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Ex Post Evaluation of the Commission for Rural Communities - RE0273

On 29 June 2010 Defra Secretary of State Caroline Spelman announced the abolition of the Commission for Rural Communities (CRC) under the Public Bodies Act 2011 and that Defra’s internal rural policy capacity was to be expanded to create a Rural Communities Policy Unit (RCPU). The CRC was then formally abolished on 31 March 2013.

This project is required to better understand the efficiency, effectiveness, impact and added value of Defra’s investment in the CRC and its activities between 2006 and 2013. This includes the extent to which the evidence produced was fit-for-purpose and effective, and the extent to which (and how) the CRC influenced the attitudes, behaviours, decisions, policies and programmes of others at the local and national level by delivering Strategic Added Value. The study is also focused on providing lessons learned around what works in terms of outsourcing advocacy, policy advice and a watchdog function to an independent body and to inform the ongoing rural evidence functions of the Rural Communities Policy Unit (RCPU) within Defra as appropriate.
The objectives of this research project are to:
• Assess the impact and value added of Defra’s investment in the CRC against the three statutory functions:
1. Advocate
2. Expert adviser
3. Independent watchdog
• Assess the wider impact of Defra’s investment in the CRC to identify the difference this investment made to rural communities against its policy programmes:
• Obtain the views of key stakeholders, delivery partners and beneficiaries on the performance, role, impact and value added of the CRC in helping to ensure that policies, programmes and decisions took proper account of the circumstances of rural communities.
• Assess the effectiveness and efficiency of the CRC in delivering its function
• Assess the model of undertaking these functions of rural policy outside of central government and summarise lessons learnt
Project Documents
• FRP - Final Report : Ex post evaluation of the Commission for Rural Communities Final report   (1129k)
• EXE - Executive Summary : Ex post evaluation of the Commission for Rural Communities Executive Summary   (153k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2013

To: 2014

Cost: £38,706
Contractor / Funded Organisations
SQW Limited
Rural Development              
Fields of Study
Rural Affairs