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Determining Evaluation Purpose and Evaluation Questions

As early as possible in the evaluation planning phase, the Mission or Washington Operating Unit needs to consider the purpose and audience of the evaluation and the key questions that the evaluation will address. Ideally, the evaluation purpose and questions will be developed during the design of the project or activity to be evaluated. The process of developing the evaluation questions may even inform the decision to evaluate or not.

Evaluation questions are typically developed by the Development Objective team or Technical Office managing the strategy, project, or activity being evaluated in coordination with the Program Office, which will manage the evaluation in most cases. However, evaluation questions may be based on input from Washington offices, Mission leadership, or other stakeholders, such as implementing partners and host governments. Adequate consultation is essential when defining the evaluation purpose and evaluation questions to ensure that evaluation findings will be credible, relevant, and actionable for decision-makers.

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