The MSI Evaluation Tool and Evaluation Methodology provide a framework to comprehensively and objectively evaluate the effectiveness of an MSI’s institutional design, structure, and operational procedures. They draw together current research and practical understandings about MSI structures and processes, recognizing that MSI design features — such as good governance and robust accountability mechanisms — influence an initiative’s effectiveness and potential to achieve positive impacts. By examining an MSI’s institutional framework, the Tool enables individuals, organizations, and MSIs themselves to better understand and evaluate the capacity of an MSI to affect change.

The MSI Evaluation Tool was developed collaboratively by MSI Integrity and the International Human Rights Clinic (IHRC) at Harvard Law School through a five-year iterative process of extensive research, practical pilot-testing, and global consultation with the public and experts on MSIs. The tool was originally developed to assess whether global standard-setting MSIs have been designed in a manner to effectively protect and promote human rights. However, it can also be used as a guide for reviewing or developing institutional components of MSIs, or for new MSIs looking to learn lessons from other initiatives and exemplify good practice. With some modifications, the tool can also be applied to a range of purposes beyond human rights standard-setting MSIs.

MSI Integrity has also published a simplified version of the evaluation tool called the Essential Elements of MSI Design (Essential Elements) which contains only those indicator questions that identify design features that are necessary but insufficient for MSIs to effectively protect and promote human rights. Though the Essential Elements does not provide a comprehensive evaluation of MSI design, it can be used to conduct preliminary, indicator-based assessments or inform the development of new MSIs or revisions to existing ones.

The finalized MSI Evaluation Tool (2017) builds off the Draft MSI Evaluation Tool (2013) by incorporating feedback related to indicator criteria and clarifying assessment procedures. A summary of each comment received during the 2013 Global Consultation process and the resulting modifications is available here.

More information on the development of the MSI Evaluation Tool and Evaluation Methodology is available here.

Download the MSI Evaluation Tool (2017) here.

Download the Essential Elements of MSI Design here.