The indicators are measurement index of the results, which will be used as an index or evidences to evaluate if the project is moving in the right direction guided by the objectives, and if it yields expected results by the local organizations and by the donors. The indicators will provide evidences about whether a designed result occurred, and it will measure the changes in the activities of the project. The expressions of indicator could be quantity data (number, percentage, ratio), and quality data (fact, knowledge, etc.), and based on these the donors will judge the project’s successes in reaching its objectives.
While selecting indicators, it should be ensured that they are clear, precise, feasible, and best reflecting the outputs and outcomes of your results. It will be recommended to select at least one or more indicators for each objective, but if you have multiple candidates to select from, you may select those most appropriate and with resources available to obtain and analyze the data. For example, if some indicators selected require statistical calculations for the data analysis, you need to think about the availabilities of statistical software and the capable persons who know how to use the software to analyze the data. The following factors could be considered but not limited to when selecting the indicators:
- Donor interest
- Understandability by donors
- Relevance to the project
- Data availability and feasibility
- Availability of Resources (budget, software, and personnel)
- Ease in obtaining
One principle is needed to be followed while selecting, which is that the indicators should not indicate how the change will be, but only give the possibilities of change without the direction of either positive or negative, because we need to keep it open and unknown in order to be objective. For example, rather than writing “the increase in rates of the populations in the understanding of public involvement to policy decision”, we should write this: “the rates of the populations in the understanding of public involvement in policy decisions” without indicating that if it will be increased, decrease or unchanged. Other examples could be “the percentages of local people against the current policy making procedure”, “the rates of women voters after one year of the project”, and “the communication times between the government and people before and after the project”.