The RAPID Outcome Assessment (ROA) is a learning methodology to assess and map the contribution of a project’s actions on a particular change in policy or the policy environment. It is a flexible and visual tool that can be used in conjunction with other evaluation tools and methods (Source: ODI RAPID).
ROA draws significantly from Outcome Mapping as it focuses on key actors that the project is directly influencing and the progressive changes in those actors. It also draws from other methodologies such as Episode Studies, which focuses on working backwards from a policy change to determine the factors that contributed to it; and Most Significant Change, which helps to identify and prioritise the key changes (ibid).
The ROA methodology has three main stages. The first stage is a preparation stage, during which a document review and a series of informal conversations are carried out to develop a draft picture of the project’s history and the intended changes. The second stage is the workshop during which the key policy change processes are identified by the stakeholders. The third stage involves a follow up process that allows the researchers to refine the stories of change, identifying key policy actors, events and their contribution to change (ibid).
The ODI RAPID programme has produces a useful handout that explains ROA in a little more detail: RAPID Outcome Assesment handout
Image courtesy of [ODI Overseas Development Institute]