Impact analyses and evaluations

We study the How and Why of societal changes.

Impact analyses and evaluations are method used to study the How and Why of political and societal changes. Which groups of people were reached? And which of were prepared to change their attitudes, skills, actions or situation?


Qualitative and quantitative data form the starting point of every impact analysis or evaluation. In the case of impact analyses, the measurement of outcome, output and impact is paramount. But in the case of evaluations, the focus is on the processes or the question as to how well and why something happened and what changes came about as a result. If we can fall back on existing data, we deploy our expertise in data science. If there is a lack of adequate data, we gather the data using our market and opinion research methods.


“We frequently carry out impact analyses and evaluations in relation to civil service activities or new laws. They can serve as the central control mechanism of a strategy process – with which success is measured, further potential identified and promising opportunities for action revealed.”
Lukas Golder - Co-director and President of the Administrative Board gfs.bern

Purpose of impact analyses and evaluations

The main purpose of impact analyses and evaluations is to assess outcomes, outputs and impact in the case of societal changes or activities of organizations and civil service activities. Systematic and empirical studies are necessary if the impact is indirect (for example, if an increase in professional expertise is to be studied) or if those affected cannot be questioned directly (this may the case for reasons of data privacy).

gfs.bern models for impact analyses and evaluations are often used in collaboration with specialist partners, when we deploy our survey and analysis skills. Our reputation on the one hand and our expertise on the other allow us to enter into contact with the people directly affected by activities of the civil service or of organizations or by societal change and to establish a dialogue. Unlike with the methods that are often used, we evaluate the impact directly in those affected and do not relay on data or opinions from associations or other organizations in between.

“The potential of models, our political understanding, our networking and our methodological expertise make us the ideal partner for evaluations. Here, too, the focus is on dialogue with stakeholder groups.”
Cloé Jans - Operations Manager and Media Spokeswoman gfs.bern

Which clients buy impact analyses and evaluations?

Impact analyses and evaluations are of particular interest to authorities, NPOs and charitable organizations.

They generally have to demonstrate the impact of their work. In this context, output describes the activities or achievements of the authority, the NPO or the charitable organization, while outcome describes the impact on the target group and on society.

The assessment of output, outcome and impact is generally difficult. If quantitative and qualitative data is available in sufficient quantity and quality, we assist our clients in the evaluation of the analysis and the formulation of conclusions or recommendations. If there is a lack of quantitative and qualitative data, we also assist them in data gathering.