C4D Hub: Identify Reporting Requirement

What is it?

Different groups of primary intended users and other stakeholders will have different needs in relation to reporting requirements (what needs to be reported and when) emerging from R,M&E. It is important to think about these needs as part of the M&E Framework or Evaluation Plan before beginning the data collection and analysis to ensure that the R,M&E activities will meet these needs. It is useful to undertake this task in conjunction with Identify primary intended users and Decide purpose. This information should then be reviewed periodically. 

General Information

Advice on undertaking the task of identifying reporting requirements can be found on the main BetterEvaluation site. It includes links to more information on communication plans and reporting needs analysis. This page is recommended reading before considering options to apply to C4D.

Identify Reporting Requirements and C4D 

Applying the C4D Principles


Reports from R,M&E are usually focused on satisfying the needs of donor and managers. These are important users, but it is also important to think about the reporting needs of other groups we are accountable to. This includes partners, community groups, local institutions and other stakeholders. 


Taking a participatory approach to undertaking this task would mean actively engaging with key stakeholders in a reporting needs analysis, and/or the development of a communication plan. It would mean thinking about the needs and uses of communities and other groups and the reporting requirements to support this. 


Different primary intended users may have different preferences for receiving reports. They may also have different interests and time scales for applying the findings. Thoughtful reporting strategies that suit the user’s needs and timeframes can help facilitate an adaptive approach to C4D work. 


Critically reflect on the assumptions relating to reporting. It is important to ask: are there good reasons why reporting must take certain forms? are there ways in which certain reporting requirements exclude or favour certain groups? whose needs are being served by the reporting requirements?

Recommended options and adaptations for C4D

It is reasonable to expect that this task is something that would be a strength for C4D, however, this task is often neglected when things get busy. 

Reporting needs analysis: This helps in working with your stakeholders to determine their reporting needs. This approach is consistent with the C4D Framework in the following ways:

  • Participatory: This process supports a participatory approach, since it takes into account the needs of all stakeholders, which can inform the communication plan. 
  • AccountableThis process ensures transparency and clarity in relation to reporting needs to ensure both upward and downward accountabilities are met. 

Communication plan: Developing a plan that outlines the strategies which will be used to communicate the results of your R,M&E.

  • Participatory: This process supports a participatory approach, since it ensures that a plan is in place to communicate with key stakeholder groups and communities where necessary.
  • Learning-basedA communication and dissemination plan is a key part of ensuring use and learning among key groups.
  • CriticalIn developing a communication plan it is important to think about access issues among different groups. (see also Ensure accessibility


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