Advances in data and technology have created new opportunities to work on the evaluation of large infrastructure investments. The ieConnect for Impact program is generating a significant body of evidence through the development of data systems and experimental and quasi-experimental evaluations that can transform the way we think of mobility as an economic force and at a scale that will substantially improve the evidence-base for policy making. The ieConnect for Impact program is a collaboration between DIME and the World Bank’s Transport Global Practice.
- 30 impact evaluations (IEs) across 19 countries
- Focusing on urban mobility, transport corridors, road safety, and rural roads sectors
- Thematic emphasis on gender, female economic empowerment, and fragile situations
Leveraging Innovative Data
Transport IEs are typically on a larger scale, have more intensive data requirements, and present unique methodological challenges compared with IEs in other sectors. The ieConnect program has prioritized the development and expansion of data systems using new technologies to harvest large amounts of data at higher frequency or with greater geographic coverage and spatial resolution than traditional survey methods allow. This includes geospatial, crowdsourced, or sensor data, coupled with new and existing datasets. The data systems being developed allow research teams to mitigate methodological challenges—such as the fact that selection of project sites is not random and is often integral to project design—using rigorous IE methods. This, in turn, can build local capacity and strengthen government agencies’ basis for evidence-based decision making for transport investments in the long-term.
The Rwanda Rural Feeder Roads IE analyses the impact of the large rural road upgrading program on markets and household research questions are:
The data system developed on the rural roads IE has also been adopted by the government. It will be used to additionally measure the impacts on corridor projects, thus forming the basis for monitoring and evaluation for the entire transport sector.
Smart and Safe Nairobi Transport (smarTTrans) Impact Evaluation
The smarTTrans project is developing a detailed real-time geo-referenced crash map of Nairobi. In the first stage the team is generating high-frequency data on crashes and crash density around urban hotspots and using a real-time verification process to record characteristics related to the crash. Once this process has been successfully tested for Nairobi, the code will be open and available so that this type of data collection can be expanded to other countries. The second stage will use the information on the characteristics of the different crash sites to conduct a series of experiments testing different types of interventions. A better understanding of which road safety interventions are most effective can be used to mitigate the health impacts of increasing motorization in Nairobi.
From the ieConnect program we will learn about how to improve the availability and quality of data that can be used for measuring the impact of transport projects, and generate evidence that can be used to improve decision making for transport investments in the long-term.
This program has been funded with UK aid from the UK government.