The AcT Approach

The AcT Programme aims to strengthen and support the principles of democracy by ensuring that Tanzanians are increasingly able to claim and exercise their rights as citizens. It does this by providing funding to CSO’s that have the capacity and potential to innovate, scale-up and implement activities which increase the accountability of government around key national development priorities.

But there is more to AcT than simply providing funding. AcT also supports CSO partners to achieve change outcomes. We do this through technical support in strategic planning, monitoring and reporting, and drawing on tools from Outcome Mapping. Equally important, we support our CSO partners to better understand the accountability environment they are trying to influence, facilitating and documenting learning opportunities and undertaking policy-relevant research.


AcT’s Theory of Change

We have a clearly articulated theory of change. In its short form this is:  ‘Supporting civil society partners to implement context-specific strategic interventions will enable them to influence positive change in the attitudes and behaviour of citizens, civil society and government, making government as a whole more responsive and accountable.’  Its long form is explained in this ‘Think Piece on Theory of Change’

Incidentally, we have a complementary theory of change document that captures thinking around the options available to partners in bringing about change – using formal and informal processes, inside and outside track options. Read more

AcT’s Approach to Partnership

We have written up our Approach to Partnership as a supplementary document to be read alongside the legal contract that we have with all our partners.  It also provides information on the indicators we ask partners to provide information on, and the ‘Progress Markers for Partners’ tool, which we use as a log to track changes in partner performance over time. 

AcT’s Approach to Capacity Building

AcT is an ambitious programme.  As our Theory of Change articulates, strengthening work in governance and accountability of necessity works in a complex multi-stakeholder environment.  The dynamics are frequently changing, sometimes rapidly so.  AcT also seeks to work at the interface between the conventional ‘good governance agenda’ – citizen participation and monitoring of plans, budgets and so on,  and making sense of the concepts of good governance and accountability as they play out in the eyes of ordinary citizens.  This requires a great deal of capacity within partner organisations. Read more

AcT’s Approach to Learning

We envisage learning happening at four different ways:

  • Within individual partner organizations
  • Across and between partner organizations – including also spreading out into wider civil society
  • Learning and documentation by the AcT Programme from its partners
  • Contributions to DFID’s (and other DPs’) learning from the AcT Programme

How these combine together is captured in our Learning Strategy


AcT’s Results

AcT Reports to DFID Annually on results achieved.  The 2012 annual review can be found on DFID’s website:

In November/December 2012, AcT had its Mid Term Review.  The reviewers‘ assessment was that AcT is a high-performing, unique and innovative governance and accountability programme. Some of the changes the AcT partners are reporting represent material changes in citizens’ lives… Read more

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