This week, Dar es Salaam hosted more than 60 experts from United States Agency for International Development (USAID) missions across Africa and officials from the Tanzania Office of the Prime Minister to share best practices in using data to improve development programs, partnerships, and results.

Under the theme “Progress Beyond Programs: Enhancing Accountability and Evidence-Based Decision Making,” the five-day program explored approaches that will help USAID and Tanzania monitoring, evaluation, and learning (MEL) professionals deliver more impactful programs based on facts and proven progress, rather than potentially outdated insights and assumptions.

“Strong MEL policies and practices translate into improved programs and services and tangible benefits for the intended participants and communities,” said USAID/Tanzania Mission Director Craig Hart. “In Tanzania, using data has helped us achieve significant results, including our work with the Ministry of Health. For example, m-mama, a Government of Tanzania-led program supported by USAID and the Vodafone Foundation, has used a real-time dashboard to provide emergency transportation via community drivers and ambulances to respond to more than 25,000 obstetric and neonatal emergencies, contributing to a 27 percent reduction in maternal mortality.”

Reinforcing the long-standing development partnership with USAID and the joint objectives of the governments of the United States and Tanzania, the Office of the Prime Minister shared the government’s ongoing progress in developing a national monitoring and evaluation strategy and the benefits of this approach for different stakeholders.

“Monitoring and evaluation plays a crucial role in the public sector, as it enables policymakers, program managers, and other stakeholders to assess the effectiveness of public policies, programs, and interventions,” said Dr. Sakina Mwinyimkuu, Director of Performance Monitoring and Evaluation at the Office of the Prime Minister.

The conference highlighted the U.S. Government’s broader efforts to embrace local and private partnerships and use data to make informed decisions when investing taxpayer dollars in international development projects. It also reinforces USAID’s Policy Framework: Driving Progress Beyond Programs, a vision for development that lasts beyond the life of its programs.

For more information on how program evaluation affects Tanzanians, please contact the U.S. Embassy Tanzania Press Office at