CLAimDev’s highest-level purpose is to bolster the capacity of USAID/Philippines to effectively lead and practice CLA, integrating CLA principles into the Mission’s work to increase development effectiveness. High-quality, timely, and relevant evidence-driven CLA is CLAimDev’s foundation. This section of the report describes CLAimDev’s CLA collaboration with the Mission’s technical and support offices and the ways that CLAimDev put learning, use, and dissemination at the forefront of its evaluation and research efforts. It also describes how CLAimDev’s work generating evidence and supporting the Mission’s performance management and monitoring, together with its approach to CLA, supported the Mission’s Mid-Course Stocktaking of the 2019–2024 CDCS.

CDCS Mid-Course Stocktaking (MCST)

A USAID Mission must complete at least one Country Development Cooperation Strategy (CDCS) MCST during the life of the strategy. Stocktaking assesses strategy-level results on a cumulative basis and changes in context or opportunity that could result in updates to strategy implementation.

The MCST is a structured opportunity to reflect on how contextual changes and results to date confirm or challenge core assumptions of the Mission’s strategy. Often, stocktaking looks ahead to the development of the succeeding CDCS. Stocktaking plays a vital role in a Mission’s ongoing learning and adapting as the Mission pauses and reflects to generate, analyze, and apply new knowledge and learning across programmatic and operational approaches.

The MCST should examine whether the critical assumptions for each development hypothesis hold true and whether the operating context has changed. If the context has changed, an MCST provides an opportunity to determine if and how these changes may positively or negatively affect results based on available evidence and data. Because critical assumptions and risks are dynamic, the stocktaking explicitly determines if they are still valid.

USAID/Philippines began preparatory activities for its MCST in September 2021 and conducted the MCST in stages from March 2022 through October 2022. The process involved a series of desk reviews, consultations among the technical offices, and focused discussions with sector representatives.