Planning evaluability assessments: A synthesis of the literature with recommendations

The report presents a synthesis of the literature on Evaluability Assessments.

The main focus of the synthesis is on the experience of international agencies and on recommendations relevant to their field of work. The synthesis provide recommendations about the use of evaluability assessments.


"The purpose of this synthesis paper is to produce a short practically oriented report that summarises the literature on Evaluability Assessments, and highlights the main issues for consideration in planning an Evaluability Assessment. The paper was commissioned by the Evaluation Department of the UK Department for International Development (DFID) but intended for use both within and beyond DFID."


  • What experience is there to learn from?
  • What is evaluability?
  • What is an Evaluability Assessment
  • Why are Evaluability Assessments needed?
  • What kinds of activities can be assessed?
  • When to carry out an Evaluability Assessment?
  • Mandatory or voluntary?
  • Who should do it?
  • How long does it take to do an Evaluability Assessment?
  • What does an Evaluability Assessment cost?
  • What process should be followed?
  • What major issues should be examined?
  • Project Design
  • Information availability
  • Institutional context
  • Why use checklists?
  • Why calculate aggregate scores?
  • Why use weightings
  • Can evaluability really be measured?
  • What outputs can be expected?
  • Does it work?
  • What are the risks?
  • Why has Evaluability Assessment not been part of standard practice?


Davies, R. (2013) Planning Evaluability Assessments: A Synthesis of the Literature with Recommendations. 40 Working Paper, DFID.