Recognising the need for improved learning and accountability in settings of violent conflict and state fragility, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development’s (OECD’s) Development Assistance Committee (DAC) launched an initiative to develop evaluation guidance in 2004/2005. Two of the DAC’s specialised networks, working on evaluation and on conflict, joined forces to take this work forward. Draft guidance was published in 2007 and used for evaluations in different conflict settings. Drawing on these practical experiences, the guidance was further developed and finalised in 2012.
The guidance aims to strengthen evaluation practice and support the community of donors, country partners and implementing organisations to improve the results of peacebuilding support. This article looks at the process of developing the guidance and explores some of the lessons emerging from that experience. It highlights the collaborative nature of the process, which presented both challenges and strengths, as well as the value of an extended pilot phase.