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Indian Institute of Management
Research and Technology Development Service
Research, Extension and Training Division, FAO
FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a
retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic,
mechanical, photocopying or otherwise, without the prior permission of the
copyright owner. Applications for such permission, with a statement of the
purpose and extent of the reproduction, should be addressed to the Director,
Information Division, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Viale
delle Terme di Caracalla, 00100 Rome, Italy.
The designations employed and the presentation of material in this
publication do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever
on the part of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United
Nations concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or
area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its
frontiers or boundaries.
There has been a tremendous development of agricultural research in developing countries
over the past few decades, during which time investment in agricultural research from both
national resources and international assistance has increased markedly. However, agricultural
research institutions are generally managed by veteran agricultural research workers promoted
for seniority rather than for management training and skills. Further, there are few courses
available on the management of agricultural research, and solutions and models used in the
developed world may not be appropriate for developing countries.
FAO has actively participated in strengthening the national agricultural research
systems of developing countries, and has stressed the importance of effective organization and
management for efficient research systems. The need for training in this area is great, and
resources particularly trained human resources are limited. FAO has therefore developed
a training programme on agricultural research management to support the training of trainers,
with the expectation of a multiplier effect, and to facilitate a common perception of the
structure and terminology of management, thus enhancing communication and understanding
among agricultural research managers in discussing management problems, solutions and
This training manual has been prepared as a basic reference resource for national
trainers, to help them structure and conduct their own courses on management at the institute
level. A separate manual will cover project and programme management. This manual is
based on the four structural functions of management: planning, organizing, monitoring and
controlling, and evaluating, each of which is covered in individual modules. Within each
module, the manual addresses pervasive management functions, including motivating,
leading, directing, priority setting, communicating and delegating, which are at all times a
concern to all managers. Topics such as leadership, motivation, human resources
management, policies and procedures are treated separately in individual sessions.
This manual as been designed for participatory learning through case studies, group
exercises, presentations by the participants and participatory lectures. Throughout the
manual, particular effort has been made to use the cases studied to capture the unique and
rich experience of developing country research managers in tackling policy, programme and
the day-to-day problems of managing research institutions and systems.
This publication is intended primarily for managers of agricultural research institutes
in developing countries and for higher education institutions interested in launching in-service
training courses on research management. However, it is hoped that agricultural research
managers everywhere will also find it useful. The manual provides a course structure with
contents that can be built upon and enriched. Users are therefore encouraged to send
suggestions for its improvement.
Louise O. Fresco
Research, Extension and Training Division
iv Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
The task of preparing a training manual on Agricultural Research Institute Management began
with the FAO Expert Consultation on Strategies for Research Management Training in
Africa, held at the International Livestock Centre for Africa (ILCA), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia,
12-16 December 1983. Following the recommendations of the consultation, and on the basis
of the curriculum design adopted, FAO embarked upon the preparation of this manual. In
the process of its preparation, many agricultural research managers and management
specialists have contributed. Besides the two main consultants, namely Dr Ronald P. Black,
Denver Research Institute, University of Denver, USA, who prepared the first draft, and Dr
V.N. Asopa, Professor at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, India, who
prepared the current version of the manual, the contribution of the following specialists in
various fields must be singled out: Ramesh Bhat, J. Casas, A.K. Jain, F.S. Kanwar,
V. Martinson, Gopal Naik, P. Nath, R.K. Patel, T.P. Rama Rao, S.K. Sharma,
E.S. Tayengco, and J.S. Woolston. FAO expresses its gratitude to them all.
Special thanks are due to the International Service for National Agricultural Research
(ISNAR), which has willingly made available its valuable experience and relevant materials
throughout the preparation of the manual.
FAO also thanks all those authors and publishers who have allowed the use of
copyright material from their publications, even though the courtesy is recognized in each
This manual has been prepared under the responsibility of the Research Development
Centre, Research and Technology Development Division, FAO, with the guidance of:
Mohamed S. Zehni, former Director; and J.H. Monyo, E. Venezian and B. Miller-Haye,
past Chiefs of the Research Development Centre. Scientific supervision was provided by
G. Beye, Senior Officer, now Chief, Research and Technology Development Service.
Training manual for institute management
TABLE OF CONTENTS
The previous Modules were:
INTRODUCTION TO THE MANUAL AND ITS PURPOSE
Appendix 1 Management orientation and decision making
Appendix 2 Case method
Appendix 3 Summary of course contents
Appendix 4 Illustrative schedule for a workshop on agricultural research institute
Appendix 5 Management training
Appendix 6 Planning and management of short-duration, executive development
Module 1 INSTITUTIONAL AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH:
ORGANIZATION AND MANAGEMENT
Session 1. MANAGEMENT: THOUGHT AND PROCESS
Session 2. OBJECTIVES AND ORGANIZATION OF AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH
Session 3. ORGANIZATION OF INTERNATIONAL RESEARCH
Session 4. ORGANIZATION OF NATIONAL AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH SYSTEMS
Module 2 RESEARCH PLANNING
Session 1. PRINCIPLES OF RESEARCH PLANNING
Session 2. THE INSTITUTE-LEVEL PLANNING PROCESS
Session 3. SETTING GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
Session 4. FROM OBJECTIVES TO AN OPERATIONAL PLAN
Session 5. PARTICIPATORY PLANNING EXERCISE
Session 6. CASE STUDY: PLANNING AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH IN MUGHAL
Module 3 ORGANIZATIONAL PRINCIPLES AND DESIGN
Session 1. ORGANIZATIONAL THEORIES
Session 2. STRUCTURE OF AN ORGANIZATION
Session 3. ORGANIZATIONAL DESIGN AND CHANGE
Session 4. CASE STUDY: ESTABLISHMENT OF A DIRECTORATE OF RESEARCH AT
SORONNO UNIVERSITY OF AGRICULTURE
Session 5. CASE STUDY: ORGANIZATIONAL CHANGE AT SAMARU, NIGERIA
Module 4 LEADERSHIP, MOTIVATION, TEAM BUILDING AND
Session 1. LEADERSHIP
Session 2. MOTIVATION
Session 3. TEAM BUILDING
Session 4. THE IRRI AGRICULTURAL EQUIPMENT PROGRAMME CASE STUDY: IRRI
MANAGEMENT COMPARES IRRI WITH DEVELOPING COUNTRY RESEARCH
Session 5. CONFLICT MANAGEMENT
Session 6. CONFLICT MANAGEMENT CASE STUDY: DR AGADIR
vi Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
Module 5 MANAGING HUMAN RESOURCES
Session 1. RECRUITING AND MAINTAINING STAFF IN THE RESEARCH ENVIRONMENT
Session 2. THE PROFESSIONAL STAFF
Session 3. HUMAN RESOURCES MANAGEMENT EXERCISE
Session 4. PERFORMANCE APPRAISAL
Session 5. PERFORMANCE APPRAISAL CASE STUDY: SUZENE KOPEC
Session 6. EXERCISE IN DESIGNING PERFORMANCE EVALUATION FORMATS
Module 6 MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEMS, COMPUTERS AND
Session 1. MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEMS (MIS)
Session 2. MIS EXERCISE
Session 3. COMPUTERS AS MANAGEMENT TOOLS
Session 4. NETWORK TECHNIQUES
Session 5. PERT AND CPM EXERCISE
Module 7 FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT
Session 1. FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT 1: COMPONENTS AND INFORMATION NEEDS
Session 2. FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT 2: PLANNING AND BUDGETING
Session 3. FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT 3: PROJECT DESIGN AND IMPLEMENTATION
Session 4. CASE STUDY: FARO ARROYA
Session 5. GENERATING FUNDS THROUGH CONSULTING AS AN INSTITUTIONAL
ACTIVITY. CASE STUDY: FOOD TECHNOLOGY RESEARCH INSTITUTE OF DONGAL
Module 8 RESEARCH-EXTENSION LINKAGE
Single Session: RESEARCH-EXTENSION LINKAGE
Module 9 INFORMATION SERVICES AND DOCUMENTATION
Session 1. SCIENTIFIC AND TECHNICAL INFORMATION IN A DEVELOPING-COUNTRY
Session 2: INFORMATION AS AN INPUT TO RESEARCH
Session 3: INFORMATION AS AN OUTPUT OF RESEARCH
Session 4: COOPERATION IN NATIONAL PROGRAMMES
Session 5: EXERCISE ON BARRIERS TO THE FLOW OF INFORMATION
This final Module consists of:
Module 10: INSTITUTE EVALUATION
Single Session: INSTITUTE EVALUATION 1
Session guide: Developing a framework for evaluation of a research institute 5
General observations 5
Case exercise: The Cocoa Research Institute of Savana 6
Case study: The Cocoa Research Institute of Savana 23
Research departments 25
Training manual for institute management vii
Administration and service department 26
Research stations 27
The third cocoa project 27
Appendix 1: The six scientific research divisions in CRIS 29
Reading note: Organizational evaluation 31
Why organizations need evaluation 31
Types of evaluation 32
Users of the evaluation results 32
Assessment process 33
References cited and background literature 41
Training manual for institute management
This module comprises a single session devoted to the evaluation of a research institute. The
training material includes a case exercise to be discussed in a plenary session. Its aim is to
familiarize participants with a framework for organizational assessment and covering various
Evaluation of an institute aims at measuring organizational effectiveness in terms of
its functioning, problems and achievements from both behaviourial and social system points
of view. Through an organizational assessment exercise, problems that underlie constraints
are identified, as distinct from mere symptoms. This then helps in discerning priority issues
for change, visualizing alternative ways to achieve that change, and formulating a plan to
bring about the desired change.
