IDEA-NEW Impact Evaluation
This report evaluates the impact that the USAID funded IDEA-NEW project had on livelihoods and opium cultivation in the province of Nangarhar in eastern Afghanistan. The evaluation was managed by David Mansfield in partnership with Alcis and OSDR. It draws together detailed evidence gathered through the use of remote sensing and GIS analysis and in-depth field work, including in some of most challenging parts of the southern belt of Nangarhar bordering Pakistan.
The USAID Incentives Driving Economic Alternatives for the North, East and West Program (IDEA-NEW) was built on the efforts of the earlier Alternative Livelihoods Program - North (ALP-N) and Alternative Development Program - East (ADP-E). Both of these programs were designed to dissuade farmers from growing opium poppy by increasing access to licit, commercially viable alternative sources of income. Running from March 2009 to March 2014 IDEA- NEW was a US$ 159.88 million rural development program that 'works to increase agricultural production, rural enterprise, and related infrastructural development, access to financial services, and overall value-chain development and integration for key regional industries’.
The report used a research site approach, where detailed data collection and analysis, from the interpretation of high resolution satellite imagery was combined with indepth interviews of rural households in each of the research sites. The collection of data ran over an extensive time frame, from 2007 onwards, and builds a picture of the changing circumstances of farmers and the role development programs, in particular IDEA-NEW, played in supporting livelihood resilience and in the face of a number of exogenous shocks, including a ban on opium production.