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CDD Impact Evaluations: Practical Approaches to a Tough Analytic Problem


Presentation (102kb PDF)

Tuesday, March 15, 2005
12:30 - 2:00 pm
Room: MC8-W150

Presenter: Robert Chase

Operations that adopt a Community Driven Development (CDD) approach are an important part of the World Bank's portfolio. Within this broad set of operations, there is great diversity as to how the Bank supports CDD. To see what works well, find what does not, and learn how to spend resources most effectively, it is important to evaluate CDD approaches. To this end, there have been several CDD impact evaluations, there are many currently underway, and there are many more planned for the near future.

But evaluating CDD is tough.  In that CDD seeks to give control over decisions and resources to community groups, there is great diversity in what communities choose to do with their resources.  Thus, it's hard to identify ex-ante what outputs an evaluation should track in any given community.  Further, whether or not a community gets resources from a CDD operation often depends on its capacity to organize an appropriate proposal. Given difficulties observing community social capital, ex-ante "treatment" communities don't easily identify themselves, nor do non-participating comparison communities with comparable social capital characteristics. Finally, CDD operations often have explicit objectives to empower communities, objectives that are difficult to measure under any circumstances.

Despite these difficulties, there are several promising approaches to evaluating CDD operations. The BBL will present several case studies of CDD evaluations, including ex-post efforts that combine quantitative and qualitative methods, baseline surveys, and experimental designs based on randomization.  From this overview of practical and creative approaches, it will focus on feasible tactics to meet the challenges of evaluating the impact of CDD operations.

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