Sri Lanka has expressed commitment to support good governance, accountability and informed decision making. The practice of high quality evaluation is a globally accepted requirement for strong evidence-based decision making at the national level. Evaluation is the systematic assessment of policies, programmes and projects to determine the relevance and fulfillment of objectives, development efficiency, effectiveness, impact and sustainability. An Evaluation should provide information that is credible and useful enabling the incorporation of lessons learned into national decision–making processes. Evaluation also promotes learning and a knowledge-based society that is in keeping with Sri Lanka’s vision for the future. Such initiatives will contribute greatly towards building a knowledge-based, strategic and high performing parliament and government that can achieve equitable and transparent development results for the people of Sri Lanka.
A National Evaluation Policy (NEP) is seen as an essential tool that sets professional standards for evaluation. A NEP in Sri Lanka would be invaluable to create an evaluation culture within the country. It would contribute to improving transparency, accountability and good governance and facilitate evidence-based decision making. Further, an NEP can improve Parliamentary accountability and support oversight functions and provide substantial guidance to national strategic planning.
Being historical in the parliament history in the world, on 9th August 2016, Hon. Buddhika Pathirana submitted an adjournment motion proposing to the Parliament of Sri Lanka to have a National Evaluation Policy and evaluation system for the country. Two months later, he moved a further Adjournment Motion to allocate funds from the national budget for evaluation. These two motions generated active discussion in Parliament and have contributed to formation of the Sri Lanka Parliamentarians Forum for Evaluation (SLPFE).The SLPFE Forum was launched at the Parliament of Sri Lanka in October 2016. Hon. Ananda Kumarasiri was appointed as the convener of the forum. The SLPFE is linked to the Parliamentarians Forum for Development Evaluation-South Asia and the Global Parliamentarians Forum for Evaluation.
The objectives of the SLPFE Forum are to:
(i) Create awareness of Parliamentarians on evaluation creating a culture for evidence-based decision-making;
(ii) Support the development of a National Evaluation Policy (NEP) and National Monitoring and Evaluation System, with associated data availability and analysis;
(iii) Promote demand for evaluations by Parliamentarians to improve accountability to citizens;
(iv) Encourage Parliamentarians to use evaluation evidence and findings to improve development progress for the country.
Since its inception, the SLPFE Forum has been active and carried out a series of training on evaluation and the Sustainable Development Goals for Parliamentarians, Government officials and District Level training was piloted in Matara and Moneragala districts; with a view to expanding the training nation-wide. The good progress of the SLPFE demonstrates the growing awareness of the importance of evaluation in Sri Lanka and reflects the strong global emphasis on evaluation as a key to good governance and accountability. The SLPFE believes that these are very significant steps in creating an enabling environment for evaluation and achieving the 2030 Agenda in Sri Lanka. Please refer to details in below links