In 2002 the UK National Audit Office reviewed DFID’s performance management. It found a gap in country-level performance measurement. DFID then formalised a routine of independent Country Programme Evaluations (CPEs) or Regional Programme Evaluations (RPEs).
Evaluation of operations at the country level became increasingly important as DFID decentralised. These evaluations, conducted for DFID’s Evaluation Department (EVD), provided important accountability and lesson learning functions for DFID. The key aim of the evaluations was to assess DFID’s strategy choices in its bilateral programmes and the effectiveness of its strategy implementation – i.e. the results it has achieved. The primary audience for the evaluations was the UK government and DFID senior management, including heads of country offices.
We conducted five annual rounds of competitively tendered DFID Country Programme Evaluations (CPEs) and Regional Programme Evaluations (RPEs), as an independent external evaluator. We led a consortium and provided the Study Director and the majority of the Team Leaders, as well most of the technical specialists in the evaluation teams. These included specialisms such as aid effectiveness, results-based management, policy and planning, public financial management, public sector reform, pro-poor growth, conflict / post-conflict, security sector reform, state-building, cross-Whitehall working, governance, health and HIV/AIDS, education, humanitarian response, civil society, and food security. Our approach was to use small teams for each of the country studies, which as far as possible, were both consistent between countries and reflected the main programme themes in each specific country.
We conducted CPEs / RPEs in: Afghanistan; Bangladesh; Cambodia; the Caribbean Region (Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago); the Central Asia, South Caucasus and Moldova Region [CASCM] (Armenia, Georgia, Kyrgyz Republic, Moldova, Tajikistan); China; DR Congo; Ethiopia; Ghana; West Bengal State (India); Indonesia; Kenya; Malawi; Mozambique (twice); Nepal; Pakistan; Rwanda; Sierra Leone; Sudan; the Southern Africa Region (Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, South Africa); Tanzania (jointly for DFID and Irish Aid); the Western Balkans Region (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Serbia); Yemen, Zambia.
We produced a CPE/RPE report, a presentation to DFID and an Evaluation Summary for each country. The reports are public domain documents, available from DFID’s website, and have been some of their most downloaded documents. We also produced an annual synthesis report to capture the generic lessons across the evaluations, and make cross-cutting recommendations to DFID senior management.
They are also available under the Knowledge Products menu of our own websiteImage © DFID Regional Evaluation Programmes_Itad