Evaluations & technical assistance

Types of evaluations

Evaluations focus on the effectiveness of particular humanitarian actions, assessing their impact. We strive to provide the right information to the right people by developing specific quantitative and qualitative methodologies for each assessment. By measuring impact and promoting learning we contribute to improve our clients’ performance. All evaluations are carried out and delivered to the highest standard, producing evidence based reports and utilisation focused recommendations.

Real-Time Evaluations

World map indicating all the countries where DARA has carried out evaluations. ©2009 DARA

DARA carries out both ex ante and post evaluations but is one of the few research organisations in the world to have direct experience of conducting real-time evaluations that influence decision making in a timely fashion. These are carried out during rather than after a humanitarian emergency operation, helping to solve operational challenges as they occur. For example, in 2007 DARA participated in the real-time evaluation of the IASC response to the cyclone and floods in Mozambique; one of the first of its kind and a pilot RTE for a broader programme of such evaluations.


System-wide Evaluations

DARA also has special expertise in system-wide evaluations, where the international response to a disaster is evaluated across all sectors helping identify gaps in the whole system. For example, DARA, as the only Spanish-based organisation, participated in the Tsunami Evaluation Coalition (TEC) and evaluated the funding response of multiple governments, the European Commission, NGOs and the International Red Cross Movement to the 2004 Tsunami. Similarly, DARA’s evaluation of the European Commission’s Disaster Preparedness Programme (DIPECHO) in Central America is another example of this type of evaluation.

Thematic or Sector Evaluations

DARA also undertakes thematic or sector evaluations that cover a part of the system such as a thematic or sectoral study. An example of this kind of study is DARA’s evaluation of the ICRC policy on internally displaced persons.

Single Agency Response Evalution

DARA takes commissions to evaluate the overall response to a particular disaster event or complex emergency by a particular agency. For instance, WFP’s country wide interventions in Mozambique or Timor Leste. On a smaller scale, DARA undertakes evaluations of a single project carried out by a single agency such as the Spanish Red Cross’s recovery projects in Indonesia and Sri Lanka.

Standards & codes evaluations

DARA also evaluates the use of standards, codes and benchmarks that have been developed to ensure better results of interventions. For example, DARA participated in the evaluation of the Paris Declaration, considered to be the international community’s main instrument to ensure the effectiveness of development aid.

Post-evaluation support

To implement recommendations DARA offers ad hoc support to its clients drawing up a change package and providing tailored services such as training, which boosts capacity building, coaching and technical assistance.