A Review of Monitoring and Evaluation Roles in Research Development Program

Authors

S.K. Vaezi

Abstract

This study analyses the evaluation and monitoring of state research development programs through their procedures and standards and the activities of evaluation and monitoring agencies and associations (both governmental and non-governmental).
In all countries it is true that sustainable development and overall improvement are only possible with the presence of a combination of factors including: training, preserving & maintaining technological, research & scientific assets, research improvements, the promotion of scientific and technological development of the country and the sustainability of this development. It is therefore key to identify and support those who are engaged in these activities within a society in order to utilise their skills to support sustainable development as part of a national research development program.

Assumptions

Context and Issue
Improvements in information technology can be attained through the supervision of research programs that promote the role of scientific associations and research organisations. Improvements can also be secured through boosting the share of public and private research funding as a percentage of GDP in the state’s budget.

Supporting the implementation of state-run research projects by universities and research centres as a means of diversifying their financial resources also encourages faculty members to play a more effective part in national research activities that can be a strategic career move. By using a systems analysis approach based on role definitions, the problems of development and the role of national research development programs can be monitored and evaluated.

There are two main types of role that are relevant here:

Those relating to an effectiveness-oriented approach.
Those relating to an efficiency-oriented approach.
The first set of roles can be improved by making some changes to the design and performance of agencies that undertake research, and research monitoring as well as providing an effective bridge between the functional elements. In this process, monitoring and evolution of research development programs should be better balanced and more effectively geared to national development needs.
Based on the state national development program, a large proportion of resources are devoted to the research section, therefore improvements to the existing system are best achieved by increasing efficiency.

The standard of the second set of roles can be improved by a major change in national development objectives that would give very high priority to a research development program involving rural transformation.

This study focuses on the choice of actions and standards made by monitoring and evaluation agencies. Major changes in procedure and standards will be key to achieving much needed change in the practices and policies of evaluation and monitoring agencies. Attention must also be paid to new problems that may hinder the application of evaluation procedures such as growing complexity, globalization and advances in instructional uses of electronic technology. These new factors will allow new forms of research provision to emerge and assessment must adjust accordingly.

Policies and programmes
In order for research institutions to qualify as participants in state development research programs they must satisfy meet two fundamental criteria:

The research institution must be able to evaluate, monitor, analyse and predict fundamental changes in science and technology in order to keep abreast of the changes in science and technology occurring at a global level.
The research institution must be able to develop a plan that prioritises the countries’ technological activities in such as a way as to reengineer the nationwide development of science and technology and to provide a sustainable structure for research development programs.
In order to develop strategic priorities for science, research and technology, evaluations of the national research system have emphasized the decentralization of universities and research centres as well as their independence in administrative, financial, employment and organizational affairs. They have also devised a comprehensive assessment system for research and technological affairs at the national level.

Conclusions

Existing policies should be re-examined and replaced or updated where necessary. Monitoring agencies should be considered as a way to manage and improve research practice in the interests of the society as a whole. Individual researchers must also understand that scrutiny from these agencies is necessary for them to develop their careers.

In the interests of the national research development program, monitoring and evaluation agencies must stimulate innovation and be able to respond effectively to changing circumstances. Agencies should be encouraged to experiment with new approaches but it is should also submit their plans for outside review by other public or non-public evaluation agencies.

An organisation’s role in the national project of development should be considered when monitoring of their activities is occurring; particular attention should be paid to responsibilities for monitoring commercial research. All of these methods ensure that monitoring and evaluation agencies not only guide the development of innovative practices but they also credibility to emerging forms of research innovation. Terms of good practice should be set which will guide the actions of these organisations.

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