Monitoring, Evaluation, Reporting & Improvement

Monitoring, Evaluation, Reporting & Improvement (MERI) is our way of looking at what we have been doing, how we have been doing it, reporting these findings and finding ways to improve our delivery of services for improved NRM delivery. A robust and comprehensive monitoring and evaluation system is necessary to track changes to our natural resources as changes to land management and improvements in their management are made. The data collected and the results of evaluations are necessary tools for us as an organisation to make informed decisions on what is the best bang for our buck in terms of investing in natural resource management changes, thereby achieving a ‘co-learning attitude' whereby land managers and staff can learn together and plan strategically for the future.

To aid our progress in this field we have developed the Namoi CMA MERI Strategy and MERI Plans to ensure that our progress towards planning targets are measured efficiently and effectively.

MERI provides the model for assessing the state and trend of assets against planned immediate, intermediate and long-term outcomes through the systematic and objective appraisal of the appropriateness, effectiveness and efficiency of policies and programs.

Monitoring is an ongoing process of collection and analysis of both quantitative and qualitative data and information and describes what is happening over the monitoring period. Monitoring data can be derived from either existing information sources or from new monitoring programs. Ideally, monitoring data comes from the most effective, efficient and appropriate sources.

Evaluation in its broadest sense is the systematic investigation of the value or worth of a program. Evaluation is carried out through addressing specific Key Evaluation Questions, which are applied to address the appropriateness, efficiency and effectiveness of the program, where:

  • appropriateness addresses questions related to the suitability of a program;
  • efficiency addresses questions related to how well the program was implemented; and
  • effectiveness addresses questions related to whether the desired program outcomes where achieved.

Reporting is communicating the results and findings of an evaluation.

Improvement is the process of using the results and findings of an evaluation to make future programs better.

The underlying philosophy for implementing a MERI program is to gather information that will guide and support adaptive management as the local strategic plan is implemented.