Knowledge for Development

S&T Organisations / Web resources

ADOPT: How to estimate the timeframes for project impacts in innovation and agriculture

By G. Kuehne; R. Llewellyn, D. Pannell; AgEcon Search; 2011.This paper reports on the reasoning underpinning the development of the Adoption and Diffusion Outcome Prediction Tool (ADOPT), i.e., an increasing demand from research, development and extension (R, D & E) agencies for estimates of likely extent of adoption and the likely timeframes for project impacts. The tool has been designed to predict an innovation‘s likely peak extent of adoption and time for reaching that peak. The tool is structured around four aspects of adoption: 1) characteristics of the innovation, 2) characteristics of the population, 3) actual advantage of using the innovation, and 4) learning of the actual advantage of the innovation. Findings in the paper show that : (a) without considering the influences on adoption and diffusion, R, D & E investment can result in poor returns and unsatisfactory on-ground benefits; (b) there is demand from R, D & E funding agencies for ex-ante assessments of adoptability and proposed practice change resulting from R, D & E investments; (c) the use of a tool based on established adoption and diffusion principles offers a level of consistency when comparing forecasts of impacts across projects; (d) understanding the attributes of innovations allows the extension strategy to be modified so that levels of adoption and diffusion can be improved.


Evidence and impact in agricultural research and development

New AgriculturistViews from attendees at the 5th Africa Agriculture Science Week of the Forum for Agricultural Research for Africa (FARA), held in Burkina Faso in July 2010, on impact assessment are presented. They argue much more can be done to better use research to influence policy, increase agricultural productivity, cut poverty and reduce the impact of agriculture on the environment. During the week, discussions on the impact of agricultural research in alleviating poverty, promoting food security and protecting the environment was a recurring theme. A selection of participants offered New Agriculturist their points of view, on (1) What impact to expect?, (2) Finding evidence - a difficult challenge, (3) Transforming research for greater impact, (4) Working with others and sharing information and (5) Critical next steps.


Agricultural Science and Technology Indicators

The Agricultural Science and Technology Indicators (ASTI) initiative compiles, analyzes, and publicizes data on institutional developments, investments, and capacity in agricultural R&D. The ASTI timeseries database provides access to agricultural R&D indicators for developing countries in tabular format. There are also keynote documents, country reports and directories.


Independent Science and Partnership Council: Impact Assessment

The Standing Panel on Impact Assessment (SPIA) is a sub-group of the ISPC that advises CGIAR members through the Fund Council on issues relating to the quality, relevance and impact of CGIAR research activity. SPIA helps to ensure accountability on overall impact by: (1) Providing evidence on the effectiveness of research investments through ex-post impact assessment of system programmes, (2) Increasing the rigour and the reach of impact assessment studies on program areas and systemwide activities, (3) Facilitating impact assessment activities on crosscutting issues such as partnerships, capacity building, diversity, gender and any other relevant ones that may emerge, (4) Contributing towards improved strategic decisions by improving feedback from impact assessment results and by enhancing the rigor of trend and foresight analysis, and (5) Supporting, through appropriate collaborative mechanisms, stakeholder accountability fora that will contribute to the assessment of the effectiveness of the CGIAR in meeting developmental objective


Dynamic Research Evaluation for Management (DREAM) 3.0: A tool for evaluating the economic impacts of agricultural R&D

DREAM, or Dynamic Research Evaluation for Management, is a menu-driven software package for evaluating the economic impacts of agricultural research and development (R&D). Users can simulate a range of market, technology adoption, research spillover, and trade policy scenarios based on a flexible, multi-market, partial equilibrium model.


DFID: Impact Case Studies

This series of case studies have been commissioned by the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and made available to EIARD, as part of a series demonstrating the impact of DFID's funding to agricultural research.


A User’s Guide to Poverty and Social Impact Analysis (PSIA)

World Bank Poverty Reduction Group (PRMPR) and Social Development Department (SDV)World Bank, Washington, D.C., USA2002This draft User’s Guide lays out ten key elements to be considered by the analyst and policy maker in approaching PSIA. Furthermore, it has given a brief overview of some of the tools and methods that might be used in undertaking analysis of poverty and social concerns associated with policy change. In so doing, it has attempted to draw from tools used by economists and social scientists and to present them in an integrated fashion. These tools have seldom been used in tandem in the design of policy change (Box 10 provides an example of an attempt to do so). Applying these tools to the operational context using this multidisciplinary approach will lead to a richer, more integrated understanding of policy impacts. Moreover, due to the very different types of reform issues, transmission channels, and available data, the choice of tools and methods used for PSIA will vary substantially by type of reform.


Assessing the Impacts of Research

This site, compiled by the Becker Medical Library at Washington University in St Louis, details publications, websites and examples of frameworks/models for assessing impacts of research.


Systemic Approaches in Evaluation

Documentation from a conference on Systemic Approaches in Evaluation (25-26 January 2011) is available at this GTZ website. A key concept is interdependency instead of linear cause-effect-relations. Systemic approaches in evaluation focus on interrelations and the interaction between various stakeholders with different motivations, interests, perceptions and perspectives. More than 200 participants from academia, consulting firms and NGOs discussed, amongst others, the following questions: (1) what are systemic approaches in evaluation? (2) for which kind of evaluations are systemic approaches (not) useful? Can they be used to enhance accountability, for example? (3) are rigorous impact studies and systemic evaluations antipodes or can we combine elements of both approaches? (4) which concrete methods and tools can be used in systemic evaluation?


IDRC and Evaluation

This website summarises IDRC’s approach to evaluation, explaining what work the Evaluation Unit does, and what research on evaluation the IDRC supports. It also gives access to evaluation reports, resources and publications.


Evaluation of IFAD's technical assistance grants programme for agricultural research

The Agricultural Research grant funding line of the AR&T Programme has been evaluated for the first time since its establishment in 1979. From 1979 to 2001, a total of USD 171.541 million has been allocated for 199 agricultural research grants, to a total of 32 International Agricultural Research Centres. Of these, 16 have been CGIAR centres, and 19 have not been part of the system. Grants have ranged in size from USD 150 000 to USD 4 million, with an average size of USD 1.35 million.


Program on Participatory Research & Gender Analysis: Impact assessment guides

This site provides links to various guides on impact assessment, many relating to agricultural research, with a particular focus on participatory research and gender analysis aspects.


Agricultural Research: World Bank

A list of key papers relating to impact assessment in agricultural research, particularly those relating to world development.


World Bank: Agriculture Investment Sourcebook

This sourcebook, published by the World Bank in 2005, discusses the policy, technical, and institutional options for improving the agriculture sector. Targeted to practitioners around the world, it also describes options for program design and discusses the issues involved in scaling up investments for maximum impact. It includes a module entitled ‘Investments in Agricultural Science and Technology’.


Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research Impact Assessment

This site aims to communicate evidence about the impact of agricultural research. It is for donors and researchers, and it provides easy access to impact studies, tools for strengthening impact assessment studies, and aims to provide feedback to research priorities from the results of impact assessment studies. There is access to impact briefs, syntheses and a database.


ACIAR Methodology for Quantifying Impact

This site details the work emerging from collaboration between the ACIAR and the Centre for International Economics (CIE) to develop a set of guidelines for ACIAR impact assessment studies. The aim is to enhance the comparability between the studies and consistency of their results. It provides links to impact assessment publications, the impact of multilaterial R&D, methodology, outcomes of impact assessments and returns on investment.