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Evaluation and the use of evaluation evidence across government

Government needs evaluative evidence of what works well to enable it to make better informed decisions. Identifying lessons learned from previous interventions is important for improving future decisions, resource allocation, planning and delivery of priorities. Without proper evaluation, government cannot effectively demonstrate value for money in its use of public resources.

Our work will look at systems and measures in place to support the provision and use of evaluation evidence in government to produce better outcomes. We will identify any barriers and make recommendations to overcome them. We will consider whether:

  • the centre of government has established a clear and coherent framework for promoting the provision and use of fit-for-purpose evaluations across government, with a plan to implement it;
  • departments are well placed to deliver evaluations that are fit for purpose; and
  • government is making effective use of evaluation findings in its decision-making.

This complements our 2013 report on evaluation in government which focused primarily on the quality of evaluations.

If you would like to provide evidence for our study please email the study team on enquiries@nao.org.uk, putting the study title in the subject line. The team will consider the evidence you provide; however, please note that due to the volume of information we receive we may not respond to you directly.