Handbook on Impact Evaluation: Quantitative Methods and Practices

This book provides "a comprehensive overview of steps in designing and evaluating programs amid uncertain and potentially confounding conditions. It draws from a rapidly expanding and broadbased literature on program evaluation—from monitoring and evaluation approaches to experimental and nonexperimental econometric options for designing and conducting impact evaluations." (Khandker, Koolwal & Samad, 2010)

The book provides exercises and examples on a variety of evaluation options. There is a chapter dedicated to each option with a chapter breakdown that follows the structure outlined below.

  • Summary
  • Learning Objectives
  • Introduction
  • Regression Discontinuity in Theory
  • Advantages and Disadvantages of the RD Approach
  • Pipeline Comparisons
  • Questions
  • References


  • Basic Issues of Evaluation: reviews the basic issues pertaining to an evaluation of an intervention to reach certain targets and goals.
  • Randomization: focuses on the experimental design of an impact evaluation, discussing its strengths and shortcomings.
  • Propensity Score Matching: examines matching options, including the propensity score matching technique.
  • Double Difference: deals with double-difference options in the context of panel data, which relax some of the assumptions on the potential sources of selection bias.
  • Instrumental Variable Estimation: reviews the instrumental variable option, which further relaxes assumptions on self-selection.
  • Regression Discontinuity and Pipeline Options: examines regression discontinuity and pipeline options, which exploit the design of the program itself as potential sources of identification of program impacts.
  • Measuring Distributional Program Effects: presents a discussion of how distributional impacts of programs can be measured, including new techniques related to quantile regression.
  • Using Economic Models to Evaluate Policies: discusses structural approaches to program evaluation, including economic models that can lay the groundwork for estimating direct and indirect effects of a program.


Khandker, S. R., Koolwal, G. B., & Samad, H. A. The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development / The World Bank, (2010).Handbook on impact evaluation quantitative options and practices (52099). Retrieved from website: http://www.esf-agentschap.be/uploadedFiles/Voor_ESF_promotoren/Zelfevalu...

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