Report by MOMENTUM Introduces a New Organizational Capacity Framework

January 12th, 2022 | News


Capacity building has been a cornerstone of development for the last half-century.

MOMENTUM Knowledge Accelerator’s new report, Organizational Capacity: An Enhanced Framework, provides an overview of current organizational capacity literature and proposes a framework that reflects on the evolution of capacity development thinking in recent years. It considers performance, resilience, sustainability, adaptive learning, and systems thinking. This report is unique in that it focuses on a limited set of observable behaviors and practices that drive organizational performance, rather than on the documents and structures often sought as evidence of organizational capacity. In doing so, it offers preliminary suggestions for projects that can use the framework for capacity planning and measurement, and places organizational performance at the forefront of capacity development.

Variations on the Western business model for organizational development framework have been the foundation of nongovernmental organization capacity support programs over the last 30 years. Now, global movements toward systems thinking, gender and social inclusion, and decolonizing aid, combined with the COVID-19 pandemic, are shifting our worldview. These societal changes are especially noteworthy for their effect on organizational capacity, and indicate a need for a new framework.

The specific objectives of this report are to:

  • Consider different approaches to understanding organizational capacity.
  • Propose an enhanced organizational capacity framework that reflects current best practices and new thinking on capabilities that MOMENTUM awards can use as they deem appropriate.
  • Suggest data collection and analysis methods to monitor performance using the framework.

Read more in MOMENTUM Knowledge Accelerator’s new report, Organizational Capacity: An Enhanced Framework.

Kinghorn, Meg with Beryl Levinger (Consultants). 2021. Organizational Capacity: An Enhanced Framework. Washington, DC: MOMENTUM Knowledge Accelerator.

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