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Message from the President


In an increasingly open and complex world our fellow citizens expect from public policy to be more effective but also easier to understand and, to this end, they require our contribution. Accordingly, we have to take greater account of the complexity of public action, to shed light onto the role of its multiple stakeholders and fuel public debate. This is the challenge of evaluation.



Evaluation differs from our traditional duties such as compliance audit, performance measuring and providing of expertise so as to improve public management. It is not to be confused with performance audit. Evaluation extends and supplements performance audit by providing insight into complex public policies, by giving explanations on their success or failure, by identifying their objectives and by making their implementation understandable.

Practicing evaluation requires from us to adapt our organization, our methods and even our culture. Evaluating complex public actions also requires the use of rigorous methodology, of consideration for the views of stakeholders and more frequent use of multi-disciplinary expertise.

The working group on program evaluation is available to help SAIs take up this challenge, in which hopefully this site will also contribute. The aim of this site is to facilitate the exchange and dissemination of best practices, to centralize your contributions and advice, and to provide useful links towards the international evaluation community. I am counting on your contribution in feeding this website so that it becomes a living and useful resource for the development of the practice of evaluation by SAIs.

Evaluation will not make us change job, quite the contrary. It can give more consistency and meaning to our role in serving citizens: to make policy action more effective, easier to understand and fairer.

Didier Migaud, First President of the Cour des comptes
President of the working group on program evaluation