Programme Sustainability Model [HEURISTIC]

Based on our experience of designing and evaluating development initiatives, there are three elements that are critical for the sustainability of programmes.


The source of energy and momentum inside the programme. This is an idea that people care about, connected to a methodology that allows them to achieve new things towards that idea. It is best when it is ground-up.


The assets and solutions created by communities and local government need to be high quality. If not, failure leads to programme stagnation. Detailed guidelines, videos, demonstrations, and standards need to be accessible.


Activities that support and encourage people and teams. These can include trainings, clinics, exchanges, newsletters, awards, conferences. They connect and encourage people, allowing them to grow.
To remember these we use the heuristic of a planet working as an integrated system:

  1. The planet’s hot core is the DRIVING FORCE of the programming
  2. The planet’s hard surface is the TECHNICALLY SOLID design that quality is built on
  3. The planet’s atmosphere is the LIFE SUPPORT SYSTEM that an organisation creates around the programme