IEG Evaluation Methods Advisory Function
Objectives of the Methods Advisory Function
IEG’s objective is to help the WBG meet its goals and enhance its development effectiveness through timely, robust evaluation. In 2016, as part of its organizational renewal, IEG’s Methods Advisory function was established to help deepen the quality and credibility of IEG evaluation work. The Methods Advisory Function currently has the following responsibilities:
- Advising IEG staff on the best available evaluation methods to address specific evaluation questions, and how to employ those methods.
- Ensuring consistent and efficient use of data in evaluations through support to IEG’s data arrangements, systems, and analytic staffing.
- Researching, generating, and promoting innovative evaluation methodologies – within IEG and external audiences – through knowledge sharing activities and publications.
- Through a learning program, supporting the development of evaluation skills among IEG staff and ensuring that internal and external audiences understand and appreciate the rationale for IEG’s evaluation methodologies and approaches.
The Work of the Methods Advisory Function
IEG’s Methods Advisor, Jos Vaessen, in collaboration with Estelle Raimondo, Senior Evaluation Officer at IEG, lead a small team of IEG staff who have different areas of methodological specialization. These staff work together with IEG evaluation teams to achieve the objectives described above. As each evaluation is unique, there is no single approach to how the methods team members work with IEG evaluation teams. Generally, the methods team members advise on research designs and evaluation questions, recommend approaches to collect and analyze data, sometimes manage aspects of the evaluations (especially when there are methodological innovations such as employing data science approaches). In addition to advising evaluation teams, the methods advisor and team also contribute to special evaluation initiatives in IEG or the World Bank Group (such as co-writing the World Bank Group Evaluation Principles). Researching and sharing evaluation methodological knowledge is a core part of the team’s work, and members frequently lead and organize knowledge sharing sessions and workshops within the World Bank Group and with other partner groups, such as those involved with the Global Evaluation Initiative, evaluation associations, government agencies, and others. In 2020, IEG re-established its work in developing and commissioning methodological guides. Finally, the IEG Methods Team organizes the IEG Academic Fellows program, which is on hold during the COVID-19 period but will restart when the COVID-19 situation improves.
Among multi-national and bi-lateral agencies with evaluation teams, IEG is one of the few with a formal Methods Advisory Function. To learn more about how we work and how the program has developed, please contact us.