Lessons Learned and the Contributions of the Paris Declaration Evaluation to Evaluation Theory and Practice

The final event of the Paris Declaration Evaluation was a lessons- learned workshop. This article first highlights the lessons about joint evaluations identified by participants in that workshop with the resulting report being a model of how to bring closure to a major evaluation. The article then presents 10 contributions of the Paris Declaration Evaluation to evaluation theory and practice.

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Meta-Evaluation: Evaluating the Evaluation of the Paris Declaration

It has become a standard in major high-stakes evaluations to commission an independent review to determine whether the evaluation meets generally accepted standards of quality. This is called a meta-evaluation. Given the historic importance of the Evaluation of the Paris Declaration, the Management Group commissioned a meta-evaluation of the evaluation. The metaevaluation concluded that the findings, conclusions, and recommendations presented in the Paris Declaration Evaluation adhered closely and rigorously to the evaluation evidence collected and synthesized.

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Dissemination and Early Use of the Paris Declaration Evaluation

Reflecting the long experience of the main organizers of the Paris Declaration evaluation, dissemination and use of the national and synthesis evaluation results were conceived, born, and carried out with a consistent view to the usefulness of both its processes and products for policy. This shaped all aspects of the Evaluation: governance, stakeholder participation, setting the evaluation questions, design and implementation of the processes and methods, and injecting findings and recommendations into the policy bloodstream.

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Results of the Paris Declaration Evaluation

The Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness comprised principles and specific commitments for improving development aid processes, accepted by an unprecedented coalition of developing countries and aid donors.

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The Paris Declaration Evaluation Process and Methods

The Paris Declaration Evaluation faced the challenge of assessing the effects of a policy compact between nations, an area in which evaluation thinking and practice is still emergent. It also confronted the challenge of attempting to link development results to the implementation of a broad reform agenda in countries of widely differing circumstances. This article describes how the Core Evaluation Team, in consultation with the management and governance structures of the Evaluation and the evaluation teams involved, addressed these challenges.

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Preparing, Governing, and Managing The Paris Declaration Evaluation

Joint or multi-partner evaluations are evaluations of development cooperation policies, programs, and projects in which different donors, development agencies, and partner countries participate. The complexities of a large number of diverse stakeholders and multiple units of analysis in joint evaluations pose significant governance and management challenges to ensure the evaluation's independence, credibility, quality, and utility. This article reports how governance and management were structured and operated to facilitate the evaluation of the Paris Declaration.

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The Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness: History and Significance

The Paris Declaration, endorsed in 2005, commits international development aid donors and recipients to act in accordance with five principles: ownership, alignment, harmonization, results, and mutual accountability. This landmark international agreement was the culmination of several decades of attempts to improve the quality of aid and its impact on development. As context for the evaluation of the Paris Declaration, this article traces the history of international agreements that led up to the Paris Declaration and the significance of the agreement itself.

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