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Managing and Monitoring an Evaluation Team

The responsibilities of an Evaluation COR/Manager for an evaluation contract or task order are technically no different than the responsibilities of a COR for any other implementing mechanism. In practice, though, managing the implementation of an evaluation differs in significant ways from managing the implementation of other development activities.

Evaluations typically have much more compressed timelines compared to other activities, requiring quick responses and adaptations when problems arise.

Evaluations also rely heavily on the cooperation of other USAID partners. The Evaluation COR/Manager must help mediate and manage the relationship between the evaluation team and the implementing partner being evaluated. This relationship can place a considerable burden on the implementing partner as they assist the evaluation team in obtaining documents, participating in interviews, and facilitating access to beneficiaries. This is particularly true for experimental designs in impact evaluations, which require that the implementing partner adhere to pre-specified treatment and control groups.

Finally, managing an external evaluation team requires the Evaluation COR/Manager to carefully balance USAID’s involvement to ensure a high-quality, useful, and on-time product with the need to protect the independence of the evaluators and the evaluation report.

Guidance and Tools