carry out the study "How to increase the impact of Link NCAs on the programs?"   This survey, conducted in 2017 with field actors, Link NCA analysts and donors, takes stock of the impact of the last 22 Link NCA studies. It highlights several findings including that:  
  • Defining operational objectives positively influences the impact of Link NCA on programs, however they are rarely formulated.
  • According to the interviews, the hypothesis hierarchy exercise that builds strong consensus and drives real program-based dynamics can sometimes lead to unrealistic expectations of the impact on programs.
  • The results of the Link NCA sometimes encounter technical or institutional bottlenecks.
  • The draft guide for the programming phase needs to be re-adapted to suit each context. A simple "internal" programming phase, which was not deployed in the end, may in some cases be the most relevant option.
  •   Following the study, recommendations were made. Three main ones are listed below:  
  • Make Link NCA a fully-fledged project using the project logical framework: the logframe, understandable by all, requires an operational objective to be defined as a general objective and simplest Link NCA methodology must be developed in order to meet this objective.
  • Improve the efficiency of Link NCAs: concrete approaches are proposed to optimize resources and adapt the methodology to meet the same specific objectives. For example, it would simplify sampling, set a quantified efficiency goal, or validate the study by an ethics committee only when necessary.

  • Contextualize Link NCA: The last 22 Link NCAs can be classified into 3 operating types ("define new programs", "seed phase" and "multi-stakeholder approach") and a specific humanitarian context ("refugee camps"). The recommendation is to work based on these 4 scenarios to develop ad hoc operational solutions.
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