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The Program Cycle Learning Study


The Program Cycle Learning Study (PCLS) used a qualitative case study approach to provide a systematic and holistic understanding of how four Missions understand and implement the Program Cycle. The study offers examples of how Missions implement the Program Cycle on a day-to-day basis and provides evidence and insight into the effects of Program Cycle processes on the Missions’ work. The Missions involved in the study were: USAID/Uganda, USAID/El Salvador, USAID/Guinea and Sierra Leone, and USAID/Vietnam.

Two main study questions guided the research: (1) How do Missions implement the Program Cycle? (2) What are the effects of Program Cycle implementation? The PCLS was not intended to formally assess or evaluate Missions. Rather, the focus of this report is on identifying common themes across Missions regarding staff members’ implementation of Program Cycle processes in order to inform USAID’s Bureau for Policy, Planning and Learning’s (PPL) overall understanding of, and support for, the Program Cycle. The goal was also to inform future inquiry.

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