The Center for Evaluation and Development is a non-profit organization and registered charity that provides evidence on what works, for whom, when, why and under which circumstances in the development sector. It conducts excellent, rigorous and independent research that meets the highest standards of quantitative and qualitative analysis, and collaborates with renowned partners like UNICEF, ILO, the World Bank, KfW and GIZ. It is an Associate Member of the International Initiative for Impact Evaluation (3ie) and regularly partners with J-PAL Europe in training and research.

Based in Germany, the Center runs numerous large-scale, randomized control trials as well as quasi-experimental policy evaluation studies in more than 40 countries across Africa, Asia, Latin America and Europe. Headed by Prof. Dr. Markus Frölich, the Center is supported by a team and network of experienced researchers who bring a broad range of expertise from education, health, and labor markets, to microfinance, insurance and rural development, to name a few.


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Evaluating impact for effective philanthropy

Symposium “Evaluating Impact for Effective Philanthropy”

To ring in the new year, C4ED together with the University of St. Gallen, hosted a symposium on the 15 of January 2020 to discuss how to evaluate impact for effective philanthropy. With more than 70 participants from Germany, Switzerland, Liechtenstein and France, as well as Thailand, Lebanon and Paraguay, we set the stage for meaningful discussions on effective philanthropy and how to evaluate impact.

Across three panels and six workshops, the day offered ideas as diverse as the background of participants: along with domestic and international foundations, we welcomed start-ups, NGOs and renowned members of academia. Prof. Marc Gurgand, Scientific Director of J-PAL Europe and Professor at the Paris School of Economics, delivered the well-received keynote speech.

Last week’s event aims to kick-off a regular series on “promoting change, not charity,” with the next symposium scheduled for later this year. Set to take place in the Mannheim/Frankfurt area, interested parties who would like to exchange views on impact investment can register their interest here: events@c4ed.org

Workshop on Systematic Reviews

Together with the Campbell Collaboration and the University of Mannheim (SFB 884), C4ED organized a workshop on systematic reviews and meta analyses in international development. With more about 50 participants from across Europe and beyond, the two-day event equipped researchers with core principles of systematic reviews and the statistical tools to conduct meta-analyses. Dr. Ashrita Saran from the Campbell Foundation’s South Asia office and Dr. Bernd Weiss from the GESIS institute in Mannheim delivered an interactive format of lectures followed by hands-on sessions where participants performed meta-analytical analyses using R or stata. C4ED is grateful for both the speakers’ and the participants’ dedication towards an evidence-based policy movement, and is looking forward to welcoming interested researchers in the future again.

C4ED congratulates Banerjee, Duflo and Kremer for Nobel Prize in Economics

C4ED congratulates Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo and Michael Kremer for the acknowledgement of their hard and groundbreaking work! The three researchers from MIT and Harvard University were awarded the Nobel Prize “for their experimental approach in alleviating global poverty.” Having founded the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (JPAL) in 2003, researchers around Banerjee adapted the techniques of randomized clinical trials from medicine to concepts useful for impact evaluations of public programs to reduce poverty in developing countries.

C4ED is officially affiliated with JPAL and is one of the few organizations in Europe that has been working with the same rigorous methods to evaluate development programs worldwide. We believe that the acknowledgement of the Nobel Prize winners‘ hard work will have a lasting impact on our work at C4ED. It will lend credibility to the rigor of our research, help us strengthen the clients’ trust in the methods we use and convince the implementing partners of the importance of this work. Their hard work amending their implementation plans to control for spill-over effects, to include a control group and/or treatment arms, their openness to rigorously test new approaches to alleviate poverty and to provide access to monitoring systems in order to learn from successful programs does eventually pay off. We thank the Nobel laureates for helping us to establish the trust we need to achieve a greater goal. We send our best wishes to the three laureates and to colleagues at JPAL, and are looking forward to continuing to contribute to making an impact in alleviating global poverty.

C4ED contributes to 3ie's 100th report

C4ED is happy to announce that its researchers have contributed to 3ie’s (International Initiative for Impact Evaluation) anniversary to have published the 100th report.



Prof. Dr. Markus Frölich

Prof. Dr. Markus Frölich is full professor of Econometrics (Chair of Econometrics) at the University of Mannheim in Germany, as well as a permanent guest professor at the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland. He obtained his Ph.D. in economics in 2002 from the University of St. Gallen, after which he was granted a Marie Curie Individual Fellowship at the University College London. From 2008 to 2011, he was director of the research program »Employment and Development« at the World Bank and the Institute for the Study of Labor. He is further affiliated with J-PAL, the Swiss Institute for Empirical Economic Research (SEW, St. Gallen), the Institute for Labour Market Policy Evaluation (IFAU, Uppsala), the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW, Mannheim), the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA, Bonn) and the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER, Essex).

Neutral and objective impact evaluations are indispensable for addressing poverty and underdevelopment. Effective, impact-oriented development programs build upon a continuous learning process. Innovative ideas are to be first tested through pilot and demonstration projects and evaluated under strict scientific standards before being scaled up. Improving quality and rigor standards of evaluations of development projects is of central importance to C4ED.

Improving lives through effective development solutions


Prof. Dr. Leonard Wantchekon, Founder of the African School of Economics (ASE) in Benin, Professor of Politics and Affiliate of the Economics Department at Princeton University

Impact evaluations based on rigorous econometric methodologies are of crucial importance for policy design and poverty alleviation in developing countries. At the African School of Economics, we cooperate with C4ED and Professor Frölich in helping making development interventions more effective. I wish C4ED the best of luck and success on their way to further contributing to greater social impact.

Mr. Tahir Waqar, Senior Program Manager – Head of Monitoring Evaluation and Research, National Rural Support Programme, Pakistan

NRSP has been partnering with Prof. Frölich and his team on a number of large projects since 2010, testing and assessing the impact of several innovations in micro-finance, health insurance and community mobilization. Our fruitful cooperation resulted in high-quality evaluations and analyses, which proved an extremely helpful source of organizational learning and decision-making to NRSP.

Dr. Cecilia D. del Castillo, Executive Director – Negros Women for Tomorrow Foundation

Professor Frölich and his research associates have been successfully collaborating with us since many years now, helping us to provide sustainable financial and client-responsive developmental services to the poor. Together, we have evaluated entrepreneurship and financial education programs and developed health emergency savings products that help the poor in the Philippines better deal with sudden health shocks and other emergencies.

Sarah Coleman, Chief Child Protection – UNICEF

Impact evaluations contribute significantly to the effective delivery of UNICEF’s global mandate in support of the realization of the rights of the child. We truly appreciate the high-level technical support provided by Professor Frölich and his team, particularly with regard to our adolescent empowerment and child labour reduction programs in Pakistan.