Centre for Excellence and Development Impact and Learning
The Centre of Excellence for Development Impact and Learning (CEDIL) was established in 2017 through funding from UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office. Its primary objectives are to:
- Develop and test innovative methods for evaluation and evidence synthesis in international development contexts
- Build the evidence base on research uptake and use in decision-making
To deliver these goals, CEDIL is commissioning a £10 million research portfolio of primary evaluations, secondary data analysis, evidence synthesis and exploratory projects. These projects will focus on three thematic areas:
- Evaluating complex interventions: The Centre seeks to strengthen methods to evaluate complex, multi-component interventions and improve theoretical understanding of causal chains that explain how and why combinations of activities work.
- Enhancing evidence transferability: The Centre will develop and test middle-range theories to explain how programmes work in a plurality of contexts and how interventions can be designed and adapted to novel contexts.
- Increasing evidence use: The Centre aims to rigorously assess three areas of research uptake – stakeholder engagement, making sense of evidence and communication methods – and will develop guidelines for policymakers on using evidence from multiple sources.
In addition, the Centre’s Directorate will undertake evidence synthesis and outreach activities to maximise learning from its research and ensure uptake.
New CEDIL methods working paper on big data
The paper ‘Using big data for evaluating development outcomes: a systematic map’ discusses the methodological, ethical and practical constraints relating to the use of big data for measuring and evaluating development outcomes. It also presents the analysis of a systematic gap map developed by 3ie. The map includes 437 studies, comprising impact evaluations, systematic reviews and big data measurement studies.