DIME Overview

The World Bank’s Development Impact (DIME) department generates high-quality and operationally relevant data and research to transform development policy, help reduce extreme poverty, and secure shared prosperity. It develops customized data and evidence ecosystems to produce actionable information and recommend specific policy pathways to maximize impact.

The work is based on a co-production model aimed at transferring capacity and know-how to partners to make mid-course corrections and scale up successful policy instruments to achieve policy outcomes.

These corrections increase the rate of return of underlying investments by large margins, far exceeding the costs of the research. The group conducts research in 60 countries with 200 agencies leveraging a $180M research budget against $18B in development finance. It also provides advisory services to 30 multilateral and bilateral development agencies in the world.

Finally, DIME invests in public goods to improve the quality and reproducibility of development research around the world. From DIME Wiki to toolkits, training and summer schools, DIME is servicing the global community of researchers and, in so doing, improving the quality of global policy advice.

DIME adopts a programmatic approach to evidence-based policymaking to increase economies of scale in research and learning.

It bridges the gap between research and practice by engaging government counterparts in every phase of the policy cycle and building their capacity to make systematic use of data and evidence.

DIME embeds machine learning, events studies, and experimental research to iteratively push policy interventions towards their efficient frontier, increasing cost-effectiveness and value for money.



The DIME Porfolio

DIME’s IE portfolio includes 170 impact evaluations, 145 of which were supported by the seed financing provided by DIME’s i2i trust fund. At least 21 percent of the portfolio evaluates gender-specific interventions and 56 percent of the portfolio conducts disaggregated gender analysis.  Thirty-two percent of the portfolio falls under the World Bank’s Gender Cross-Cutting Solution Area.  Seventeen percent of DIME impact evaluations take place in FCS countries, and 27 percent in FCS-affected situations. 

The DIME IE portfolio spans all six regions where the World Bank operates.



Policy Influence

Understanding when, where, and how policy is influenced by our research is a priority for DIME. We measure policy influence through yearly surveys of internal and external clients to collect detailed information on when and how IE data and evidence was used to affect their decisions. The results confirm that DIME IEs have a huge influence on policy decisions and that those decisions have important economic value.


DIME works closely with the World Bank’s Global Practices and Cross-Cutting Solutions Areas to define knowledge priorities and develop policy relevant impact evaluations, engaging the senior management leadership and dedicated sector teams to shape project designs and structure experiments to guide project implementation toward greater effectiveness.

These partnerships help speed up the rate of implementation and steer decisions toward improving results. Externally, DIME secures the participation of many development partners that are both interested to learn from DIME’s operating model and evidence and contribute ideas, projects, and resources to our global effort to improve development practice. Some notable participants both as funders and partners include:


United Kingdom
Germany – GIZ 
Germany – BMZ


European Union 
African Development Bank 
Inter-American Development Bank 
Islamic Development Bank

Global Funds

Global Agriculture and Food Security Program 
Gates Foundation 
Climate Investment Fund 
World Food Programme

World Bank Funds

Strategic Impact Evaluation Fund 
Umbrella Facility for Gender Equality 
Knowledge for Change Program 
Identification for Development