• Evaluator

Dr Johannes Schmitt

© DEval

Dr Johannes Schmitt is a senior evaluator and team leader at DEval. Johannes Schmitt joined DEval in November 2012. Before, he worked at the University of Duisburg-Essen, where he was involved in research and teaching at the Institute of Political Science. In 2010/11, he gained experience in evaluation at the German Development Institute (DIE) where he worked as a researcher and contributed to a joint evaluation of budget support in Zambia. Johannes holds a master’s degree in International Development Studies from the University of Marburg. Johannes studied African and International Development Studies at the University of Bayreuth and the University of Marburg. In 2017, Johannes completed his dissertation on ‘Budget Support and Domestic Accountability in sub-Saharan Africa’ and holds a doctoral degree in political sciences from the University of Duisburg-Essen.

Key qualifications

Thematic focus

conceptualising and implementing complex development evaluations

implementation of multi-donor budget support, private sector development and decentralisation in Ghana

aid effectiveness,

general budget support and democratisation,

political economy and institutional economics

Methodological focus

qualitative methods of empirical research,

theory-based evaluation,

qualitative systematic review

Regional focus




Selected publications


Schmitt, J. (2020). The causal mechanism claim in evaluation: Does the prophecy fulfill? In J. Schmitt (Ed.), Causal Mechanisms in Program Evaluation. New Directions for Evaluation, 167, 11–26.

Schmitt, J. (2020). Causal Mechanisms in Program Evaluation. New Directions for Evaluation, No. 167, Fall 2020.

Schmitt, J. (2018), No more black boxes. Working with causal mechanisms in evaluations, DEval Policy Brief 10/2018, German Institute for Development Evaluation (DEval), Bonn.

Schmitt, J. (2018), "Testing causal mechanisms with Bayesian process-tracing: Strengthening explanatory power of case study evaluations", The Evaluator. Autumn 2018, S. 16-18.

Schmitt, J. (2018), Schluss mit Schwarzen Boxen. Zur Arbeit mit Kausalmechanismen in Evaluierungen, DEval Policy Brief 10/2018, German Institute for Development Evaluation (DEval), Bonn.

Orth, M., J. Schmitt (2018), How effective is budget support as an aid modality?, DEval Policy Brief 2/2018, German Institute for Development Evaluation (DEval), Bonn.

Orth, M., J. Schmitt, F. Krisch, S. Oltsch (2017), What we know about the effectiveness of budget support. Evaluation Synthesis, German Institute for Development Evaluation (DEval), Bonn.

Schmitt J., and F. Krisch (2017), "A mechanism-centred approach to evaluating complex aid interventions: the case of accompanying measures to budget support", Journal of MultiDisciplinary Evaluation, Vol. 13, pp. 29-40.

Schmitt, J. (2017), "Budget Support, Budget Transparency and Domestic Accountability in Mozambique", The European Journal of Development Research, 29(1): 246-262, DOI 10.1057/ejdr.2016.17. 

Schmitt J. and D. Beach (2015), "The contribution of process tracing to theory-based evaluations of complex aid instruments", Evaluation, Vol. 23, pp. 1-19.

Krisch, F. and J. Schmitt (2015), Accompanying measures to budget support – any added value?, DEval Policy Brief 5/2015, German Institute for Development Evaluation (DEval), Bonn.

Krisch, F., J. Schmitt and U. Dörr (2015), Accompanying measures to general budget support in Sub-Saharan Africa, German Institute for Development Evaluation (DEval), Bonn, forthcoming.

Schmitt, J. (2014), „Entwicklungsfinanzierung zwischen Konditionalität und Politikdialog am Beispiel Multi-Donor Budget Support in Ghana“, in A. Ziai (ed.), Im Westen nichts Neues? Stand und Perspektiven der Entwicklungstheorie, Nomos.

Faust, J., S. Leiderer and J. Schmitt (2012), “Financing poverty alleviation vs. Promoting democracy? Multi-Donor Budget Support in Zambia”, Democratization, Vol. 19, No. 3, pp. 438-464.

Faust, J. and J. Schmitt (2010), “Democratic Ownership and Development Cooperation”, in S. Frenken et al. (eds.), Ownership and political steering in developing countries: proceedings of international conferences in London and Berlin, Nomos, Baden-Baden.

Kruse, S. and J. Schmitt (2008), Vision 2015 – Eine MDG Halbzeitbilanz für Subsahara Afrika, in Wirtschaftliche Lage und Perspektiven – Volkswirtschaftliche Analysen der KfW Entwicklungsbank.


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