Policy and Program Design and Evaluation in Complex Situations

This course focuses on how to design interventions, whether these be policies, programs of projects in situations of high complexity where outcomes cannot be determined with certainty or where the intervention seeks an innovative outcome which, by definition, cannot be clearly defined upfront.

These situations occur both in FCVAS (Fragile, Conflict and Violence Affected Areas) as well as in development in relatively stable but complex situations where many actors are present and are linked by dynamic and constantly changing interconnections and relationships. The course is designed to be very practice oriented, but adequate theory is included to ensure that participants new to this kind of thinking can have a sound understanding of the principles in order to be ready for the practice.

  • Topics
  • Audience
  • Instructor
  • Understand the nature of VUCA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, Ambiguous) social and economic situations

  • Appreciate the characteristics and principles of complex adaptive systems

  • Design Programs in VUCA situations

  • Design Policies in VUCA situation

  • Evaluate programs and policies in VUCA situations

  • Public servants, NGO staff, and graduate students working with complex conflicts, humanitarian relief, early recovery, or in more stable development situation, but seeking to design or evaluate innovative approaches in these contexts, will find these ideas and tools of immense practical value in their work.

Naresh Singh, Ph.D is currently Special Adviser on sustainability at the Toronto Centre and concurrently Senior VP at Global Development Solutions Canada. He is a former DG/Acting ADM at CIDA ( Federal Government of Canada) in Policy then Partnerships as well as Principal Adviser on Poverty and Sustainable Livelihoods at UNDP, New York. Over the last 7 years he has designed policies and programmes as well as conducted evaluations in complex situations such as in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, and in countries affected by the Syrian conflict. He has also led high evaluations for UNDP, FAO and ILO. He is currently leading a socio-economic impact assessment of Covid19 in Syria.  He is visiting professor at several Universities and is widely published.

Online Distance Learning 

Certain sessions of this course are now offered online via live video conferencing. Online session are indicated in parenthesis in the box below.

Register today by selecting an online session.


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Policy and Program Design and Evaluation in Complex Situations (Online Session)
March 14, 15, 16, 17, 2022
9:00 - 12:00

Scholarships Available!

Scholarships are now available for students registering to the Integrative Peacebuilding and Complex Global Challenges Program. Please download and fill out the form below and send it to PDInstitute@uOttawa.ca to apply!

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