Scaling Up: A Framework and Lessons for Development Effectiveness from Literature and Practice


Scaling up of development interventions is much debated today as a way to improve their impact and effectiveness. Based on a review of scaling up literature and practice, this paper develops a framework for the key dynamics that allow the scaling up process to happen. The authors explore the possible approaches and paths to scaling up, the drivers of expansion and of replication, the space that has to be created for interventions to grow, and the role of evaluation and of careful planning and implementation. They draw a number of lessons for the development analyst and practitioner. More than anything else, scaling up is about political and organizational leadership, about vision, values and mindset, and about incentives and accountability—all oriented to make scaling up a central element of individual, institutional, national and international development efforts. The paper concludes by highlighting some implications for aid and aid donors.

An annotated bibliography of the literature on scaling up and development aid effectiveness was created by Oksana Pidufala to supplement this working paper. Read more »