On 8 October 2019, the Independent Office of Evaluation of IFAD (IOE) hosted a learning event on “Opportunities for Integrating Big Data into IFAD Evaluations”. The seminar was organized in connection with the launch of the book titled Information and Communication Technologies for Development Evaluation, edited by Oscar A. Garcia, Director, IOE, and Prashanth Kotturi, Evaluation Analyst, IOE.
The seminar was led by Michael Bamberger, independent consultant and author of the UN Global Pulse report on Integrating Big Data into Monitoring and Evaluation of Development Programmes. The event was an occasion to explore the expanding applications of big data in development programmes, as well as the potential benefits of big data and related technology for the evaluation context, with a view to achieving Agenda 2030’s Sustainable Development Goals. Several members of IFAD’s staff participated and provided vital contributions, including Mr Garcia; Alessandra Garbero, Senior Econometrician, Research and Impact Assessment Division; Ed Gallagher, Lead Officer, Change Delivery and Innovation Unit; and Rebecca Slocum, Consultant, Change Delivery and Innovation Unit.
The event also provided an opportunity for IOE staff to discuss and brainstorm on the potential for incorporating Big Data and other technologies into their work.