Svetlana [user:field_middlename] Negroustoueva

Svetlana Negroustoueva

Principal Evaluation Officer
African Development Bank
Côte d'Ivoire
    • Dear colleagues,

      Thank you for your interesting insights, it is great to see an overall consensus on an important role that Theories of Change play in evaluation practice. Throughout my evaluation career, and especially more recently, I have come to appreciate the value-added of using TOC, especially if it has been co-created and/or deconstructed in a participatory manner.

      Comparatively speaking, I have found TOC approach particularly valuable when evaluating cross-cutting themes, such as local stakeholder and civil society engagement, governance and gender. Even in the presence of documents, that guide related interventions (similar to sectors), their effective implementation should take into account, and mainstream civil society engagement, gender, accountability and transparency in the work of other sectors, teams, etc. Thus ToCs help inform the evaluations and facilitate exploration against the envisioned process and outcomes, against the existing framework and operational modalities, within and external to the organization.

      In these cross-cutting domains and sometimes beyond, I also have found that teams that are being evaluated more often appreciate and welcome discussions of the TOC, including and sometimes with a particular appreciation of assumptions. Once posed with questions about feasibility within an enabling (or not) environment, the realization of why desired outcomes may have not been achieved becomes real. Consequently, having gone through TOC reconstructing, ambitions and targets are likely to become sharper and more streamlined next time around.

      Svetlana Negroustoueva