Accountability and Feedback Loops

CDA is widely recognized as a thought leader on effective listening and feedback processes, with evidence-informed recommendations on improving community engagement and accountability practices.

Lessons from Time to Listen: Hearing People in the Receiving End of International Aid have been extended to the development of practical tools, and CDA leads in a number of interagency forums that promote improving community engagement and accountability practices.

CDA continues to facilitate learning regarding aid agencies’ efforts to listen to, engage with, and be accountable to those affected by their policies and programs.

Background:  CDA’s work on aid effectiveness, accountability and feedback loops began in 2005 with the launch of the Listening Project. The Listening Project used CDA’s listening methodology in 20 collaborative listening exercises around the world with 130 local and international aid organizations. We engaged 6,000 people in listening conversations about cumulative impact of aid efforts in their societies and communities. The resulting lessons are presented in Time to Listen: Hearing People on the Receiving End of International Aid.

core questions

In what ways does the aid system, widely regarded as “externally-driven”, need to reform to meaningfully engage local actors and communities?

How can aid providers be more accountable to the people they aim to support?

How can international and local organizations actively seek feedback from the people affected by their programs—and then act on that information?

from our partners

Yo Winder, Partnerships and Accountability Advisor / Oxfam GB

“CDA are, pretty much, the world experts in how feedback loops can work and the benefits to be gained in terms of programme quality”


Isabella Jean

Isabella Jean

Director of Collaborative Learning and Evaluation

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Sarah Cechvala

Sarah Cechvala

Senior Program Manager

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CDA provides services to donors and international aid agencies, both at headquarters and at the country level.  Ask us how we can customize our resources and expertise to help you improve your community engagement, feedback loops and accountability practices.