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Proposal presentation2

  2. 2. Objectives of the WorkshopIFPRI Develop skills for preparing policy research proposals Understand the elements of a winning proposal Analyze some examples of good proposals Gain practical skills for organizing the components of a proposal Review some of the existing resources Page 2
  3. 3. What is a Research Proposal ?IFPRI A document A logical presentation of a research idea A new idea Illustrates the idea’s significance Shows the idea’s relationship to past research List research activities one proposes Describes resources needed Page 3
  4. 4. What Should a Research Proposal Convey?IFPRI Enthusiasm Impression Reassurance Model of clarity Page 4
  5. 5. IFPRI “it is what your writing conveys to the reader that is judged, regardless of what you intended?” Page 5
  6. 6. IFPRI How does a proposal develop? Page 6
  7. 7. The Proposal Development ProcessIFPRI 1. Idea 2.Translate into a tentatively proposed set of activities Potential sponsor unknown Potential sponsor 3a. No Sponsor known found 3. Search for sponsors Reformulate 4. Select a few sponsors as prime targets project 5. Selection of and contact with target sponsor 6. File “Intent to Submit” card, if required Page 7
  8. 8. IFPRI 7. Firm up activities and design study (keeping sponsor program goals in mind) 8. Estimate cost, including overhead, and compare with likely sponsor support Too low Too high Good Match 9c. Adjust9a. Take advantage activities to of slack 9b.Prepare proposal to sponsor’s reduce costs to improve specifications, Providing best fit to study design your goals and evaluation 9d. New problems or better Submit proposal for Consideration possibilities appear Rejection? Resubmit or SUCCESS ! pick new sponsor Page 8
  9. 9. Basic ComponentsIFPRI Title page Abstract Introduction Problem statement Literature review Objectives Page 9
  10. 10. Basic Components cont.IFPRI Project description Budget Budget explanation Special considerations Curriculum vitea Appendices Page 10
  11. 11. Title PageIFPRI Descriptive Clear Concise One sentence Avoid • Jargon • Words with multiple interpretations • Flippancy • Controversial terms Fit title to mission of sponsor Page 11
  12. 12. AbstractIFPRI Other names: • Executive summary • Summary Purpose: • Summarizes key information • Research significance • Potential contribution Page 12
  13. 13. Abstract: ContentIFPRI Problem Research objectives Procedure and method Likely outcomes and benefits Credibility • Institutions • Researchers At least 1 sentence per topic Page 13
  14. 14. IntroductionIFPRI Purpose • Establish your credibility • Significance of your research idea • How research relates to the mission and priorities of sponsoring organization? Page 14
  15. 15. Introduction: ContentIFPRI Background Describe goals Establish who you are • Emphasize particular expertise • Evidence of relevant accomplishments Relate sponsors purpose and priorities to research Lead logically to the problem statement Page 15
  16. 16. Problem StatementIFPRI Purpose • Reason behind your proposal • What you hope your research will change? Information is subject to: • criteria of the donor’s program Page 16
  17. 17. Problem Statement: ContentIFPRI Show problem in the perspective of the larger field State problem generally • Betterment of humankind • Project’s contribution to theory and knowledge of the phenomenon • Describe the value of some concrete applications of the knowledge Page 17
  18. 18. Problem Statement: Other SuggestionsIFPRI Limit the problem to the specific • Don’t be too narrow Don’t dwell on the obvious Include a 2-3 sentence sketch of the approach Set the frame of reference Page 18
  19. 19. Problem Statement: ChecklistIFPRI Establish the importance and significance of the problem Justify why it is important to the sponsor Feasible to solve the problem Arouse the reader’s interest and encourage him/her to read further Relate problem to your organization’s goals State the outcome in terms of human need and societal benefits Page 19
  20. 20. Literature Review: PurposeIFPRI Purpose • Builds further understanding of the problem Solidly anchored in past work yet moving beyond that work • It indicates: one’s grasp of the field one’s methodological sophistication in critiquing other’s research the breadth and depth of one’s reading • How the project contributes to the forward movement Page 20
