Oh the Metrics we track

by | Feb 4, 2023 | Change, ICT4D |


In most large businesses, the team working on innovation and new products do not have the same profit targets as the mainstream business units. In some businesses, the innovation team has no profit target – loss is accepted as innovation is seen as part of research and development. They have different metrics. This is accepted, expected even and seen as good and normal business practice.

Unfortunately, in the humanatarian world, we only have one metric of efficiency. And it works for the majority of people affected by a crisis, but not for the ‘edge’ cases, the hard to reach people, the most vulnerable. It is more ‘efficient’ and greater ‘value for money’ to help 20 household with a cash payment to their mobile money account than it is to help one elderly woman, living with disaabilities who does not have or have access to a mobile money account.

We understand the logic when it is pointed out. But our behaviour doesn’t change because the metrics don’t.

Photo by Lukas Blazek


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