Impact Evaluation to Development Impact (i2i) is a World Bank multi-donor trust fund program launched in March 2014 with support from the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID). i2i’s mandate is to generate high-quality and operationally relevant impact evaluation (IE) research to transform development policy, help reduce extreme poverty, and secure shared prosperity. Its objective is to increase the use of IE in the design and implementation of public policy, strengthen country institutions for evidence-based policy-making, and generate knowledge in strategic development areas. The program aims to serve as a global platform to build donor partnerships in expanding the use of IE across the developing world. i2i is managed and delivered by the Development Impact Evaluation unit (DECIE) in the Research Group of the World Bank and adopts a bank-wide governance structure that comprises the bank’s regions and global practices.
i2i achieves its objectives by:
· Developing and running experiments in collaboration with government partners to inform their policy decisions,
· Building agency capacities to do this systematically
· Drawing lessons and sharing them face-to-face with global audiences.
i2i funds IEs across all World Bank sectors with a special focus on under-evaluated areas. It covers 12 operational sectors of the Bank across four pillars and two cross-cutting themes. The pillars are shared prosperity, governance, climate change, and human development. The cross-cutting themes are gender and fragility and conflict and violence. Based on current donor financing, support is not available for the human development sector, including education, health, and social protection. i2i aims to support this sector as new donors join.
i2i adopts the Bank’s DIME operational model. DIME is a global program managed by DECIE in the World Bank, which has developed institutional structures to ensure that its IE products are relevant and can influence the decision-making process for development. Internally, DIME works with a cross-institutional council composed of chief economists and directors from operational vice-presidencies who provide strategic guidance; with working groups in each global practice setting learning priorities and selecting IE cases; and with each operational team for the selected cases to shape project design and structured experiments to guide project implementation toward greater effectiveness. Externally, DIME engages with clients from the beginning to set research questions, adapt policy implementation, and agree on entry points to affect policy decisions using experimental results. This model, adopted by i2i, transfers knowledge and tools needed to support evidence-informed policymaking to country institutions through a medium-term learning-by-doing approach. i2i also focuses on building capacity among other intermediaries of development policy to help move the global development agenda forward. In view of this, all research products are jointly owned.
i2i generates evidence on what programs and policies work by targeting important, relevant, and demand-driven policy questions and empowering policy-makers to promote evidence-based policy-making in developing countries. Most importantly, by engaging government counterparts throughout the IE cycle, from identification of policy questions to the design and implementation of the IE, i2i puts governments in driver seats to test innovations and scale up solutions for their most pressing policy issues. Through this approach of identifying pathways from policy to results, i2i’s shapes the way development work is done at scale and in a large number of contexts and practices.