ActionAid will be participating in the research to develop a case study on their institutional Annual Learning and Planning System (ALPS). There is also a possibility that the separate Knowledge Initiative, based in Brazil, will contribute a separate dimension/ case study for the organisation.

ALPS was developed in 2002 to provide a framework for involving communities and partners closely in all aspects of ActionAid's programme work, including planning, budgeting, monitoring and reviewing. The system is designed to allow more creative and honest assessment of change and create space for staff to listen to and engage with the concerns of poor people, putting poor people at centre stage in learning, analysing and responding to their own situation. Key elements of ALPS are its emphasis on accountability to the poor, particularly women and girls, rather than just to donors, and its goal of sharing information freely between ActionAid and the people with whom it works. It sets out procedures for all ActionAid programmes and units to follow in their programme planning, implementation and evaluation cycles, although these are minimal and flexible. The only thing fixed about the system are its principles. ALPS is available here [1]

The case study: Staff from the Impact Assessment unit, based in Johannesburg, will coordinate a reflection process in 2 country programmes (in Africa and India)on some of the strategies they have used to implement the principles of ALPS, as well as the obstacles they have encountered. This ties in with work they are doing to explore how ALPS and participatory processes work to make and strengthen links across the diverse areas and themes of the organisation.