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Author Archives: Piroska Bisits Bullen

Piroska has worked on a range of international development programs involving local NGOs, international NGOs, UN agencies and government. She holds a Ph.D. in public health, has published articles in several journals, and was a speaker at TEDx Phnom Penh. Piroska is passionate about using scientific evidence and creativity to design programs that work.

Does your program align with the national strategy?

Ever since the Paris Declaration in 2005 “aligning with the national strategy” has become an important focus of international development / aid. There are many benefits to supporting the national strategy – it means that everyone is working towards the same goal (endorsed by the government), using similar activities, and avoiding duplication ... Read More »

How to hire a consultant in development / aid

Two people at desk

Consultants are often used for short term projects in international development / aid. Typical projects include needs assessments, evaluations, and report writing. A good consultant can be extremely valuable to your program. However, if a consultant is not hired and managed well the results can be equally disappointing (and very expensive!). ... Read More »

5 questions to ask before starting an innovation project

Light bulb on paper

There has been a proliferation of innovation-specific development funds in recent years, a trend that seems to have spread from the business world to the development / aid sector. Innovation has an important place in development, and in my experience the most effective innovation projects are the ones that make ... Read More »

Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) template

Glasses on papers

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) is an agreement made between two or more partners. An MoU is normally signed when NGOs agree to work with each other, or when an NGO agrees to work with the government. In an MoU, all parties are considered equal, and agree to worth together ... Read More »

How to write the sustainability section of a proposal

Computer classroom

Sustainability is the nirvana of development. Everyone wants to get there but very few actually do. Most donors only want to fund projects that will be sustainable, so they include it as a section in their proposal template. Writing the sustainability section can either be very easy (if you just fill it ... Read More »

How to close a project

International development projects can be closed for a variety of reasons. In the best case, a project will be closed because the problem it is trying to solve has been fixed. In other cases, a project could close because there is a lack of funding, the organisation no longer has ... Read More »

Delivery Audit template

Most international development and aid programs involve deliveries of some kind. Relief operations deliver food, medical supplies, and other essential items to those in immediate need. Long term development programs often deliver equipment or supplies to government institutions, or even directly to participants – such as seeds for an agricultural program, or bed ... Read More »

Receipt Audit template

There are three common ways that (apparently original) receipts can be used to hide fraud or theft on an aid program: Fake receipt: The company itself may be fake, or the person making the purchase may have created a fake receipt in order to keep the money. Altered receipt: It is possible that ... Read More »

5 ways to measure qualitative results

Measuring results is important, but not every result can be counted, tracked and fit neatly into an M&E framework. Some results are intangible – things like “empowerment”, “confidence” or “improved capacity”. Just because these things are difficult to count that doesn’t mean you can’t measure them. You just need to measure ... Read More »

Concept Note template

Stack of papers

A concept note is a short version of a proposal. Donors often request concept notes as the first step in funding applications. This allows them to screen applications so that only the best ones are invited to submit a full proposal. Usually the donor has their own concept note template ... Read More »

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