Important parameters to be examined during the evaluation include:
the mandate of the research institute and whether it is clearly understood by the
management and the scientific staff;
the present scope of the activities of the research institute, and whether they are consistent
with the mandate;
the research programme and support services, and whether they are relevant to and
adequate for carrying out the mandated research activities;
the balance between basic and applied research, and extent of interdisciplinarity;
the quality of the scientific direction of research and the quality of the scientific staff;
the success of research and the process of technology transfer;
the structure and organization of the institute, and whether this facilitates multidisciplinary
research in the context of the mandate;
the quality of the managerial staff and the extent to which managerial training has been
human, financial and other resources, and their adequacy for implementation of the
mandated activities; and
the productivity and cost effectiveness of the research institute.
2 Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
Basic principles of evaluation discussed in the reading note can be evolved through a
discussion of the case study. This provides, during the discussion, an opportunity for
participants to bring in their own experiences of organizational assessment.
Training manual for institute management
Individual reading, group discussion and
plenary participatory case discussion
The case study exercise should help participants appreciate:
1. The process of institute evaluation.
2. Associated data requirements and their collection and analysis.
3. Formulation of recommendations.
Module 10 Session 1
4 Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
Steps in organization assessment
Contents of an example of an organization assessment report
Framework for assessing organizational performance
Question areas for the assessment exercise
Assessment information from records and documents
Case study: The Cocoa Research Institute of Savana
1. Lawler, E.E., III, Nadler, D.A., & Cammann, C. (eds) 1980. Organizational
Assessment. New York, NY: John Wiley.
2. Nadler, D.A., Mackman, J.R., & Lawler, E.E., III. 1977. Managing
Organizational Behaviour. Boston, MA: Little Brown.
3. Dagg, M., & Eyzaguirre, P.B. 1989. A methodological framework for ISNAR
reviews of national agricultural research systems (NARS). ISNAR Working Paper,
SPECIAL EQUIPMENT AND AIDS
Training manual for institute management 5
DEVELOPING A FRAMEWORK FOR EVALUATION OF A
The Cocoa Research Institute of Savana (CRIS) case can be handled as an exercise to expose
participants both to the institute evaluation process and to the instruments used in measuring
the performance of various components and activities of a research organization.
Using the Reading note, participants should be able to develop a framework for
organizational evaluation. Because of the limited availability of information, they will
probably be able to develop only a framework, and then only for some components. As
suggested earlier, participants should try to develop this framework individually, and then
improve it during small-group discussions.
During the case briefing, assessment areas can be specified so that participants develop
their framework to include those areas. It may be desirable to divide participants into groups
and assign to each group a particular assessment area on which to work. In this way the
coverage should be comprehensive. The groups could present their framework during the
plenary session, and discussion could be organized around these presentations. Alternatively,
the resource person could lead the discussion and seek inputs from various groups at
appropriate times. From the guidelines given below, the resource person can provide
additional information as required. The overall effect of the plenary session should be to
simulate the organizational evaluation process.
The resource person is advised not to discuss the Reading note as such in a separate
session. The note should serve as a useful guideline for participants to develop the evaluation
framework and for their discussions in the small-group and plenary sessions.
Depending upon the availability of time, some general remarks on institute evaluation
might be made at the beginning. Alternatively, the resource person might wish to proceed
directly to the case, since the observations made in the reading note would be repeated during
Module 10 Session 1
6 Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
CASE EXERCISE: THE COCOA RESEARCH INSTITUTE OF SAVANA
Ask participants why anybody should want to assess the performance of a research institute.
One of the reasons may be that an international agency is considering providing or extending
financial support to strengthen the activities of the institute. In that case, it will be an
external review. This is the case with CRIS. The institute could also undertake an internal
review exercise as part of its strategic planning process.
Show EXHIBIT 1, and discuss various steps involved in assessing the organization. While
it would be ideal to discuss the case following these steps, that may not be possible because
of limited time and incomplete information about the organization.
Ask participants what CRIS's mission is. In considering the background of the institute,
a statement of the mission should be written out so that the responsibilities and activities of
the institute can be identified.
Next discuss the objectives of an assessment exercise. It may be to overcome deficiencies
recognized in the working of the institute. For example, the research programme may not
be sufficiently responsive to the immediate problems of the clients, particularly the farmer-
users. The laboratories, equipment and other facilities may be in poor condition. Linkage
with extension workers and farmers may be inadequate. The management system may be
poor and administrative systems weak. Against these known deficiencies in the working of
the institute or other objectives specified, terms of reference for the review can be specified.
It is important to spell out clearly the duties of the review mission so that the report meets
The assessment exercise may call for an impartial review of scientific and, technological
content of the approved research programme, the quality of its implementation, its relevance
to farmers and to industry problems, and the soundness of results. In this context, the
assessment exercise may review the entire research programme.
The discussion could be confined to evaluation of:
the scientific programme;
assets and human resources.
Next discuss the composition of the review team. This would depend upon the objectives of
the assessment exercise. An external management review team would include experts in
institute management, various scientific disciplines and other areas under review. An internal
review team should consist of experts who have experience in the working of other research
The review team should set its working framework in the context of the relevance of the
institute in the national agricultural research system. Thus CRIS focuses on cocoa, which
is the main cash crop exported. Therefore the review team should consider biological and
socio-economic constraints to the Savana cocoa industry, and then assess the importance of
the research work carried out by the institute.
Begin with an overall assessment of the current research programme and its priorities.
List priority research projects by each division to get a feel for the institute's research
Training manual for institute management 7
programme. This review should allow comments to be made on the overall programme of
the institute and its priorities.
Next, the existing research programme has to be reviewed in detail by division. This
analysis will help in:
commenting on research programmes of specific divisions;
identifying future research priorities; and
working out requirements for strengthening the research divisions to fulfil their agenda.
Ongoing research projects should be reviewed, taking into consideration:
ultimate utility; and
Apart from recommendations on specific projects, the review team might question whether
the approach adopted in a particular research project will lead to recommendations acceptable
to farmers. In the case of Savana, given high pressure on land, the luxury of fallowing land
is no longer an option, because it requires inputs and is non-productive in terms of food crops
and income. Further thought should be given to any work proposed along the line of
alternatives to fallowing.
The review team may make recommendations concerning adding, collaborating in,
abandoning or transferring a particular research activity. For example, one of the projects
in CRIS focuses on value addition to the cocoa crop by making use of pod husks and
discarded beans, it is no doubt a valuable piece of work, but CRIS is not the institute best
suited to do it. This should be done by some other institution. At best, CRIS could provide
the raw material required. This would enable CRIS to transfer available resources to
research in subject areas of greater priority.
The adequacy, suitability and operational status of equipment available in the scientific
divisions will have to be assessed to find out whether the lack or availability of laboratory
equipment facilitates or impedes progress in research work.
List the laboratory equipment and assess whether:
the available equipment is sufficiently sophisticated to support the ongoing research
the main equipment is operational, in need of repair or even of replacement;
any new equipment is required, and list the requirements in terms of capital equipment,
minor equipment, consumables and other component parts;
available equipment can be used better. For example, a computer could be better utilized
with the addition of graphics software and a word processing package;
facilities such as cold rooms or controlled-temperature areas are available and operational,
and if there is a need to create new facilities or strengthen the available facilities;
there is need for training or broadening the experience of technical officers in a particular
Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
whether the layout of the division is satisfactory and provides safe, easy access and
adequate working space; and
the laboratory needs refurbishment (renewing bench surface material, fume cupboards and
fume extensions, etc.).
Evaluation of supporting divisions such as those for plant physiology and biochemistry -
should include additional dimensions pertaining to the effectiveness of mechanisms for coord-
ination and collaboration with the main scientific divisions. Incidentally, the organization of
CRIS has, over time, absorbed these divisions into the main scientific divisions. Ask
participants whether that was desirable and whether it has improved the efficiency and
increased the outputs of these divisions.
