In 2006, we started a project based on previous fieldwork in Afghanistan as well as other Central Asian countries to assess whether development aid in (post-)conflict regions has an effect on stability, that is, security, legitimacy of the state and its institutions and attitudes towards the intervention. In the current presentation, we describe four steps to design and implement impact evaluations: Focus/Relevancy, Theory of Change, Data and Strategy for Causal Inference. These steps are illustrated based on an ongoing mixed-methods research project in North East Afghanistan, using surveys as well as extensive qualitative field research methods to investigate the relationship between development aid and stability. We give examples of the analysis of the quantitative and qualitative data and a short overview of the results obtained up to 2009, and we end with a discussion of lessons learned from the project.
Assessing the Effects of Development Aid in Post-Conflict Regions: Using Survey and Field Research Methods in the North East Afghanistan Longitudinal Study