Enhancing evidence-informed interventions​

Insights generated by ground data on developments interventions supported by UNDP and partners enable learning and cross-learning on what works, where, why and for whom.

Bridging knowledge gaps with robust data and methods

“When you can measure what you are speaking about, and express it in numbers, you know something about it.”

― Lord Kelvin 

Quality data is at the heart of evidence-informed decision making, and the lack of it hinders the ability to learn what works in complex settings. But high-quality data does not constitute evidence unless coupled with rigorous methods. 

By combining traditional and non-traditional data sources with robust causal analytical methods, it is possible to

  • understand how much each dollar invested returns as a benefit to communities/environment, and
  • shift conventional wisdom and reorient investments towards more effective interventions.

Learn on what works on the ground contributes to identification of solutions that are both viable and scalable in different contexts.

The M-CLIMES Project has worked in food-insecure districts in Malawi to modernized climate information and early warning systems. There is evidence that the project increased crop yields in 60% and had a positive impact concerning adaptation capacity of farmers at risk of climate change. Source: UNDP Malawi

Leveraging public goods

UNDP works in 170 countries and territories in 6 cross-cutting approaches, powered by digitalisation, innovation and development financing for greater impact. Scaling up the evidence-based work within the organisation could mean expanding global knowledge by providing public goods on the effectiveness of development intervention.

UNDP has been collecting tailored evidence on what works in development interventions in 13 countries.  In these assessments, UNDP incorporates theory-based designs and collects unique data on the interventions – process that is also accompanied by capacity building activities. Through capitalizing on the richness of the on-the-ground data collected during these assessments, there is significant scope for exploring the context-specific reasons of successful interventions, as well as generating evidence-based knowledge products over and beyond the immediate intervention. 

Countries and territories
Signature solutions

Mapping the available evidence

Rigorous and scientifically sound measurements of intervention effectiveness – or ‘what works’ – are scarce. Studies measuring the impact of interventions in low and middle-income countries are very limited and are unlikely to explain much about the mechanisms (why/how). By using new technologies, UNDP will map the available evidence and explore how the findings from its own impact evaluations advance the global knowledge on poverty and inequality, governance, gender, environment, energy and resilience.

Country Cases

UNDP has supported evidence-based assessments around in Cambodia and Malawi and it is currently contributing to other assessments conducted in Bhutan, Ecuador, Georgia, India, Liberia, Mongolia, Uganda, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Explore the details below.