AWI/59/18 W: Ongoing evaluation of the Rural Development Programme 2014-2020

Coordination of “Evaluation Package E”, focus areas “Improving water management“ (4B) and “Preventing soil erosion and improving soil management” (4C) in the Austrian Agri-environment Programme

Initial situation
The Federal Institute for Agriculture was involved in various stages of the evaluations of the previous rural development programmes as well as in the ex ante evaluation of the 2014-2020 programme. Therefore, it has expertise in various areas of the programme, which is now being used to support the BMNT in the planning and implementation of the evaluation as a member of the evaluation team. For the evaluation of LE 14-20, the BMNT has grouped certain priority areas or assigned project types into so-called "evaluation packages". The Federal Institute for Agricultural Economics has taken over the evaluation of various evaluation packages and contributed to the preparation of the first extended implementation report (SFC report) for the European Commission as well as the national evaluation report in 2017.

The aim of the project is to coordinate and support the work of the BMNT on the accompanying evaluation of the Rural Development Programme 2014-2020 in accordance with the requirements and recommendations of the European Commission within the framework of the "Evaluation Package E". Based on the experience gained so far, the evaluation for the extended implementation report (in SFC format) for the European Commission as well as for the national detailed report for the year 2019 will be prepared and carried out within the framework of the project. In particular, the evaluation questions specified by the European Commission will be answered and the corresponding indicators quantified.
The "Evaluation Package E" comprises the coordination of the priority areas 4B (improvement of water management, including the use of fertilisers and pesticides) and 4C (prevention of soil erosion and improvement of soil management) for selected and substantively related project types of the ÖPUL programme as well as project type 7.6.1 (support and investments for the conservation of natural heritage); see table below. In addition, other project types with impacts on these two priority areas are assigned, which are evaluated by other persons from the evaluation team and with whom coordination takes place in the preparation of the extended implementation report (in SFC format).

Status of the project
In 2018, mainly coordinative and preparatory work took place with regard to the preparation of the Extended Implementation Report and the National Detailed Report for the reporting year 2019. The activities mainly comprised the organisation of the evaluation of priority areas 4B and 4C in coordination with the evaluation team of these two priority areas. This includes data management, preparation of the report, support for the evaluators of priority areas 4B and 4C, cooperation with coordinators and evaluators of other evaluation packages or cross-cutting themes and other institutions (e.g. AMA, WIFO).

Work in 2019
The activities within the project include the coordination of the "Evaluation Package E" with the following tasks:
- Coordination of the technical evaluation to answer the evaluation questions concerning the project types with regard to the priority areas 4B and 4C, supported by evaluators and evaluation studies;
- Providing texts and evaluations for the extended annual implementation report 2019 and the national detailed report 2019;
- Providing support for the evaluation studies commissioned under Priority Areas 4B and 4C;
- Contact person for the coordinators and evaluators of the other evaluation packages to answer questions arising from overlaps in content, as well as contact person for the bodies responsible for priorities or cross-cutting themes (persons responsible for measures in the BMNT and other research institutions).

Project start: January 2018
End of project: December 2019

Project Status


Project Leader


Agricultural, Environmental and Food Systems
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