Independent Development Evaluation (IDEV)

IDEV logo

About IDEV

Independent Development Evaluation (IDEV) is an independent and impartial unit dedicated to enhancing the development effectiveness of the African Development Bank in its regional member countries through:

  • independent and instrumental evaluations
  • oversight over self-evaluation processes and products, and
  • proactive engagement in evaluation partnerships and knowledge-sharing activities.

The three objectives of IDEV’s independent evaluation

IDEV’s core objectives are:

  • to contribute to enhanced learning
  • to provide a basis for accountability, and
  • to promote an evaluation culture within the Bank and regional member countries.

Evaluation Activity

IDEV undertakes evaluations of completed projects, sector policy reviews, country assistance evaluations, business process reviews, and other studies relevant to the Bank’s policies, operations, and results. Additionally, IDEV is also tasked with the oversight of the overall evaluation system within the Bank; the internal and external communication of evaluation findings and lessons; and the promotion of evaluation capacity development.  

Lessons Learned

IDEV’s evaluations provide compelling lessons for the direction of future projects. They highlight the factors that have been shown to determine success across sectors (infrastructure or water for example), themes (e.g. poverty or health), regions (projects across borders) or countries. Lessons learned also identify the issues that most commonly hinder outcomes and highlight the areas where specific attention in programme design and implementation can produce the most positive impact.

Independence

IDEV enjoys organizational and behavioural independence; it is protected from outside influences and pressure and avoids conflicts of interest.  The Evaluator-General reports directly to the Bank’s Board of Directors through its Committee on Operations and Development Effectiveness (CODE). CODE maintains oversight of IDEV’s work, endorses and recommends IDEV’s work program and the associated budget to the Board of Directors for approval, and ensures that the department’s budget is ‘ring fenced’ and insulated from management influence.

Annual Report

IDEV produces an annual report which monitors its progress against the strategic objectives.

Activities

IDEV undertakes evaluations of completed projects, sector policy reviews, country assistance evaluations, business process reviews, and other studies relevant to the Bank’s policies, strategies, operations, and results. Additionally, IDEV is also tasked with the oversight of the overall evaluation system within the Bank; the internal and external communication of evaluation findings and lessons; and the promotion of evaluation capacity development. 

Evaluations and knowledge sharing

IDEV provides a range of evaluations and knowledge products and organizes events that are responsive and relevant to the need for evaluative knowledge.

IDEV also produces Evaluation Matters, a quarterly magazine on development and evaluation issues distributed to a wide network of stakeholders.


Evaluation Capacity Development

IDEV engages in developing the evaluation capacity of the Bank and its RMCs. The approach taken is to support evaluation institutions and organizations in Africa to build capacity to supply evaluation and to raise demand for their use.

The History of Evaluation within the AfDB

1977

AfDB

First evaluation undertaken at the AfDB

1980

AfDB

First evaluation unit set up

1987

AfDB

Unit becomes the Operations Evaluation Office, reporting to the President

1995

AfDB

The Operations Evaluation Office is upgraded to a department

1996

AfDB

The Operations Evaluation Department is placed under the umbrella of the newly created Committee on Operations and Development Effectiveness

2002

AfDB

The function of the Operations Evaluation Department is reviewed and a Presidential Directive defining the department’s mandate is issued

2007

AfDB

The Board of Directors approves the independent evaluation policy and functional responsibilities of the Operations Evaluation Department

2012

AfDB

OPEV undertakes a self-assessment that forms the basis for a revised Independent Evaluation Policy and a new Independent Evaluation Strategy, and informs the Rolling Work Programme for 2013-2015

2013

AfDB

The Independent Evaluation Strategy 2013-2017 is adopted by the Board of Directors, and an update to the rolling Work Programme is presented for 2014-2016

2014

AfDB suup

OPEV changes its name from operations evaluation to Independent Development Evaluation (IDEV) to better reflect its independence and its mandate

2015

AfDB

The Board approves the IDEV Work Program for 2016 – 2018

2016

AfDB

The Independent Evaluation Policy is revised, and IDEV hosts the AfDB Development Evaluation Week in Abidjan, attracting 250+ evaluation stakeholders.