Evaluation of Slum Upgrading Programs: Literature Review and Methodological Approaches

Dec 2013
This technical note analyzes the methodologies used to evaluate neighborhood upgrading programs, describes their results, and suggests approaches for future evaluations. Local and central governments are increasingly utilizing slum or neighborhood upgrading programs to deal with the multiple problems of urban poverty. These programs employ a methodology of integral interventions, combining of both infrastructure works and social services targeted to specific neighborhoods. Due to this variety of interventions the assessment of their impact is complicated and requires a comprehensive approach. This document analyzes the methods used in the evaluation of a number of upgrading programs either looking at individual interventions or their combined outcomes. It proposes a methodological approach for their assessment based on three categories of outcomes: housing, neighborhood, and individual. For each type of outcome, the authors present a literature review of common interventions and their evaluation results. The document also suggests relevant indicators for evaluating slum upgrading programs according to these three types of outcomes, and finally, it presents methodological issues to take into consideration when designing the evaluations of integral programs.