Problem tree

problem-tree_example.jpgA problem tree is a common tool for project planning. The idea is to identify a focal problem for the project and then look for the causes and effects of this problem. This should help you to identify the target group that you want to work with, important issues in their context, as well as the kinds of stakeholders you need to take into account in your project.

You can use the template below to draw your problem tree. This is a very simple version of the problem tree analysis. More sophisticated versions exist elsewhere (e.g. in the sourcebook of sound planning of ESF programmes).

What you need to do: 
  1. Fill in your problem statement, as specifically as possible, in the middle.
  2. Then write down the causes of the problem in the boxes above and the effects of the problem in the boxes below. This can help you identify who can influence the problem: either by influencing its causes, or by having an interest in its effects.
  3. You can add relevant questions to the callouts connecting to the cause and effect boxes.

NB: You can find some general causes of problems in the Target Group Profiles, under Dig Deeper.

Template / Checklist:

This power point template helps you visualise your problem analysis by drawing a problem tree.