The SDGs have become a new challenge for international evaluation community. The monitoring and evaluation can help to understand and analyze the complex interdependence among the SDGs. The 2030 Global Agenda makes it clear that there is a need for follow-up and review of the SDGs with M&E as an important element for SDGs achievement. M&E provide accountability and learning in the implementation process, playing an important role in helping to analyse progress as it occurs. In order to strengthen national M&E systems for the SDGs it is important to bring together multi-stakeholder groups that include different national ministries, parliamentarians, NGOs, academia, private sector as well as professional evaluators.
Useful links (updated 08/31/17):
EVALSDGs Network’s Webinars:
UNICEF’s Evaluation Office and EVALSDGs have joined forces to present a series of webinars.
The second webinar: Guest Presenter – Stefano D’Errico “Evaluation and Voluntary National Reviews (Agenda 2030)”, 13 July 2017.
Click here for details of the webinar and the guest presenter. Please click to access the webinar recordingand the PowerPoint presentation. For direct access to the video recording, please click here.
EVALSDGs Network’s Briefing Notes:
National parliaments are crucial in ensuring the 17 Goals in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development are meaningfully translated into national policies and programmes that improve citizens’ lives. Parliamentarians are responsible for making national government accountable and should therefore be strong advocates for using evaluation in policymaking. They can also help lead efforts to develop each country’s wider capacity for evaluation. This briefing discusses parliamentarians’ efforts to build national evaluation capacity and use evaluation effectively. Such tasks are not without challenges, but these, we argue, can be reframed as opportunities.
At the 2016 UN High Level Political Forum, 22 countries presented Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) — status reports on their efforts to implement national-level follow-up and review frameworks for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). VNRs are meant to cover the status of the 17 SDGs in each reporting country and to provide an overview of processes planned to assess national progress towards them. This briefing reports on a review of the 22 VNRs, which focused on how each addressed the role of evaluation. It found that most VNRs show little awareness about just what evaluation is and how it could be used to support the 2030 Agenda. Many more countries will soon be presenting their VNRs. The recommendations presented here can strengthen and improve future reporting on VNRs.
Developing National Evaluation Capacity (NEC) in the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) era brings four dynamic and interrelated challenges. These are: developing a National Evaluation Policy, setting up the institutional processes, securing adequate evaluation capabilities and engaging with partners. The challenges affect both the supply of sound evaluations for development plans and also the demand for their relevant and useful evidence, which in turn informs national policy development. This briefing highlights areas to consider when developing NEC, and is the fifth in a collection of briefings on effective evaluation for the SDGs.
Systematically evaluating policies, programmes and strategies is an essential feature of ongoing follow-up and review processes for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. But although it may be shocking to say, evaluation on its own is not enough. If follow-up and review frameworks and mechanisms are to address challenges, gaps and successes, they must be grounded in evaluative thinking. Evaluative thinking includes both a set of skills and a particular outlook or viewpoint. Building capacity in evaluative thinking is not the same as building capacity to do evaluations. This briefing defines evaluative thinking, describes what it requires to thrive and what stifles or inhibits it, and explains how it is intimately connected to adaptive management. It is the fourth in a collection of briefings discussing the role of evaluation in achieving the SDGs.
Each country sets its own national agenda and strategy within the broad contours of the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), yet the Agenda gives little explicit guidance on how to do this. However, there is a perspective on development that offers direction. This perspective views development through a ‘complex systems’ lens. It is consistent with the 2030 Agenda because it considers development as a holistic, integrated, multifaceted and context-sensitive process that has diverse means and ends, and is intimately tied to sustainability. This briefing summarises five aspects of this perspective that emerged as important lessons for evaluation during the Millennium Development Goals era, and discusses their implications for national evaluation agendas that support countries’ achievement of the SDGs. It is the third in a collection of briefings discussing the role of evaluation in achieving the SDGs.
Global indicators are important for understanding progress towards each of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). However, they can mask sub-national and thematic variations. They cannot explain how or why change occurred or its significance to different stakeholders. Evaluation helps to define and assess the worth, merit and significance of national policies in different contexts.
This briefing introduces key considerations for the use of indicators, monitoring and evaluation of SDGs implementation, review and follow-up at the national level. It promotes the importance of context-sensitivity, broad stakeholder involvement and adaptive management approaches in efforts to achieve development results. It is the second in a collection of briefings discussing the role of evaluation in achieving the SDGs.
April 2016: Evaluation: a crucial ingredient for SDG success
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development calls for follow-up and review processes that examine progress toward achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Such processes are needed at international and regional levels, but especially at the national level. To be maximally useful to policymakers and citizens, review processes must incorporate rigorous, country led evaluations that examine policy and programme implementation and effectiveness, and build well-reasoned and supported cases for claims of progress. At present, there is considerable focus on how to measure progress using indicators, but evaluation must go beyond measurement, to consider whether progress is equitable, relevant and sustainable. Such evidence will help demonstrate public sector accountability and accelerate change by focusing attention on enhancing learning and innovation. This is the first in a planned collection of briefings by
EVALSDGs and IIED.
International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) is developing a body of work that seeks to understand how to develop better evidence for sustainable development research and evaluation.