Scaling and Systems Change Have to Go Hand-in-hand

Authors: Richard Kohl and Elizabeth Vance 23 May 2022 The relationship between scaling and systems change has been much debated within the scaling literature over the last few years. Those who focus on systems change, have argued that most scaling efforts are flawed because they ignore or underappreciate the role of systems. Too often they narrowly consider only how to [...]

  This blog was initially posted on Broadband Search. Read the full blog post here.

Evaluation approaches to scaling – application and lessons

This blog was initially posted on the International Initiative for Impact Evaluation (3ie). Read the full blog post here.

Evaluation for impact at scale – a need for interventions along the pathway

This blog was initially published on the International Initiative for Impact Education (3ie). Read the full blog post here.

Hardwiring the scaling-up habit in donor organizations

Digital technology and African smallholder agriculture: Implications for public policy

Scaling Principles

Abstract Scaling has increasingly been accepted by international development actors as core to their mission, goals and activities. While a number of scaling frameworks have been developed, there is no consensus as to widely applicable scaling principles and lessons. To address this gap, the Scaling Community of Practice commissioned this working paper to help develop such a list of scaling […]

Plenary 1: Scaling & Systems Change

Speakers: Larry Cooley, President Emeritus and Senior Advisor at Management Systems International, Co-Founder of the Scaling Up CoP Johannes Linn, Senior Fellow at Brookings Institution, Co-Founder of the Scaling Up CoP Richard Kohl, Founder and Principal at the Center for Large Scale Social Change LLC Liz Vance, Program Director of Systems Change for Workforce Development at International Youth Foundation Lennart […]

6th Annual Workshop of the Global Community of Practice on Scaling Development Outcomes (CoP)

The 6th Annual Workshop of the Global Community of Practice on Scaling Development Outcomes (CoP) took place as a series of twelve virtual sessions spread over the two-and-a-half-week period from November 8 through November 22nd. The program of events included 3 plenary sessions focusing on cross-cutting issues and a total of 9 sessions on sectoral and thematic perspectives on scaling […]

Scaling Toolkit for Practitioners: New 2021 Edition Available Now!

The newly revised edition of the popular MSI toolkit is intended as a companion to the MSI Scaling Up Framework. It includes tools for creating an overall scaling strategy, developing scaling plans, securing needed political support and financing, implementing the scaling process, and tracking progress toward sustainability. View the 2021 Toolkit here. Printable Tools: Tool 1: Scaling Task Model Tool 2: […]

Scaling and Systems: Issues Paper

A recent Working Paper for the Scaling Community of Practice (CoP) identified a number of cross-cutting issues whose further exploration would benefit the entire CoP membership.  One of these was the relationship between Scaling and Systems.  There has been a vigorous debate in the scaling community on the extent to which systems need to be taken into account in scaling […]

Public Expenditure for Child Care Reform: How to Use Influence to Reach Scale

By: Beth Bradford, Changing the Way We Care Technical Director, Maestral and Erica Dahl-Bredine, Changing the Way We Care Influence, Learning, and Engagement Director, CRS Efforts to promote family care of children and reduce the reliance of national children’s care systems on residential institutions depend heavily on public systems and therefore public finance. National care reform is increasingly on the […]

Sierra Leone Shows Low-Cost Scaling Up of Community Based Legal Advice and Assistance is Possible

By: Marcus Manuel ( and Clare Manuel, ODI Summary Forthcoming ODI research shows that the new, mainly government-funded, Sierra Leone Legal Aid Board has scaled up community-based justice advice and assistance by a factor of 10 and has done so affordably, reducing unit costs by a factor of at least 5 compared to previous foundation and donor-supported programmes. The Board […]

Strengthening Sustainable Early Childhood Development (ECD) Programming in Lebanon through the Ahlan Simsim/Play to Learn Scaling Approach

By: IRC Team Vulnerable infants and children in Lebanon, including Syrian refugees between the ages of 0 and 5, face a general lack of quality early childhood support and are frequently exposed to stressful home environments. Often, they don’t have access to pre-school or daycare services that support their early development. This is due to an unequal distribution of daycares and nurseries […]

HarvestPlus Updates Biofortification Priority Index with More Crops and Features

By: Destan Aytekin ( HarvestPlus and Ekin Birol ( What is the Biofortification Priority Index (BPI)? The BPI is an analytical tool developed by Harvestplus to inform data-driven decisions for scaling up biofortification. It is also recognized as one of the notable innovations of the CGIAR global agricultural research partnership over the past 50 years. The BPI helps identify where […]

Can a Telenovela Help Kids Stay in School during COVID-19?

