9:30—10:45 AM Washington DC time

Harnessing the Power of a New Toolkit for Rapid, Rigorous Evaluations and Better Public Policy

Read the paper and blog.


  • Ariel BenYishay, Chief Economist, AidData and Associate Professor of Economics, College of William & Mary
  • Kelly Bidwell, Director, Office of Evaluation Sciences, U.S. General Services Administration
  • Santhosh Mathew, Country Lead for Public Policy and Finance, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, India Country Office


  • Ann-Sofie Isaksson, Researcher, University of Gothenburg and Institutet för Näringslivsforskning


  • Amanda Glassman, Executive Vice President and Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development


As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to rage and public funding is increasingly scarce, the need for high-quality, timely evidence on the effectiveness of public programs has never been clearer. Given that impact evaluations are uniquely suited to estimating the net impact of programs, they play a distinct role in the evidence and data ecosystem. But these methods have also prompted longstanding concerns, including that they cost too much and may take too long to provide results.

New technology has made gathering and sharing large amounts of data more feasible and affordable than ever before, and software innovations have made this data easier to combine, analyze, and use. Join CGD for a discussion of recent advances in evaluation methods and data that enable faster, lower cost, and more responsive approaches, drawing from new research by Ann-Sofie Isaksson as part of CGD’s Working Group on New Evidence Tools for Policy Impact. Speakers will discuss specific ways to leverage this broad menu of evaluation strategies to optimize returns for public policy decision-making, highlighting the importance of system-wide functions along the evidence continuum.

If you have questions for our speakers, please submit them to [email protected], tweet @CGDev #CGDTalks, or submit your comments via YouTube.

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