Baselines and Targets

This guide defines baselines and targets and why they are both important. Using targets for performance management in a learning organization is detailed before differentiating the types of targets and how to express targets.

The guide examines four common scenarios which provide the context for establishing the baseline data:

  1. Baseline is established
  2. Baselines must be collected
  3. Baselines are established on a rolling basis
  4. Baseline is zero


  • Introduction
  • What are baselines and targets?
  • Why are baselines important?
  • Establishing the baseline
  • Why are targets important?
  • Using targets for performance management in a learning organization
  • Types of targets
  • Expressing targets
  • Disaggregating targets
  • Setting targets
  • Document and file


Tirnauer, J (2010)  Baselines and Targets, Performance Monitoring & Evaluation TIPS Washington DC, USAID Center for Development Information and Development Evaluation. Retrieved from



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A special thanks to this page's contributors
Evaluation Specialist, Better Evaluation.
Gold Coast, Australia.


Anonymous's picture
joel violette

Good job!

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