  21. 21. Literature Review: ContentIFPRI Review of literature • Discuss studies in sufficient detail Summarize pertinent information Describe how study contributes to this research Indicate how this study moves beyond the past study Point out technical flaws » Mention how you will avoid these flaws Page 21
  22. 22. Content continuedIFPRI • Most recent literature in content and method Review original work (primary sources) » Do not use outdate sources Select only relevant literature » Social Science Citation Index Use literature from other disciplines Mention current research » The Institute of Scientific Information » Social Science and Humanities Proceedings Index » Social Science Citation Index » Speak with colleagues Page 22
  23. 23. Content ContinuesIFPRI Discuss theoretical basis Don’t include too many references and do too little with them • It is what you do with the references that is the basis for judging this section. • “no research bearing on the problem [exist]” Page 23
  24. 24. Quantitative Literature ReviewIFPRI To draw an overall conclusion Methods • Counting the positive, negative and neutral results and comparing these with what would be expected by chance • Combing the results of individual studies into a single-test of significance • Developing a standard school estimate of the average strength of treatment Page 24
  25. 25. Should I Include a Quantitative Literature Review?IFPRI Are there enough comparable studies Is the number of studies too large? Could this be a first component of the project? Read “Primary, Secondary and Meta-analysis” by Smith and Glass (1977) Page 25
  26. 26. Objectives: PurposeIFPRI Form the basis for judging the proposal What you plan to accomplish Show the reviewer that you have a clear picture Form the foundation Assess the appropriateness of the study’s proposed methods Page 26
  27. 27. Objectives: ContentIFPRI Specify the measurable outcomes Define your research methods Identify key study variables Identify interrelationships of variables Evaluate your outcomes State the expected changes State what means “success” State purpose of study Page 27
  28. 28. Objectives as HypothesesIFPRI State as hypotheses • Theoretical base • Build bridge from theory to study • Testable • Translated into the research operations evidence of their truth and falsity • Don’t state as a null hypothesis Page 28
  29. 29. Objectives: FormatIFPRI Are specific, concrete and achievable 1-2 sentences for each objective Ordered by importance or contribution Follow each major objective with its specific sub-objectives Avoid unnecessary wording Stand out on page • Bullets, numbers and indentions Neatly flow Page 29
  30. 30. Objectives: Common ErrorsIFPRI Vague generalities Imbedding them Undeveloped objectives Page 30
  31. 31. Project DescriptionIFPRI Purpose • To describe project activities • How objectives will be accomplished • Describe the sequences, flow and interrelationship of activities • Planned staffing Page 31
  32. 32. Project Description: Procedural SectionIFPRI Write 1 overview paragraph Describe • How? • When? • Why? • Where? Page 32
  33. 33. Procedure Section: AudienceIFPRI Know one’s audience • anticipate and meet their concerns Difference about the best design • Help them follow your line of reasoning Page 33
  34. 34. Procedure Section: LimitsIFPRI Restrain Procedure and Design to Realistic Limits • Level of resources • Ethical considerations • Access and cooperation to other institutions • Time available Page 34
  35. 35. Procedural Section: SubsectionsIFPRI Population and sample Design – an art Data and instrumentation Analysis Work Plan Expected end products Page 35
  36. 36. Population and SampleIFPRI Clues to the generality of findings • Sample size – statistically significant Preciseness of estimate How different are the individuals How much certainty is required • “Power analysis” If you hope for statistically significant result Page 36
  37. 37. Population and SampleIFPRI Sampling plan: • Nature of the plan • If stratified, describe nature and rational • If random sampling is not feasible Provide all information about the sample Page 37
  38. 38. Survey SamplingIFPRI 5 major types • Simple random sampling • Systematic sampling • Stratified sampling • Cluster sampling • Hybrid sampling Page 38
  39. 39. Survey Sampling cont.IFPRI Simple random sampling • Process List all elements of population Select sample randomly using a table of random numbers (lottery) • Problems Difficult to list entire population Expensive Page 39
  40. 40. Survey Sampling cont.IFPRI Systematic random sampling • Process Number each element Select first element randomly Then skip sample intervals • Problem Expensive to obtain a full list of population Page 40
