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2018 Summer School in Impact Evaluation

  • Presented by:
    • Trinity College Dublin, Irish Aid and the Trinity Impact Evaluation Unit (TIME)
  • Dates:
    • August 27th-30th, 2018
  • Instructors:
    • Prof. James Copestake (University of Bath), Dr. Tara Bedi (TCD), Prof. Andrea Guariso (TCD and TIME), Prof. Nicola Mastrorocco (TCD and TIME), Prof. Gaia Narciso (TCD and TIME), Prof. Alejandra Ramos (TCD and TIME)

The summer school is a unique opportunity for development practitioners, NGO personnel, and policy makers interested in acquiring the skills needed to conduct, evaluate and manage impact focused research. While the course will draw heavily on developing country examples, the content is relevant to many contexts and will be of interest to domestic policy makers and NGOs, and a broad range of PhD students.

The Summer School embraces mixed methods combining the quantitative expertise of TIME with international expertise in qualitative methods. Upon completion, participants will:

  1. Understand various techniques of impact evaluation and the criteria used to select the appropriate method;
  2. Understand the practical challenges of implementation;
  3. Develop skills to design impact evaluations;
  4. Acquire tools necessary to be critical of impact evaluation research;

Summer School Structure

The summer school ran over three days and was preceded by a one-day statistics boot-camp to help prepare participants with less quantitative backgrounds.

The course included a mix of lectures and group work. The lectures covered both experimental (e.g. randomized control trials), and quasi-experimental (e.g. regression discontinuity designs) quantitative methods as well as qualitative methods and the interaction between the two. Sessions were interactive with participants working in groups to solve exercises based on the methodologies that have been introduced.

An outline of the course is as follows:

Day Itinerary Topic
Monday 9am - 5pm Statistics Boot-Camp: Topics to include: random variables, distributions, linear regression and inference

Day 1 - Registration 08:30

Class 9am to 5pm

a) Why evaluate?

b) Randomization

c) Sampling

Tuesday Evening Day 1. Reception - 5pm to 8pm Reception
Wednesday Day 2 - 9am to 5pm

a) Design of survey instruments

b) Potential issues in the field

c) Qualitative methods

Thursday Day 3 - 9am to 5pm

a) Quasi-experimental methods for impact evaluation

b) Data analysis