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USAID Contribution

USAID Evidence Summits: Turning Evidence into Action


Integral to the agency's reform efforts is a renewed emphasis on the application of research and evaluation to inform strategic thinking about development. An evidence-based approach to development must underpin business processes at all levels of USAID, from project design to strategic planning to policy development.

The Learning Evaluation and Research (LER) Office within USAID's Policy Planning and Learning (PPL) Bureau introduced the idea of hosting evidence summits as part of the commitment to support evidence-based policy and programming. Evidence summits bring together academics, development practitioners, and other USG to systematically marshal existing empirical evidence, pinpoint what we know and what we do not know and help field staff in how to best design and implement programs around specific development challenges. What distinguishes these summits from traditional conferences is their focus on mutual exchange and actionable outcomes; their purpose is to provide USAID with some evidence-based guidance on how to achieve some of the world's most difficult development goals. Learning outcomes from summits synthesize a comprehensive picture of where points of agreement and disagreement are, establish priorities for future research and often feed into an iterative agency-wide policy/strategy document on the given subject.

PPL/LER has implemented three evidence summits on the topics of counter insurgency, broad based growth and agricultural technology adoption & food security; please click on the links to the right to view information on each summit. In addition, this page contains a link for information on USAID Global Health evidence summits as well as USAID's Office of Microenterprise and Private Enterprise Promotion's (MPEP) Evidence Summit on Microfinance and Inclusive Market Development.

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