A clear and well-thought out focus is crucial to ensure that you will be able to carry out your research with adequate rigour and incisiveness, as well as to increase the effectiveness of youradvocacy efforts.

This preliminary step will help you determine which aspect(s) of the right to education you shouldmonitor. The nature of your work may automatically shape the scope of your monitoring work. For example, if your organisation’s mission is to serve the local community and to work with local schools, then your geographic scope may already be determined.

It is also likely that your initial motivation to monitor the right to education comes from the fact that you have already identified a specific problem in education that you want to address. If this is the case this step may still be useful in helping you to critically assess your chosen thematic focus and to determine whether it requires further refining.

Nevertheless, if you consider that the thematic focus of your monitoring project is both well thought through and sufficiently narrow, you may skip this section of the Guide and move directly to Step 2.