Issue 1/2023, 22. Volume Page 39–54
Terms of Reference Matter – Insights from Evaluations of Finnish Development Cooperation
High-quality terms of reference (ToRs) point to solid evaluation objectives, precise evaluation questions, appropriately capturing of OECD/DAC criteria and specific methodological requirements. They guide evaluators by facilitating focussed evaluations, thus, more tailored data collection and analysis, which in turn is expected to uplift the quality of evaluation reports. Based on a meta-evaluation commissioned by Finland’s Ministry for Foreign Affairs, we assess the impact of ToRs on the quality of evaluation reports. For a sample of 70 mid-term and final evaluations of development interventions, we run different ordinary least square regressions with robust standard errors. We find that a one-unit increase of quality of ToRs (on a scale from 1 to 4) is statistically significantly associated to a third of a unit increase of quality of evaluation reports (on a scale from 1 to 4). Therefore, we conclude: it is plausible that ToRs matter.
Meta-Evaluation, Quality of Evaluation Reports, Quality of Terms of Reference, Development Cooperation
Väth, S., Flaig, M. & Gaus H. (2023). Terms of Reference Matter – Insights from Evaluations of Finnish Development Cooperation. Zeitschrift für Evaluation, 22(1), 39-54. https://doi.org/10.31244/zfe.2023.01.03