Most significant change

What is the most significant change method? The most significant change (MSC) technique serves the participatory monitoring or evaluation of complex interventions and other social change programmes or projects. It can be used throughout or at the end of a project or programme cycle. The MSC technique uses stories from the field level for collecting important outcomes valued by individuals or actor groups and for deliberating on their significance. It includes systematic and transparent discussion and consolidation processes among designated groups of stakeholders for identifying most significant changes. This allows reflecting on different perceptions and priorities and checking the direction of work.


(G. Wülser)
(G. Wülser)

Learn more

There are several publications by Rick Davies who developed the method, all listed in: Davies R, Dart J 2005. The Most Significant Changes (MSC) Technique: A Guide to its Use.

freely available:

Since 2000 there has been an active and global "community of practice" that shares experiences with the use of MSC in different settings and provides information on essential reading:

We found the method in the book:
Mcdonald D, Bammer G, Deane P 2009. Research Integration Using Dialogue Methods. Canberra: ANU E-Press, pp 165.
available open access:

Practical experiences


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Gabriela Wülser