By Sergio De Marco and Barbara Sparrow A still from the telanovela “Decidiendo para un Futuro Mejor” (Choosing a Better Future). In late 2020, as part of Peru’s national mobilization for educational continuity during the COVID-19 pandemic, the country’s Ministry of Education started airing episodes of a telanovela “Decidiendo para un Futuro Mejor” (Choosing a Better Future), on national TV, embedded in […]

Scaling Up Impact – the Key Challenge for the Development Community Takeaways from a Workshop of the Scaling Community of Practice

By: Lawrence Cooley, Richard Kohl, and Johannes Linn “Scaling up impact” is the new watchword in development. Cynics might be inclined to dismiss it as the newest fad in the merry-go-round of fads in development theory and practice. But this would be a serious mistake. It is high time that the development community gets beyond the prevalent focus[1] on one-off […]

CRS’s Approach to Strengthening Local Systems for Scaling-up Safe and Dignified Shelter and Housing Solutions

By Mehul Savla ( and Sahdia Khan ( Catholic Relief Services’ (CRS) Homes and Communities (H&C) approach is committed to ensuring safe, dignified H&C through direct humanitarian service provision for 1.5 million crisis-affected people by 2030. In addition, CRS aims to influence governments, markets, humanitarian, and development actors so they take up innovations and good practices thus enabling 8.5 million […]

BRAC Radio School: Education at Scale During Pandemic

By Farzina Siraj Rahee ( BRAC Education Programme (BEP), in cooperation with BRAC’s Community Empowerment Programme (CEP) and BRAC Institute of Education and Development’s (BIED) Social Innovation Lab (SIL), has initiated an innovative approach called ‘Radio School’. It is a supplement to the national efforts of reaching pre-primary children through distance learning and assisting parents in nurturing their children in […]

CARE’s New Guidance for Impact at Scale

By Jay Goulden ( and David Leege ( How does an international NGO like CARE contribute to sustainable, systemic change at scale, far beyond the direct work we and our partners carry out with communities? That is the challenge we’ve put at the heart of our new 10-year strategy. Drawing on learning from within CARE’s programs and within the wider […]

“Catalyzing Public Sector Demand for Health Innovation”

By Richard Kohl ( ) and Tom Feeny ( Results for Development (R4D) is implementing a project funded by Grand Challenges Canada (GCC) (1) to better understand and catalyze demand for, and scale-up of, health innovations by public sector actors in developing countries, and (2) to identify what GCC (and other donors) can do to encourage public sector scaling. The […]

Organizations Working Together: A Critical Aspect of Effective Scaling

By Alan Hurwitz ( The success of many scaling processes may depend in large part on the effectiveness of a group of interdependent stakeholders working as a truly collaborative system. For some years, I have been exploring the more general phenomenon of individual organizations working together for limited, though often very important goals, as a part of my organizational development […]

Scaling Early Childhood Impact: Ideas and Lessons Learned from Bernard van Leer Foundation’s Experience

By Irina Ivan with Cecilia Vaca Jones, Hague, The Netherlands, 16 July 2020 The Bernard van Leer Foundation (BvLF) has kept its focus on early childhood for more than 50 years. Since 1967, we have been working with and through partners in government, civil society, academia, and business to develop, scale and spread solutions that can be adapted and deployed worldwide, […]

Pathways to Scaling Biofortification: The Uganda Example

By HarvestPlus, July 2020 More than 2.5 billion people are at risk of micronutrient deficiency worldwide. Also known as “hidden hunger”, and mainly resulting from poor diets, micronutrient deficiencies cause ill health, impair children’s mental and physical development, and reduce productivity in adults— all preventing people and countries from reaching their full potential. Biofortification is the process of using conventional […]

Scaling Education Innovations in a Pandemic: What Can We Learn from Nigeria?

By Oyindamola Adegboye and Olumide Morolayo, The Education Partnership (TEP) Center July 2020 Similar to other countries, schools in Nigeria have been temporarily shut down following the outbreak of COVID-19. While this presents numerous challenges for an already fragile education system, there is also an opportunity for education innovation to shine and thrive in Nigeria like never before. Within the […]

Nourishing Africa: A Program of Outreach on COVID-19 Crisis Impact and Solutions

By Ndidi Nwuneli At the beginning of this month, Sahel Consulting through its initiative created a series of weekly Covid-19 webinars focused on the effects of the pandemic on the African agriculture and food landscape. These webinars have brought in leading voices from across the Continent and beyond to share critical insights on how African governments and the […]

Ahlan Simsim: Pivoting ECD and Caregiver Support in Response to COVID-19 in Jordan, Lebanon, and Iraq

By Chantale Kallas The International Rescue Committee (IRC) and Sesame Workshop have teamed up to create Ahlan Simsim (“Welcome Sesame” in Arabic), a program that delivers critical early learning and nurturing care to children and caregivers affected by displacement in Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria. Through in-person direct services across the region a new, local version of Sesame Street, […]

Strengthening Family Planning under COVID-19 in Nigeria: ExpandNet Discussion with Dr. Sada Danmusa

By Ruth Simmons In Nigeria, ExpandNet is collaborating with the Technical Support Unit (TSU) project led by Dr. Sada Danmusa who leads an NGO called Development Outcomes and Support Center (DOS.Center). A key focus of this ambitious project is to strengthen the family planning (FP) capacity of state government leaders to take ownership and more effectively implement the country’s […]

The Education Scaling-Up Education Working Group: Report on a Meeting

The Education Working Group hosted a webinar on April 9, 2020, to discuss how members are continuing (or exploring how to continue) learning opportunities in the midst of the global COVID- 19 pandemic, and more specifically to: Discuss immediate and longer-term impacts of COVID-19 on children’s education. Share information about current education efforts underway in response to COVID-19 crisis and […]

Lessons on Scaling Up Education Interventions: The LEARNigeria Story

By The Education Partnership (TEP), February 2020 As with most of sub-Saharan Africa, the education sector in Nigeria faces a number of challenges. With over 10.2 million out of school children, insufficient teachers, low learning outcomes, and complexities in basic education policies, Nigeria lags behind in achieving its development potential. The government alone is unable to meet the learning needs […]

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