IMPACT is a study to evaluate how the assistance provided under the EU-IOM Joint Initiative Programme for Migrant Protection and Reintegration promotes the sustainable reintegration of the returning migrants in the Horn of Africa. IMPACT focuses on Ethiopia, Somalia and the Sudan - the three countries that account for the largest reintegration caseloads in the region.

The IMPACT study has three objectives:

  1. Obtain robust estimates of the impact of reintegration assistance provided under the EU-IOM Joint Initiative programme in Ethiopia, Somalia and the Sudan
  2. Improve IOM’s understanding of Sustainable Reintegration metrics
  3. Inform the definition of a standard impact evaluation methodology for future reintegration programmes

IMPACT is the first impact evaluation conducted on a large-scale reintegration programme implemented by IOM. It builds on the MEASURE Project, under which the Reintegration Sustainability Index was developed, to monitor and evaluate reintegration initiatives based on IOM’s Integrated Approach to Reintegration.

IMPACT is deeply rooted in the mixed-method philosophy. Besides more traditional quantitative impact evaluation designs, the study features also a novel Natural Experiment-based evaluation, an evaluability assessment and methodological research. Qualitative analysis is used in to contrast and nuance the findings of quantitative approaches across all of the study’s components.

The study was initiated in 2019 through multiple rounds of technical and programmatic consultations and was concluded in March 2023. The Regional Data Hub (RDH) led the development of the study, supported its procurement and provided technical supervision on both methodological and information management matters.


IMPACT Study Reports
  • IMPACT Study Report #1: Returning Home: Evaluating the Impact of IOM’s Reintegration Assistance for Migrants in the Horn of Africa. This report provides a comprehensive overview of the findings of the IMPACT study across all of its components. It summarizes the analysis presented in the other IMPACT Study reports and technical resources, providing a general interpretation of the results.
  • IMPACT Study Report #2: COVID-19, Returnees and IOM in the Horn of Africa: A Natural Experiment-based Evaluation. This report focuses on a natural experiment-based evaluation conducted as part of the IMPACT study, to better illustrate the effects of the pandemic and other shocks on the wellbeing of returnees. The findings of this evaluation complement the results obtained through the main evaluation design described in IMPACT Study Report #1 and the IMPACT Study Country Reports available in the Technical Resources. The report is accompanied by an Annex with technical resources pertaining the analysis conducted.
  • IMPACT Study Report #3: Evaluability Review and Deep Dive Assessment of Community-based Reintegration Projects (CBRPs). This report looks at the evaluability of the Community-Based Reintegration (CBR) initiatives undertook under the EU-IOM Joint Initiative in the Horn of Africa programme, and also provides a general framework for strengthening the evaluation of such type of activities in the future. The results from a qualitative “deep dive” assessment of six CBR projects are also presented.
  • IMPACT Study Report #4: Systematic Review of the Reintegration Sustainability Index. This report addresses one of the core objectives of the IMPACT study: improve the understanding of reintegration metrics. It provides the results from a comprehensive review of the structure and composition of the Reintegration Sustainability Index (RSI), looking specifically at the suitability of this instrument for evaluation. Recommendations for the revision of the RSI are also presented. [coming soon]
  • IMPACT Study Report #5: Using Natural Experiments in Crises: Lessons for Evaluation. This report elaborates on the usefulness and potential for natural experiment-based evaluation approaches in contexts that are prone to shocks or in which shocks have already occurred, providing also practical lessons for those interested in conducting such type of studies, based on the experience of the natural experiment-based evaluation presented in IMPACT Study Report #2.
Dissemination Resources
  • IMPACT Study Framing Brief. The Framing Brief provides a non-technical overview of the IMPACT study objectives, scope and architecture.
Technical Resources
Datasets [coming soon]

The RDH encourages the reanalysis of the data used for the IMPACT study and its usage for different research purposes.

E-Course on Impact Evaluations for Return and Reintegration Programmes

The learning generated during the implementation of the IMPACT study was consolidated into a self-paced e-course titled “Impact Evaluations for Return and Reintegration Programmes”. The e-course covers fundamental impact evaluation concepts and designs and how they apply to ‘real world’ situations that can be encountered in return and reintegration initiatives.

The e-course is available on the IOM e-Campus platform in Arabic, English and French:

Procurement Documentation
Research related to the IMPACT Study

A number of research initiatives were implemented in parallel to the IMPACT study to address methodological issues and to add different perspectives on the the experiences of returnees and the challenges faced during reintegration. Like the IMPACT study, this body of research focused largely on returning migrants assisted under the EU-IOM Joint Initiative for Migrant Protection and Reintegration in the Horn of Africa.