Performance Measurement & Improvement


Assessment is imperative to improving performance and to generating social impact. It creates value for businesses and their stakeholders as they use data to improve operations. It is an iterative process – metrics can and should shift as a company evolves from design to scale. We specialize in applying a multidimensional approach to assessing poverty reduction. Multidimensional assessment provides unique insights into increasing effectiveness, sustainability and scalability.

WDI’s Performance Measurement and Improvement team (PMI) designs and implements customized assessment solutions to understand the economic, social and environmental performance and outcomes of organizations and businesses operating in low- and middle- income countries. Our team uses these data to create more value for stakeholders by improving the effectiveness, scalability and sustainability of ventures. We have conducted numerous projects with a variety of private, non-profit and government partners in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. These assessments have spanned the following sectors: agribusiness, healthcare, information technology, renewable energy, housing, sanitation, impact sourcing, and economic growth.

As opposed to focusing only on output-level or economic indicators, we focus in assessing multidimensional poverty reduction outcomes such as changes in physical and/or psychological health, knowledge, self-esteem, aspirations, empowerment, interactions, social networks, home and/or local environment in addition to financial indicators such as income. We specialize in developing research designs and quantitative and qualitative questions and surveys that measure these indicators. We carefully adapt our questions and data collection methods to the local context in order to ensure accurate and valuable data are collected.

Our team also engages with experts across different disciplines at the University of Michigan who have developed unique tools and frameworks, and have a wealth of measurement experience. We also provide different trainings on assessment best practices.

Check out our Capabilities Statement for more information and ways to collaborate or email us.

The Performance Measurement & Improvement Sector utilizes a range of measurement tools, frameworks and methodologies including outcome harvesting, developmental evaluation, among others.

One of the tools our team uses is the Base of the Pyramid Impact Assessment Framework (BoP IAF), featured in the Harvard Business Review in order to help inclusive businesses gain a deep understanding of how they affect low-income stakeholders. The BoP IAF is flexible, customizable to the business and provides managers with a robust and systematic approach to understanding venture influence on their local buyers, sellers, and communities in which they exist. The framework accounts for positive and negative poverty alleviation impacts by assessing three areas of well-being: economic, capability and relationship, as defined below:

  • Economic Well-being: Changes in income, income stability, assets, consumer surplus and economic productivity resulting from the enterprise’s activities.
  • Capability Well-being: Changes in physical health, skills, knowledge, psychological well-being and aspirations resulting from the enterprise’s activities.
  • Relationship Well-being: Changes in roles and status within family, community, etc., access to social support, levels of dependence and responsiveness and quality of the local physical and cultural environment resulting from the enterprise’s activities.

The BoP IAF is also highly collaborative as key stakeholders help inform which impacts are collected. The methodology includes an initial ‘Strategic Analysis’ phase followed by a ‘Performance Analysis’ phase. During the Strategic Analysis phase, the team conducts in-depth interviews with key stakeholders to prioritize potential impacts by magnitude and likelihood of occurring. The second phase, the Performance Analysis, is an empirically-based quantitative assessment of the prioritized impacts from the Strategic Analysis phase. For more information on the steps included in strategic analysis and performance analysis please review our webinar series by clicking on the Knowledge Sharing navigation at left. Additional information on the performance analysis phase can be found in this video.


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