Inter-American Development Bank, Office of Evaluation and Oversight


The Office of Evaluation and Oversight (OVE) is an independent body of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), responsible for externally evaluating IDB's projects and performance. The evaluations are aimed at promoting institutional learning and improving IDB's development effectiveness.

OVE was created in 1999 when the evaluation function in the IDB was redesigned after a thirty-year history. OVE gained independence from IDB's Management and has reported solely and directly to the Board of Executive Directors. To ensure its independence, OVE has organizational and behavioral independence, and is free from external pressure and conflicts of interest according to the criteria established by the Evaluation Cooperation Group (ECG), of which the IDB is a founding member.

OVE undertakes independent and systematic evaluations of IDB's strategies, policies, programs, activities, delivery support functions and systems. It disseminates findings of these evaluations so that recommendations for improvement can be used in the design, appraisal and execution of new operations. The Office also provides normative guidance on evaluation issues and contributes to evaluation capacity building in the Latin American and the Caribbean region. In recent years, OVE has increased its efforts to improve evaluation training among regional governments through the CLEAR Initiative.

Evaluation Products

  • Country Program Evaluations (CPEs) review the IDB's involvement in an individual borrowing country to improve the planning and goal-setting capacity of the institution, and evaluate progress toward achieving country program objectives. They are tied to the countries' electoral cycles in order to provide an evaluative contribution to each of the IDB's new Country Strategies. CPEs provide the Board of Executive Directors with an account of IDB-funded programs, creating an opportunity for reflection to improve them.
  • Sector and Thematic Evaluations are conducted on a sample of projects in a particular sector or related to a specific theme of IDB lending where there is a high probability of lessons to be applied to the design of future operations. The sample may include both ongoing and completed projects and the sector or thematic area may be covered by a formal IDB strategy.
  • Project Evaluations are designed to evaluate project performance and assess sustainability. These evaluations provide information to government officials and the IDB which allows parties to decide on whether to expand, modify or eliminate project categories. For the IDB, in particular, the purpose of the evaluation is to generate data that will allow the IDB to evaluate models underlying project design and determine whether to replicate interventions of evaluated themes in other countries.
  • OVE contributes to institutional learning and expanding the knowledge frontier regarding the real impact of IDB interventions through Impact Evaluations on specific topics which are relevant for Latin America and the Caribbean.
  • Corporate Evaluations include the Evaluation of Instruments and Policies as well as the Evaluation of IDB Systems and Processes. Policy and Instrument Evaluations are ex-post or in-process evaluations of IDB policies and instruments which address project results and the value of the strategic approach being implemented. They may also examine the IDB's non-financial development activities in addition to corporate issues. OVE evaluates them periodically to determine their relevance and effectiveness.
  • The Evaluation of the IDB's System and Process assesses the effectiveness, efficiency and quality of the IDB's monitoring and evaluation systems and processes.
  • OVE provides Evaluation Capacity Development to Borrowers through cooperative evaluation agreements with regional financial institutions, such as the Caribbean Development Bank, the Central American Bank for Economic Integration and the University of the West Indies. OVE has also worked with the Brazilian Institute for Research in Applied Economics (IPEA) to develop evaluation networks in Latin America and increase awareness of the use of evaluation for public administration. 
  • Currently, OVE is a member of the CLEAR Initiative which provides support to the consolidation of two regional CLEAR Centers for Latin America, hosted at CIDE in Mexico and FGV in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Last updated: April 2014