General and Institutional Affairs, Smart Regulation, Evaluation
All interested citizens, businesses, academics, practitioners, organisations and public authorities are invited to respond to this consultation. Contributions are welcomed, not just on the issues we raise below, but also on any other points relating to how the Commission should go about evaluating EU actions.
From 12/11/2013 to 25/02/2014
The Commission Guidelines for Evaluation will be used by Commission services when they conduct evaluations of the performance and continued need for existing EU actions (e.g. financial programmes, legislative and policy measures). Evaluation does more than just assess what has happened - it also looks at what caused any change and how much might reasonably be credited to EU action. Evaluation is an integral component of the Commission's Smart Regulation policy, providing an evidence-based critical analysis of whether EU actions are fit for purpose and delivering as expected. Robust evaluations help to identify key learning points which can then be fed back into the decision-making process, leading to actions being dropped or developed and improved. While retrospective evaluation looks at past performance, forward-looking evaluation, or impact assessment, assesses options for future EU action.
The guidelines subject to this consultation only cover 'retrospective evaluation', that is evaluation that looks back to assess the performance so far of existing actions. The main purpose of the guidelines is to strengthen the Commission's evaluation system and ensure high quality evaluations, well-founded in evidence, producing robust conclusions on how well EU actions are delivering results. At the same time, making the process more consistent and transparent should enable stakeholders to contribute better to evaluations and to benefit more from their results.
The Commission wants to make evaluation a simple, clear and open process, providing useful and timely public information on its assessments of the performance of EU actions. It wants evaluations to rely on sound data and clear input from stakeholders. Some aspects of the organisation of evaluation work are rather technical, but the Commission invites anyone interested in how EU actions work to contribute their ideas and suggestions, whatever they are.
The new guidelines will replace those published in 2004 [6 MB] .
The most important suggestions we have identified for consultation concern:
These Guidelines are intended for internal use by the Commission services, providing an introduction to evaluation. More detailed supporting information will be provided over time on our internal websites and by evaluation specialists in the Directorates General.
We would like to hear all views and comments on how EU actions should be evaluated. Without wishing to limit the process, we ask the following questions:
We encourage you to send in your comments and suggestions on any aspect of the Commission guidelines and evaluation policy and practice.
You are invited to respond to this consultation in any official EU language. Given the possible delays in translating comments submitted in certain languages, translations of the replies into one of the Commission's working languages (preferably English) would be welcome to enable the Commission to process them more swiftly.
You can submit your contributions in two ways:
This is often the most convenient way for stakeholders. If you provide your answer in paper copy or in PDF format, we would invite you to also submit an electronic Word version so that the Commission can analyse and process your contribution more easily.
In the interests of transparency, organisations have been invited to provide the public with relevant information about themselves by registering in the Interest Representative Register and subscribing to its Code of Conduct.
The Commission thanks all participants who took part in its public consultation.
The main findings of the public consultation [364 KB] are now available.
Number of responses received to this consultation - 53
View the contributions
The follow-up on the results of the public consultation and future steps in the development of the evaluation policy of the Commission are in preparation.