Equipment is essential for all scientific work and has to be appropriately assessed to find
out whether there is a need to reorganize, upgrade or re-equip the division concerned. Points
to be considered include:
Has equipment been installed satisfactorily? Have suppliers met their obligations fully?
Is the new equipment compatible with the existing equipment?
Is any equipment currently out of commission? If broken down, is it serviceable and is
there any impediment to its servicing, such as availability of spare parts or funds?
Are procedures for repairs clear and effective, or do they need to be reviewed?
Does the division responsible for maintaining and repairing equipment have essential tools
and test instruments?
Are servicing and testing manuals available in the maintenance division, making tracing
of faults easy? Is the procedure for obtaining spare parts efficient and quick?
Do equipment servicing and equipment have a high priority for funds?
Is it possible to get older items serviced?
Is the servicing problem aggravated because of different makes and countries of origin?
Can alternative facilities be used? Do such arrangements exist? What would be the cost?
How would that affect scientific work?
Has poor maintenance of equipment: demoralized the technical staff; led to diversion of
work in other directions, say to field work rather than work being done in the
laboratories; impeded the eagerness to repair the equipment; led to loss of competence
to use equipment through lack of practice; and led to lack of confidence at the technical
Is there need to remove old and unworkable equipment from the working area?
Is the centralized service system working as required for maintenance of certain
Is the electricity supply reliable, continuous and with a stable voltage?
Are central services and electricity supply emergency back-up equipment working?
Is the head of the service division in a sufficiently senior position to command respect
from the administrative hierarchy of the institution?
Training manual for institute management 9
In the case of technical staff, important issues to examine are whether:
there is a gap between the extremely high academic and professional qualifications of the
research officers and the level of training of technical grade staff;
the technical staff can provide support to the research staff; and
training in the use of modern analytical instruments, routine analysis procedures and other
areas would help raise the level of ability and confidence of the technical staff.
In the case of information services, factors to be assessed include:
Is the library properly funded and up to date?
What is the range of books and journals on display?
What deficiencies, if any, are there in library services, and what measures would help to
Is the reproduction section properly equipped? Is the equipment in good working order,
or does it need repair or even replacement?
Does the photographer have adequately sophisticated equipment to do the advanced work
for which she or he is trained?
Assessment of assets and human resources requires evaluation of the Works and Estate
Division (WED) to ensure that support is available for research. Aspects to be assessed
the current state of workshops, transport and equipment, and need for rehabilitation;
the extent to which WED is capable of providing support to the research divisions;
whether WED is structured optimally or poorly; is it over-centralized or over-fragmented;
whether lines of responsibility are clearly defined;
whether some of the responsibilities which should logically be part of WED are outside
its jurisdiction, creating difficulty in coordination;
how well WED is managed;
the extent of cooperation between WED and the scientific divisions;
whether information is transferred freely across divisions and units, or whether each
department acts independently;
whether supervision is adequate and efficient;
whether the stores unit tries to forward purchase, acts only in response to direct requests
for parts or materials, or waits until equipment is totally non-operational before taking
the skills, work experience, mechanical knowledge and managerial skills of staff at
various levels in the division, and hence related departmental training needs;
whether utilities like water and electricity are available adequately and reliably, or if
problems are common;
whether regular investment has been made to replace capital equipment;
whether transport resources are adequate and operational;
10 Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
whether preventive maintenance of transport and other equipment is carried out on a
whether the replacement policy is clearly formulated, or ad hoc and the source of
confusion and problems;
whether farm machinery is adequate in number and type;
whether the standards of operation required are clear and known to all operators;
whether safety procedures are enforced to ensure the safety of operators and others.
After evaluating WED, the review team might wish to suggest a rehabilitation programme,
which could cover:
organization of the division;
basic requirements for upgrading facilities;
standardization of makes and models;
technical assistance; and
Apart from recommendations specific to individual scientific and other divisions, the review
team must look into two crucial issues in the context of CRIS, namely:
comments should be made on whether the institute should continue to focus on the main
cash crop (cocoa) or include other crops, like coffee and shea nuts. If the
recommendation is to include other crops, then a mechanism should be evolved to
maintain a correct balance of effort and resources. Resources must not be diverted or
increased at the expense of cocoa; and
although the CRIS management claims that a strong interdisciplinary approach prevails
in the institute, it has to be appropriately evaluated. The existing priorities have also to
be evaluated against client needs.
The assessment exercise could reveal either that an interdisciplinary approach is lacking or
weak, or that the existing priorities neither conform to client requirements nor make the best
use of the available resources. In either case, the review team could advocate the adoption
of a new interdisciplinary approach to address the major areas of research identified. Even
while adopting such an approach (which follows the model developed by the International
Potato Centre (CIP) and other IARCs of the CGIAR system), CRIS should maintain its
scientific divisions for administrative, career development and resource allocation purposes,
while continuing supportive component research, to be conducted as deemed appropriate by
division heads and as approved by CRIS management. In general, linkages between CRIS
and other organizations, both in and outside Savana, will be best fostered within such a
The concept of interdisciplinary thrust is based on research management by objectives.
Each thrust established should call on a multidisciplinary team charged with tackling an
identified, practical problem area and addressing agreed objectives. Each thrust (often
Training manual for institute management 11
containing subsidiary programmes and their respective aims) should be implemented by a
team led by a person drawn from the most appropriate division, but not necessarily the
divisional head, and comprise scientists drawn from appropriate divisions within the
institution. To be effective, it will be necessary to have a strong research management
directive, operating at Deputy Executive Director level, through the Cocoa Research
The review team might put forward some suggestions for the initial thrusts, which should
tackle the perceived constraints in cocoa production. These could be:
cocoa swollen shoot virus;
cocoa black pod disease;
capsid damage and its control; and
The review team should assess CRIS's linkage with other organization. The need for such
linkage arises because:
it is neither economical nor practical for CRIS to attempt to develop expertise in all the
disciplines and technologies needed to support its research programme;
the institute should concentrate its research on developing only particular (in-house)
other sources of expertise could be exploited through such linkages. Linkage with other
institutions will expand research potential by making use of complementary expertise and
If existing linkages with related organizations inside and outside the country are weak or
absent, the review team could make suggestions for establishing or strengthening such
The review team will also have to examine any possible need for additional units that
might help better achieve the institute's objectives. For example, even though CRIS
management claims linkages with extension, its organizational structure does not indicate any
formal mechanism for that purpose. Therefore it might be necessary to have a farming
system unit so as to create or strengthen such an important linkage. In recommending an
additional or major modifications to any unit, it is necessary to provide justification and
indicate probable functions, support required, human resources needs and possible approaches
to be adopted.
Given the size of the organization and that its work should be directly transferable to user
farmers, there should be a mechanism for transfer of technology and dissemination of
information. The organization could require a scientific information officer, a communication
consultant and extension professionals.
Human resources requirements should be projected on a division and unit basis. Any
comments on a perceived need to add, reduce or transfer staff should be justified on the basis
of changing needs, and the relative urgency of any changes should be noted. Any
12 Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
modifications to the staffing structure should be placed in a proper perspective, bearing in
mind the contributions made by the permanent staff, technical cooperation staff (expatriate
appointments, i.e., professional and technical staff seconded from or financed by external
agencies) and short-term consultants. Recommendations should specify needs foreseen in
terms of work-months per year.
A need for additional review could be suggested as follow-up to the main assessment
exercise, pertaining to, say, a particular division or unit.
Before concluding the discussion, the resource person should clarify that, while the
discussion may not have been well structured, the assessment report has to present
observations and analysis in an organized and integrated manner. The report could be
presented along the lines of the report whose outline contents are shown in EXHIBIT 2.
Time permitting, the resource person may wish to conceptualize the theoretical basis of
organizational assessment by presenting the framework for assessing organizational
performance (EXHIBIT 3). This framework is ordered by different units in the organization,
each having a different focus and coverage. Important areas for investigation can be broadly
identified, but they will have to be addressed to the individual role holders within the
organizational (EXHIBIT 4). While these individuals should be able to furnish a great deal of
the information required for the evaluation exercise, additional information will have to be
generated from other sources. EXHIBIT 5 should help identify information requirements and
sources whence this information could be derived within the organization. Of course, there
is a simpler presentation possible of the concepts contained in this exhibit, as discussed during
the case discussion.
