Learning Matters

By Learning Lab, February 2023

Note from the Learning Lab Team

Agency Learning and Evidence Month
is coming to a screen near you in April 2023! 

Agency Learning and Evidence Month is a USAID event showcasing progress on the USAID Agency Learning Agenda and celebrating agency-wide evidence use. This event will ensure that evidence from USAID, our partners, and key development stakeholders reaches broad audiences to inform international development policy, practice, and principles. A series of virtual sessions will be delivered in interactive online formats to cover each of the nine Agency Learning Agenda questions!

What topics will be covered during USAID’s Agency Learning and Evidence Month 2023?
USAID’s Agency Learning Agenda includes a set of nine questions, which cut across USAID’s policy priorities and respond to critical Agency evidence needs. USAID’s 2022-2026 Agency Learning Agenda features questions on:

  1. Operational Effectiveness
  2. Resilience to Shocks
  3. Climate Change
  4. Anti-Corruption
  5. Migration and Forced Displacement
  6. Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility
  7. Affirmative Development
  8. Locally-Led Development, and 
  9. Partnering for Sustainability. 

How can I participate in Agency Learning and Evidence Month? 

  1. Agency Learning and Evidence Month will include a mix of sessions open to the public and sessions for Agency staff. Keep an eye out for sessions of interest on the event page.
  2. Many of you might already be working on activities, projects, or strategies that generate evidence and learning under one or more of the Agency’s nine questions. Share your own experiences on Agency Learning and Evidence by submitting a blog to Learning Lab!
  3. Reach out to, with other thoughts and ideas!

Check out the event page for more information and a list of core Agency Learning and Evidence Month sessions.

Visit the event page

What We're Excited About This Month!

 USAID/Washington Learning Agendas April 2022 Snapshot 
What is a Learning Agenda? A learning agenda is a set of questions, activities, and products that help to systematically address gaps in our knowledge about operations and programming. Learning agendas can help us work more effectively by bringing evidence to bear in our work.
Find Out More
  USAID Agency Learning Agenda
Did you know that USAID has an Agency-Wide Learning Agenda? Published in May 2022, USAID’s Agency Learning Agenda articulates USAID’s priorities for learning and evidence to inform Agency decision-making. The Agency Learning Agenda engages key internal and external stakeholders in the generation, synthesis, sharing, and use of evidence to inform agency decision-making. The 2022-2026 Agency Learning Agenda transparently communicates how USAID builds and uses evidence to address its highest policy priorities, as articulated in the Department of State and USAID Joint Strategic Plan and forthcoming USAID Policy Framework.
Find Out More
  Cracking the Evidence Conundrum: Four Ideas to Get People to Use Evidence
What stops you from using data? Read this blog on the "evidence conundrum" to learn about the barriers development professionals face in using data and discover four insights from research on evidence-based decision-making that can help us be more intentional about applying evidence to our decision.
Read Now

Mark Your Calendar!

  • Join IDEAL and Mercy Corps for a webinar to introduce Mercy Corps' “Food for Thought: A Pause & Reflect Toolkit for Emergency Food Security Programs.” The toolkit builds on USAID’s current CLA framework and offers guidance, resources, templates, and advice on how to implement a one-day pause and reflect session for emergency food security programs.

In Case You Missed It!

Find more content and news from Learning Lab and our partners below.
  • CARE's Emily Janoch published a blog on asking local partners what changes they want to see, as a part of CARE's commitment to localization and learning.
  • In a blog, Ebele Achor discussed PACT's own capacity strengthening and localization efforts, as well as three key lessons about transitioning local partners to direct funding.
  • Reeti Hobson's blog discussed how USAID’s Infectious Disease Detection and Surveillance (IDDS) project strengthens health systems by focusing on laboratory networks. IDDS deployed experts dedicated to expanding diagnostic services and strengthening localized disease surveillance.
  • DAI and MarketShare Associates shared a new resource brief on shifting the locus of learning to from only program-focused to system-focused, and included 10 strategies for action.
  • A new blog in the Collective Action Series: "Performance Results Are Not the Whole Story: Using Non-Traditional MEL and Targeting Cohesion in Collective Action Programs."

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