  41. 41. Survey SamplingIFPRI Stratified random sampling • Process Divide population into strata Draw sample from each strata » Need to control size of each strata Example: urban – rural strata (no strata is skipped Page 41
  42. 42. Survey Sampling cont.IFPRI Cluster sampling • Addresses 2 problems Lack of sampling frame (population list not available) Cost of reaching a sample element is very high • Process (Multi-stage: areas & zones) Randomly select zones Randomly select communities Randomly select households Clusters must be selected randomly with equal probability of getting selected Page 42
  43. 43. Problems in SamplingIFPRI Non-sampling error (non-coverage error) • The omitted part of the target population Example: Telephone surveys • Wrong population being surveyed Example:College students vs. college-age persons • Low response rate • Instrument error Example: Wording of a question • Interview error Example: Female headed household/male interviewers Page 43
  44. 44. Problems in Sampling cont.IFPRI Sampling Error (SE) • SE = Z (ơ/n1/2) n SE ơ SE (more heterogeniety) Page 44
  45. 45. Determining Sample SizeIFPRI Statistical method • N = Z2 (ơ2/e2) Rule of thumb • Smaller population bigger sampling ratio • Larger population small sampling ratio • Population under 1000 30% of sample • Population large 10,000 10% of sample • Over 150,000 1% • Over 10 million .25% Page 45
  46. 46. Sampling SurveyIFPRI Cluster sampling cont. • Advantages List required for selected communities only Less sampling error Proportionate sampling when cluster sizes are different Page 46
  47. 47. DesignIFPRI A description of the structure of the study • Protects against alternative explanations • Shows how the situation will be structured Least contamination • Control variables What are they? » Did you compromise? If so, how? How to control them? • Design configuration that efficiently uses available resources • Give priority to the most serious alternative cause of the effect Page 47
  48. 48. Design: Common ErrorsIFPRI Lack of control group Pretest effects Hawthorne or reactive effect Research expectancy effect Regression effect Over- and underachievers Cross-validation Page 48
  49. 49. Instrumentation and Data CollectionIFPRI Data collection • Details • Appropriateness for the task • Comparable collection of data How will you correct for undesirable variation? Measures problem definition and explanation • Describe the problem • Justify the closest measure • Use a new instrument • Omitting the latter discussion is reason for disapproval Include all critical terms Establish validity, reliability and objectivity Page 49
  50. 50. Instrumentation and Data Collection: ValidityIFPRI Appearing to be congruent with the constructed definition Types of Validity • Face validity • Predictive and concurrent validity • Construct validity Page 50
  51. 51. Instrumentation and Data Collection: ReliabilityIFPRI Types of Reliability • Stability reliability • Internal consistency reliability • Equivalence reliability Page 51
  52. 52. Instrumentation and Data Collection: ObjectivityIFPRI Observation scales require that all observers use them the same way so that they agree when rating the same phenomenon • Eg: quantities of output Page 52
  53. 53. Instrumentation and Data Collection: Sources of InstrumentIFPRI Instrument clearance • If administered a certain number of people • Established vs. new instruments • Problems in data collection • Disturbance to the natural situation Page 53
  54. 54. Instrumentation and Data Collection: Sources of InstrumentsIFPRI Problems • Using an observer, tape recorder, or television camera may influence the experimental variables or create artificial situation. What steps will you take to deal with this problem? Page 54
  55. 55. Questionnaire PreparationIFPRI Use a participatory approach with the enumerator Pre-test the questionnaire for logical flow and best method of asking questions Train the enumerators for data collection Supervision of data collection • Surprise Visits • Recall the questionnaire during the supervision Data cleaning Data sharing with other researchers and donors Page 55
  56. 56. AnalysisIFPRI Consistency of methods with the objectives Statistical assumptions and the data • If not, what are your corrections? New statistical techniques, computer programming or other unfamiliar analytical tools • Adequately described • Advantages over current methods clearly indicated • Back-up Reveal the depth to which these problems have been anticipated Page 56