TRAINING MANUAL FOR INSTITUTE MANAGEMENT EXHT
Module 10 Session 1 EXHIBIT 1
STEPS IN ORGANIZATION ASSESSMENT
1. Objectives of the assessment exercise
2. Size and nature of the organization
3. Areas to be covered during the assessment
4. Potentials users of the assessment results and
5. Organizational model on which the assessment
methodology is to be based
6. Framework for conducting the assessment
7. Evaluation of data
8. Methods of collecting data
9. Methodology for conducting the assessment
10. Results, analysis and recommendations
TRAINING MANUAL FOR INSTITUTE MANAGEMENT EXHIBIT 2
Module 10 Session 1
CONTENTS OF AN EXAMPLE OF AN
2. Terms of reference
3. Composition of the review team
4. Biological and socio-economic constraints in the
Savana cocoa industry
5. CRIS current research priorities
6. CRIS infrastructure and human resources
7. Review of the current research programme
Agronomy, including soil science and biometrics
Plant mycology and nematology
Plant physiology and biochemistry
8. Proposed interdisciplinary approach
9. The proposed farming systems unit
11. Recommended inputs
12. Independent review body and monitoring
TRAINING MANUAL FOR INSTITUTE MANAGEMENT
Module 10 Session 3
A FRAMEWORK FOR ASSESSING ORGANIZATIONAL PERFORMANCE
ASPECT DIMENSIONS AND COVERAGE
1. Overall organizational analysis
Macro-organizational Demographic aspects
contt Organizations's strategies
Projected demand and supply
Forms of departmentation
Macro-organizational design Functional
(structural aspects) Programmatical
Overall performance of the organization
Macro-oranizational Attainment of goals
performance Acceptance and adoption of research findings
2. Organizational unit analysis
Organizational element and Managerial and technical variables
department context Vertical and horizontal location of the element
(assessing functional in the organizational set-up
contribution of unit to the Nature of work performed by the unit;
organization difficulty and variability of tasks
Size of unit and staff complement
Different tasks assigned to a unit, and the
various job titles in the unit
Heterogeneity of personnel
Interchangeability of roles
Automation of work methods
Details of unit rules and procedures
Design of organizational Decision making
eemen Centralization of decisions in the unit head
(assess dimensions related
to a unit or department) co atio
Performance norms; standards of audit;
emphases on quality or quantity control
at group level
at individual level
16 Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
ASPECT DIMENSIONS AND COVERAGE
Share of unit in the attainment of
Quality and quantity of department
performance Department efficiency (cost per unit output)
(assess effectiveness of Unit morale
the unit or department) gop esiveness
work group cohesiveness
staff turnover rate
Adaptability to changing demands
3. Individual job analysis
Contribution of job to unit and organization
S. Characteristics of person in the job
Individual job context
(Assess individual eated
strength of growth need
variety of tasks performed
scope of tasks performed
length of job-entry orientation
training time on-the-job
Design of individual job Jb standariation
details of job discretion
freedom in making job-related decisions
closeness of supervisor
job-contingent rewards and sanctions
feedback from work, managers and peers
Value judgements on the criteria used to evaluate
effectiveness of individual jobs
percentage of job performance in attaining
.. organizational goals
Individual job performance organizational goals
quality and quantity of individual
Training manual for institute management 17
ASPECT DIMENSIONS AND COVERAGE
4. Intra- and inter-unit relations
Resource dependence pattern
o directions and amounts of resource flows
among organizational units, levels and
routinization of resource flows
perceived dependence among
organizational units, levels and positions
Information flows Direction and frequency of information flows
among organizational units, levels and
Distribution of influence
conflicts, and models of its resolution
Quality of communication
Value judgements on criteria used to evaluate
effectiveness of coordination and control
among organizational units, levels and
Perceived effectiveness of interpersonal
Coordination and control relations and interpositional levels
outcomes Degree of sub-optimization and competition
among organizational units at inter-unit level
Cost of marginal transactions across intra-
organizational units compared to inter-
organization or the market at macro-
Based on: Van de Ven, A.H., & Ferry, D.L. 1980. A revised framework for organizational
assessment. pp. 221-223 in: Lawler, E.E., III, Nadler, D.A., & Cammann, C. (eds)
Organizational Assessment. New York, NY: John Wiley.
TRAINING MANUAL FOR INSTITUTE MANAGEMENT EXHIBIT 4
Module 10 Session 1
QUESTION AREAS FOR THE ASSESSMENT EXERCISE'
Subject areas for questions for the assessment exercise at various levels should cover the
1. AT DIRECTOR OR HEAD OF INSTITUTE LEVEL
Objectives of the institute.
Responsibilities of the director.
Information about management committees, if any.
Organization of the institute's activities: by product or by discipline.
Information about the various substations of the institute.
Information about coordination of the institute's activities and research programmes with
other agricultural institutes, both national and international.
Information regarding teaching and extension programmes of the institute, and also on
how they are integrated.
Coordination of research programmes.
Information about budgetary allocations to different areas, including teaching, research,
extension and administration.
Information about research programmes of the institute, such as who decides, approves,
monitors and evaluates research projects, both ongoing and completed.
Information regarding the reward system of the institute.
Information regarding interdisciplinary research programmes, and also about basic and
applied research in the institute.
Information about transfer of technology and extension programmes, and how
technology is transferred to the ultimate users.
Information about the most important research projects and research achievements of
the institute in the last five to ten years.
Research gaps, if any, and how these could be bridged
2. AT HEAD OF DIVISION LEVEL
Information about the head of the division, including qualifications, professional society
memberships, experience, job description, time devoted to research, teaching, extension
and administration, etc.
Details about authority, responsibility shared by sub-units, and also of flexibility in
Research Advisory Committee activities at divisional level and its role and functioning.
Divisional activities and frequency.
Research outputs and publications of the division.
Constraints faced in maximizing divisional efficiency: constraints could be related to
physical facilities, skills and human relations.
1. Adapted from: Quinquennial Report of the National Dairy Research Institute. Indian Council of Agricultural
Training manual for institute management 19
Relationships and coordination with other agricultural institutes in the country.
Likely future programmes of the division in research, teaching, extension, etc.
Detailed and separate information about the division's functioning arid involvement in
the areas of research, teaching, administration and personnel.
3. AT SCIENTIST LEVEL
Information about educational and professional particulars of the scientist, her or his
discipline and previous experience.
Job description, clearly indicating duties and responsibilities.
Proportion of time spent on research, training and extension activities.
What was the source of the idea and who was responsible for proposing the research
project taken up by the scientist?
Criteria considered for selecting a research project. These criteria might be:
urgency of research;
compatibility with the institute's goals;
contribution to the knowledge base;
cost of adoption by farmers;
resource availability; or
potential economic benefits.
Authority responsible for approving and evaluating the research proposal.
Who would benefit from the research outputs: farmers, research division, self, policy-
makers, institute, students, extension worker or general public?
Any limitations or hindrances faced in efficiency and effectiveness.
Seminars, conferences or workshops attended or any advanced study during last five
Information about research projects in which the scientist is involved.
Scientist's recently completed research projects and his or her most important findings
in last five years.
Publications and other research material developed by the scientist.
Information about authority, responsibility and autonomy of the scientist in research.
Conflict, if any, between the research priorities of the scientist and those of the
Scientist's opinion about facilities available.
Scientist's opinion about the institute's reward and motivation system.
Scientist's opinion about resource allocation.
TRAINING MANUAL FOR INSTITUTE MANAGEMENT E T
Module 10 Session 1X
ASSESSMENT INFORMATION FROM RECORDS AND DOCUMENTS'
1. For individual staff members
Office or work station, spatial arrangements, decoration, size and location;
organizational status, responsibilities, interpersonal relations and accessibility.
Personal artifacts; personal habits and interests.
Physical count of performance outputs.
Application form and resume: age, sex, race, marital status, work history,
education, tenure and past and current addresses.
Deduction forms: number of dependents.
Personnel file: employment interview, career advancement and counselling,
performance evaluation, written reprimands and commendations, and exit
Files: communications, work relations and authority.
Calendar: work schedule, meetings and social life.
Payroll records: wages, benefits and position.
Performance records: quantity and quality of output.
Medical records: health, somatic complaints, accidents, illnesses and visits to the
Time cards: work hours, absences and lateness.
Accounting records: investment in hiring, training and development.
1. Based on: Mirvis, P. 1980. Assessing physical evidence, documents and records in organizations. pp. 424-425
in: Lawler, E.E., III, Nadler, D.A., & Cammann, C. (eds) OrganizationalAssessment. New York, NY: John
Training manual for institute management 21
Work areas, machinery, layout: modernity of equipment, interdependencies and job
Safety and health: safety equipment, noise and air quality, and smells
Physical count: inventory, buffer stocks, finished goods, product rejects and returns,
scrap and spoilage, and materials and supplies.
Technical drawings, specifications and work orders.
Process flow charts: core and supportive technology, production gaps and
Accounting records: capital investment, depreciation, replacement costs and
Performance records: inventory, buffer stocks, finished goods, product rejects and
returns, scrap and spoilage, materials and supplies, downtime and machine repair,
Performance standards: engineered and historical standards, and budgeted objectives
Work areas: organizational function and status, intra- and inter-group relations,
cliques, interdependence, roles and cohesiveness.
Non-work areas: social norms and intra- and inter-group relations.
