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Monitoring ‘monitoring’ and evaluating ‘evaluation’: an ethical framework for monitoring and evaluation in public health
  1. Vijayaprasad Gopichandran,
  2. Anil Kumar Indira Krishna
  1. School of Public Health, SRM University, Kattankulathur, Tamil Nadu, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr Vijayaprasad Gopichandran, School of Public Health, SRM University, Medical College Third Floor, Kattankulathur, Kanchipuram District, Tamil Nadu 603 203, India; vijay.gopichandran{at}


Monitoring and evaluation (M&E) is an essential part of public health programmes. Since M&E is the backbone of public health programmes, ethical considerations are important in their conduct. Some of the key ethical considerations are avoiding conflicts of interest, maintaining independence of judgement, maintaining fairness, transparency, full disclosure, privacy and confidentiality, respect, responsibility, accountability, empowerment and sustainability. There are several ethical frameworks in public health, but none focusing on the monitoring and evaluation process. There is a need to institutionalise the ethical review of M&E proposals. A theoretical framework for ethical considerations is proposed in this paper. This proposed theoretical framework can act as the blueprint for building the capacity of ethics committees to review M&E proposals. A case study is discussed in this context. After thorough field testing, this practical and field-based ethical framework can be widely used by donor agencies, M&E teams, institutional review boards and ethics committees.

  • Codes of/Position Statements on Professional Ethics
  • Public Health Ethics

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