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Conducting a Situation Analysis

Considering the wider dimensions of programme implementation.
Para athlete teaches young boy how to play badminton Papua New Guinea
© Joanna Lester - Pacific Sports Partnerships

In this article, we go into more detail on the key questions on situation analysis, themes, and issues to consider in programmes.

How To Start Your In-depth Analysis?

You need to listen and ask questions. And lots of them!

As a starting point, reflect on the workbook questions. There will be some questions that you cannot answer yourself and will need to explore further with the community directly. Some questions also may not be relevant, but hopefully it will start to get you thinking about the context your programme is working in.

Whilst it is possible to conduct a partial situation analysis as desk research, programme participants need to be involved, either through interviews or group workshops. You will not understand the full picture unless you talk to participants directly.

If your participants are children (under 18 years), you can use the Nine Basic Requirements for Effective and Ethical Participation to help you.

A situation analysis is not something that is done once and then never done again – it requires ongoing review as part of the monitoring and evaluation process to ensure the design is still appropriate and that all groups involved have been considered.

N.B. This analysis will be useful when building your logic model as there is a section for ‘assumptions’ which will help make you aware of the wider implications for delivery.

Themes for Analysis

Below are some factors you may wish to consider within your analysis. The themes and questions are not exhaustive, so do feel free to add or adjust to fit your specific initiative or community:

Sport in context Is sport the right mechanism? What currently exists?
Gender and sexuality Does your programme promote gender equality and diversity of sexual orientation (e.g. LGBTQI+ people)?
Disability and diversity Is your programme inclusive for people with disabilities? Are diverse groups involved together?
Social cohesion Does your programme foster inclusion and integration?
Culture and religion What cultural factors are important to consider?
Environmental sustainability What is your environmental impact? Can you reduce it?
Socio-economic factors How do these factors affect your programme (e.g. access to resources, facilities for your beneficiaries)?
Political landscape Are there political factors and actors to consider?
Governance and administration How is your programme/organisation governed? Is there independent oversight (e.g. a board)?


Developing a situation analysis report

Use the workbook below to introduce you to these tools and practice the analysis techniques. The questions are non-exhaustive, so do add your own questions relevant to your specific community.

This is the third stage of your situation analysis. This analysis will also enable you to develop your logic model through a better understanding of initiative ‘assumptions’.

Screenshot of workbook Developing your situation analysis
This workbook contains reflection questions for your situation analysis, under the following headings:
– Your community
– Sport and development within the local context
– Organisational capacity
– Situation Analysis Report template
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