Identifying characteristics: bulletin boards, slogans, signs and demarcations.
Personnel records: group homogeneity or heterogeneity.
Performance records: group cooperation and production norms.
Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
Building: age, size, number of offices, status of departments and functions.
Geography: location, landscape, fences and security.
Facilities: offices and work areas, lunchrooms, vending machines, water fountains,
parking lots and washrooms.
Amenities: carpets, artwork, library, rest and recreation areas and equipment,
refrigerators and liquor cabinets.
Security personnel and facilities.
Charter: mission goals.
Organization chart: division of authority and responsibility, lines of communication,
levels, size, line and staff functions, supervisor to subordinate ratios, and
Union relations: contract and union constitution and bylaws.
Internal communications: memos, speeches, company newsletter, suggestion boxes,
films, orientation and training materials, files, trash and policy manuals.
External communication: advertising, speeches, annual report, public relations
releases, periodicals, publications and films.
Reports: staff studies, audits and consulting studies.
Law suits and legal briefs.
Accounting records: sales, assets, liabilities, profit, return on investment, goodwill,
stock price, dividends, earnings per share, business cycles, products and services.
Personnel records: internal stability, promotions, minority and female employment,
national targets and compliance and affirmative-action policies.
Union relations: grievances, work stoppages, strikes and lockouts.
Payroll records: salary structure and bonus policy.
Information systems: budgets, standards, historical performance and operational
Insurance records: plant and equipment, worker's compensation and safety.
Training manual for institute management 23
THE COCOA RESEARCH INSTITUTE OF SAVANA
The Cocoa Research Institute of Savana (CRIS) was originally called the Central Cocoa
Research Station of the Department of Agriculture, and was established in 1937. There had
been a marked decline in cocoa yield in the Eastern Province and production had dropped by
as much as two-thirds. At the same time, a substantial decline in cocoa production was
reported in the neighboring countries. This led to establishment of an inter-territorial Cocoa
Institute of the Coastal States (CICS) in 1944. When Savana became independent, CICS was
dissolved and CRIS established, taking over the former CICS facilities at Tofa. Since then,
the administration of the institute has passed through a succession of national bodies,
including the National Research Council in 1962, the Savana Academy of Sciences in 1963,
and the National Council for Scientific and Industrial Research in 1969. Currently the
institute is under the Savana Cocoa Marketing Board (SCOCOBOD). From the outset,
research work at the institute was commodity based. Cocoa was the sole focus until 1979,
when cola, coffee and shea nut were added. It was argued that since the production and
processing of these crops was quite similar to cocoa, CRIS was an institute well suited to
work on these crops too. However, the functions of CRIS remained unchanged and the
primary focus remains on cocoa.
Over time, CRIS has become a mature research institution, with a long tradition of
thorough scientific study. It has well qualified research staff and has most of the facilities
and equipment required for effective work. Organizational arrangements are generally sound
The institute is headed by a director, who is responsible for day-to-day management on behalf
of the Management Committee. The director is assisted by two deputy directors, responsible
for coordinating research work and administration respectively.
The organization is pyramidal with a large proportion of employees in the lower
strata, and a director at the top who is required to be actively engaged in research as well.
Module 10 Session 1
Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
Figure 1 Organizational structure of the Cocoa Research Institute of Savana (CRIS)
Board of Trustees
Plant physiology and biochemistry
Research Policy Committee
Training manual for institute management 25
It has been argued that the pyramidal type of organization has not encouraged people
to use their abilities to the full. It has stifled initiative, and has led to frustration and palpable
apathy and indifference. The result has been that employees have performed their duties
half-heartedly. In the wake of much talk about evolving 'collegial authority,' institute
management has argued that the employees at lower levels have to be directed and trained
for their jobs, while young research scientists required some initiation into the work
programme. Besides, if a pyramidal organization had created frustrations, there would have
been an elevated staff turnover level. However, that has not been the case, but primarily
because of lack of opportunity.
Research work at the institute is organized in six divisions (see Appendix 1 to this case study
for their activities). The organization of research in divisions is for administrative
convenience, as there has always been an interdisciplinary approach, with close cooperation
between staff of different disciplines. Each research division is headed by a senior scientist,
with a team of scientists assisted by a number of laboratory assistants and field staff. The
institute has 1 600 employees in various categories. The programme of work is drawn up
collectively by the team of research workers. A researcher, upon joining the institute, is
expected to participate in ongoing projects, but can later conduct independent research.
There are three stages in any particular line of work:
First, laboratory investigations, for which skilled technical staff and specialized equipment
Second, strictly controlled field experiments, putting into test the observations and
deductions made in the laboratory.
Third, field trials on farmers' land in different localities and maintained by farmers, or
at agricultural stations, under the supervision of agricultural field staff. These are to
test the validity of the results from the first two stages, and to observe economic
effects and farmers' reactions.
There are several institutional arrangements for programme coordination so as to ensure that
research projects are not merely academic exercises executed by individual researchers and
departments, but are properly integrated and mission oriented, and that the results are
disseminated effectively. These include an internal research committee made up of the heads
of each of the research divisions, under the chairmanship of one of the deputy directors. The
committee determines the general direction of research. It studies projects, assesses their
importance to the industry, and considers the possible participation of scientists of different
departments within CRIS, or even from other institutions. Since it is necessary to fit all
activities into the approved budget allocation, the committee also examines the human and
equipment resources requirements for the project. This is the stage when the project could
be accepted or rejected. Ongoing projects are similarly examined critically from time to
time. The heads of departments benefit from ideas put forward by different members and
carry them to their colleagues. In addition, the interdisciplinary nature of the committee is
of immense advantage, especially with the increasing specialization of research staff.
26 Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
Bearing in mind that there are a large number of research scientists, it would appear
that only a small number (i.e., the heads of department) have the opportunity to obtain an
overall view of the work of the institute. However, organized seminars provide a forum at
which the work of research scientists can be openly discussed by the entire staff.
At these seminars, the researcher chooses the topic for presentation. This is followed
by a frank discussion on all aspects of the work. Occasionally, non-staff members from
related institutions working on other, related aspects of the commodity are invited to present
their work to the staff body.
The seminars serve as a means of informing staff about research work in progress at
the institute and related organizations, correcting errors, suggesting possible coordination and
ensuring relevance to the needs of the industry, and introducing new research staff members
and technicians to the scientific background of the work carried out at the institute.
While the research programme is adhered to fairly closely, latitude is permitted in its
execution. Occasionally, work on projects may have to be suspended because of absence of
staff, non-availability of equipment or lack of funds.
The Management Committee reports to the Commodity Board (SCOCOBOD). Its
chairman is the deputy chief executive of the board responsible for pre-harvest operations.
The membership of the committee is made up of representatives of farmers, related
institutions, as well as middle- and lower-level staff of the institute. This committee also
examines all aspects of the institute's operations that require attention.
The Research Policy Committee advises the Management Committee regarding
research policies and priorities. The Research Policy Committee comprises the director and
deputy directors of CRIS, the director of the extension service unit, with one of his or her
deputies and two regional officers, and one farmer.
The Research Extension Committee comprises leaders or heads of the research
divisions of CRIS and representatives of the Extension Service Unit for the commodity. The
director of the latter chairs its meetings. Topics discussed include joint programmes of the
two organizations (i.e., research and extension) such as multi-location trials, on-farm trials,
farmers' reactions to innovation (e.g., use of new insecticides, herbicides or new planting
material), and any subject requiring further investigation.
While the research departments bring together officers of the same discipline, the
research-related committees are commodity-centred and interdisciplinary.
ADMINISTRATION AND SERVICE DEPARTMENT
In addition to the six research departments there are four service or support departments.
The administration department is responsible for general administration and personnel
matters. It arranges recruitment, maintains personnel records, collates information for staff
promotions, interprets conditions of service and, in short, helps promote an understanding
and good relationship among the different categories of staff. An accountant heads the
department responsible for budgeting and day-to-day financial matters, and tho', activities
are scrutinized by an independent internal audit unit.
New construction and repair work of buildings and vehicles are undertaken by the
maintenance department, which also has the task of ensuring that essential services -
including water supply, electricity and access roads are adequate and in good working
Training manual for institute management 27
order. Since some of the research trials involve extensive land preparation and upkeep, the
farm management department has been assigned the task of land preparation and upkeep for
field trials, and keeps the entire estate in a good sanitary and aesthetic condition.
Unlike the research departments, the leaders or heads of these service departments
are selected and directly appointed to their posts on the basis of their qualifications and
An estates committee meets periodically to monitor work progress and priority areas,
particularly in the context of overlapping requests for land areas for experimental work.
As the institute generates no revenue, it has to be fully supported by the government or the
commodity board. Currently the cost of operating CRIS is borne fully by SCOCOBOD. The
CRIS recurrent budget (D 281 million or $US 3.1 million in 1985/86) represents only 2%
of SCOCOBOD's total budget, and only 0.6% of the current value of the Savana cocoa crop.
