What does this mean?
The external evaluation team is responsible for data collection and analyses and for the evaluation report, including the formulation of judgements (also called reasoned assessment) and the drafting of conclusions and recommendations. It interacts with the reference group and the evaluation manager. It provides evaluation services to the commissioning body under contract.
The members of the external evaluation team are independent of the organisations that participated in the design and implementation of the evaluated intervention. They belong to national or international research organisations or consultancy firms, or are experts working independently. Where possible, some members of the team are from the country or countries targeted by the evaluated intervention.
Why contract an external evaluation team?
- To ensure the independence, impartiality and credibility of the evaluation process.
- To provide expertise on evaluation methods and techniques.
- To provide expertise in the sector(s) concerned.
How to select the team?
The external evaluation team is selected on the basis of proposals via different procedures, e.g. pluri-annual evaluation service contract or specific call for tenders.
The evaluation manager engages the team after consulting members of the reference group.
The following criteria are used as guidelines:
- Relevant experience in evaluation.
- Knowledge of the evaluated development aid modalities.
- Knowledge of the evaluation scope (e.g. sector, country).
- Presence of local experts and consultants.
- Team leader's managerial skills (organisation, coordination, dialogue with the client, etc.).
- Team's independence as regards the evaluated intervention and absence of conflicting interests.
- Evaluation skills and particularly the ability to formulate judgements, to draw up conclusions and recommendations and to draft syntheses.
- Mastery of data collection and analysis tools.
- Diversity of team members' profiles and expertise.
The evaluation manager sets the relative weight of criteria and specifies it in the terms of reference.
- Involve local consultants, as far as possible, to promote the development of local capacity (development of national evaluation expertise) and benefit from their close knowledge of the field.