Next Frontier in Evidence-Based Policies: Charting A Path Forward 

2 June 2022; 11:00 AM – 01:00 PM

Venue: Tonino Lamborghini International Convention Center Sharm El Sheikh (Suez Canal Hall)


Social development programs are essential for assisting countries in achieving their development goals. They contribute to a more competitive economy and have significant multiplier effects. However, IsDB Member Countries (MCs) face challenges related to optimal social program design, targeting, delivery, and performance management. One way to strengthen the effectiveness of social development policies is to use evidence to guide program design or, where evidence does not yet exist, to conduct rigorous evaluations to understand program impacts. Using data and evidence from rigorous impact evaluations, we can better understand the actual needs of vulnerable groups, and strengthen our understanding of what interventions work, in which contexts, and why. There is a significant opportunity for IsDB MCs to improve their evaluation of interventions and policies associated with social protection, labor promotion, and other programs to promote human capital development.

In Indonesia and Egypt, government agencies have made significant commitments to using evidence to improve the effectiveness of development policy. This event will share how government-led partnerships with researchers work, how they can be designed, and how they can help generate rigorous research to inform policy design. Concretely, the event will share what government-led partnerships with the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab have looked like in Indonesia, Egypt, and several other countries, with government representatives shedding light on development priorities, and evidence-based programs and policies adopted by the Governments of Egypt and Indonesia. It will also support IsDB Mcs in mainstreaming a culture of evidence-based policymaking and transforming their development policy into a more comprehensive, flexible, and sustainable system that is responsive to shocks and strengthens the resilience of vulnerable populations. Finally, it will offer other IsDB MCs a model to consider implementing social development embedded labs.

The event is co-organized by the Egyptian Ministry of Planning and Economic Development, Community Jameel, and the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL).

Key issues to be addressed:

  1. Egypt's social development agenda (Hayah Karima, Family Development strategy, etc.…) 
  2. Indonesian strategies for a comprehensive acceleration of poverty reduction. 
  3. Progress of social development embedded labs in IsDB's Mcs.
  4. How to maximize the benefit of "Egypt Impact Lab"? 
  5. What role can IsDB play in supporting its Mcs’ social development programs? 

  • Opening Remarks
    • H.E. Muhammad Al Jasser

      Is the President and Chairman of IsDB Group. H.E. previously served as Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Economy and Planning. H.E. is also a former Governor of Saudi Central Bank, and an advisor at the General Secretariat of Saudi Council of Ministers.    

    • H.E. Hala Helmy El-Said, Minister of Planning and Economic Development

      is the Egyptian Minister of Planning and Economic Development and the IsDB Governor. She is a prominent female banking figure, as a member of the Central Bank's Board of Directors and previously as an Executive Director of the Egyptian Banking Institute.

  • Honorable Guest
    • H.E. Suharso Monoarfa

      Indonesian Minister of National Development Planning and Chairman of National Development Planning Agency. Started career as a businessman. After showing some successful results in business field, Suharso became professional politician. Previously, he was trusted as The Minister of Public Housing and member of Presidential Advisory Council. 

  • Keynote Address
    • Rema Hanna

      A Jeffrey Cheah Professor of South-East Asia Studies at Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard University. She serves as the Faculty Director of Evidence for Policy Design at Harvard University’s Center for International Development. she is also Scientific Director, J-PAL Southeast Asia. 

  • Speakers:
    • Reham Rizk

      Head of Social Planning and Development Unit at the Egyptian Ministry of Planning and a research associate at the Economic Research Forum. She has experience in randomized evaluations, development economics, entrepreneurship, and education. She is also developing Egypt’s Multidimensional Poverty Index with Oxford University.

    • Vivi Yulaswati

      Senior Advisor to the Indonesian Minister of National Development Planning for Social Affairs and Poverty Reduction. She has long experience in designing anti-poverty programs including Community Driven Development and Conditional Cash Transfer. She is also the Head of the National Secretariate for SDGs. 

    • Elan Satriawan

      Chief of Policy Team in the National Team for the Acceleration of Poverty Reduction (TNP2K), Indonesian Vice President's office. He is also an Associate Professor in the Economics Department, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Indonesia. Previously, he was a Senior Research Fellow of JPAL-MIT.

    • Amer Bukvic

      Acting Director-General of Global Practice & Partnerships,IsDB. He leads IsDB’s product organization and strategic direction in partnerships, public and private financing, co-financing, and knowledge products. Mr. Amer also previous served as the CEO of Bosna Bank International for 15 years. 

    • Alison Fahey

      Executive Director of J-PAL Middle East and North Africa, guiding strategy and growth for the office's research, policy, capacity building, and operations teams, and forging partnerships for evidence generation and use with innovative policymakers across the MENA region.

    • Lina Marliani

      Executive Director of J-PAL Southeast Asia. Ms. Lina has extensive experience in research and social protection, ranging from overseeing large scale surveys, leading capacity building events, conducting data management and analysis, and advising organizations on data and evaluation design.

    • May Ali Babiker

      IsDB’s Regional Hub Manager - Cairo. She is an Economist and Anthropologist by training. She has extensive experience in the field of gender and development, poverty reduction and inclusive growth. She established the women and youth empowerment division in IsDB.

  • Concluding Remarks
    • George Richards

      Director of Community Jameel. George helped establish the MIT Jameel World Education Lab, the MIT Jameel Clinic and the J-PAL European Social Inclusion Initiative. He holds a first in Arabic and Persian from the University of Edinburgh.