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Quantitative and Qualitative Methods in Impact Evaluation and Measuring Results

Garbarino, Sabine and Holland, Jeremy (2009) Quantitative and Qualitative Methods in Impact Evaluation and Measuring Results. Discussion Paper. University of Birmingham, Birmingham, UK.

Available under License Creative Commons Attribution .


URL of Published Version: http://www.gsdrc.org/docs/open/EIRS4.pdf


There has been a renewed interest in impact evaluation and measuring results in recent years amongst development agencies and donors. This paper reviews the case for promoting and formalising qualitative and combined methods for impact evaluation and measuring results, as part of a broader strategy amongst donors and country partners for tackling the evaluation gap. The accompanying workshop report provides a summary of the January 2009 workshop “Make an Impact: Tackling the “I” and the “D” of Making It Happen”, which aimed to familiarise DFID staff with the use of qualitative methods in impact evaluation and measuring results.

The case for qualitative and combined methods is strong. Qualitative methods have an equal footing in evaluation of development impacts and can generate sophisticated, robust and timely data and analysis. Combining qualitative research with quantitative instruments that have greater breadth of coverage and generalisability can result in better evaluations that make the most of their respective comparative advantages.

Type of Work:Monograph (Discussion Paper)
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
Number of Pages:51
Department:International Development Department

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Date:March 2009
Projects:Governance and Social Development Resource Centre
Series/Collection Name:GSDRC Emerging Issues Papers
Keywords:monitoring, evaluation, accountability, impact evaluation, qualitative methods, quantitative methods
Subjects:H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
H Social Sciences > HA Statistics
Related URLs:
Funders:UK Department for International Development (DFID)
Copyright Status:Copyright 2009 University of Birmingham
Copyright Holders:University of Birmingham
ID Code:646

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