Learning how to learn: eight lessons for impact evaluations to make a difference

This background note from the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) outlines some of the key lessons that have been learnt through recent and ongoing work in impact evaluations,  utilisation-focused evaluations and evidence-based policy.


"Just as there have been repeated calls for aid evaluation to move beyond outputs to measure downstream impacts, it is also important for the same principles to be internalized in thinking about impact evaluations themselves. There are eight specific insights from previous research that are worth considering maximizing the possibilities of take-up. These fall into three broad categories:

  • Institutional readiness
  • Implementation
  • Communication and engagement" (Ramalingam 2011)


Ramalingam, B. Overseas Development Institute (ODI), (2011). Learning how to learn: eight lessons for impact evaluations that make a difference. Retrieved from website: http://www.odi.org.uk/resources/docs/7096.pdf

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