Embracing evaluation for Agenda 2030 is the focus for Parliamentarians at #EvalColombo2018 in Sri Lanka

Over 100 Members of Parliament from 70 Parliaments globally, with many Commonwealth Parliaments and Legislatures represented, as well as international agencies, evaluation experts and civil society organisations, attended the first Global Parliamentarians Forum for Evaluation (GPFE) #EvalColombo2018 global conference in Sri Lanka from 17 to 19 September 2018 on the theme of ‘Responsible Parliaments – Embracing Evaluation for Agenda 2030’.

Over the last ten years, interest has grown steadily amongst Parliamentarians about the role of evaluation as a source of evidence for decision-making on national policy making and development and in appraising progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals. Evaluation provides Parliamentarians with robust evidence on the performance of policies and programmes and allows them to demonstrate achievements, learn from challenges and be accountable and effective leaders.

At the opening of the GPFE forum, Hon. Maithripala Sirisena, the President of the Republic of Sri Lanka said that "As MPs, we have a great responsibility on our shoulders and a priority to the SDGs. For this data, information and statistics have to be used." Hon. Ranil Wickremesinghe, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Sri Lanka said that "evaluation is necessary. We will introduce an evaluation culture in Sri Lanka as policy without evaluation puts a huge taxation burden on the people and no return on investment."

The Speaker of the Parliament of Sri Lanka, Hon. Karu Jayasuriya, MP addressed the forum and the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) was represented by many Commonwealth Parliamentarians attending the forum along with Ms Meenakshi Dhar from the CPA Headquarters Secretariat.

Hon. Kabir Hashim, Minister of Public Enterprise Development in Sri Lanka and the Chair of the GPFE recalled the milestones of the Global Parliamentary Forum from 2008 where policy makers were engaged in evaluation and now there is representation from all over the globe. He said: “Our vision is that evaluation becomes so embedded in good governance that no policy maker or manager will dare hold an important meeting or reach an important decision without having reviewed relevant evaluation information.”

The Global Parliamentarians Forum for Evaluation (GPFE) together with EvalPartners, the Sri Lanka Parliamentarians Forum for Evaluation, Prime Minister’s Office of Sri Lanka, Parliament of Sri Lanka, and the Sri Lanka Evaluation Association, hosted #EvalColombo2018 to promote demand and use of evaluation by Parliamentarians through dialogue and exchange, and to generate innovative approaches to policy making using evaluation as a tool.

The Colombo Declaration will be the main policy document in future for Parliaments to address evaluation and the Global Parliamentarians Forum for Evaluation hopes to follow up with all the countries regarding the Colombo Declaration commitments and efforts to strengthen Parliaments in this regard.

To read the Colombo Declaration please click here.
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Updated 25th September 2018.

The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association connects, develops, promotes and supports Parliamentarians and their staff to identify benchmarks of good governance and the implementation of the enduring values of the Commonwealth. The CPA is an international community of around 180 Commonwealth Parliaments and Legislatures working together to deepen the Commonwealth’s commitment to the highest standards of democratic governance. 
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