We consider that evaluation can play a useful role in terms of guiding managers and other decision makers when it comes to reviewing past performance or preparing new initiatives. In addressing the established evaluation criteria of relevance, efficiency, effectiveness, impact and sustainability, an evaluation is an increasingly in-demand rational tool in the project and policy cycle.

However, for an evaluation to be truly meaningful, it needs to be both ‘modest’ and ‘open-minded’.

Modesty implies that an evaluation refrains from reducing outcomes to mere numbers. Evaluators are susceptible to limiting their efforts to quantification, checking the achievement of quantified results against set targets in logical framework matrixes.

We consider that only focusing on quantification can lead to confusion between evaluation and auditing and risk neglecting the often rather qualitative nature of evaluation outcomes. Moreover, whilst popular with many donors, this approach deflects attention from the more nuanced achievement of objectives and may result in the construction of defensive barriers within the minds of programme managers and beneficiaries. These are challenges often exacerbated by weak evaluation culture or limited evaluation experience.

Therefore, we consider open-mindedness to be an essential value when conducting an evaluation that correctly balances quantitative and qualitative approaches within the appropriate project or policy context. Evaluators needs to familiarise themselves with the evaluation context in order to grasp and explain qualitative outcomes. This can be a demanding task within the generally short evaluation timeframes; however, we have had successful experiences in overcoming this constraint by emphasising stakeholder consultations on the ground, conducting interviews with different parties affected by an evaluation, and supplementing these tools with surveys to larger groups of stakeholders.


We conduct research for public clients, including European Union institutions, on policies and programmes that impact the European Institutions, Civil Society Organisations, and other international organisations. Covering a wide range of policy areas, our studies are mostly qualitative, utilise mixed-methods, and are conducted alongside academic research partners. For detailed information on recent research assignments conducted, please visit our ‘Projects’ section.

Our approach to research often incorporates a variety of methods for data collection and analysis, including key informant interviews (KIIs), surveys, case studies, and experience with quantitative data sets. As visible among our past assignments, our research is often undertaken in a multi-country context, so care is taken to understand and compare unique policy contexts that vary across different countries and cultures. Furthermore, our multicultural and multilingual team has the capacity to conduct data collection in a wide range of languages and with sensitivity and awareness of cultural contexts significant in carrying out many research assignments.

As researchers, developing a comprehensive and nuanced understanding of the policy and programme topic is critical in establishing the basis of our studies. We understand that it is important for a researcher to focus on consulting with a variety of perspectives and data sources to produce a more thorough and balanced analysis, particularly in situations involving a variety of actors, institutions, and / or sensitive topics.

Applicability is another valued component of our work. Our objective is that the research methods applied help illuminate the selected policy and programme topic in a way that can inform future policy decisions and help our clients best align their work with the needs of their beneficiaries and / or citizens, in the case of European Union Institutions.