Evidence Based Decision Making - International Initiative for Impact

Evidences Based Decision Making:
Cases from PEO studies
Planning Commission
Government of India
Evidence-based policy has been defined as an approach
which “helps people make well informed decisions about
policies, programmes and projects by putting the best
available evidence at the heart of policy development and
Sources of Evidence may come from integrated monitoring
and evaluation systems, academic research, historical
experience and 'good practice' information. However all the
sources of information may not become evidences for
using policy formulations.
• The aim of the Government is to design and implement
policies in such a manner that the general quality of life of
population is improved.
Investigation of all available evidences (scientifically) are
required to take effective policy decisions to achieve
desired outcomes.
A systematic and rational approach is essential for
analyzing available evidences to take policy decisions.
The evidences should reflect the real needs of the
population; and decision, based not on these reflections
may lead to faulty formulation of decisions and thus
bringing ineffective outcomes.
Therefore ,the advantages of using evidence based policy
making are as follows:
• it ensures that policies address the real needs of the
problems which requires immediate attention can be
better highlighted.
it enables sharing of information with the stake
reduces government expenditure.
• it ensures decisions made are consistent with our
democratic and political processes.
• it ensures transparency and accountability.
The Planning Process:
• Planning in India is essentially an exercise to
coordinate the basic objectives of India’s development
for improving level of living of India’s vast majority
of population and the desired results achieved in this
• Five Year Plans play a crucial role in the development
of Indian Economy
• However, planners cannot be certain of outcomes of
the development projects
Plan Formulation:
Macro: Assessment of resources, set development
goals & Objectives –overall & sectoral,
sector/sub-sectoral allocation of resources. Broad
strategies for realization of development goals.
Specific Interventions: Projects & Programs. The
implementing Ministries/Departments plan and
Need for Evaluation:
• Macroeconomic indicators reflect the strength of our
planned economy but access to basic services is still
• Growth in economy needed to raise the incomes of the
people for general improvement in their level of living
• Govt. of India has over the years enlarged its functions to
provide targeted benefits for a larger section of the society
• These benefits and services are targeted mainly at poor
and embedded in the procedures of bureaucratic
• The design of Government schemes may not be
appropriate and the benefits may not reach the targeted
• The GoI established the Programme Evaluation
Organisation (PEO) in 1952 as an independent organization
to undertake evaluation of selected programmes/ schemes.
• PEO conducts evaluation through direct observations,
sample surveys and use of social science research methods
and its findings and suggestions are used in formulating
various Five Year Plans.
• The objective is to have quality evaluation of various
programmes and to know the relevance of government
funding and development intervention.
• Broadly speaking, the objectives of evaluation work taken
up by PEO includes objective assessment of process and
impact of the development programmes, identifying the
areas of success and failures at different stages of
administrations and execution, analysis of reasons for
success or failure, examining extension methods and
people’s reactions thereto and deriving lessons for future
improvement in the formulation and implementation of the
new programmes/schemes
Evaluation Reports of PEO
• PEO reports are placed in the public domain i.e. in the Planning
Commission Website (http://planningcommission.gov.in)
• The findings are used by the Parliament, implementing
Ministries, State Governments
• The major areas where evaluation studies have been conducted
by PEO are i) rural development, ii) agriculture and allied
sector, iii) social welfare, iv) education, v) labor and
employment, and vi) health and family welfare
• PEO, out of 250 final reports, has published till now 245 reports
• Many evaluation study reports are in the process of finalization
• The recent evaluation for the year 2012-13 are related to rural
development, education and development of minority
Evidences from PEO studies & Planning
• Evaluation studies of PEO has helped framing effective
policies for the Five year Plans making available
systematic better informed evidences to the planners.
• Utilizing these evidences midcourse corrections ahs also
been taken to speed up development process of the
Also, the evidences from evaluation studies has helped in
understanding the policy environment and how its
Evidences from the PEO study and the 12th Five Year Plan
Actual Evidences
Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Program
 the gap between the Irrigation Potential
Created and Utilised is substantial and
 State Governments are finding it difficult to
finance recurring costs of irrigation.
