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June 04, 2024

OMB Revises its Uniform Grants Guidance, Clarifying Support for Program Evaluation

By The Evidence Team, OMB

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issues guidance in Title 2 of the CFR, often referred to as the Uniform Grants Guidance, that represents government-wide policies for the award and administration of Federal financial assistance. This guidance provides a common framework for how more than 1.2 trillion dollars are spent by recipients of Federal funds, including grants. An updated version of this guidance was released in April 2024.  The Uniform Grants Guidance 2024 Revision clarifies that evaluation is a supported activity of agencies and award recipients, and the guidance emphasizes that recipients are allowed to spend a portion of award funding on evaluation activities related to the award.

Evaluation is an important priority and a key agency function within the Federal Government. Evaluation allows agencies and grant recipients to better understand the extent to which intended goals are being achieved, beyond performance reporting and grant monitoring. Evaluation can address questions related to grant implementation, the effectiveness or impact of specific strategies used in grant activities, and questions related to understanding the important context for results achieved or a deeper understanding of outcomes across various groups served. Evaluation can provide results to help agencies and grant recipients learn what works, for whom, and under what circumstances. Award recipients are able to use a portion of award funds for a broad range of evaluation activities including evidence reviews, evaluation planning and feasibility, assessment, conducting evaluations, and more.

Agencies issuing Federal awards and organizations receiving a Federal award should review the Uniform Grants Guidance 2024 Revision, which:

More information about supports for evaluation and allowable costs for evaluation activities are available in reference guides issued by OMB as well as the OMB Uniform Grants Guidance 2024 Revision.

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