Planning using the Project Planning Matrix (PPM) - Main Users / Purpose

files/images_static/user.jpg Provincial Planners, District Planners, Project and Programme Planners.

During routine evaluation of development projects in the early 1970’s a number of recurring factors were noted, including the fact that:

  • There was a lack of clear statement on project objectives. Projects tended to follow many different objectives that were not always necessarily part of the main components.. There was a great deal of uncertainty about what the projects should achieve in the long term, it was therefore not possible to objectively compare planned objectives with those actually achieved.
  • The management responsibilities were unclear. It was difficult to define precisely who was responsible for what.
  • Evaluations did not have an objective basis because of the lack of clear goal formulation, both at the planning level and more particularly at the implementation level.
  • Lack of accurate prediction of time, personnel and the resources required.
  • Project descriptions were often lengthy and difficult to understand quickly.

As a direct result of these planning constraints the Logical Framework technique was developed in order to:

  1. Separate what project managers could expect to accomplish from the postulated consequences of those accomplishments.
  2. Consistent with “management by objectives,” have clear targets that would define success.
  3. Enable project teams to iteratively improve project design and focus.
  4. Focus evaluation on improving future performance rather than assigning blame.
  5. Force a clear definition of success as a project end point, defying the contractor and university driven culture by which projects continued indefinitely.
  6. Consistent with scientific method, define exactly how one will verify success or failure—a thing is not defined until and unless you say how it will be measured.

The name of the technique has since changed to being termed the Project Planning Matrix (PPM) and it is currently in use by numerous international development organisations, private sector organisations and in some cases also by commercial companies.