Principle 8 - Focus on results, capture lessons from experience



Effective Public Investment Line 8



To focus on investment outcome goals and pursue them throughout the investment cycle at all levels of government.
Focusing on results include, but are not limited to, investment strategies with well-defined policy goals, performance budgeting, well-designed tendering procedures and performance monitoring of procurement, technically sound project appraisals, effective investment monitoring systems and high-quality ex post evaluation.

To monitor the implementation progress of projects.
Monitoring the implementation progress of projects can be done in terms of inputs, activities, and outputs; and evaluation through intermediate and final outcomes and their alignment with strategic goals. Outcomes of an investment may take three, five, or more years to be measureable, and thus the monitoring indicators need to be tracked years after the investment is made, and often beyond an election cycle. Indicator systems should balance comprehensiveness, usefulness and administrative burden.

To promote learning from experience.
Learning happens in a repeated game, but only if information produced in a first step is used in a subsequent one.  Evaluation addresses the goals of investment, assessing if the intended outcomes were achieved and the role played by investment activities. Information that emerges from monitoring and evaluation systems should feed into decisions regarding investment in subsequent investment cycles.

To allow for some flexibility and reconsideration of initial priorities
to adjust to evolving priorities and context throughout the investment implementation.


  • Use monitoring systems to track performance, emphasising progress toward outcomes (all levels).

  • Develop indicators that are relevant (linked to national and regional objectives), valid (measure the constructs of interest), reliable, and useful (provide actionable information for administrators and policy makers) (all levels).

  • Establish a manageable set of common indicators for sub-national reporting and develop "bench learning" practices among SNGs (all levels).

  • Require and/or co-finance ex post evaluations (all levels).

  • Incorporate lessons identified into subsequent investment decisions (all levels)


  • Require sub-national governments to report back on too many different indicators.

  • Change constantly changing indicators, not allowing subsequent evaluation and effective learning processes.

  • Gaming indicator systems and thus not achieving the desired outcomes


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See real life examples on how countries have been putting this principle into practice. Read more


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Country profiles on how they have been using the toolkit to assess public investment capacity . Read more


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Indicators and self assessment questionnaire on this principle. Read more



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