Project Design Tools – the key for implementing successful development projects


“At the end of this course, I feel a tangible evolution in my knowledge of project management. Especially important since I work at the Ministry of the Interior, Local Authorities and Territorial Planning (Algeria) where any approach or initiative is a project.” said Amel Elmehdaoui who joined the 5-day executive Project Design Tools program from 7 – 11 December 2020. Due to the current circumstances, the program was taught online.

Governments, NGOs and private organizations in the developing world are increasingly engaged in donor-funded projects. Often, they are asked to formulate project proposals that are economically, socially, politically and environmentally viable. To handle these often complex and demanding processes, project managers need to possess the latest knowledge on various project design tools. Mirjana Stanisic, lecturer International Business & Sustainable Development at MSM, designed this program to prepare project manager to handle the complex and demanding processes in donor-funded projects.

Introduction to Logic Models
On the first day of the program Ms. Stanisic introduced the participants to Logic Models - a tool for planning, describing, managing and evaluating a program or intervention. In addition, the participants learned about the project and development life cycle and a stakeholder analysis, as one of the important elements in the decision-making process providing insight into the interest of stakeholders in relation to the project.

Analytical tools
The second day, the participants dived deeper into the world of analytical tools understanding that without a clear, evidence-based understanding of the cause and effects of a problem, it is difficult to propose changes through the project. In addition, the participants learned about the importance of the result chain as a tool for improving performance which is especially relevant in the evaluation part of a project.

Planning tools
The planning tools have been discussed more in detail towards the end of the course. Mr. Maragno, international consultant, provided the participants with knowledge about the process of planning but also the cost scheduling, linking the  total costs of production at different levels of output. The afternoons were filled with presentations and discussions. As Amel Elmehdaou mentioned: “The program was very rich in information and concepts. Its particularity is that the experts shared with us cases of real projects which gave a practical dimension this course.

Finalizing assignment and presentation
Throughout the whole course, participants were applying newly gained knowledge to their own project idea, building the business case. After the morning lecture, on the last day of the course participants had a chance to present their individual assignment. The main focus of the individual assignment was to stimulate critical thinking about the application of a selected number of concepts, tools, skills and insights gained throughout the program.

Would you like to join the Project Design Tools program as well?
The next 5-day Project Design Tools program will take place from 31 May – 4 June 2021. In case you would like to join, make sure you apply before 3 May (Non-EU)

About MSM’s executive education programs
In today’s rapidly changing world, it is important for leaders and professionals to keep their knowledge and skills up to date and relevant. Investing in executive education is investing in your future. At MSM, we embrace this lifelong learning approach! MSM’s hands-on executive programs, led by thought leaders and business experts, provide a practical and action-oriented learning experience and are designed to have an immediate impact on performance.

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