Participants are provided with a reasonably detailed case study with information that can include quantitative and qualitative data. They are then given time to analyse and process the information, develop conclusions or insights and present it back. The assessor asks follow-up questions to further understand the practitioner’s logic and process.
Using this mode
Case analyses can be used in hiring processes and for promotion decisions. The problem or case should be geared towards the specific role.
Guidance for assessors
- Provide as much detail as possible in the case study. Refrain from providing data that has already been analysed. Remove bias and allow the practitioner to do their own analysis.
- Probe for process. Ask practitioners how they came to their conclusions and interpreted a situation. See if they are able to assess things from multiple standpoints.
Example competencies for presentation of case analysis
Systems analysis for economic inclusion: competency A1
Provide a package of background information and data for a market and require participants to present an analysis of market structure, performance and market failures
Frame a case that includes clear examples of power imbalance due to either political patronage or affirmative action. Probe how participants analyse how the distribution of power affects market dynamics.
Probe for understanding of: feedback loops; two-way interactions between actors, institutions, and social norms; multiple possible causal relationships.
Business and financial analysis: competency A2
Provide a case study of an organisation that includes details on its mission, activities and financial model. Provide detailed numerical data if possible. Let the participant spend some time processing the information. Ask them to present on the organisation’s business model, financial health and areas of concern or improvement. Probe for an ability to use business terms accurately, recognise missing information, make reasonable assumptions and come to evidence-based and justifiable conclusions.
Behavioural insight: competency A3
Probe for understanding of why individuals or organisations make choices. Probe for an ability to see multiple reasons for behaviour, including social and cultural pressures, rather than just financial. Assess for ability to design interventions that target behaviour change from multiple angles.
Knowledge Synthesis: competency A5
When listening to a presentation of a case analysis push practitioners to backup their claims with sources and the credibility of those sources. Look for inconsistencies and contradictions. Challenge practitioners to explain or reconcile their decisions about what perspectives to believe.
Critical thinking, foresight & vision: competency A6
At the end of a presentation ask practitioners to go back through their key points to emphasise the main assumptions they made. Ask them to articulate which they think is the most likely to be wrong, how they would test it and what they would do differently if it turned out to be incorrect.
Decision making: competency B1
Ask practitioners to develop interventions and to explain what specific hypotheses they are testing through the intervention. Probe how the intervention results might prove or disprove their hypotheses.
Intervention design: competency B2
Given a case study and a goal in mind ask participants to craft an intervention including details related to activities, exit strategy and performance metrics. Probe participants on how they would present the intervention to partners.
Coordinating multiple interventions: competency B3
Ask practitioners to develop a portfolio of interventions for a given market systems case. Probe for the ability to sequence the interventions that allow for the gradual spread of the change in the system. Push them to rationalise their choice of interventions with regards to feasibility, sustainability, and scale.
Donor relations & compliance: competency B5
Add an additional question to an existing case study presentation: how does this solution comply with donor requirements? How would you reassure the donor that what you are proposing does not compromise their rules, policies or image?
Facilitation: competency C2
Provide a prompt for a situation where practitioners have to interact with a person whose behaviours are easy to judge negatively - for example predatory business behaviour or spending family money on drinking. Get them to role play that interaction. Observe how much they are able to empathise and inquire as opposed to being judgmental and jumping to conclusions.
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