However, it implies a significant commitment to research: equivalent in gross terms to almost
D 10 million per research worker or D 15 million per hectare of field trials.
CRIS's main research station is at Tofa, with substations at Suafa, Nobsu and Belo. Tofa
(267 ha) is some 120 km north of Savanawan in an area well suited for cocoa production.
Suafa (230 ha) was acquired in 1973 to carry out trials which could not be accommodated
at Tofa. By 1983, about 65 ha had been developed for experimental purposes. The Suafa
substation is located 106 km away from Tofa, and it is difficult to provide intensive technical
supervision there as most research staff are located at Tofa. The Nobsu substation (18 km
from Tofa) is mainly devoted to trials involving cocoa, coffee and cola. The substation at
Belo (480 km north of Tofa) has been developed for research on shea nut, which grows wild
in that area. The CSD cocoa station at Wadepa in the Eastern Region is also used as an
overflow site, mainly for progeny trials which cannot be accommodated at Tofa.
THE THIRD COCOA PROJECT
In 1984, the institute was preparing a five-year plan of activities to be included in the third
phase of the World Bank-assisted Savana Cocoa Project. The project aimed at enhancing
CRIS's capacity to carry out research on which to base expanded production of cocoa and
coffee. The sub-components of the project were:
upgrading the Tofa station and central services, and improving basic services at the sub-
establishing a CRIS off-station trials unit, and
Some investments to start new trials were also contemplated. The total cost estimate was a
modest $US 6.5 million. It was in this context that an evaluation of CRIS became necessary.
Training manual for institute management 29
CRIS case study
THE SIX SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH DIVISIONS IN CRIS
Agronomy research is aimed at improvement of field techniques in establishment and
maintenance of cocoa, coffee, cola and shea nut. Field work is done in close association with
the Soil Science Division. It includes studies on optimum plant densities; evaluation and
quantification of shade; and pruning in relation to yield. There are economic studies on
intercropping cocoa with food crops during establishment, and with coconuts later. The
division also studies seed viability, microclimates under shade, and use of herbicides for weed
The entomology division does large-scale trials with insecticide and fungicide mixtures for
the control of cocoa pests. It is also making population assessments of the major pests,
mealy bugs and capsids, and of minor pests of cocoa in relation to farm practices and control
measures. The effects of the minor pests on the plant are being monitored in case they
become a major problem. The division also has projects to study the long-term effects of
insecticides on the soil fauna. Very intensive investigations are being made into the biology
and ecology of natural pollinators of cocoa, and the effects of insecticides on them.
The main objective of this division is to breed better planting material for farmers. The
cocoa research programme includes breeding for resistance to swollen shoot virus, black pod
disease and drought. The division maintains a large collection of cocoa clones to provide a
broad genetic base for the breeding programme. Promising and improved progenies with
good characteristics such as high yield and disease resistance are introduced to farmers
by siting observation plots on working farms.
For coffee, the division selects breeding material from introduced Coffea robusta
trees. It is also breeding hybrids of C. arabica and C. robusta, making selections from the
In association with the FAO/International Atomic Energy Agency Joint Division,
induced mutation studies are being conducted for resistance to cocoa swollen shoot virus,
black pod and drought in cocoa.
A germplasm collection of shea nut types is maintained and the botany of the plant
is being studied. In the case of cola, work is confined to field population investigations in
relation to fertility and yield.
30 Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
PHYSIOLOGY AND BIOCHEMISTRY
The main objectives of the physiology division are to study the physiology of cocoa, coffee,
cola, shea nut and Pentadesma butyracea (an oilseed crop), and to carry out research into
growth hormones and propagation of these crops by rooted cuttings.
In the biochemistry section, the biochemistry of cocoa fermentation and effects upon
flavour and quality are under study. The Phytopathology Division is collaborating in the
development of cocoa swollen shoot virus purification techniques and ELISA techniques for
virus identification. Utilization of cocoa by-products and analyses for pesticide residues, fats
and oils, carbohydrates and phenolics are also being studied.
At present, work is under way on the growing of cocoa in marginal areas. Research
is proceeding into the fatty acid composition of shea nut, and further development of ELISA
techniques for the early identification of cocoa swollen shoot virus in the field.
The division is studying diseases affecting cocoa, coffee, cola and shea nut, and seeking the
most economically effective control measures. The division is organized into three sections:
The Mycology section deals with fungal diseases: black pod, dieback (associated with
capsids) and a recent cause of sudden death in cocoa in the Western Region, termed
white thread disease.
The Virology sections deals with swollen shoot disease.
The Nematology section is a new section set up to investigate the nematode infestations
which cause plantain, which is used as temporary shade for young cocoa, to fail to
bear after just one crop.
Research projects include basic investigations into the epidemiology of the black pod fungus
to ensure that control measures are effective. Stem cankers, caused by the fungus infecting
the stem via the pedicles of diseased pods, have been shown to be a serious source of
inoculum. Sanitation measures involve stripping the infected pods from the trees.
The pathology and plant breeding divisions work together in research on disease
The work of the division is organized into three sections to deal with:
field trials and fertilizer investigations, and
The long-term objective is to work out the interactions of fertilizer requirements and overhead
shade to give farmers the most economically sound recommendations.
Training manual for institute management
Evaluation is an important tool for improving management. Through organizational
assessment commonly known as evaluation the effectiveness of an organization is
measured in terms of its functioning, problems and achievements from both the behaviourial
and social system points of view (Lawler, Nadler and Cammann, 1980). Organizational
assessment thus involves "measurement of variables related to patterns of organizational
behaviour and effectiveness" (Nadler, Mackman and Lawdler, 1979). It can play an
important role in helping managers improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their
operations and can be an instrument for creating public support for the research programmes
and outreach activities.
Depending upon when evaluation is conducted, it may be ex ante, current or ex post.
Ex ante evaluation is conducted prior to implementation. It involves analysis of internal and
external consistency of plans, programmes and projects before their implementation. Current
or progress evaluation is conducted during implementation. It measures the extent of use of
resources and materials, the execution of activities and the partial results reached in relation
to the set plans. It is also known as monitoring or concurrent evaluation, since it takes place
at many points during implementation. Ex post evaluation is conducted after implementation.
It involves evaluation of the results and impact in relation to the set objectives.
WHY ORGANIZATIONS NEED EVALUATION
Organizational evaluation "measures, compares and analyses the coherence between results
and specific objectives and between specific objectives and general objectives of institutional
projects, programmes or plans" (Hernan, 1987). It can be helpful in identifying:
whether or not the objectives and goals originally established are being achieved, as well
as their expected effects and impact;
whether the organization is adapting to new environments, changing technology and
changes in other external variables so as to efficiently utilize the available resources;
areas which need to be improved, modified or strengthened; and
different modes to better fulfil the needs of the clients of the institute.
Module 10 Session 1
32 Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
In addition, organizational assessment:
generates evaluation information, which then becomes a valuable experience-based input
in future planning, establishing of priorities and resource allocation;
furnishes financial data to justify the need for additional resources; and
helps keep the key activities on the right track and offers information that allows the
setting of minimum standards to promote compliance with the organizational research
TYPES OF EVALUATION
Depending upon the objectives of the evaluation exercise, assessment may focus on one or
several of the following (Hernan, 1987):
Economic impact This includes measurement of the effectiveness of research results,
using techniques such as cost-benefit analysis.
Impact evaluation Impact is measured in relation to long-term effects on variables which
were sought to be altered through the activities. For example, in a research
organization, impact evaluation would measure effects of research outputs on transfer
of technology and returns to the farmer.
Basic evaluation This covers the identifying and analyzing of the socio-economic,
biological, physical, technical and institutional aspects which can be improved by
Analytical evaluation This involves socio-economic analysis of adoption studies,
productivity analyses, risk assessment, use of labour, marketing credit and prices and
their effects on technical alternatives.
Operative evaluation This measures efficiency by comparative analysis between materials
and resources used, activities carried out and the results achieved.
Evaluation of results This includes quantitative as well as qualitative analysis of research
results, retribution factors and probabilities of adoption.
Traditional evaluation It involves use of reports, technical meetings, committees, ad hoc
groups, courses and seminars.
Personnel this covers evaluation of the performance of professional, administrative and
technical human resources in the organization.
USERS OF THE EVALUATION RESULTS
Sponsors are the primary users of the results of the organizational assessment exercise. Other
users could include:
policy and decision-makers who are responsible for instituting, continuing, discontinuing,
expanding or curtailing programmes;
funding organizations which provide funds;
target participants who take part in organizational activities directly or indirectly;
Training manual for institute management 33
programme management, by individuals or a group who coordinate during the evaluation
evaluators, who may be individuals or groups, and who design and conduct the
assessment exercise; and
organizations which compete for available resources.
