Message from our Executive Director

Dear colleague,

The new year signifies new beginnings and, for us at 3ie, 2024 is when we enter the next strategic phase. As we set our new strategy in motion, our commitment to facilitating and institutionalizing the use of high-quality evidence, and continued production of evidence where it is most needed remains unwavering. Powered by the successes of the past year, we aspire to achieve a lot more in collaboration with our key partners. As I wish you a fulfilling year ahead, I take this opportunity to highlight 3ie’s work in areas that continue to dominate the development and humanitarian landscape and call for urgent evidence-informed decision-making and action.

A few months ago, we crossed the half-time mark towards the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Our recent report, in collaboration with DEval, is a deep dive into the evidence available on each of the 17 goals. This analysis of impact evaluations and systematic reviews available in 3ie’s Development Evidence Portal published between 1990 to 2022 sheds new light on the state of effectiveness evidence. While several SDGs are still neglected in terms of having a robust evidence base, even the research that exists, for a large part, lacks gender and equity considerations. Explore the dashboards here.

On the impact evaluation front, 3ie’s evaluation specialists and partners are bringing new evidence to bear on programs that address support to migrant populations, peacebuilding initiatives, gender and livelihoods, aquaculture, nutrition and maternal and child health, amongst others. 3ie works closely with partners to design, implement and use impact evaluations from start to finish. We tailor robust identification strategies, either experimental or quasi-experimental, to the program’s operational realities, and complement quantitative research with process evaluations and other mixed-methods to better understand impact pathways. Our evaluation teams also leverage our extensive in-house capacity in cost-measurement and analysis, data science, research ethics and transparency, and computational reproducibility to produce credible and actionable evidence.  

In fragile contexts, our work on peacebuilding with the UN Peacebuilding Fund has been expanding, and we are currently working on impact evaluations in Guatemala, the Mali/Niger Border,  the Sierra Leone/Guinea border, and Sudan. We have also worked with partners to conduct capacity-sharing events to share evaluation skills with UN colleagues and other partners.

As part of our work on climate change mitigation and adaptation, we recently mapped the latest impact evaluations and systematic reviews of interventions on land-use change and forestry programs. Additionally, we developed a new framework that categorizes existing interventions and outcomes in climate change and biodiversity programming in L&MICs and will serve as a comprehensive basis for our forthcoming evidence gap map for these sectors. This work is supported by UK’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

We are also working on another flagship project – the first evidence gap map (EGM) for the energy sector. 3ie is developing and co-funding this groundbreaking work with Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL). The interactive map will enable our stakeholders to leverage existing research and evidence – around specific geographies, technologies, and other intervention areas – and illustrate gaps where new studies will further help.

I am also happy to announce that there are new funding opportunities coming out of the newly established FCDO Research Commissioning Centre (RCC), which 3ie is leading in partnership with the University of Birmingham. Upcoming opportunities cover a range of development and diplomacy topics—from the politics of infrastructure megaprojects to the use of AI in food and agriculture and impacts of climate change on rail operations (see full list here). You can also receive news and updates about the RCC by joining our mailing list.

We are also moving forward with momentum with our key partners who took the Global Evidence Commitment pledge last year. We are working together to flesh out details of each organization’s more specific plans for the coming year and beginning plans for an event in the fall in which relevant organizations will join us to discuss our commitments and for mutual learning and support in making better use of rigorous evidence to improve the cost-effectiveness of projects.

Marie Gaarder
Executive Director, 3ie


Learning brief |  Weaving through generations: Productivity and women's autonomy in family-owned businesses in rural India
Evidence gap map report | Land-use change and forestry programmes in low- and middle-income countries: an evidence gap map update
Working paper | Mapping the evidence on interventions to address climate and biodiversity crises in low- and middle-income countries: a framework proposal


Upcoming events

Mapping the evidence on what works for addressing root causes of irregular migration: new insights | 13 February 2024, 10:00 am – 11:30 am EST

To provide comprehensive insights into the complexity of migration drivers and measures that can contribute to reducing the share of irregular migration, 3ie has completed mapping existing literature and academic knowledge which analyzed the effectiveness of all initiatives and programs with digital trace on the web which have been implemented since 1990 to address the root causes and drivers of irregular migration. Based on the results from the mapping, 3ie synthesized one of the intervention categories for which there was a sufficient number of studies to group and compare the results on migration-related outcomes: skills-based active labor market policies. In this webinar, we will discuss why the evidence falls short and what more is urgently needed to inform policy.
Panelists: Marina Manke, Chief, Global Migration Data Analysis Centre, IOM; Hanna Snider, Migration Data & Research expert, USAID; David MacKenzie, Lead Economist, World Bank; Domenico Tabasso, Senior Economist, World Bank- UNHCR Joint Data Center on Forced Displacement; Carolyn Huang, Senior Evaluations Specialist, 3ie; and Sebastian Martinez, Director, Evaluation Office, 3ie

Register here



EvalFest 2024 | 21-23 February, New Delhi
EvalFest 2023 is a biennial event organized by the Evaluation Community of India (ECOI) and EvalYouth India (EYI). The event will be held on 21 – 23 February 2024 at India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road, New Delhi. The theme of EvalFest 2024 is The Shifting Sands in Evaluation: Need for Responsive, Adaptive and Future-Proof Approaches’. Sebastian Martinez, 3ie’s Director of Evaluation, will be part of the opening plenary on ‘Use of AI in evaluation: opportunities and challenges’ and Neelakshi Mann, Program Director –  Asia, 3ie will chair a session on ‘Measuring women's empowerment: Findings and experiences in implementing gender evaluation tools’. 

More information | Register here



What Works Climate Solutions Summit | 9–12 June 2024, Berlin
The What Works Climate Solutions Summit (WWCS) is a high-level conference for evidence-based climate policy to promote and catalyze synthetic evidence on climate solutions for upcoming climate change assessments – particularly the IPCC’s 7th Assessment Report ─ as well as other forms of scientific policy advice. 3ie is a partner organization and our Executive Director Marie Gaarder is part of the steering committee of WWCS.

Read more


Join our growing and dynamic team by applying for one of these unique and impactful roles. View all the current opportunities here.

Research commissioning centre – upcoming calls for proposals

Through our recently announced Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) Research Commissioning Centre in partnership with the University of Birmingham, we intend to launch several calls for proposals in early 2024. The research will cover a range of development and diplomacy topics.

If you are interested in receiving updates about the upcoming opportunities, please read more.

Senior Research Fellow

3ie’s Senior Research Fellows Program includes experts from various sectors – including development, evaluation, policy as well as academia. This month, we feature David de Ferranti, who until last year served as a member of our senior management team, providing strategic advice and direction, leading initiatives on business development and partnerships, and contributing to evaluation programs and other technical work. He was the founder, president, and chief executive officer of Results for Development (R4D) and now serves as its Board Chair. Before that, David was at the World Bank, rising to its senior management team and leading its work on health, education, nutrition, population, and social protection. He also headed the Bank’s Latin America and the Caribbean program, overseeing a US$25 billion loan portfolio and a staff of 700 in 16 locations. Read more.

Since 2020, 3ie's Fellowship Program has contributed to achieving our mission by tapping into diverse expertise and experience across the world.