Strategic collaboration, continuous learning, and adaptive management throughout the Program Cycle helps USAID missions and operating units (OUs) achieve better development outcomes. Collaborating, Learning, and Adapting (CLA) can be integrated into the procurement process, solicitation, and management of implementing mechanisms. Support activities, also known as support platforms or support mechanisms, can also provide supplemental CLA capacity for specific activities, specific projects, or for the entire portfolio of the mission or OU. A support activity can be an indispensable resource for strengthening USAID Mission and OU capacity to ensure that CLA is practiced systematically throughout the Program Cycle.
This document describes different factors to consider and decisions to make when designing CLA services in a support activity, whether it’s a stand-alone activity for CLA services or part of a Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning platform. These services respond to demand from Missions and USAID/Washington OUs for CLA specific considerations when planning, designing, or procuring support services.
If you determine that your Mission/OU needs CLA support services, there are three key decisions for you to make that will inform the design of CLA in a support activity:
- What need(s) will the CLA support services address?
- What is the scope of the CLA support services that you need?
- What is the structure of the CLA support services that would best suit your Mission/OU?