Vinod Thomas

Director General, Independent Evaluation

Vinod Thomas is Director General of the Independent Evaluation Department at ADB. Prior to his appointment in August 2011, Thomas held various senior posts at the World Bank, including Chief Economist for Asia and Director General of the Independent Evaluation Group. He formerly lived in Brazil as Country Director for the World Bank, wrote a popular book entitled From Inside Brazil, and travelled with President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva on his first trip to India. Thomas enjoys travelling with his camera in provinces and towns in the Philippines.

Blogs by this Author

  • Contractors build a cable tunnel for the new switchyard at the Nurek Hydroelectric Power Plant in Tajikistan.

    Top 5 surprising independent evaluation results

    Published on Monday, 04 January 2016

    Although evaluation findings often confirm strongly held and highly intuitive views in areas like project design, sometimes there are unexpected results.

  • A vendor and girls on a bicycle go through a flash flood in Manila. Photo by Froi Rivera for ADB’s #Click4Climate contest.

    More frequent disasters show urgency of climate deal at COP21

    Published on Friday, 27 November 2015

    The spike in climate-related disasters is linked not only to people’s increased exposure and vulnerability, but also to changes in temperature and rainfall from rising greenhouse gases.

  • The Philippine government’s conditional cash transfer program has increased school enrollment rates among children aged 3-11.

    When evaluation makes a decisive difference

    Published on Wednesday, 28 October 2015

    If done well, evaluations can also bring a certain degree of objectivity to decision-making in development programs. Here are 3 ways in which evaluation results make a difference.

  • Workers on a railway construction project in Azerbaijan.

    Infrastructure and safeguards

    Published on Tuesday, 06 October 2015

    As multilateral development banks gear up to fill serious gaps in infrastructure in Asia, attention also focuses on safeguards, which should be a top concern for established lenders such as the World Bank and ADB as well as new players like the AIIB.

  • Girls heading to school in Yogyakarta, Indonesia.

    Making sustainability work

    Published on Monday, 14 September 2015

    For a long time, sustainability was seen as an environmental issue that represented an unwelcome trade-off with strong economic growth. But now it encompasses a more mutually dependent set of environmental, economic, and social goals.

  • Children living beside railway tracks in Bangladesh.

    Actions for inclusion amid rising inequality

    Published on Wednesday, 05 August 2015

    A focus on inclusion in the new SDGs is vital for Asia and the Pacific, where inequality has risen some 20% in the past two decades, and around 1.4 billion people live under $2 a day.

  • ADB’s safeguards policy could be a benchmark

    Published on Thursday, 12 February 2015

    Safeguards to avert damage that development projects can do to the environment and communities are essential in development finance. 

  • Good governance central to Asia’s transformation

    Published on Friday, 05 September 2014

    There is no universal strategy for pursuing a triple bottom line of high, socially inclusive and environmentally sustainable growth, but better governance is an imperative.

  • Impact evaluations crucial for effective public policy

    Published on Monday, 01 September 2014

    Asian countries are increasingly turning to investing in dedicated development programs rather than relying entirely on economic growth to deliver better social outcomes. Evaluations of their actual impact have not always accompanied such decision making, but where they have, it has made a key difference.

  • A boy watches a pump providing water to irrigate a rice field in Cambodia

    The Food, Water, Energy Nexus

    Published on Thursday, 20 March 2014

    Striking rates of economic growth notwithstanding, 550 million people remain hungry in Asia and the Pacific, 65% of the population has no safe piped water, and more than 600 million people live without electricity. Overcoming these problems requires a combined approach in which food, water and energy are treated as a nexus, rather than as separate, standalone issues, which has too often been the case in the past.