United Nations Population Fund

United Nations Population Fund

Evaluation is a central function in UNFPA. It strengthens accountability for results, and evidence-based decision making and learning towards informing policies, strategies, country programmes and initiatives.

The evaluation function is governed by the evaluation policy, approved by the Executive Board. The Independent Evaluation Office reports directly to the Executive Board, including through the Annual Report on Evaluation. 

Key documents that frame the evaluation function at UNFPA:

UNFPA evaluation policy 2024

UNFPA evaluation strategy 2022-2025

UNFPA strategy to enhance evaluation use through communications and knowledge management 2022-2025

UNFPA multi-year costed evaluation plan 2024-2027

Evaluation Function Snapshot Independence Agenda Setting & Evaluation Planning Quality Assurance Use of Evaluation Joint Evaluation

Evaluation Function

UNFPA conducts centralized evaluations to assess organization-wide issues, and decentralized evaluations of country and regional programmes.

Centralized evaluations are managed by the Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) and include institutional, programme, thematic and joint or system-wide evaluations, as well as evaluability assessments and baseline studies. In its drive for greater organizational learning, a synthesis report pulling together and aggregating findings from evaluations is produced periodically by the IEO. 

Country and regional programme evaluations are undertaken in conformity with the evaluation policy and are considered a formal part of the evaluation function of UNFPA. Country programme evaluations provide an assessment of the entirety of the country programme and assess whether UNFPA has made appropriate strategic choices in the given context and delivered effectively. Country programme evaluations are designed to meet the need for learning and accountability at UNFPA, and to inform the strategic orientation and the design of the next programme cycle. In line with the evaluation policy, country programme evaluations should be conducted at least every other programme cycle.


The UNFPA evaluation function encompasses four major areas of work: (1) evaluation at centralized level; (2) support to decentralized evaluations, with a focus on quality assurance and evaluation capacity development; (3) evaluation coherence within the United Nations system; and (4) strengthening national evaluation capacity development, including a focus on youth in evaluation.

Evaluation at UNFPA is focused on strengthening:

  1. Demand-driven evaluation function processes and products
  2. Diversification and innovation of evaluation processes and products
  3. Quality and credibility of evaluations
  4. Enhanced use and utility of evaluations
  5. A human rights-based approach to evaluations especially gender, youth, social and environmental standard and disability inclusion
  6. Evaluation capacity development
  7. Global evaluation advocacy and partnerships to accelerate influential evaluation at the national level


The IEO reports directly, on an annual basis, to the Executive Board on the evaluation function at UNFPA, including compliance, coverage, quality, findings and recommendations of evaluations conducted by UNFPA. It is independent from the operational, management and decision-making functions in the organization, and is therefore impartial, objective and free from undue influence. 

The IEO has the authority to determine the scope of, design, conduct and commission evaluations, and to submit reports directly to the appropriate decision-makers, including the Executive Board. Programme-level evaluations are independent from programme management since the IEO approves the final design and selection of consultants, even though management may participate in the design and commissioning of such evaluations. Management cannot impose restrictions on the content and recommendations of evaluation reports. To avoid conflicts of interest, remove biases and maximize impartiality and objectivity, evaluators must not be directly involved in policy-setting, design, implementation or management of the subject of the evaluation before, during and at least two years after the evaluation. In addition, evaluation teams should have relevant expertise as well as gender and geographical balance.




Agenda Setting & Evaluation Planning

The IEO implements the Multi-Year Costed Evaluation Plan 2024-2027, which provides a coherent framework to guide the commissioning, management and use of evaluations at UNFPA. The plan provides a basis for monitoring and reporting on the implementation of planned centralized evaluations, as well as decentralized country and regional programme level evaluations. The IEO is responsible for implementing the plan and reports on its implementation to the Executive Board annually.


Quality Assurance

The UNFPA Evaluation Quality Assurance and Assessment (EQAA) system has two basic elements to ensure the quality of evaluations at UNFPA – quality assurance and quality assessment. With the purpose of promoting quality throughout the evaluation process, quality assurance takes place during the evaluation, beginning with the evaluation terms of reference and ending with the draft final evaluation report. Quality assessment takes place after an evaluation is completed (ex-post), whereby the final evaluation report is quality assessed by an external independent assessor.

Use of Evaluation

Relevant, timely, targeted, efficiently and strategically communicated evaluation evidence is vital to influence change and to augment the commitment of UNFPA to be a results-driven organization that is continually learning and adapting. A dedicated strategy by the IEO underscores the importance of a strategic approach to communications and knowledge management in order to facilitate enhanced use of evaluations.

The strategy focuses on audience knowledge needs; producing relevant, innovative and diversified evaluation knowledge products for a range of audiences; streamlining and enhancing knowledge management platforms and processes for increased availability; and providing timely access to targeted evaluative knowledge for decision-making, adaptation, learning and accountability.

Further, all UNFPA evaluation reports are accompanied by a management response. The Policy and Strategy Division has instituted a management response tracking system. This system enables the Division to monitor the implementation of recommendations and report on their status.

The IEO also manages the UNFPA repository of evaluation reports. This database is available on the public UNFPA website. 

Joint Evaluation

The IEO is sustaining and further deepening its engagement in system-wide and joint evaluations at different levels. At the global level, UNFPA has been active in strengthening evaluation coherence within the United Nations system, through engagement with United Nations evaluation platforms (such as UNEG, the Inter-Agency Humanitarian Evaluation Group, and joint and system-wide centralized evaluations) and through the United Nations System-Wide Evaluation Unit and the Global COVID-19 Evaluation Coalition.

At regional and country levels, UNFPA is active in joint evaluations, UNSDCF evaluations, and inter-agency monitoring and evaluation groups at country and regional levels.




UNEG Members

Bikem Ahiska

Communications Analyst, UNFPA

Deborah McWhinney

Evaluation Advisor, UNFPA

Independent Office of Evaluation

Hicham Daoudi

Evaluation Adviser, UNFPA

Karen Cadondon

Evaluation Specialist, UNFPA

Louis Charpentier

Evaluation adviser, UNFPA

Magalye Mars Mompoint

Evaluation Associate, UNFPA

Marco Segone

Director, Evaluation Office, UNFPA

Messay Tassew

Evaluation Specialist, UNFPA

DNB 21-62

Neha Karkara


Nsanshya Chilupula

Evaluation Analysr, UNFPA

Evaluation Office

Oanh Nguyen

Regional M&E Advisor, UNFPA

Arab States Regional Office

Thi Nguyen


Valeria Carou-Jones

Evaluation Adviser, UNFPA

Evaluation Office

Fact Sheet