Evaluation of RDPs 2007-2013 > Evaluation Guidelines
Various forms of guidance and methodological support are available to assist Member States in dealing with evaluation requirements for their Rural Development Programmes (RDPs) 2007-2013.
The evaluation requirements are set out in Council Regulation (EC) No. 1698/2005 which has, inter alia, established a Common Monitoring and Evaluation Framework (CMEF) in view of guiding Member States towards a more effective system for assessing progress towards Community and national objectives, ensuring the accountability of public spending through RDPs, and improving programme performance. The CMEF consists of common baseline, output, result and impact indicators for the RDPs which are defined in Annex VIII of the implementing Regulation No. 1974/2006. The CMEF is laid down in a set of documents drawn up by the Commission and agreed with the Member States. These documents are put together in a Handbook, which includes a series of evaluation guidelines and guidance sheets on the monitoring indicators.
The main documents available to implement the CMEF are:
- The Handbook on Common Monitoring and Evaluation Framework – DG Agriculture and Rural Development – September 2006
- Explanatory notes to the Common Evaluation Questions & Recommendations on Mid-Term Evaluation Reporting – the Evaluation Expert Network – July 2010
- Working Paper on Capturing impacts of Leader and of measures to improve the Quality of Life in rural areas – the Evaluation Expert Network – July 2010
- Working Paper on the Evaluation of National Rural Network Programmes – the Evaluation Expert Network – July 2010
- Working Paper on the CMEF Gross Value Added Indicators – DG Agriculture and Rural Development – June 2010
- Working Paper on Approaches for assessing the impacts of the Rural Development Programmes in the context of multiple intervening factors – the Evaluation Expert Network – March 2010
- Guidelines on the Mid-Term Evaluation of Rural Development Programmes – the Evaluation Expert Network – July 2009
- Guidance Document the Application of the High Nature Value Impact Indicator 2007-2013 – the Evaluation Expert Network – November 2008
The Handbook on CMEF includes a series of evaluation guidelines and guidance fiches on the common indicators for monitoring and evaluation, as listed in Annex VIII of Commission Regulation 1974/2006 laying down detailed rules for the application of Council Regulation 1698/2005 on support for rural development by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD). Four main annexes are attached to the Handbook, providing details on the following elements: General Guidance; Programming and Measure Guidance; Indicator Guidance; and Other Guidance. Within each annex, there are “Guidance notes” elaborating in more detail specific elements of the CMEF.
Explanatory notes to the Common Evaluation Questions & Recommendations on Mid-Term Evaluation Reporting
The explanatory notes are designed to provide complementary information to the Handbook on the Common Monitoring and Evaluation Framework in order to operationalise the Common Evaluation Questions. The document includes explanations about the use and purpose of the evaluation questions, shows the approaches for answering them and provides additional clarifications concerning the structure of the MTE report.
Working Paper on Capturing impacts of Leader and of measures to improve the Quality of Life in rural areas
The working paper proposes a framework of reference in order to assess Quality of Life in the context of RDPs. Based on state-of-the-art methodologies, the working paper suggests a three-step approach, provides a rapid overview of the main standard and participatory assessment tools and shows current practice examples collected from Member States.
This working paper summarizes the outcomes of a workshop on the topic of the evaluation of National Rural Network Programmes which was held in Brussels in May 2010. It documents the approaches of Germany, Italy, Portugal and Spain for the evaluation of their National Rural Network Programmes, compares the indicators and evaluation questions and shows the evaluation methods envisaged during the mid-term evaluation.
In response to questions from Member States about value added indicators, DG Agriculture and Rural Development has clarified in a working paper several issues Part I of the working paper deals with inconsistencies related to definitions (measurement) of the CMEF value added indicators applied in farming and forestry. Part II deals with monitoring related questions regarding the CMEF value added indicators, but also other result indicators.Part III contains annexes. (changes in the respective indicator fiches of the Handbook on CMEF, reporting of the result indicators and some examples).
Working Paper on Approaches for assessing the impacts of the Rural Development Programmes in the context of multiple intervening factors
This working paper describes possible methodologies to be applied for assessment of socio-economic and environmental impacts in the rural development context. It provides support for measuring, interpreting and judging the seven common impact indicators (economic growth, employment creation, labour productivity, biodiversity, HNV, water quality, climate change) of the CMEF. Its purpose is to assist the responsible administrations in Member States and the evaluators in assessing the impacts of Rural Development Programmes.
The Guidelines on the Mid-Term Evaluation of Rural Development Programmes are designed to support Member States and relevant national or regional authorities in framing the work of their independent evaluators in their preparation and implementation of the mid-term evaluation in 2010. This good practice advice complements Guidance note B (Evaluation guidelines) of the Handbook on CMEF and contributes to the adoption of a consistent approach across the EU-27.
The High Nature Value (HNV) impact indicator is one of seven common impact indicators included in the CMEF to support assessment of the impacts of Rural Development Programmes (RDPs). The HNV farming and forestry concept is quite recent within EU-supported RDPs, and this HNV guidance document is intended to assist Member States in developing a workable approach to applying the HNV indicator.