Independent Project Evaluations Step by Step



1. Planning an Evaluation at the Design Stage

Independent Project Evaluations are required for all projects.

Depending on the evaluation purpose, Independent Project Evaluations are undertaken at mid-term of the project (mid-term evaluations) and/or shortly before the end of the project (final evaluations). Projects lasting four years or more must undergo a mid-term evaluation and a final evaluation.

Mid-term evaluations aim at improving future performance of the project. While final evaluations aim at determining the extent to which objectives were achieved and at contributing to future programming, policy making and overall organizational learning.

Bearing in mind that the evaluation provide information in a timely manner, so that it becomes available when the programme or project needs it most, the Project Manager should determine a schedule for when to carry out a mid-term or final Independent Project Evaluation in order to plan in advance when the evaluation process should start and end.

a) Evaluation Criteria and plan

Criteria for Independent Project Evaluations

Guidelines for Cluster Evaluations

Evaluation Criteria Definitions and Sample Questions

Evaluation Plan Template

Evaluation Quality Criteria Checklist - Design of Projects and Country, Regional and Thematic Programmes

In-depth Evaluation Approach Paper

b) Human Rights and Gender Equality

Mainstreaming Human Rights and Gender Equality

c) Roles and Responsibilities

Evaluation Roles and Responsibilities in Independent Project Evaluations

d) Evaluation Handbook

Evaluation Handbook: Chapter I and Chapter II.


2. Approving Process 

Submitting offices must undertake consultations with IEU for all projects and programmes (and revisions to the same)  to be approved either by the PRC or by Field Representatives. For more details, see Evaluation Step by Step.


3. Managing an Evaluation

Independent Project Evaluations are initiated and managed by Project Managers, and conducted by independent external evaluators. Project Managers assume the day-to-day responsibility for managing the evaluation, including its funding, and serve as a central person connecting evaluation stakeholders. They also ensure compliance with UNODC Evaluation Policy and Guidelines.

Where available, the Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Focal Point, serves as facilitator to the Project Manager throughout the evaluation process.

Independent Project Evaluations need to be initiated 4 to 6 months in advance, depending on the size of the project. Evaluations are to be completed during the life span of the project to ensure appropriate evaluation capacity and to avoid project extensions.

a) Terms of Reference (ToR)

Guidelines for Evaluation ToR

Template for Evaluation ToR

b) Selection of evaluators

Guidelines for Selection of Evaluators

Evaluation Consultants Declaration of Interest

c) Evaluation Handbook

Evaluation Handbook: Chapter III (+ Chapter IV)


4. Undertaking an Evaluation

The Project Manager is responsible for the provision of desk review materials to the evaluation team, reviewing the evaluation methodology, liaising with the Core Learning Partners, as well as reviewing the draft report and developing an implementation plan for the evaluation recommendations.

The Project Manager is further in charge of providing logistical support to the evaluation team including arranging the field missions of the evaluation team. For the field missions, the evaluation team liaises with the UNODC Regional/Field Offices and mentors as appropriate.

a) Roles and Responsibilities

Evaluation Roles and Responsibilities in Independent Project Evaluations

b) Guidelines and Templates

Guidelines for Inception Report; Template for Inception Report

Guidelines for Evaluation Reports Template Report, Typographic Styles, UN Spelling

Quality Assessment for Independent Project Evaluation Reports

c) Evaluation Handbook

Evaluation Handbook: Chapter III (+ Chapter IV)

When drafting the evaluation report, the mandatory Guidelines for Evaluation Reports and the Template Report must be consulted and used.  

The Template Report is used by writing the new text on top of the text laid out in the word file to adopt the correct format and style. Please remember to download the word file of the Template Report and save locally before using it. 


5. Using the Evaluation

Appropriate evaluation follow-up mechanisms are required in order to ensure that evaluation recommendations are properly utilized and implemented in a timely fashion, and that UNODC future activities take into account the results of previous evaluations.

Once the evaluation report has been finalized and disseminated, the Project Manager is responsible for filling in the Evaluation Follow-up Plan (EFP) template one month after issuance of the final evaluation report. In the EFP, the Project Manager summarizes when, how and by whom the recommendations made in the report will be implemented.

The Project Manager updates the EFP regularly and provides to IEU.

Related documents, tools and templates:

Evaluation Follow-up Plan (EFP)

Evaluation Handbook: Chapter VI


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