SPRS methodology

Inclusion [Social Ratings] has designed its Social Performance Rating System ("SPRS") to measure the social performance and impact of a microfinance institution ("MFI") based on an analysis of the MFI's capacity and ability to oversee, manage and monitor its performance in its drive to achieve its social mission. It is, as well, designed to analyze to what level the MFI has had a positive impact on the targeted beneficiaries of its programs. Basically, the SPRS reviews how effective the organization is at translating its mission into practice and to what extent it has been successful in that effort. It encompasses the organization's objectives, systems, services, human resources and results, as well as its use of performance indicators and other information as it seeks to achieve its objectives. The results of the SPRS is expressed through a rating called the Social Performance & Impact Rating ("SPIR"). The SPIR is also meant to give the MFI a value-added tool for identifying and assessing the specific areas in its social performance that need improving, and where it is achieving or surpassing its social objectives. The SPRS is based upon a combination of a proprietary scorecard, where data captured from documents and information provided directly by the MFI to Inclusion analysts, is input directly. The scorecard utilizes proprietary algorithms weighted by an analytical hierarchy process that takes into account objective and subjective multi-criteria to arrive at an implied Social Performance & Impact Rating.


The social performance factors and indicators, or measures, that are incorporated into the scorecard and that the SPRS utilizes to arrive at a rating, include common sector social performance and client-protection principles and indicators found in other assessment tools such as the SPI4, the Smart Campaign and the Social Performance Task Force's Universal Standards for Social Performance Standards Management.


The Inclusion [Social Ratings] SPRS assesses an organization's social performance and impact not only by looking at its past results, but also by reviewing the quality of its operational and financial structure and the processes it employs to assess the likelihood of that performance and social impact being sustained into the future. It also incorporates client interviews conducted onsite in the field and interviews with branch staff to assess levels of social impact resulting from the organization's activities. It is our belief that an organization that performs better and receives a higher SPIR will have a higher likelihood of positively affecting the lives of its clients in the future and be less likely to cause harm.


A full description of the SPRS Methodology is available for download at:



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