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5: Performance measurement     

Performance measurement is the underpinning of the “Check” part of the “Plan, do, check, improve” system. It provides fact-based information on which to measure progress and is an integral part of the collective management of the FSDS. As described by the TBS Results-based Management Lexicon, performance measurement is the process and system of selection, development and on-going use of performance measures to guide decision-making and assess whether or not the government is meeting its requirements. In the case of the FSDS, performance measurement will be used in two ways:

  • to track progress of the government‘s goal of improved performance on FSDS goals and targets (environmental indicators), and
  • to assess the Act’s purpose of making environmental decision-making more transparent and accountable (performance measures). 

Performance measurement will provide reassurance that outcomes are unfolding as expected.  It will also serve as an early warning that planned results are not being attained and, therefore, may require further investigation, identification of gaps and possible adjustments. Where appropriate, results of performance measurement will be included in FSDS progress reports.

5.1 Environmental indicators – Headline and target level indicators

Environmental indicators, reported on by the Canadian Environmental Sustainability Indicators (CESI) program, track performance at the ultimate outcome level. They measure progress toward achieving targets of themes I to III of the FSDS and provide “state-of-the-environment” headline indicators. The CESI indicators inform policy and decision-making by providing credible scientific data in areas such as air quality and pollution, GHG emissions, water availability and quality, and nature. For purposes of the logic model, CESI will report on the ultimate outcome of “Improved performance of FSDS goals and targets”. 

The environmental indicators produced by CESI are supported by Environment Canada, Statistics Canada, and Health Canada. CESI is expanding its suite of indicators and adapting its release strategy to meet the reporting requirements of the FSDS.

5.2 Performance measures

Performance measures track progress towards making environmental decision-making more transparent and accountable. They also track performance of the activities outlined in the logic model at the immediate and intermediate outcome levels (see Logic Model, Appendix 4). 

The performance measures provide the ability to measure progress on how the FSDS is being managed.  Several different methodologies will be used, including web analytics, stakeholder reports and comments, surveys and departments/agencies RPPs and DPRs.

Some of the performance measures require FSDS departments/agencies to contribute data and/or participate in surveys. The SDO will manage the internal measurement process outlined in Appendix 5, including how the quantitative and/or qualitative research will be conducted and the data gathered (e.g. surveys, interviews, etc.). Participating in the quantitative and/or qualitative research and compiling data should be integrated into the planning processes of each participating department/agency. Timing of the research has been outlined in the Performance Measurement Framework and will be discussed at the DG and ADM Committees.

5.3 Performance management table

The Logic Model in Appendix 4 is a tool for reporting the FSDS performance story by providing the logical linkages among FSDS activities, outputs, and outcomes. The Performance Management Table in Appendix 5 provides the details of how performance at key outcome levels (immediate, intermediate and ultimate) will be tracked and reported on. 

As such, the Performance Management Table includes descriptions of the:

  • performance measures and environmental indicators, a brief explanation of how these will be tracked and who is responsible for managing them;
  • systems to support monitoring--how FSDS results/performance will be reviewed and incorporated into government analysis, and reporting and decision-making; and
  • timing and frequency of data collection and publication.

In accordance with the FSDS Performance Measurement Framework, progress of Themes I to IV will be included in the FSDS Progress Report, as appropriate, as information becomes available.

The SDO, using CESI indicators, will lead in the reporting of data as it relates to progress of Themes I through III targets while PWGSC will monitor and compile results on progress for Theme IV targets.


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