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what is investment Logic mapping and why do it?

ILM flow.png

During  pre-budget planning, public sector program managers need to take stock of programs that are due to expire. This is cause for reflection on possibilities to fund new and emerging priorities.  

To give yourself the best chance of success, it is best to start the investment planning process as early as possible. 

One good way to do this is to undertake an Investment Logic Mapping (ILM) exercise. But wait, what is an ILM and why do we need it?

An ILM is a structured facilitation process, developed and refined by DTF (Vic) over the past 20 years. It is pinpoints the major causes and effects of problems and promotes a stakeholder-driven approach to solutions definition. In Victoria, high-value, high-risk investments mandate business cases with ILMs, but it is often a great first step no matter the size of investment sought.

The ILM process results in a simple one-page output that visually distils the underlying problems to be addressed, the benefits to be achieved (along with KPIs), a suite of responses and the preferred solution. It is part of DTF's Investment Management Standard (available here)- the suite of tools and templates to help public sector leaders to plan and deliver significant investments. 

Completing an ILM process has other benefits:

  • it draws key stakeholders together to establish a shared understanding of the program

  • it enables evidence sources to be identified, both to understand the baseline and to target improvements

  • it provides a structured approach to agreeing options that are most closely targeted to desired benefits

  • it considers factors such as risks, dis-benefits, interdependencies, cost and timeframe in the options analysis process. 

The ILM process involves between one and four facilitated workshops with key stakeholders, facilitated by a DTF-accredited facilitator. Each workshop is built around one of four themes, as shown in the graphic above. 


Charlie Tulloch from Policy Performance has been an accredited ILM facilitator since November 2016 and has expertise and experience leading over 50 ILM workshops for diverse topics/sectors to support business cases in Victoria, Queensland, ACT and WA.

The sooner you start your ILM process, the more time you will have to build the most compelling case for change in the business case, and the clearer your investment case will be when you bump into the Minister or your senior executive in the corridor.

Contact Charlie should you need support to get your ILM process started and secure the ongoing benefits of the program for your program beneficiaries and related stakeholders. 

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