Impact assessment

The impact of ACIAR work in agricultural research for development 1982–2022

Date released
07 February 2022
Publication Code

Vol 1

Centre for International Economics

Vol 2

Jeroen van der Heijden




ACIAR has made a significant contribution to meeting the complex challenges of growing more food, reducing poverty and improving biosecurity in the Indo-Pacific region. Over this time ACIAR has committed to assessing impact and where possible, quantifying the achievements of our Australian and international research partners.

This 100th edition of our Impact Assessment Series is an opportunity to look back at what our research has achieved and reflect on what we have learned from 40 years of brokering and funding agricultural research partnerships in our region.

Volume 1 provides compelling evidence of the significant returns on our research investment in our region. This aligns with international research and evaluation work that has consistently found agricultural research for development to be an extremely effective and efficient way of investing overseas development assistance (ODA) funds. This impact assessment study shows that the benefits of ACIAR investment in research-for-development since 1982 are well in excess of $64 billion.

Volume 2 presents the findings of a large cross-case analysis of past projects. Recognising that not all impacts can be crystallised in production numbers or financial returns, the study applied qualitative comparative analysis to identify the key research design, management and practice principles that have supported the effective translation of research knowledge into development outcomes.