Some donations accomplish more than others. If we could provide the public with sound information about which types of programs tend to be more cost-effective at obtaining various outcomes, we could greatly enhance the effects of aid and help prevent negative outcomes. Aid is a very complicated issue and there are many components that determine a program’s level of success. While providing good advice on how to donate money is difficult, it is very important.
Randomized controlled trials and other rigorous methods of impact evaluation can give us an estimate of how effective a program may be. (What is an impact evaluation?) The results from impact evaluations can then be combined into meta-analyses that help us see how consistent the trends are and how they vary across different contexts. (Why do a meta-analysis?)
Charity navigators do not tend to use the results of impact evaluations in their assessments and, where they do, they focus on the simplest kinds of impact evaluations: randomized controlled trials. Research institutes focus on getting impact evaluations done. AidGrade goes a step further. First, we have the quantitative ability to address the full spectrum of impact evaluations. Second, we combine the results of impact evaluations in a quantitatively rigorous way and allow people to conduct their own analyses of the data.
Through our work we provide potential donors with the most accurate, accessible and up-to-date information about the effectiveness of aid programs and organizations; we support NGOs, social enterprises and other partners in producing and disseminating cost-effective and transparent impact evaluations; and we help researchers maximize their own development impact.