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Writing Terms of Reference for an Evaluation: A How-To Guide

Independent Evaluation Group (IEG)
Year Published:
Resource Type:
Technical Guidance

The terms of reference (ToR) document defines all aspects of how a consultant or a team will conduct an evaluation. It defines the objectives and the scope of the evaluation, outlines the responsibilities of the consultant or team, and provides a clear description of the resources available to conduct the study. Developing an accurate and well-specified ToR is a critical step in managing a high-quality evaluation. The evaluation ToR document serves as the basis for a contractual arrangement with one or more evaluators and sets the parameters against which the success of the assignment can be measured.

A quality checklist and some internet resources are included in this publication to foster good practice in writing ToRs for evaluations and reviews of projects and programs. The publication also provides references and resources for further information.