Introduction to Impact Evaluation for Public Management


Learn how impact evaluations help make better decisions about public resources: how to identify evaluation opportunities, what a credible impact evaluation consists of, how to take advantage of the
lessons of an impact evaluation, and how to drive a learning agenda at your institution.

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This is a basic course that will allow you to acquire the key concepts to understand how experimental and quasi-experimental methodology can be used with the aim of making better decisions within an
organization and finally promoting a process of learning and continuous improvement. The fundamental objective is that the participant learns to recognize evaluation opportunities in his organization, understanding the technical requirements and necessary conditions to carry out an evaluation with scientific credibility. The course will allow you to get started in the field of impact evaluation through theory
and real evaluation cases. You will also receive tools to develop a learning agenda at your institution to
design and implement evidence-informed policies.

Duración: 6 semanas

Inicio: 03/01/2023

Final: 02/01/2024

  • Objetives:
    At the end of the course, the student will have understood what a reliable impact evaluation with scientific credibility consists of and will have learned how impact evaluations help make better decisions about
    resources and public management. In turn, they will know the experimental evaluation method and the technical requirements to carry out impact evaluations and will have acquired the ability to identify
    opportunities for experimental evaluation within public policy, as well as the recognition of the elements (logistical, institutional and ethical) to take into account when designing an evaluation.
  • Contents:
    The course contemplates the participation of the students in the discussion forum of the course, as well as the realization of five practical and integrating exercises (one per module). For each of these exercises,
    the student will answer a series of short questions and/or multiple-choice questions that will allow them to apply what they have learned. The exercises also allow the self-assessment of the student.
    Participation in the discussion forum is not mandatory, it is not evaluated and has no value in the finalgrade, but it is of great learning for the student.
  • MODULE 1 – Importance of impact evaluation
    1.1 Lessons learned for public and private administration
    1.2 What is an impact evaluation and why is it useful for public and private administration?
    1.3 What does impact evaluation help us understand/respond to?
    1.4 The importance of everyday measurement
    1.5 Monitoring and evaluation
    1.6 What do we need to conduct an impact evaluation?
  • MODULE 2 – Basic concepts of the impact evaluation and the experimental method
    2.1 Let’s recall what impact evaluation and experiments are
    2.2 The key to impact evaluations: counterfactuals
    2.3 Technical requirements of an experimental evaluation – Randomization as a solution to the selection
    2.4 Analytical model to estimate the magnitude of the impact
  • MODULE 3 – Theory of change
    3.1 Theory of change and its use
    3.2 Theory of change in practice
    3.3 When the intervention is already defined
    3.4 The theory of change and the lack of impact (or unforeseen impacts)
    3.5 When the intervention is not defined
    3.6 Defining the intervention
    3.7 Learning opportunities that arise throughout the causal chain
    3.8 Impact and outcome variables
    3.9 Types of impact variables
    3.10 Disaggregation level in measurements
    3.11 Operations or process evaluation
    3.12 Conclusion
  • MODULE 4 – Management Evaluations: Evaluating the how instead the what
    4.1 What is a management evaluation?
    4.2 Management vs policy evaluations
    4.3 The question they answer
    4.4 The evaluation user
    4.5 Management evaluations in processes
    4.6 Supplementary activities to an existing process
    4.7 Importance of management assessments
    4.8 How to identify management evaluation opportunities
    4.9 Conclusions
  • MODULE 5 – How to start thinking about an evaluation: technical, logistical, institutional and ethical
    5.1 Questions we must solve when thinking about an impact evaluation
    5.2 Technical Aspects
    5.3 Logistic, institutional and political aspects
    5.4 Ethical aspects
    5.5 Conclusions
  • MODULE 6. Conclusions


Daniel E. Ortega:

Director of development contributions and impact evaluation at CAF -development bank of Latin America- and associate professor at IESA in Caracas. His work focuses on the microeconomics of development, with an emphasis on impact assessment for crime reduction, educational programs, and public capacity. His research has been published in several international journals. He has a PhD in Economics from the University of Maryland in the USA and is an Economist from the Central University of Venezuela.

Agustina Hatrick:

Executive of the Department of development contributions and impact evaluation of CAF-development bank of Latin America. She designs and manages impact evaluations of public policies in Latin America and encourages institutions to use data and evidence to improve their decisions. Master in Economics and Bachelor Degree in Economics from the Torcuato Di Tella University. She also works as an impact evaluation professor at the same university.

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Duración total

6 semanas


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