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Annex F Case Study Process and Tools

Topic Guide for Uganda Country Case Studies (February 2012); based on Evaluation Framework (revised Nov. 2011) for Study of Civil Society Engagement in Policy Dialogue

  Study questions Indicators
(specific evidence required)
1 Enabling environment for CSO engagement in policy dialogue and key changes over the past five years within case study countries  
  1.1 How would you describe the legal, political and financial freedoms of CSOs at the present time (in relation to this case study)?

1.2 How have they changed over the last five years?

1.3 How does the relationship between Government and civil society work in practice – including the power dynamics at play for this case study? Note: Use this section to explore concept of invited/uninvited space etc.

1.4 How this has changed over the last five years?

1.5 What are the key factors determining the enabling environment in relation to (this case study)?
  • Analysis of factors that contribute to CSO effectiveness in the country context
  • Changes of the last five years
  • Analysis of power relations and how these affect the space for policy dialogue
2 Enabling and disabling factors affecting whether CSOs engage in policy dialogue  
  2.1 What are the factors influencing whether CSOs engage in policy processes or not?

2.2 Why are some CSOs NOT engaging in policy dialogue work (given their constituency and profile)?
  • Key factors (drivers, breakers) influencing CSO engagement in policy processes
  • Practices that have enabled CSO outcomes in policy dialogue
3 Accountability and Legitimacy:  
  Explore the question; to what extent is CSO engagement in policy dialogue supported by their mandate in this sector/case study?  
3.1 Whose interests do CSO engaged in policy dialogue represent? Who are the constituents in this case study?

3.2 How do you obtain legitimacy to work in this sector?

3.3 To what extent are CSOs’ political demands supported by “numbers” (size of constituencies)?

3.4 To what extent are you (as CSOs engaging in policy dialogue) accountable to your constituencies?

3.5 How transparent are your CSO procedures and operations? Evidence.

3.6 What are the feedback mechanisms? What evidence to support this?
  • Whether the CSOs’ mandate supports engagement in policy dialogue
  • Whether there the CSOs are accountable to their constituencies on their engagement in policy dialogue
  • Whether the CSOs have established feedback mechanisms with their constituencies
  • Whether CSOs have the “critical mass” to support their political demands
  • Whether CSOs present the interests of poor and marginal groups
(Process outcomes, policy changes and policy outcomes):
4 Explore how effective are the CSOs in asserting influence on Gvernment (at national and district level) through policy dialogue? Use the POLICY CYCLE Tool to capture responses at different stages  

4.1 List and describe current policy dialogue activities/events (a) this year, and (b) over past five yearsactivities by the three main policy cycle stage(as in Scoping Study):

  • Policy formulation
  • Policy implementation
  • Monitoring & Evaluation/ lesson learning

Note: A policy dialogue activity could cover morethan one stage.

4.2 Formulation: What role has the CSO played in definingthe shape and content of the policy (e.g. policy briefs)

4.3 How effective has the CSO been in influencing policychange? Provide evidence.

4.4 Implementation: How effective is the CSO oninfluencing the implementation of policies?

4.5 How has this been achieved? What has beenachieved? What results?

4.6 Monitoring: How effective is the CSO at monitoringand evaluating the implementation of the policy?

4.7 And what has been achieved? Provide evidence.

4.8 How effective is the CSO in holding governmentaccountable for policy implementation?

4.9 What were the unexpected results of policy dialogue?

  • Extent to which policies changes occurred in selected policy areas
  • Evidence that CSOs have been substantially engaged in policy dialogue
  • Evidence that CSOs contributed to policy change inselected policy areas
  • Evidence that CSOs are holding Government to account for the implementation of policies

Achievement of CSO’s own policy objective

5.1 Do you have a Strategy document which sets out your CSO’s objectives in terms of engaging in policy dialogue?

5.2 How effective is the CSO in achieving its own specific policy objectives?

Note: Obtain copy of Strategic plan and related action plans etc.

  • Evidence that CSOs achieve their stated policy objectives
  • Cases where CSOs failed to achieve their objectives (and why)
6 CSO perspective of DP support:  

6.1 What role did DP support play in making your policy dialogue more effectiveness?

6.2 Provide examples of support? What worked and what did not?

6.3 How responsive are DP strategies to your priorities?

6.4 What examples of policy dialogue activities which had NO donor support (both successful and not successful)?


  • Lessons (and examples) on responsive support; Lessons (and examples) on responsive support: what worked and what didn’t?

6.5 What value do specific support strategies add?

6.6 In particular, what value does support provided through different channels (Northern CSOs, local CSOs) add?

  • Whether DP strategies support diversity of CSOs
  • Whether DP strategies support learning, innovation and focus on results
  • Whether partnerships with Northern CSOs provide opportunities for networking, dialogue and information sharing?
7 Donor perspective of DP support:  

7.1 What is the relevance of DP support vis-à-vis CSO priorities on policy dialogue?

7.2 What do DP perceive as the main needs of CSOs, particularly in relation to policy dialogue?

7.3 To what extent has DP support been driven by CSO demands?

7.4 To what extent does DP support respond to changing conditions for policy dialogue? To what extent is DP support informed by sound contextual analysis?

7.5 To what extent do DPs pursue their priorities through support of CSO engagement in policy dialogue (whose agenda)? Or where relevant: do what extent do Northern CSOs pursue their agenda through cooperation with local partners (who sets the agenda)?

  • Whether DP support is aligned to CSO priorities (priorities evidenced through CSO internal strategies, planning and communication)
  • Whether DPs are responsive to CSOs demands
  • Evidence of DP analysis and response to changing framework conditions
  • Cases where CSO priorities changed in response to DP support
  • Whether DPs (or Northern CSOs) pursue their strategic priorities through CSO support in policy dialogue

DP support and Enabling factors

7.6 To what extent have DP support strategies addressed the enabling and constraining factors that CSO face?

  • Evidence that DP strategies have addressed those enabling and constraining factors

This page forms part of the publication 'Support to Civil Society Engagement in Policy Dialogue' as chapter 18 of 19
Version 1.0. 07-01-2013
Publication may be found at the address


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