  57. 57. Work PlanIFPRI Also known as a time schedule Gives a perspective of the project Format • Flow charts or diagrams • Sequential statements of the operations • Shows interrelationship between activities Demonstrates relative length of each activity Page 57
  58. 58. Work PlanIFPRI Workload Analysis • Week-by-week view of peaks and valley in demand for personnel • Does not compare personnel demands with available staff • Good for large, complex projects • Place in the appendix Page 58
  59. 59. End Product/ DeliverablesIFPRI Describe these products/ Deliverables Minimum end product/ Deliverables Maximum end product/ Deliverables Monthly and quarterly reports Review copyright policy Intellectual Property Rights Page 59
  60. 60. Dissemination of ResultsIFPRI State anticipated journal articles, monographs, conference, and workshop presentations • Give targeted dates Why important? Consider how the results will be used Cost of specific modes of dissemination Policy communication strategy Page 60
  61. 61. PersonnelIFPRI Director of Project • Competence • Relevant experience • If lacking, highlight training that might substitute Other key staff members • Qualifications • Place 1 page CV in appendix • Responsibilities • Mix of expertise fits this project Page 61
  62. 62. PersonnelIFPRI Staff members with minor roles • 1 paragraph on responsibilities, assignment, and relevant background Make each person’s assignment clear Do not list persons without their permission Page 62
  63. 63. Personnel: Organization and ManagementIFPRI Purpose • To describe how the organization and management will support the project Content • Record of successes • Present evidence that team members have worked together effectively • Relation of project to the unit Page 63
  64. 64. Personnel: New ResearchersIFPRI Ask an established researcher to work with you • Active consultant • Co-researcher • Principal investigator Letter from senior person • Role • Opinion of the junior staff • Willingness to actively oversee the project Page 64
  65. 65. Curriculum ViteaIFPRI Purpose • To tell your education and professional experiences • To highlight unique background and qualification Page 65
  66. 66. Curriculum Vitea: ContentIFPRI Education • Recent degrees first Year conferred Specialty Work history • Relevant • Chronologically Teaching experience Research experience Graduate advising experience Page 66
  67. 67. Curriculum Vitea: ContentIFPRI Projects Awards Travel experience Publications • Relevant • Past 5 years • Append your most recent and relevant publication Focused on your research capabilities Page 67
  68. 68. Curriculum ViteaIFPRI Do not: • List extraneous information • List personal information • List non-relevant memberships Page 68
  69. 69. BudgetIFPRI Purpose • Statement of proposed support and expenditure What it should do? • Mirror research plan • Credible • Realistic Page 69
  70. 70. BudgetIFPRI Types of costs • Direct costs Personnel Subcontracts and services Materials and supplies Communications Reports and publications Travel Equipment rental and purchase Page 70
  71. 71. BudgetIFPRI Indirect costs (overhead costs) • Cost of space • Heat/ airconditioning • Institutional administration • Accounting • Library • Basic phone service/ fax/ email Calculated as a percentage of direct cost Page 71
  72. 72. Budget: Direct CostIFPRI Personnel • Largest expense category • Each key staff member is shown the % of time he/she will work on project over a year Include annual and semi-annual wage increases • Workload analysis will show if students or temporary help is available • Separate entry for fringe benefits Page 72
  73. 73. Budget: Direct CostIFPRI Subcontracts and services • Separate budget category • May need approval from sponsor • Subcontractors indirect cost • No fringe benefits • Obtain cost estimates in writing Page 73
  74. 74. Budget: Direct CostIFPRI Materials and supplies • Expendable Stationary supplies Duplication supplies Audiotapes Videotapes Surveys Computer supplies • If high cost, then break into separate categories Page 74
  75. 75. Budget: Direct CostIFPRI Communications • Long-distance calls • Postage • Internet/ email connection • Large entries should be explained Page 75
  76. 76. Budget: Direct CostIFPRI Reports and publications • Cost of producing final report • Cost of producing reports during the project • Include estimated page charges from journals • Find number of copies that can be duplicated Page 76
