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Thursday, September 5 • 3:45pm - 4:45pm
Smartcards for MERL, Worth the Money?

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ACDI/VOCA has been using touchless smartcards to track beneficiaries for over four years. As a result, through our USAID funded Agricultural Development and Value Chain Enhancement project (ADVANCE) in Ghana, we won the USAID 2017 Digi Award. ADVANCE was able to report on the benefits received by over unique 131,000 Ghanaian smallholder farmers with this technology. We have also been successfully using smartcards in Colombia within our USAID funded Emergency Response in Arauca project (ERA). However, we failed in integrating this technology in a few other projects, including in Kyrgyzstan.

These last four years, we were able to take stock and reflect on the pros and cons of this technology in different contexts. During the session, we will provide detailed explanation on how this technology works with live and interactive demonstration. We will share the lessons we learned, the success factors, and a decision tree that will help organizations determine whether smartcards are a good solution for their monitoring and evaluation (M&E) activities. Examples of factors include costs, local capacity, project activities scale, number of beneficiaries, project M&E database features, and where in the implementation cycle projects are. Furthermore, we will discuss alternative technological solutions that might be more accessible and less expensive for the cases where smartcards are less relevant.

At the end of the session, the audience will be familiar with the use of smartcards for Monitoring and Evaluation and will be able to map their way forward in the design of their next beneficiary tracking solution.


Nirinjaka Ramasinjatovo

Senior Director for M&E, Acdi/voca
Niri Ramasinjatovo is a monitoring and evaluation professional with over 18 years of experience in international development in Ghana, Mali, Burkina Faso, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Madagascar where she is originally from. Before her current role, she was the Deputy Chief of Party... Read More →

Nicole Chao

Senior Director for Resilience and Growth, ACDI/VOCA
Nicole Chao is an international development professional with over 15 years of experience. She currently provides project management oversight of livelihoods, employability, food security and community development projects in Colombia. Throughout the years, she has overseen projects... Read More →

Thursday September 5, 2019 3:45pm - 4:45pm EDT
Angle FHI 360 Conference Center, 1825 Connecticut Ave, 8th Floor, Washington, DC
  Emerging Approaches, 1 Hour Break Out
  • session type Workshop