At Dalberg, evaluation goes beyond accountability and standardization to the bigger picture: value creation.

We build results measurement strategies, actionable learning agendas, and robust evaluation studies and strategic reviews to help clients amplify their impact.


 What we do:

  • Develop results measurement strategies and frameworks for non-profits, mission-driven enterprises and foundations/donors by defining the client’s theory of change and then developing appropriate data analysis, technology, and shared learning tools and protocols based on needs of the client and its stakeholders.

  • Create learning agendas for networks and coalitions of organizations to coordinate and prioritize industry research and learning questions.

  • Conduct evaluations and strategic reviews of organizations or programs to assess their outputs, outcomes, and impact, as well as their added value vis-à-vis other initiatives in the space. We have led randomized control trials, developed and implemented experimental designs, adopted mixed quantitative and qualitative methods, collected and analyzed data against theory of change-based metrics, and developed robust case studies.

  • Generate strategic insights and recommendations based on our evaluation findings, including to streamline, course correct, or scale up existing programs and to inform the design of new programs.


Client Success:

Initiative for Smallholder Finance: Smallholder Impact and Risk Metrics 

The Initiative for Smallholder Finance (ISF) is a multi-donor effort focused on expanding financing for smallholder farmers. ISF recognized that the smallholder agricultural finance sector needed a more coordinated approach to impact measurement to:
• aggregate, demonstrate, and communicate impact within the wider agriculture industry;
• drive internal improvements and risk reduction; and
• help develop infrastructure that increases efficiency and profitability.

Dalberg was hired to create a shared results measurement strategy agenda for ISF.

Our Approach

Dalberg worked with ISF’s key stakeholders to understand how they view impact, and how their theories of change drive their work. Dalberg created an initial concept for a theory of change that was refined through one-on-one conversations with over 50 leading actors from social lenders (such as Root Capital and Triodos Bank), to technical assistance organizations, (like Technoserve and Rainforest Alliance), and brand-name companies. The final theory of change led to several new pieces of industry infrastructure:
• A set of core recommended metrics for all in the agriculture industry
• A library of industry metrics and measurement tools and indicators
• An online wiki of evaluations and literature supporting each aspect of the theory of change


The seven largest investors in smallholder agricultural finance have adopted the theory of change and core metrics. The metrics library and online literature wiki have been viewed by thousands and have helped focus new evaluations on unexplored questions around increasing livelihoods for smallholder farmers.


To learn more about our work, see our insights or contact:

Veronica Chau, Washington D.C.