Mark [user:field_middlename] Engelbert

Mark Engelbert

Senior Evaluation specialist
International Initiative for Impact Evaluation (3ie)
United Kingdom

I manage 3ie-funded research and conduct evidence synthesis for 3ie’s Agricultural Innovations and Immunisation evidence programmes. I also work on 3ie's Evidence Repository, which is a comprehensive database of impact evaluations and systematic reviews in international development.

My contributions

  • How are we progressing in SDG evaluation?

    • Dear Emilia,

      Regarding your last point, I'm glad you raised the issue of why our report found the patterns we did in terms of which SDGs are being evaluated (with quantitative impact evaluations) and which aren't. For context, we generally tried to stay away from "why?" questions because (a) our data don't really give us insight about that, and (b) we aren't experts in all the sectors covered. 

      But obviously, over the course of writing the report we wondered about why we were seeing the patterns we did. Like you, I'd be very curious to hear thoughts from environmental sector experts. I'd also be interested in hearing your own hypotheses!



    • This may be coming at the question from a slightly different angle than Emilia intended, but as it happens, my team has just released a report on evaluation evidence (impact evaluations in particular) for the SDGs. We classified over 7,000 impact evaluation studies by SDG, with the goal of answering the question: "if I'm a policymaker working to improve progress on a particular SDG, how much evaluation evidence do I have to go on?". (The research questions are stated much more formally in the report, but that's the basic idea.)

      We found that there has been a lot of evaluation work on "People" SDGs (e.g., poverty, food security, education) but the "Planet" SDGs have been largely neglected in the literature (with the exception of a big recent push by Chinese researchers to evaluate environmental regulations in China). 

      We argue for a coordinated "evidence for sustainable development" agenda, which will ensure that a broad base of evaluation evidence is available to support evidence-informed decisionmaking across all the SDGs.

      Just mentioning this here as it may provide some useful info for folks interested in the role of evaluation in achieving the SDGs.