Thursday, November 5, 2009

Matching Results Framework and Logical Framwork Terminology

Long before the need to monitoring and evaluate a project/program is the fundamental need to design a project/program. The acronym, DME, as in DME Advisor refers to design, monitoring and evaluation. Yes, I like to get involved in the initial design of a project, which is important in how it will monitored and evaluated.

There are two basic project/program designs being used in SC at this time. There is the Results Framework (RF), recommended by SC and generally used by US and Canadian-based donors. In addition, as more funding comes from non-US sources, the Logical Framework Approach (LFA), which is generally used by European donors.

Since SC primarily uses the RF most project/program directors or manager are familiar with it; however, increasingly they are being asked to use the LFA.

There are basic differences between the two design approaches, of which the two main are format and terminology. The basic format of a LFA is that of a matrix, whereas the basic format of a RF is a graphic illustration.

The largest challenge though for staff is the terminology differences. Below I have tried to match the RF and LFA terminology as closely as possible. Of course, there are slightly different versions of the RF and LFA, so this table is for the generic versions of both approaches.

Results Framework                     Logical Framework
Goal                                              Long-term Objective/Goal
Strategic Objective (SO)                Purpose/Short-term Objective
Intermediate Results (IRs)              Outputs
Strategies                                       ----
Activities                                        Activities
----                                                Inputs
----                                                Risks/Assumptions
Benchmarks                                   Milestones
Targets                                          Targets

Let me know if there are some terminology I'm missing or your think I've mismatched.


  1. Going on your blog is like going into a shop that has slashed prices, one wants to pick everything. Your blog has unlocked my thinking. I school I was taught LFA and now Im working for USAID who thinks in RF, thanks for table above. I need to presnt a RF and my thinking was in LFA. Your various websites will be very helpful.

  2. Thank you for the blog. One of the issues is on outcomes versus results. Which framework uses outcomes since I dont see them in your matching matrix. I am sure if we are not careful we may get confused even worse. What I see is that both frameworks have, over time, borrowed from each other and what we see claimed under each as being original are aspects borrowed from the other one. I am sure we will see in the not so distant future organizations and donors acknowledging the use of a hybrid framework which will tape on the strength of either of the two and improve the DME processes.

  3. Thanks very much for this info. I just wanted to add that even under the RF there are Assumptions. Thanks again.

  4. I think Okumu is right because for every M&E plan there must be an assumption in order to guide stakeholders about unforeseen situation that may arise.

  5. I have recently been introduced to Design and Monitoring Framework or DMF which includes Impact, Outcome, Outputs, Activities, performance indicators and inputs. I see absolutely no difference in this methodology and the Logical Framework. Would you agree with this

  6. I have recently been introduced to the Design and Monitoring Framework used by development banks. It is presented as a matrix and uses Impact, Outcome, Outputs, Activities, Inputs, performance targets and indicators, data sources , assumptions and risks. I honestly cannot see why this is considered to be a better version to logical framework. To me, it is exactly the same with just changes to the terminology. Would you agree? Am I missing something?

  7. Yea, I also agree with Marie. I believe there should be global consensus to use the same terminology to minimize development jargon confusion to actors. At current UN and many low developing countries using Impact-outcome-outcome-activities-input in the form of result chain.Anyway, I think both have same practicality but different theory version. Please suggest me am I in the right wing?

  8. This is what i found in another website on LFA and RFA:

    Results Framework focuses specially on impact and the outcomes of the work done through the program.

    The Results Framework approach has a lot in common with the Log frame that is used on individual project basis. A log frame is a tool for improving the planning, implementation, management, monitoring and evaluation of projects. It is a way of structuring the main elements in a project that shows the logical linkages between them

  9. This is just great and thanks for putting these thoughts out. I have always wanted to have a blog like this one and so now, I don't think I need to do what is already being done so well.