Monitoring and evaluation of participatory theatre for change

This guide was written to support groups doing Participatory Theatre for Change (PTC) to design a robust monitoring and evaluation system.

It includes the following sections:

  • M&E Lessons from Designing PTC Programs
  • Monitoring Reach, Resonance, and Response
  • Process and Quality Monitoring
  • Evaluation Approaches for Arts-Based Interventions

The following information was provided to BetterEvaluation by Jessica Noske-Turner as part of the Evaluating C4D Resource Hub.

The Evaluating C4D Resource Hub sits within BetterEvaluation and houses a growing collection of the available guides, toolkits, tools and methods to use for research monitoring and evaluation (R,M&E) of Communication for Development (C4D) initiatives. The Hub is structured around two combined frameworks:

A circle with spokes and a number of graphics set against a rainbow

C4D Evaluation Framework (represented by the circle) is an approach. It describes the values and principles that guide our decisions in C4D.

The BetterEvaluation Rainbow Framework (represented by the rainbows) is a structure. It organises the practical tasks into seven categories or 'clusters' and provides methods.

While the resource recommendation below discusses the resource specifically in relation to its usefulness for evaluating C4D within the Evaluating C4D Resource Hub's C4D Framework, this resource may also be of use for people working in other contexts and with different frameworks.

Authors and their affiliation

Rebecca Herrington

Key features

The guide begins by outlining a theory of change (TOC) for PTC. This is a particularly good example of a theory of change, because it shows how multiple theories can be combined, and the 'Reach, Resonance, Response' framework is simple yet useful. Further, the resource suggests adapting the provided TOC based on situation analysis. A series of indicators and methods are suggested, and these correspond with the TOC. 

How have you used or intend on using this resource?

This resource has been identified as particularly useful for evaluating of communication for development (C4D). It was identified as part of a research project in collaboration with UNICEF C4D.

Why would you recommend it to other people?

This resource is consistent with the C4D Evaluation Framework in the following ways: 

  • Complex: The guide outlines six different, interconnected theories and assumptions as part of the overall Theory of Change. It is a good example of how multiple theories can be used.   
  • Realistic: 'Reach, Resonance and Response' framing provides a powerful yet manageable way to think through how different theories combine in an initiative. The guide suggests a good mix of indicators and methods which are fit for purpose (providing rigour and sensitivity), but will not become overly burdensome. The selection of tools is based on the questions, which are based on the Theory of Change.   
  • Holistic: The guide encourages users to adapt the frameworks and approaches based on a thorough context/conflict analysis. The guide makes specific reference to the importance of thinking about timing, especially for longer term changes, which should not be measured immediately after. 
  • Learning-based: The guide suggests involving theatre actors in data collection and management (particularly in community scans) so that this can inform programming. The evaluation questions will not just check what happened, but seek out new insights and practices that can be used to inform future programs.   
  • Accountable: The guide frames monitoring and tracking as responsibilities to ensure accountability and quality of implementation.  
  • Participatory:  The actors themselves are often included as part of data collection. This is especially the case for the community scans and the monitoring.


Herrington, R. (2016). Monitoring and Evaluating Participatory Theatre for Change. 1st ed. Washington DC: Search for Common Ground. Available at: (Accessed at: May 03, 2017) 

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