The scope is everything that is subject to the evaluation investigations. Its perimeter is defined in terms of several dimensions, such as the geographic, temporal and institutional dimensions.
The central scope of the evaluation matches the very contour of the intervention that is under evaluation. A second broader perimeter specifies the related actions and the elements from the context to be taken into account.
The central scope is stated in the terms of reference while the extended scope is stated in the inception report.
Project, programme and strategy evaluations
The assessed intervention may be simple, for instance, it may be a project aimed at causing a certain direct effect on a given public, or, on the contrary, it may be complex, such as a strategy causing its effects by means of other lower level interventions. Depending on the intervention's degree of complexity, the questions addressed and the evaluation method may vary.
Sectors and crosscutting issues
Public interventions are usually classified by sectors or areas. In addition, a given intervention or set of interventions may be evaluated from the point of view of a crosscutting issue. In both cases, this is also refered as a thematic evaluation. These terms call for clarification.