 There is financial constraints on the
maintenance of assets under AIBP. Adequate
funds should be allocated for timely repair
and maintenance of the assets created giving
high priority to the task of lining of the whole
canal system and lift irrigation system to be
installed on the banks of canals.
Institutional reforms such as restructuring
of irrigation agencies is in need.
12th Five year Plan
 Close the gap between IPC and IPU by at
least 10 million ha by prioritising investments in
Command Area Development and Management
 prioritising the allocation of investible funds
to ongoing Micro Medium Irrigation projects.
 To improve the quality as well as amount of
training to ground-level functionaries of
Irrigation Departments as well as farmers, the
GoI will provide each of the 14 Water and Land
Management Institutes (WALMIs) a grant-in-aid
of Rs.5 crore over the five-year period to
strengthen their training, research and
extension work.
 The Twelfth Five Year Plan proposes the
setting up of a National Irrigation Management
Fund(NIMF) to catalyse and support demand for
management and institutional reform.
 Lift irrigation schemes will be taken up for
AIBP support.
Actual Evidences
Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan
 There is a need to open more upper primary
schools and develop stronger linkages of preprimary schools with primary schools in villages
in order to improve retention and reduce girl
 reforming the school curriculum , No detention
policy and examinations to be replaced by
continuous assessment, Transport facilities for
children living in remote habitations .
 Extension of NPEGEL schemes in urban
clusters to schools in slums and vocational
training programmes in upper primary schools to
address the problem of dropouts in urban areas.
 Infrastructure shortages such as lack of
blackboards, drinking water, separate toilets for
girls, shortage of classrooms, repair and
maintenance to improve school environment.
 Disbursement of funds to sub block levels to
be accelerated .
The Right to Education Act to be implemented
by all states.
12th Five year Plan
 Ensure universal access and, in keeping with
letter and spirit of the RTE Act.
 Improve attendance and reduce dropout rates
at the elementary level to below 10 per cent and
lower the percentage of Out of School Children at
the elementary level to below 2 per cent in all
Raise the Gross Enrolment Ratio at the
secondary level to over 90 per cent, at the Senior
Secondary level to over 65 per cent.
Raise the overall literacy rate to over 80 per
cent and reduce the gender gap in literacy to less
than 10 per cent.
Provide at least one year of well-supported &
resourced pre-school education in primary
schools to all children, particularly those in
educationally backward blocks .
Improve learning outcomes that are measured,
monitored and reported independently at all
levels of school education with a special focus on
ensuring that all children master basic reading
and numeracy skills by class 2 and skills of
critical thinking, expression and problem solving
by class 5.
Actual Evidences
Mid-day meal scheme
 scope for convergence with schemes like
National Rural Employment Guarantee
Scheme , Rajiv Gandhi Drinking Water
Mission and National Rural health Mission.
Guidelines issued by Government of India
regarding the delivery of food
grains by PDS dealer to school directly
should be implemented .
 Steering-cum-monitoring committees
should be made functional and
active at district/block levels for effective
implementation, convergence
and monitoring of the scheme.
PPP mode which has been successful in
Andhra Pradesh can be implemented in
other states which will ensure a better
delivery of service and therefore a better
performance of the scheme.
12th Five year Plan
 MDMS will be expanded to cover preprimary schooling in a progressive
manner, private unaided schools,
particularly in the SC/ST and minorityconcentrated areas.
Provide leverage to encourage private
participation in the scheme. funding for
construction of kitchen-cum-store for
proper storage of foodgrains and
preparation of meal in hygienic
environment is being provided. This
would be implemented throughout the
country and capacity building initiatives
would be taken up for this.
Full convergence of the MDMS with
the school health programme would be
ensured during the Twelfth
Actual Evidences
National Rural Health Mission
•filling of vacant positions of specialists,
doctors, and staff nurses, diagnosticfacilitiesTechnicians ; strengthening of
• AYUSH needs to be invigorated.
