Generating demand for and use of evaluation evidence in government health ministries

Journal articles or issues
October 2017
Sophie Witter, Andrew Kardan, Molly Scott, Lucie Moore and Louise Shaxson

This article examines Demand-Driven Evaluations for Decisions (3DE), a programme piloted in Uganda and Zambia in 2012-2015. It aims to answer evaluative questions raised by policy-makers in Ministries of Health, rapidly and with limited resources. The article assesses whether the 3DE model was successful in supporting and increasing evidence-based policy-making, building capacity and changing the behaviour of Ministry staff.

The authors find that 3DE had a very limited contribution to improving evidence-based policy-making, capacity and behaviour in both countries. The evaluation recommends a focusing of objectives and a more strategic approach to stengthening evaluative demand and capacity. 

The lessons learned are likely to apply in other low- and middle-income settings, such as the importance of supporting evaluative thinking and capacity within wider institutions and understanding the political economy of evidence use and its uptake.