Capacity for change

Between 2000 and 2008, we awarded £4.3 million to 23 different projects through our Commonwealth Programme. These projects were developed and implemented by UK and African universities and NGOs working in partnership, often together with African government departments.

Following the end of the programme, we commissioned an independent review of the Commonwealth Programme. The purpose of the review was to evaluate the programme, and to gather evidence to inform the operation of its successor, the Africa Programme.

In undertaking the review, we asked four key questions.

  • Have the individual projects funded by the Commonwealth Programme met their own objectives?
  • Have the projects as a group met the objective of the Commonwealth Programme?
  • What lessons from the Commonwealth Programme can we use to inform the operation of its successor, the Africa Programme?
  • How did the Commonwealth Programme sit within the overall context of international grant-making?

The review was undertaken by an independent evaluator, Joanna Monaghan from Intandem Consulting, and Sarah Lock from the Nuffield Foundation.

We are publishing the key findings from our review, with the aim of helping applicants to the Africa Programme better understand its objectives and criteria. We also hope the review will be useful for other international grant makers.