A Conversation with MTaPS Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Director Francis Okello
You have been working in M&E for well over two decades. What are the top two or three ways the field has progressed since you began work?
Since I started working in the development sector in the late 1990s, I have observed substantial improvements in local M&E capacity, mostly in monitoring. System-based approaches to M&E have increased with the expansion of electronic systems to lower geographic levels, resulting in improved availability of data. Data use has also improved, particularly for policy development or revision, and accountability for development funding, but gaps exist in the use of evidence for adaptive implementation.
Donors and global health, in general, are placing new emphasis on monitoring results and progress. What can MTaPS contribute to global knowledge in the area of pharmaceutical systems strengthening?
MTaPS will advance critical learning about creative strategies for building sustainable pharmaceutical systems in developing countries, covering topics of governance, regulatory systems, and tools. This learning will address best practices for developing, integrating, and implementing pharmaceutical systems and tools with host countries. Our work will also showcase the link between improving governance and regulatory systems and health outcomes.
What makes you most excited to work with the program?
I’ve been extremely impressed by the technical and collegial skills of my colleagues. I’m excited by the opportunity to support team efforts towards establishing a robust multi-country system for monitoring, evaluation, and learning that both addresses knowledge needs and contributes to implementation effectiveness. I’m also excited by the efforts to strengthen the capacity of our field teams in Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning (MEL).
Francis Okello recently joined MTaPS as the Director of Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning.