The ideas catalyzing evidence-based decisions across the world

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The IDinsight Evidence-Based Decision-Making Primer:

Evaluations with Impact: Decision-Focused Impact Evaluations as a Practical Policymaking Tool

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BMJ Global Health | January 2019

Can child-focused sanitation and nutrition programming improve health practices and outcomes? IDinsight’s Gerishom Gimaiyo, Jeff McManus, and Lilian Lehmann share the findings from IDinsight’s two-year embedded learning partnership with UNICEF in Kenya in Volume 4, Issue 1 of BMJ Global Health.

Driven by IDinsight findings and recommendations, UNICEF is scaling their integrated sanitation and nutrition program to a second focal county in Kenya, West Pokot, which has over 100,000 children under 5 and the highest child stunting rates in the country.

Access the full article here.

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2018 Year in Review | December 2018

2018 was an exciting year of impact, innovation, and growth at IDinsight. We were fortunate to work closely with inspiring partner and client organizations towards our vision of improving millions of lives by transforming how the social sector innovates, learns and improves. Together, we started new embedded learning partnerships with governments across Asia and Africa, continued conducting rigorous “decision-focused” impact evaluations for leaders, launched innovative data and evidence tools to help our partner organizations solve some of the world’s most pressing challenges, and expanded into new geographies. To learn more, visit our 2018 Year in Review.


India Policy Forum | December 2018

The Asian Venture Philanthropy Network organized the India Policy Forum on 'Transforming Aspirational Districts Program.' IDinsight's India Lead, Ronald Abraham, discussed the implications of applying a data-driven approach to impact, with Prof S.V. Subramanian (Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health) and Dr Shamika Ravi (Brookings India). Ron highlighted the challenges that decision-makers face when using data for purposes other than the originally intended use. He also discussed the long time lag inherent in national surveys and the biases of administrative data. He also explained IDinsight's approach to collecting high-quality, high-frequency data for the NITI Aayog from 27 of India's aspirational districts.

Stanford Social Innovation Review (SSIR) | November 2018

As the evaluator for the Educate Girls Development Impact Bond (EG DIB), the world’s first DIB, and the Village Enterprise DIB, IDinsight’s Kate Sturla, Buddy Shah, and Jeff McManus, share four things evaluations for impact bonds must do to “get it right”.

“If we can get the measurement piece right, we believe they [DIBs] have the potential to fundamentally shift the development sector’s focus from inputs to outcomes, and to bring new funding and solutions to challenging social problems. We have also seen firsthand how impact bonds can act as a laboratory for innovation.”

Read more here.

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An IDinsight officer surveys a community member about his experience with Aadhaar in Andhra Pradesh. (Dec 2017)

An IDinsight officer surveys a community member about his experience with Aadhaar in Andhra Pradesh. (Dec 2017)

BBC World Op-ed | September 2018

India’s Aadhaar program, the world’s largest biometric digital identity initiative, is transforming how individuals interact with each other, the modern economy, and the government. IDinsight's State of Aadhaar initiative catalyzed data-driven discourse and inform decision-making in the Aadhaar ecosystem. Our State of Aadhaar Report 2017-18  included an evidence-based overview of the changes within the ecosystem over the last year and a three-state survey capturing individuals' experiences with Aadhaar. 

With the Indian Supreme Court’s verdict on the validity of Aadhaar as a mandatory form of identification, our Elizabeth Bennett (Senior Manager) and Ronald Abraham (Partner), wrote for the BBC on the importance of the dissenting opinion in the ruling and how the risks outlined in the dissent should be used to shape the future of Aadhaar in India.

Read the op-ed here.

African Development Perspectives | September 2018

How does an evidence-informed decision evolve? IDinsight Senior Associate, Alice Redfern, and Director, Dr. Alison Connor share the trajectory of the evidence-informed decision to scale the Zambian Ministry of Community Development & Social Service’s Social Cash Transfers Program in the September 2018 issue of African Development Perspectives.

Read the full article here


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African Green Revolution Forum | September 2018

IDinsight Founding Partner, Paul Wang, shared the stage with IDinsight partners, TechnoServe, JFS Mozambique, the Gulu Agriculture Development Company, and Kumwe Harvest and AIF, to discuss practical ways to serve both farmers and companies through innovations in smallholder sourcing operations. Paul specifically spoke about the mechanics of IDinsight’s work conducting rapid evaluations of innovations to improve the lives of farmers.

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Financing the Future of Education in India | August 2018

With the unequivocally successful results of the world's first Development Impact Bond, Educate Girls hosted a panel to integrate practical lessons from the DIB into future innovations in financing models to support education in India. Associate Director, Kate Sturla, joined the other discussants including representatives from Brookings India, the Children's Investment Fund Foundation, Educate Girls, the Government of India, and USAID India. 

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Using Evidence to Improve Policy Implementation | July 2018

Results 4 Allthe African Institute for Development Policy, and IDinsight convened a workshop on the role of evidence in improving policy implementation in Nairobi, Kenya. Participants included policymakers from nine countries in Africa and Latin America including Chile, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mexico, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, and Uganda. IDinsight’s Regional Director of Southern Africa, Chris Chibwana led a session for participants on Using Administrative Data For Monitoring and Evaluation Policy Implementation. The workshop was a unique opportunity for participants to learn from their shared experiences, challenges, and lessons of integrating evidence into their policymaking decisions. 

Learn more about the workshop here.

EA Global 2018 | June 2018

IDinsight CEO, Neil Buddy Shah, shared insights on the Effective Altruism movement at the EA Global Summit in San Francisco. Buddy urged people within the movement to: consider riskier interventions, tailor interventions to the moral preferences of beneficiaries, and continue to be rigorous.

Watch the full talk here.

Fishers in Andhra pradesh discuss the latest round of the open-source fisheries experiment with Idinsight and tata trust staff. Photo credit: Rob sampson