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The 2023 Asian Evaluation Week (AEW) Conference co-organized jointly sponsored by the Ministry of Finance, PRC, through the Asia-Pacific Finance and Development Institute (AFDI), and the Asian Development Bank’s Independent Evaluation Department (IED). This year’s edition was held from 11-14 September 2023 in Bangkok and its overarching theme was “Beyond Recovery: Evaluation for Development Effectiveness.”

On 11 September, Ashwani Muthoo, Director General, Independent Evaluation Office (IEO) of the New Development Bank (NDB), participated in the Plenary Session on the opening day titled “Evaluation Headlines Live”, along with Marvin Taylor-Dormond, Managing Director, Complaints Resolution, Evaluation and Integrity Unit of Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), and Véronique Salze-Lozac’h, Chief Evaluator of European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). Emmanuel Jimenez, Director General of IED at ADB moderated the session.

During the session, the heads of MDBs’ independent evaluation shared their perspectives on the key themes they believe should be prioritized in the future and the lessons for the evaluation community as the world emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic. The panel emphasized the importance of agility, flexibility, and timeliness in evaluations to provide relevant evidence-based information. Around 200 participants attended the session, including government officials, representative of international organizations, MDBs, and evaluation experts.

On 13 September, IEO hosted a parallel session titled “Infrastructure for Inclusive and Sustainable Development: The Experience of NDB, the Global South, and other Key Development Partners.” The session commenced with a presentation by Chao Sun, Senior Professional, IEO/NDB. During his presentation, he introduced the role and objectives of NDB’s independent evaluation function and shared insights from two recent evaluations conducted by IEO on sustainable infrastructure projects.

Subsequently, the session featured an in-depth discussion among the panelists, including Véronique Salze-Lozac’h, Chief Evaluator, EBRD; Lungile L. Tom, Principal Investment Officer from the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA); Sanjay Kumar, Director General of the Development Monitoring and Evaluation Office at NITI Aayog, Government of India; and Xiaozhe Zhang, Regional Manager for Asia, South-South, and Triangular Cooperation at the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). Henrique Souza, Principal Professional, IEO/NDB, moderated the panel.

During the discussion, the panelists shared their perspectives, opportunities and challenges derived from evaluations and related studies of the Global South and NDB member countries. In a broader context, the speakers underscored the significance of partnerships, sustainability, gender equality, data governance, and the consideration of socioeconomic requirements within infrastructure development projects. Furthermore, the panel highlighted the necessity for increased localized engagement and the cross-pollination of ideas and experiences. Notably, the NDB session was attended by 70 participants.


Watch:  Evaluation Headlines Live

Watch: Infrastructure for Inclusive and Sustainable Development: The Experience of NDB, the Global South, and other Key Development Partners.

Further information on the session is available here.