During 2018, t33 research activity has focused principally on the topics of innovation and evaluation of European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF).
This year the company drafted a t33 Quaderno ‘The evaluation as a supporting tool to research and innovation in EU policy: from design to impact assessment’. The paper illustrates lessons learned from authors’ evaluation experiences within the ESIF framework. The paper sets out the focus of the evaluation in the policy cycle’s phases, describes implementation challenges and options of financial instruments, instead of, or in combination with grants, and builds on the main findings of a few impact studies conducted in various regional and national contexts.
Evaluation shall not be considered as a mere technical exercise. Instead, it can be a supporting tool to research and innovation policy if it: (1) evolves and develops with the policy cycle (from design to review); (2) adopts a benchmarking function for judgements and recommendations to compare the case under assessment with others; (3) combines theory-based and counterfactual impact evaluation approaches; (4) ensures the integration of various types of data including big, open and georeferenced data.