NCID researcher Alex Armand participated in the 4th International Conference on National Evaluation Capacities organized by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the International Initiative for Impact Evaluation (3IE) in Bangkok, Thailand. Armand presented the research project, jointly carried out with Pedro Vicente from Novafrica at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa, titled âOn the mechanics of the political resource curse: information and local elite behavior in Mozambiqueâ.
âOur project has a theoretical importance-explains Alex Armand- in the sense that we want to disentangle the mechanism that is linking resource boom to changing behavior between different actors, while most other studies have focused simply on how to increase transparencyâ.
The event focused on the importance that the field of Impact Evaluation is taking on research and policy circles.
âMost of the studies run by UNDP were based on focus groups, interviews, and qualitative evaluation while nowadays they are moving towards methodologies which are more quantitative and technicalâ, said Alex Armand.
At the end the conference attendants signed what they called the âBangkok Declarationâ aiming to introduce general principles so they can integrate evaluation into the Sustainable Development Goals.
The year 2015, as declared and endorsed by the UN General Assembly, is the International Year of Evaluation, but is also the deadline by which countries were expected to have achieved the Millennium Development Goals.
Thus, the conference discussed how the field of impact evaluation and its methodologies can help to asses the Millennium Development Goals and reach the Sustainable Development Goals going forward.
According to Armand, the integration of such mechanisms can measure the impact of the SDGs and not just look at whether change has occured or not.
âThat is why it is important to introduce technical tools into evaluation, because we want to understand how we reach the goals rather than just showing that you have reached the goals,â said Alex Armand.