Evaluating Social Programs

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Overview

Learn why evaluations matter and how they can be used to rigorously measure the social impact of development programs. This practical course will provide a thorough understanding of randomized evaluations, with pragmatic step-by-step training for conducting one’s own evaluation. Through a combination of lectures and case studies from real randomized evaluations, the course will focus on the benefits and methods of randomization, choosing an appropriate sample size, and common threats and pitfalls to the validity of an experiment. While the course centers upon the why, how, and when of randomized evaluations, it will also impart insights on the importance of needs assessments, effectively measuring outcomes, quality control, and the monitoring methods most useful for impact evaluations.

This social impact course is designed for people from a variety of backgrounds: managers and researchers from international development organizations, foundations, governments, and non-governmental organizations from around the world, as well as trained economists looking to retool.