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This article is taken from the January 2000 Phatlalatsa newsletter

 

S&T: a year on

Since our first newsletter the bulk of our work has been in the monitoring and evaluation (M&E) arena. S&T has worked with various national departments - including Labour, Public Works, Welfare, Constitutional Development and others - assisting both in the design of M&E systems and their implementation.

In numerous evaluation projects we have been actively involved in shifting the mindsets of clients - including government and NGOs - to avoid situations where we are called in only at the end of a programme to provide final judgement on its worth and impact, too late to make key decisions based on sound research findings. We believe that evaluation, in all its forms, is a fundamental component of any social programme, interacting with regular monitoring to provide important information concerning the direction and impact of such pro- grammes.

S&T keeps in touch with theoretical developments in the academic arena through conferences and workshops where we have presented papers for critique and review, and submitting articles to various refereed journals. We will also be hosting an international summer school on youth, aimed at bringing together academics, policy-makers and youth workers, to bridge the gap between theory and practice.

The focus of our work remains the ability to translate theory into practice, and all our work - from involvement in government task teams to evaluation of poverty relief initiatives - aims to provide the tools and techniques of research and facilitation for decision-makers in order to better inform their decisions.

Committed to the transformation of South Africa into a powerful democracy and the development of Africa as a continent, we look forward to the new millennium as we continue to contribute in our small way to this transformation and development.

In Cape Town

The Cape Town office has played a significant role in several major national education and health initiatives, including participating in the research team that is measuring transformation in institutions of higher education in South Africa, and the National Business Initiative's study of further education and training in the Western Cape.

S&T worked on the Labour Market Skills Development Programme, facilitating Project Cycle Management and Log Frame analysis workshops with labour centres throughout the country. These will continue running for the early part of the year, and this workshop has also been run for a sub-division of the National Productivity Institute.

The Cape Town office had a busy year producing research reports and Sihaam also produced a baby girl.

 

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