Designing impact evaluations: different perspectives

Robert Chambers, Dean Karlan, Martin Ravallion, and Patricia Rogers
July 2009 3ie WORKING PAPER 4

Preface (see text below)
Howard White, Executive Director, International Initiative for Impact
Evaluation (3ie)

Making the Poor Count: Using Participatory Methods for Impact

Robert Chambers, Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex

Thoughts on Randomized Trials for Evaluation of Development:
Presentation to the Cairo Evaluation Clinic

Dean Karlan, Yale University and Innovations for Poverty Action/ Jameel
Poverty Action Lab Affiliate

Evaluating Three Stylized Intervention
Martin Ravallion, World Bank

Matching Impact Evaluation Design to the Nature of the
Intervention and the Purpose of the Evaluation

Patricia Rogers, Collaboration for Interdisciplinary Research, Consulting
and Learning in Evaluation, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology


Debates on approaches to impact evaluation design appear to have reached an impasse in recent years. An objective of the international conference, Perspectives on Impact Evaluation, March 29th to April 2nd, Cairo, organized by 3ie, NONIE, AfrEA and UNICEF, was to bring together different voices and so work toward a consensus. A key session in this approach was a plenary in which experts from different perspectives were asked how they would approach the evaluation of three interventions: a conditional cash
transfer, an infrastructure project and an anti-corruption program. The motivation for the session was that debates get stuck when they remain at the conceptual level, but that a greater degree of consensus can be achieved once we move to the specifics of the design of a particular evaluation. I am very pleased that the four presenters agreed to write up their views so they can be more widely disseminated.

Thanks are due to Hugh Waddington and Rizwana Siddiqui for assistance in the preparation of this collection.

Howard White
Executive Director, 3ie


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