• Procurement and supply of drugs needs
immediate attention in most of the states.
• Coordination between key village level
functionaries like ASHA, AWW and ANM
and involvement of VHSC can bring around
effective convergence in terms of nutrition,
sanitation, etc. together with quality health
• Outsourcing of peripheral services like
maintenance of buildings, and referral
transport services under PPP will bring
around further improvement in the quality
of health services.
12th Five year Plan
A suitable mechanism be designed to
incentivise an increase in State
Government spending.
 Financial and managerial systems will
be redesigned to ensure more efficient
utilisation of available resources, and to
achieve better health outcomes.
Efforts would be made to find a
workable way of encouraging PPP mode
for gap filling human resource.
special effort will be made to expand
medical education in States and
massive effort will be made to recruit
and train paramedical and community
level health workers.
A series of prescription drugs reforms,
medicines, and making these universally
available free of cost to all patients in
public facilities will be a priority.
Actual Evidences
Total Sanitation Campaign
The idea of using community toilets as
effective alternative for the poorest section
needs to be seriously persuaded.
 Proper attention should be given to the
availability of water to the households.
The Facilities Created Must Also be
The Toilets should be Fine Tuned with
Local and Ecological Considerations.
Village Water Sanitation Committee
should be strengthened, oriented and
given responsibility of managing sanitation
in respective villages.
12th Five year Plan
 Progressively ensure provision of
toilets and safe drinking water supply in
all Anganwadi Centers. House
Sanitatary Complexes , Separate toilets
for girls in schools with requisite
facilities to be promoted.
 Cover AWCs running in rented
premises with toilets through TSC
revolving fund or enhanced rent and for
covering all AWCs in govt.
/community/public buildings with
drinking water facilities.
Hygiene improvement under TSC to
be better integrated with
other Information Education &
Communication campaigns.
 Training and IEC activities under TSC,
NRDWP, NRHM and ICDS to be linked
and coordinated, including training of
Village Health Water Sanitation and
Nutrition Committees.
Actual Evidences
Integrated Child Development Services
Financial allocation for Supplementary
Nutrition Programme needs revision and
in accordance with the raising food
Vertical implementation of programmes
cannot help realise with the potential
benefits unless issue of convergence of
interrelated services is meaningfully
 The existing co ordination and
monitoring of ICDS needs to be
strengthened and revamped.
Community leaders should motivate the
BPL people for sending their Children to
the Anganwadi Centres instead utilizing
them as child labour.
12th Five year Plan
Integrated Child Development Services
Improvement in the nutritional status
in both children and adults must have
high priority in any strategy for human
Ensuring convergence is necessary
with related sectors i.e NRHM, TSC,
NRWP, SSA, MGNREGA through joint
The mandate for strengthening
existing co-ordination mechanism is
vested in the ministry of WCD with
partnership with Ministry of Youth
The abolition of all forms of child
labour for effective implementation of
RTE Act needs to be mandated.
 For having reliable and reflecting evidences we need
independent and quality evaluation. Statistics from MIS
or that generated from day to day administration are also
vital source of evidence but they need to provide us with
clear, objective, numerical data on important aspects.
The availability of statistical information does not
automatically lead to good decision making, as skill and
knowledge is very much required to make one to be able
to access, understand, analyse and communicate
statistical information.
Clear or consistent evidence may not be readily
available at the time of policy making as it generally
requires many different kinds of evidence.
 Evaluation
findings(Evidences) may not be used by the
implementation agency as it may be treated as a fault finding exercise.
 Evaluation has a political stance as it makes implicit political
statements (e.g., challenging the legitimacy of existing programs) and
serves as a tool for critical inquiry.
 Evaluation studies may get conducted for gaining political mileage.
Politics may influences evaluation design, process and use of findings
 Under political pressure the evaluation report may get maneuvered.
 Difficulties in handling sensitive information
Thank You

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