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A culture of measurement and a focus on impact
Useful and new evidence is essential for the sort of action that leads to tangible impact. While implementing activities on a large scale, Pratham has simultaneously tried to collect and analyze informative evidence.
This focus on data led Pratham to establish a research and evaluation unit in 2005 — the ASER Centre. The ASER Centre has since been successful in shifting discussions at the national, state, and local levels towards questions of outcomes and their corresponding data.
Apart from its flagship survey, The Annual Status of Education Report, the ASER Centre has conducted annual assessments on the outcomes of Pratham's Read India programme since 2009. The Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) has also extensively evaluated Pratham's programmes through randomized controlled trials.
In 2013, ASER expanded with the establishment of the Measurement, Monitoring, and Evaluation Unit (MME). This team of researchers works to provide timely and relevant feedback on the processes and outcomes of Pratham's programmes. The unit aims to be a paradigm of impact-focused process evaluation and programme monitoring in the social sector both within Pratham and elsewhere.