UNICEF webinar: Comparative case studies

What does a non-experimental evaluation look like? How can we evaluate interventions implemented across multiple contexts, where constructing a control group is not feasible?

Comparative case studies can be used to answer questions about causal attribution and contribution when it is not feasible or desirable to create a comparison group or control group. They are particularly useful for understanding and explaining how context influences the success of an intervention and how better to tailor the intervention to the specific context to achieve intended outcomes.

This webinar on comparative case studies was presented by Dr. Delwyn Goodrick, with a Q&A session between the presenter and audience at the end.


Can comparative case studies be used as a standalone tool or should they be complementary to regular evaluations?

How do you ensure that case studies are representative for the population and not anomalies? How do you make sure to avoid bias in selecting the case studies?

Do you think there is any scope for negotiating the realization of comparative case studies within an RCT? Or is it the case that a consultancy which proposed conducting an RCT won't be able to conduct a comparative case study?

Are comparative case studies about comparing results between countries or within the same communities?


The findings, interpretations and opinions expressed in the webinars are those of the presenters and do not necessarily reflect the policies or views of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). The presenters are independent impact evaluation experts who were commissioned by UNICEF to prepare the webinars and use their own knowledge and judgement on key issues and to provide advice. The questions and comments reflected in the Q & A materials are based on those submitted by UNICEF staff as part of this capacity-building initiative. They do not necessarily reflect the policies or views of UNICEF.

The webinars were commissioned by UNICEF and UNICEF is entitled to all intellectual property and other proprietary rights which bear a direct relation to the contract under which this work was produced. The materials on this page are subject to a Creative Commons license CC BY-NC (Attribution-NonCommercial) and may be used and reproduced in line with the conditions of this licence.


Goodrick, D. (2015, August). Comparative Case Study. Impact evaluation webinars for UNICEF [Webinar]. Retrieved from: https://youtu.be/SgLSR55BxHg

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