Working Paper

IDS working papers;70

Who Counts Reality? Participatory Monitoring and Evaluation: A Literature Review

Published on 1 January 1998

With more and more opportunities to promote broad-based participation in development, there is increased recognition that monitoring and evaluation should also be participatory.

This paper presents a literature review of experiences in participatory monitoring and evaluation (PM&E) from around the world, used in differing contexts and involving all kinds of stakeholders – NGOs, donors, research institutions, government, people’s organisations, and communities.

It introduces the key principles of PM&E, its applications for differing purposes, and a number of tools and methods used, including participatory learning methodologies as well as more conventional approaches. Finally, it raises key issues and broad challenges emerging from the literature, and outlines potential areas for future research.


John Gaventa

Research Fellow and Director, Action for Empowerment and Accountability (A4EA) programme

Publication details

published by
Estrella, M. and Gaventa, J.
IDS Working Paper, issue 70
1 85864 230 2


Related content

Working Paper

Effective Social Protection in Conflict: Findings from Sudan

Working Paper

Izzy Birch & 2 others

22 February 2024