Elements of assessment
There are typically three elements involved in an assessment exercise (Lawler, Nadler and
The organization, which is the main unit of the assessment exercise. Heads of
departments, scientists and administrative staff of the research organizations are the
sources of information.
The assessment team, which needs to use appropriate measurement tools to collect data
regarding the organization and its activities.
The people, who use the assessment results for making the organization more effective
by setting priorities, policies, plans and research projects.
To assess the performance of any organization, one needs to carefully analyse the assessment
situation with respect to some important dimensions, including those listed in Table 1 and
considered further below.
Table 1 Steps in organization assessment
1. Objectives of the assessment exercise
2. Size and nature of the organization
3. Areas to be covered during the assessment exercise
4. Potentials users of the assessment results and recommendations
5. Organizational model on which the assessment methodology is to be based
6. Framework for conducting the assessment exercise
7. Evaluation of data
8. Methods of collecting data
9. Methodology for conducting the assessment exercise
10. Results, analysis and recommendations
The sponsors of the assessment exercise may have specific expectations: programme
evaluation, scientific investigation, organizational change, etc. A clear understanding of the
objectives and purpose of evaluation can provide the framework for assessment. For an
agricultural research organization, the objectives might be to evaluate:
the research achievements of the institute and its regional and sub-stations;
the objectives, scope and relevance of research programmes and budgetary support;
Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
whether research programmes are in keeping with the mission, objectives, policies and
practices of the institute and in harmony with the programmes of related agricultural
the policies, strategies and procedures of the institute, and the effectiveness of working
of different councils and committees and consultative groups responsible for micro-
management within the institute;
whether the institute's organizational structure is capable of providing functional working
autonomy and delegation of authority in day-to-day working;
any imbalance in the staffing pattern in relation to scientific, technical and administrative
needs, and whether any changes in the set-up are required to make organizational
functioning more effective and efficient;
linkages established with the clients, farmers and other ultimate users of research results;
budget allocations to the institute in relation to overall national plans, policies and long-
constraints which hinder achievement of institutional goals, and ways to reduce or
overcome such constraints.
Size and nature of the organization
Although research organizations have a broadly similar mandate, they are also distinct from
each other for a variety of reasons. Therefore one needs to understand the nature, type and
size of the organization so as to be able to evolve an organizational model and then develop
an appropriate methodology for the evaluation exercise. Some of the important dimensions
to be carefully considered in this context are:
demographic variables, such as age, size and type of the organization factors which
play a crucial role in determining the goals of the organization and therefore influence
type of activities of the organization. Agricultural research organizations are generally
engaged in basic and adaptive research and so are concerned with the creation and
development of knowledge and technology relevant to the agricultural sector.
Evaluation of such organizations will have to be designed and conducted accordingly;
nature of the organization, based on details such as who are its clients, the nature of its
output, who benefits from its outputs and services it provides.
Knowing the size and structure of the organization helps when designing an operational and
economically feasible assessment methodology. Size not only includes the number of
employees, but also its divisions and related institutions. In the case of agricultural research
organizations, this covers various national-level institutions, their research stations at regional
and other levels, and in many cases even agricultural universities.
Areas to be covered during the assessment exercise
Assessing the effectiveness of an organization requires money, time, human resources and
advance planning. It also requires considerable contribution of time and effort from the staff
Training manual for institute management 35
of the organization, and hence diverts staff effort away from the organization's core activity
of research. In order to justify and make the optimal use of this diverted effort, the
methodology has to be holistic and effective. Therefore, designing a methodology is of great
significance. It has to be specific to the type of evaluation exercise and generate information
which is relevant, objective, systematic and comprehensive.
The evaluation exercise could be total or oriented towards a specific element, namely:
general administration, which would aim at assessing whether the management structure
for carrying out agricultural research is logical and in place;
the institute plan, which would focus on the institute's plan and examine its logic as well
as fundamental components. It would also determine if the inputs needed (such as
staff, services, facilities, land and funds) are adequate;
staff, assessing their performance and their current capabilities in relation to the staffing
support services, where the focus is on adequacy or otherwise of services required for
conducting research. The type of support services required in agricultural research
institutes will vary, but some common ones include a library and information service;
laboratory equipment; service and maintenance facilities; administrative support;
computer facilities; and land and growing houses for experimental uses;
facilities and grounds to assess their adequacy for current and planned research work;
financial issues, where the concern would be not only with current and projected flows
of income, expenditure, cash and assets and liabilities, but also the marketing and
promotional activities needed to generate funds; or
tasks and organization of research, the organizational system and technical productivity.
Organizational goals are accomplished through various activities or tasks which are performed
by groups or individuals. For performance of tasks, the organization requires individual
skills and capabilities, an organizational structure, and rewards and sanctions. These have
to be appropriately assessed in relation to the set objectives (Lawler, Nadler and Cammann,
Individuals are assessed on the basis of their skills, training, abilities, needs, desires,
motivation, perceptions, attitudes and behaviour. These are usually assessed in the context
of individual performance evaluation.
In a research organization, activities are assigned to groups of individuals. It is
important to include in the assessment exercise variables such as the dynamics of groups,
intergroup conflicts and the capabilities of groups.
Individuals and groups work within a formal organizational system to achieve
common organizational goals. This necessitates a careful study of various elements of the
formal organizational arrangements. This should include leadership practices, organizational
structure and the mechanisms used for the coordination and control of individuals and groups.
Informal organizational systems are a set of relationships, structures and processes that
develop over time in the organization, generally as a result of individual and group
An organization does not function in isolation from its outside environment. Its
priorities, functioning, etc., are influenced by the external environment in which it exists.
36 Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
It is, therefore, essential to consider environmental or situational variables which could have
a significant effect on the performance of the organization. That would provide a real
understanding of organizational behaviour.
Organizational performance can be improved by focusing on strategic aspects and
Structural aspects include work flow, operations and information technology,
departmentalization, hierarchy, control and information systems and de-centralization of
decision making in the organization. These variables affect organizational performance in
association with environmental and strategic variables.
Behaviourial aspects include leadership motivation and morale, cooperation and
conflict, creativity, conformity and innovation in the organization.
Technical productivity measures the institute's outputs, results and impact. These are
the raison d'etre for the institute's existence. It is also perhaps the most difficult and
controversial type of assessment area.
Organizational model on which to base the assessment
Organizational assessment covers a wide range of activities in and outside the organization.
it is therefore essential for the evaluation team to identify the areas which should be covered
in the assessment exercise. Organizational assessment models are helpful in identifying such
areas. Some of the theories commonly used are:
open system; and
internal process and rational goal theory.
Choice of a theoretical base depends upon the assessment team's perception of organizational
behaviour. The theoretical approach should be practical and comprehensive so as to make
the evaluation exercise effective. The chosen model should explain the concept of the
organization to be assessed, its structure and behaviour pattern likely to be observed in the
organization. It should also help in identifying factors for observation and measurement
during the assessment exercise. Some of these factors are:
nature of the work;
characteristics of the individuals;
group functioning and nature of the group;
the dimension of organizational structure and processes;
environment outside the organization;
characteristics of organizational effectiveness; and
the relationship that exists among these factors.
Some criteria for assessing the effectiveness of an organizational model have been identified
(Lawler, Nadler and Cammann, 1980):
Explicit The model should be expressed clearly and fully, without which it may be
difficult to measure effectiveness.
Training manual for institute management
Theory The model should be based on scientific knowledge.
Operationally defined The model should define the "constructs variables, effectiveness
criteria and relationship among organizational factors" in operational terms. Only
then can it give practical guidelines during evaluation and ensure a proper
understanding of the model without any misinterpretation.
Empirically validated The model should be tested to ensure that it represents the same
relationship among variables as actually exists in the organizational setting.
Face validity Since a model aims at communicating the results of the assessment, some
face validity in it is necessary. The model should reflect the propositions and
relationships which are in consonance with actual day-to-day behaviour of the
Generalizability The model should be applicable to various settings, each composed of
Framework for conducting the assessment exercise
The organization is a complex social system consisting of different sub-systems. The sub-
systems in turn have various types of structures, processes and activities. Because of this
complexity, it is essential to develop a comprehensive and integrated framework to assess
organizational performance at four levels:
overall organization level;
individual job level; and
at the level of the relationships between jobs and units within the organization and also
with other organizations.
The framework should able to assess different organizational units in relation to their total
environment so that various units, structures, functions, etc., can be conceptually interrelated
with each other. More specifically, the assessment framework should be capable of:
identifying and distinguishing relevant characteristics of context, behaviour and
performance at the macro-organization, unit and job level;
examining the unique design patterns of units and jobs that are differentiated vertically
and horizontally within the organization; and
determining how these units and jobs are integrated and the functional contribution they
make to the overall performance of the organization (Andrew, in Lawler, Nadler and
The dimensions to be examined include organizational context, design and performance at
different levels (See EXHIBIT 3 in the Session guide).
