Review of evaluation approaches and methods for interventions related to violence against women and girls (VAWG)

This paper, written by Michaela Raab and Wolfgang Stuppert for the UK Department for International Development (DfID), assesses the strengths, weaknesses and appropriateness of a variety of approaches that have been used to evaluate programs aimed at addressing violence against women and girls (VAWG).  The main focus of the review is to identify what makes an evaluation effective which in this case means if it has had an influence on on programme implementation, policy and wider learning. 


"The review team started with an analysis of 74 full evaluation reports of interventions focusing on VAWG.  Subsequently, we conducted a web-based survey to assess four types of evaluation effects: (i) action effects (informing subsequent implementation of interventions on VAWG); (ii) persuasion effects (convincing others to support an intervention or the policies it advocates for); (iii) wider learning effects (influencing professionals beyond the evaluated intervention); and (iv) empowering effects on the intended beneficiaries of the intervention.

A sub-set of 39 evaluations was examined using Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA), to identify the paths (i.e. configurations of conditions) that led to effective evaluation in the field of VAWG. We found 28 out of 39 evaluations to have generated strong effects. Each effective evaluation is linked to at least one of eight identified paths.

Statistical analysis was used to assess trends and gaps regarding the methodology, quality and effects of the set of 39 evaluations. For a more nuanced understanding of the interplay of conditions, we applied Process Tracing to five effective evaluations representing four different paths. Finally, to illustrate the range of methods used in VAWG-related evaluation, 13 summaries of evaluations were prepared (in annex)." (Raab and Stuppert, 2014)


  • Review purpose and design   10
    • Purpose of the review   10
    • Scope   10
    • Review methodology   11
      • Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA)   12
      • Main steps of the Review   12
      • Difficulties and limitations   15
  • Review findings   17
    • Trends and gaps in VAWG-related evaluations   17
      • Number of evaluations   17
      • Approaches and methods   17
      • Evaluation quality   19
      • Evaluation context   22
      • Effects of evaluations   23
    • Conditions for evaluation effectiveness   26
      • Conditions for evaluation effectiveness   26
      • QCA findings: configurations for effective evaluation   28
      • Case studies: four paths to effective evaluation   30
    • Recommendations for effective evaluations  39 


Raab, M., and Stuppert, W., Review of evaluation approaches and methods for interventions related to violence against women and girls (VAWG), Department for International Development (DfID). Retrieved from: