Coastal Services Center Performance Measure Support
Abt Associates developed a suite of output, outcome, efficiency, and qualitative performance measures to help evaluate success for the Coastal Services Center (CSC), part of NOAA's National Ocean Service devoted to serving the nation's state and local coastal resource management programs. We developed performance measures based on components of three existing logic models as well as a system to collect the appropriate metrics. The measures and system were pilot tested and adjusted based on the pilot testing results. Logic models based on four priority themes (Coastal Watersheds, Coastal Hazards Risks, Integrated Ocean Observing Systems, and the Center as a Learning Organization) were initially developed to articulate how CSC projects and activities match up with desired outcomes and strategic objectives. To make this comparison, Abt Associates screened more than 100 potential performance measures according to selection criteria tailored to CSC while following commonly practiced and accepted measurement selection principles and guidelines. These performance measures and implementation plans were developed to aid CSC with collecting required data, establishing a baseline, and setting and meeting strategic targets. Ten of the performance measures have been pilot tested and all of the performance measures have been implemented. Abt Associates modified the CSC strategic plan based on the logic models and performance measures developed. We also assisted CSC in providing input to the NOAA tools, technology, and information services Government Performance and Results Act measure. Finally, we provided conference support at meetings aimed at engaging local community leaders and national networks to make decisions that foster "resiliency" in Charleston, South Carolina and New Orleans, Louisiana. Participants worked together to develop an understanding of reasons for networking and collaboration, mechanisms that are most effective to foster networking and collaboration, and a list of common management issues.