  77. 77. Budget: Direct CostsIFPRI Travel • In town and out of town • Airfare • Accommodations • Ground transportation • Professional conventions • Per diem • Justify foreign travel Page 77
  78. 78. Budget: Direct CostsIFPRI Equipment rental and purchase • Cost is > $500 and service life > 2 years • Check inventory equipment Own institutions Neighboring institutions • If unable to buy, can probably rent Page 78
  79. 79. BudgetIFPRI Contingency allowances • Not explicitly in budget • Higher personnel cost • Can funds cross over to other categories Page 79
  80. 80. Budget: RationaleIFPRI Document how budget figures were determined Justify changes for multi-year projects Page 80
  81. 81. Budget: Key QuestionsIFPRI Will the budget … • provide sufficient resources to carry out the project? • include a narrative that justifies the major items of the budget? • be in the format required by the sponsor and your organization? • provide enough detail that the reviewer can easily see the way the items were calculated? • show a clear relationship between the budget items and the research activities? • include any attachments or appendices to justify unusual requests? • identify evaluation and dissemination costs? Page 81
  82. 82. AppendixIFPRI Purpose • To attach additional relevant information but is peripheral and not absolutely required Content • Cooperation letter from administrators • Sample items of new or unfamiliar tests and technical information on their validity • Description of unfamiliar statistical or research procedures • Samples of intended products • Reprints of your articles • Definition of terms • Subcontract data Page 82
  83. 83. AppendixIFPRI • Cooperative agreements • Letters of support from collaborators/ cooperators • Brochures about your research organization • Department research reports • Membership of research advisory boards • An index • Charts Proposal section index to evaluation criteria Personnel by required experience Detailed work plan analysis Personnel by task chart Organizational chart Textual or conceptual charts » Referred to repeatedly » Tab for easy access Page 83
  84. 84. Why Proposals Fail?IFPRI Procedure Section (Most common) • Insufficient, vague or unclear description • Discrepancies between the objectives and procedures • Design flaws Problem Section • Limited Significance • Local significance • Statements were nebulous, diffuse or unclear • Insufficiently limited studies • Lack of theoretical base Page 84
  85. 85. Why Proposal fail? contIFPRI Personnel • Lack of training or experience • Unfamiliarity with the literature or methods • Poor prior research record • Heavy alliance on inexperienced associates • Low investment of researchers’ time • Insufficient information on personnel and their duties Page 85
  86. 86. ReferencesIFPRI AIM Tips on Writing Proposal. Access on 02/13/2001. How to Write a Convincing Proposal: Strengthening Project Development, Donor Relations, and Resource Mobilization in Agricultural Research. The Hague: ISNAR. 2000. Krathwohl, David. How to Prepare a Research Proposal: Guidelines for Funding and Dissertations in the Social and Behavioral Sciences. Syracuse: Syracuse University Press. 1998. Reid, C.P. Patrick. Handbook for Preparing and Writing Research Proposals. Vienna: IUFRO Special Programme for Developing Countries. 2000. Access on 02/13/2001. Page 86
  87. 87. AppendixIFPRI Generating A Policy Oriented Research Idea By Manson Nwafor Page 88
  88. 88. Generating A Policy Oriented Research IdeaIFPRI Steps in the Policy Process 1. Define the societal problem 2. Generate a list of possible solutions 3. Evaluate the possible solutions 4. Select the most politically and socio-economically suitable solution. 5. Implement and monitor the solution 6. Evaluate the implementation of the selected solution 7. Go back to Step one where necessary The policy maker needs research evidence that can assist in steps 1 -3 – especially steps 2 and 3. Research evidence is also needed in step 6. Step 4 is more of a political/administrative decision where many factors beyond the researcher’s scope of work may be considered. Page 89
  89. 89. Generating A Policy Oriented Research IdeaIFPRI Sources of information on researchable societal problems: • Current news events • Conclusions/Areas for further research from previous studies • Events occurring in similar localities • Problems highlighted in stakeholder workshops (Farmers, donors, policy makers, agri-businessmen etc) • Trends observed from Trends reports/trends analysis • Gaps/contradictions observed in the government’s policy documents. Page 90