Photo of Chris Barnett, Monitoring and Evaluation Advisor with the Impact and Learning Team

Chris Barnett - Monitoring and Evaluation Advisor

T: +44 (0)1273 915625

Chris is the Director of the Centre for Development Impact (CDI), which is a joint initiative between IDS and ITAD. His work focuses on impact evaluation and other evaluative methodologies, and works particularly in the areas of civil society, governance and livelihoods.

Chris is an experienced team leader and director of a number of evaluations, and has led work on designing several performance management systems. He is currently the Project Director for the Impact Evaluation of the Millennium Villages Project in northern Ghana, working closely with the Principal Investigator, Dr. Edoardo Masset. He is also the Team Leader of the Independent Impact Evaluation Agent (IIEA) for Tilitonse (Malawi), which is a four-year assignment to measure the impact of a £12.5 million civil society fund.

Chris currently provides technical support on monitoring and evaluation (M&E) and value for money (VFM) to a number of governance funds in West Africa, including: the Strengthening Transparency, Accountability and Responsiveness programme in Ghana (STAR-Ghana), as well as the State Voice and Accountability Initiative (SAVI) in Nigeria. His recent work includes being Project Director for the multi-donor evaluation of support to Conflict Prevention and Peace Building (CPPB) activities in Southern Sudan, and team leading the Sida evaluation of the Chia Se poverty alleviation programme in Vietnam (a rights-based initiative).

Chris also works on VFM. He led the team that undertook the DFID study on 'Measuring the Impact and Value for Money of Governance Programmes', as well as the subsequent work for Bond (the UK membership body for non-governmental organizations). He has undertaken research studies for two National Audit Office VFM reports on DFID’s bilateral assistance; the first of Malawi’s country programme, and the second of DFID’s 10-year strategy for primary education (with work in Ghana and Kenya).

He is also interested in exploring approaches to feedback loops, where rapid feedback can be used to improve downward accountability to citizens; plus, the use of innovation prizes to stimulate new ideas and solutions in international development.

This project addresses the following question: Have the investments undertaken by Swedfund contributed to poverty reduction and, if so, to what extent and how?

More details


Evaluation and Impact Investing: A Review of Methodologies to Assess Social Impact

IDS Evidence Report 222 (2017)

This report highlights the paradox within impact investing: the prioritisation of ‘social impact’ without prioritising ‘impact evidence’. The growth of metrics, ratings and certification-based approaches has sought to address this gap but this only goes so far, and there is a need for a more evaluative approach to assessing impact. More details


Gauging Demand for Evidence and Accountability in Impact Investing by using Twitter Social Network Analysis: A Methodology

IDS Evidence Report 213 (2016)

This report explains the methodology used to analyse the demand for evidence and accountability within the impact investment market. Social network analysis, qualitative interviews and ego network analysis were used to explore actors within this market (or system), drawing on data from Twitter to consider connections, influence and conversations about social impact. More details

This is the cover to 'Millennium Villages Evaluation: Midterm Summary Report'.

Millennium Villages Evaluation: Midterm Summary Report

This study is one of three making up the qualitative part of an independent evaluation of the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) Millennium Villages Project (MVP) (2012–17). More details


Towards Greater Effectiveness and Accountability in Impact Investing

IDS Policy Briefing 126 (2016)

Impact investing – investing for social and environmental returns alongside financial returns – is a growing phenomenon in financial markets. However, concerns exist regarding the demand for robust impact evidence and accountability for impact claims when compared to a public sector aid model. More details

IDS publications on international development research

Report: New Frontiers for Evaluation in an Era of Market-Oriented Development: Monday 20–Wednesday 22 July 2015

As part of the International Year of Evaluation 2015, this Wilton Park convened meeting gave evaluation professionals, development partners, and investors an open forum to review recent evaluation experience, debate evaluation governance issues, and probe the methodological questions brought about by the market-based revolution. More details

Related Programmes and Centres:
Centre for Development Impact.