Evaluation of data
This phase includes three steps:
collection of information regarding organizational functioning and impact;
38 Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
analysis and interpretation of collected information to gain an insight into the functioning,
impact and effectiveness of the institution; and
use of the information and analysis.
The objectives of the organizational assessment or the expressed needs of the sponsors and
assessors themselves play an important role in deciding about assessment of data. They may
have different needs and expectations from the assessment exercise. A knowledge of the
members of the organization is equally important to identify the kinds of accessible data and
the sources which are valid (see Table 2). The organizational model should help in
specifying the types of variables and effectiveness criteria which need to be examined.
Symptomatic data would provide guidelines for formulating hypotheses about the nature of
critical organizational processes which need to be examined in depth. Symptomatic data are
based on the collection of information and observations during informal data collection, which
aims to identify the key issues, areas and behaviour relevant for the assessment exercise.
Table 2 Evaluating research organization assessment data
For a research organization, information should be collected in relation to different functions and fields,
depending on the coverage expected in the assessment exercise.
Areas to be covered could include the following:
Research programme and management
identification and formulation of research projects
monitoring of research project
Priority research areas for the immediate future
sources of revenue and income
expenditure by items to compute ratio of expenditure between actual revenue and salaries and
Obviously, these data will be generated through scientific and administrative staff as well as through the
documents and records of the institute. Scientific information should be collected at three levels:
institute director, division head and scientist.
Data collection methods
The organization is a social system with a wide range of complex activities and behaviour.
To assess meaningfully the performance of an organization, one needs to collect
comprehensive data on behaviourial, attitudinal, economic, functional and structural
dimensions. There has to be an integrated approach, particularly when different data
collection methods have to be used. That may be necessary sometimes to support, sometimes
to supplement, and sometimes to crosscheck, data collected through other instruments.
Training manual for institute management 39
Data can be collected through questionnaires, interviews, observation methods and
focused group interviews (Lawler, Nadler and Cammann, 1980).
Interviewing is the most frequently used method for collecting a part of assessment data.
People generally wish to talk about and share their problems, conflicts, perceptions and
achievements. This basic human nature can be exploited through a skilful interviewer. If
the interviewer is skilled, efficient and able to establish rapport with the interviewee, she or
he can generate useful data.
Depending upon the degree of structure, the interview can be:
structured but open ended; or
structured and closed ended.
These types of interviews provide question areas as well as alternative responses, such as
liked, disliked, liked very much, disliked very much, etc. During the interview, questions
may be accompanied by possible alternative responses, one of which can be chosen by the
subject of the interview.
Different types of interviews generate different types of information. The choice of
type of interview should be based upon the situation and the kind of information needed.
While information can be obtained from group interviews in a time saving manner, there are
matters which cannot be discussed in a group. Therefore the choice of type of interview
should be based upon question areas and situation.
Questionnaires can be given to respondents or administered through structured interviews.
When the questionnaire is self-administered, the subject chooses among the alternative
answers and does the coding. The questionnaire method is economical, can be used on large
populations simultaneously, and the responses can be easily tabulated and statistically
The questionnaire can have either open-ended or closed-ended questions, depending
upon the goals of the. evaluation exercise, the nature of data required and the size of the
Observation is widely used for assessing organizational performance. It is planned,
systematic and structured so that it provides required, meaningful and useful information.
There should be a clear understanding of what to observe and what not; when to observe and
when not; and what to record and what not.
Observations can be unstructured or structured. In general, unstructured observations
are useful at the beginning of the assessment exercise as they can help identify the crucial
variables and explain the nature and behaviour of the organization. Unstructured observation
is participative. The observer acts as member of the organization and discreetly keeps
observing events, and this can provide lot of useful information which other methods do not.
Observations can also be structured or semi-structured. In structured observations,
the observer takes guidelines from the instruments and procedures and records the
information. The choice of suitable observation should be decided according to the
situational requirement. Observed data can supplement data collected from questionnaires
or interview methods. They can also be used to crosscheck the validity of data collected by
40 Module 10 Single Session Institute evaluation
Focused group interviews involve a group of eight to twelve or more persons assembled to
discuss various aspects of a topic under the guidance of a group moderator. A trained and
skilful moderator can extract highly useful information from the group through the technique
of focused group interviews.
Focused group interviews are recorded using audio or video. Audio recording is
transcribed later on. Video recording can provide an added advantage during the transcribing
session. The transcriber can observe the gestures and facial expressions of the speaker and
crosscheck previous conclusions. Transcription of the session helps in analysing the data and
deriving some conclusions.
The focused group interview has the advantages of
generating qualitative data as compared to quantitative techniques,
helping understand the behaviour of organizational members,
providing useful data on the experiences of organizational members and their reaction to
specific management problems, and
being a good supplementary tool to enrich and validate data collected through other
techniques. For these reasons, it is desirable to conduct some focused group
interviews during the assessment exercise.
Documents and records During the assessment exercise, a considerable amount of data can
be generated through records, documents and physical evidence. They can provide
information regarding individuals, technology, groups and even the organization itself. There
are many sources which can be explored to get this type of information (See EXHIBIT 5 in the
The case study method is based on interviews with some of the organization's members about
organizational background, culture, functioning, etc. The researcher writes a case on the
organization, highlighting the relevant issues.
Field studies Here the researcher interviews members of the organization at different levels
and collects data on some aspects.
Results, analysis and recommendation
The utility of the organizational assessment does not lie in the meticulous care with which it
is conducted, but in the results and recommendations, which should be of use to the clients.
Meaningful implementation of the recommendations is a critical phase in the organizational
assessment exercise. The results will only be usable when they are in consonance with the
needs of clients and are operational for improving organizational functioning (Edward, in
Lawler, Nadler and Cammann, 1980).
Training manual for institute management
REFERENCES CITED AND BACKGROUND LITERATURE
Alderfer, C.P., & Brown, L.D. 1972. Questionnaire design in organizational research.
Journal of Applied Psychology, 56: 456-460.
Caro, F.G. 1969. Approaches to evaluative research: a review. Human Organization,
Cummings, L.L., & Schwaf, D.P. 1975. Performance in Organizations: Determinants
and Appraisals. Glenview: Scott, Foresman.
Douglas, D. 1986. Evaluation in national agricultural research. In the proceedings of a
workshop held in Singapore, 7-9 July 1986.
Evenson, R.E., & Kislev, Y. 1975. Investment in agricultural research and extension: a
survey of international data. Economic Development and Cultural Change,
Ferry, D.L. 1980. Measuring and Assessing Organizations. New York, NY: Wiley
Hernan, C.G. 1986. Evaluation of agricultural research in Colombia. In the
proceedings of a workshop held in Singapore, 7-9 July 1986.
Khandwalla, P.N. 1977. The Design of Organizations. New York, NY: Harcourt,
Lawler, E.E., III, Nadler, D.A., & Cammann, C. (eds) 1980. Organizational
Assessment. New York, NY: John Wiley.
Likert, R. 1958. Measuring organizational performance. Harvard Business Review,
Mirvis, P. 1980. Assessing physical evidence, documents, and records in organizations.
In: Lawler, Nadler and Cammann, 1980, q.v.
Morse, E.V., & Gordon, G. 1975. Evaluation research. Annual Review of Sociology,
Nadler, D.A., Mackman, J.R., & Lawler, E.E., III. 1979. Managing Organizational
Behaviour. Boston, MA: Little, Brown.
Norton, G.W., & Davis, J.S. 1981. Evaluating returns to agricultural research: a
review. American Journal of Agricultural Economics, 63(4): 685-699.
Peter, H.R., & Freeman, H.E. 1989. Evaluation. London: Sage.
Price, J.L. 1971. The study of organizational effectiveness. Sociological Quarterly,
Santiago, F.M. 1987. Agricultural Research Evaluation in Latin America: A Literature
Review. International Development Research Centre, Toronto.
Steers, R.M. 1975. Problems in the measurement of organizational effectiveness.
Administrative Science Quarterly, 20(4): 546-558.
Van de Ven, A.H. 1976. A framework for organizational assessment. Academy of
Management Review, 1(1): 64-78.
This training manual has been prepared as basic reference material to help national research
trainers structure and conduct training courses on research management at the institute level.
It is intended primarily for managers of agricultural research institutes in developing countries
and for institutions of higher education interested in presenting in-service training courses on
research management. The manual consists of ten modules, each addressing major
management functions including motivation, leadership, direction, priority setting,
communications and delegation. The four structural functions of management planning,
organization, monitoring and control, and evaluation are covered in Individual modules. The
manual has been designed to support participatory learning through case-studies, group
exercises and presentations by the participants.
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