Transitional Demobilization and Reintegration Program
50 Research Activities in Six Countries: The Vast Program of the Facility for Quality Enhancement and Innovation
August 2011

Since the launch of the Facility for Quality Enhancement and Innovation (FQEI) in early 2010, the TDRP team has worked intensely to develop and implement a vast program of research and evaluation of DDR projects in the Great Lakes region.

In total, almost 50 studies and evaluations are being carried out in Burundi, the Central African Republic, the Republic of Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda and Uganda.  As part of this work, the FQEI team also manages a few cross-cutting regional studies, two training workshops and two pilot projects.

The FQEI team gives technical assistance to all studies, provides training, and funds about one-third of the studies. The DDR commissions in the six countries are responsible for organizing, funding and carrying out the studies pertaining to their respective programs.

To make it easier to navigate the numerous activities, we have grouped them into three main thematic areas: monitoring and evaluation (M&E) studies, learning activities, and independent evaluations/exit strategies. 




1.     Monitoring and Evaluation Studies

M&E studies typically focus on collecting and analyzing empirical evidence.

Their objective is to measure how effective the various components in reinsertion and reintegration programs are in ensuring that ex-combatants and other targeted groups find a place in their communities, both socially and economically.

Beneficiary assessments covering vulnerable groups, such as women, children and the disabled, are also ordinarily conducted separately.

When first conducted, these assessments constitute an information baseline about a particular group of people in a project. Subsequent annual studies, called tracer studies, show the variation from the baseline in years 1, 2, 3, etc.

Similar to beneficiary assessments, community dynamics studies measure the impact of DDR interventions on the receiving communities, as well as the impact of communities on social capital and on economic and livelihood structures.

In addition, studies understanding the role and impact of implementing and supporting organizations, institutions and other actors, such as community focal points, on the DDR process are also conducted. All these studies are also meant to collect the necessary data against which project indicators are measured

    Burundi CAR DRC Rep. of Congo Rwanda Uganda
1. Baseline beneficiary assessment studies X X X X X X
2. Baseline and tracer community dynamics studies X   X X X X
3. Beneficiary assessments of vulnerable groups X   X   X  
4. Reintegration success studies X   X     X


2.   Learning Activities

Learning studies are meant to analyze particular topics related to DDR that have not received sufficient attention.

The findings from these studies become lessons that will inform and may help in the design of new DDR programs. 

The topics selected for learning result from observation of gaps in current DDR programs and other issues not in evidence when launching DDR activities.

The following activities are being carried out:

  • A study on the impact that the ex-combatant has on his family as a result of joining or being coerced into an armed group, on the role that the ex-combatant’s family plays in his reinsertion and on the impact of the family on his reintegration experience.
  • A study on the impact of mobility and migration of ex-combatants on the various program deliverables and on the communities from which and to which ex-combatants migrate.
  • A study assessing the needs and impact of volunteer community focal persons.
  • A study on economic associations, which are used by some DDR commissions as reintegration tools. The study analyses the impact of these associations on the ex-combatants, their peers and the rest of their communities, and gauges any spill-over effect on social reintegration.
  • A pilot project on using culture and sport (notably a regional football tournament) as reconciliatory activities.
  • A study on why certain ex-combatants reintegrate quicker and more successfully than others, initial conditions being equal.
  • A study on the impact of reintegrating ex-combatants back into zones where conflict still exist.
  • A study on how shadow economies function both during the conflict and immediately post-conflict.
  • A study on the possibility to design a “hybrid” reintegration package for some youth around the age of 18 by investigating the reintegration experiences of a sample of youth demobilized for at least five years either as children or adults.
  • A pilot program to extend support to the conflict affected community via an Information, Counseling and Referral System (ICRS), which will be migrated from the DDR commission to the relevant ministry at the end of the DDR program.  
  • Technical trainings to enhance the capacity of reintegration, M&E and management information system (MIS) staff of DDR commissions.
  • A study focusing on the communication aspects of a DDR program, targeting messages to ex-combatants, their communities and the public at large. The groups are targeted in two stages: prior to demobilization, and after demobilization and reintegration. This helps to understand not only what messages have the greatest impact for each target groups, but also the form, channel and timing of messages.


    Burundi CAR DRC Rep. of Congo Rwanda Uganda Regional
1. Role of families in reintegration experience X   X   X X  
2. Mobility and migration of ex-combatants           X X
3. Community focal points needs           X  
4. Ex-combatants economic associations     X X      
5. Soccer as a cultural reintegration tool X   X   X X  
6. Model versus imperfect reintegration           X  
7. Reinsertion into conflict zones     X        
8. Reintegration & shadow economies     X        
9. Comparative studies of demobilized youth X   X   X    
10. Extending and migrating an ICRS post DDR           X  
11. M&E and MIS training workshops             X
12. Impact of Communications Activities X            


3.    Independent Evaluations and Exit Strategies

Independent evaluations are a pre-requisite in most DDR programs and are usually conducted annually. They aim to provide an unbiased assessment of DDR activities.

Traditionally, they look at the effectiveness, efficiency, relevance and sustainability of the programs.

They have been expanded to include more detailed assessments of program impact and to analyze the institutional arrangements, capacity and efficiency of not only the DDR commissions but also the TDRP and other implementing partners.

Each country has its own format for these assessments, taking into account local specificities. But the FQEI team has pushed for greater harmonization of the templates to allow for cross-country analysis.

Finally, exit strategies focus on understanding what dynamics, processes and institutions are necessary to ensure a successful transition between the DDR programs, short-term by nature, and longer-term development activities.

    Burundi CAR DRC Rep. of Congo Rwanda Uganda
1. Annual independent evaluation of DDR program X X X X X X
2. Exit Strategy X X     X X




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