Speakers: Richard Manning and Ian Goldman
17 June 2020
In 2006 the Center for Global Development’s report ‘When Will We Ever Learn? Improving lives through impact evaluation’ bemoaned the lack of rigorous impact evaluations. The number of impact evaluations has since risen (to over 500 per year), as have those of systematic reviews and other synthesis products.
We researched international organizations and countries, including Mexico, Colombia, South Africa, Uganda, and Philippines, to understand how such products are being implemented and used, and what facilitates or inhibits their use.
While we see definite progress, we find that:
- Impact evaluations are too often donor-driven, and not embedded in partner governments.
- The willingness of policymakers to take evidence seriously is variable
- The use of evidence is not tracked well enough
- Impact evaluations should be seen within a broader spectrum of tools that support policymakers
- Those who commission them need to learn from good practice in maximising the prospects of use