1st Edition

Artificial Intelligence and Evaluation Emerging Technologies and Their Implications for Evaluation

    296 Pages 35 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Artificial Intelligence and Evaluation: Emerging Technologies and their Implications for Evaluation is a groundbreaking exploration of how the landscape of program evaluation will be redefined by artificial intelligence and other emerging digital technologies.

    In an era where digital technologies and artificial intelligence (AI) are rapidly evolving, this book presents a pivotal resource for evaluators navigating the transformative intersection of their practice and cutting-edge technology.  Addressing the dual dimensions of how evaluations are conducted and what is evaluated, a roster of distinguished contributors illuminate the impact of AI on program evaluation methodologies. Offering a discerning overview of various digital technologies, their promises and perils, they carefully dissect the implications for evaluative processes, and debates how evaluators must be equipped with the requisite skills to harness the full potential of AI tools.  Further, the book includes a number of compelling use cases, demonstrating the tangible applications of AI in diverse evaluation scenarios. The use cases range from the application of GIS data to advanced text analytics. As such this book provides evaluators with inspirational cases on how to apply AI in their practice as well as what pitfalls one must look out for. 

    Artificial Intelligence and Evaluation is an indispensable guide for evaluators seeking to not only adapt to but thrive in the dynamic landscape of evaluation practices reshaped by the advent of artificial intelligence.

    1. Evaluation in the Era of Artificial Intelligence  2. Emerging Technology and Evaluation in International Development  3. The Applications of Big Data to Strengthen Evaluation  4. Ethics & Equity in Data Science for Evaluators  5. Extracting Meaning from Textual Data for Evaluation – Lessons from Recent Practice at the Independent Evaluation Group of the World Bank  6. Text Mining and Machine Learning in an Evaluation of Police Handling of Cybercrime in Norway  7. Big data for big investments: making responsible and effective use of data science and AI in research councils  8. The Use of Quantitative Text Analysis in Evaluations  9. Artificial Intelligence and Text Analysis in Evaluating Complex Social Phenomena. The Russia-Ukraine Conflict  10. Harnessing Geospatial Approaches to Strengthen Evaluative Evidence  11. The Future of Evaluation Analytics: Case Studies of Structural Causal Modeling in Action  12. The Algorithmization of Policy and Society: The Need for a Realist Evaluation Approach  13. The Evaluation Industry and Emerging Technologies  14. Artificial Intelligence: Challenges for Evaluators 


    Steffen Bohni Nielsen (PhD) is Director General at the Danish National Research Centre for the Working Environment, NFA and a member of the Danish National research and Innovation Council. He is a member of INTEVAL and has published extensively in the field of evaluation.  

    Francesco Mazzeo Rinaldi (PhD) is professor at the University of Catania, Italy, and affiliate professor at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) Stockholm. In recent years, his research interest has revolved around program and policy evaluation and Big Data analytics in several regional, national, and international public organizations. He is a member of INTEVAL.

    Gustav Jakob Petersson (PhD) is Senior Analyst at the Swedish Research Council. He is a member of INTEVAL and has co-edited one of its volumes on cyber society, Big Data and evaluation in 2017. 

    The book is highly relevant, and its publication comes at the perfect time to stimulate reflection on the benefits and challenges of integrating artificial intelligence and emerging technologies into evaluation. The various authors, all renowned experts in the field of program evaluation, draw on their knowhow to offer cutting-edge analyses and prospective solutions for integrating AI technologies into evaluation. In short, this book is an enriching and enlightening read, carried by renowned authors, designed to enlighten minds on a subject of crucial importance in our time. 

    Steve Jacob, Professor of Political Science, Laval University

    AI is poised to change the field of evaluation in a multitude of ways, yet the evidence base is still slim. This book is a welcome addition to the literature on emerging technologies and their implications for evaluation. Key reasons that evaluators were not taking up big data approaches included a lack of relevant use cases for the public and not-for-profit sectors and a mistrust of big data approaches due to ethical concerns. This book provides a rich set of potential use cases, documentation and learning from those examples, and an exploration of ethics and equity themes related to data science and evaluation, and offers an important contribution to the literature base for the use of AI in evaluation. The work comes at an important time for the Evaluation field, when interest in AI is quite high yet, in many cases, capacity and knowledge need to be enhanced and supplemented. It offers a unique perspective on ways that AI can be integrated into Evaluation, drawing on the work of well-respected evaluation professionals and academics who have long-standing experience to share.

    Linda Raftree, Founder, MERL Tech