About CPIA

It is no longer enough to just implement a project or policy.

There is increasing demand for professionals who understand how to conduct careful and rigorous evaluations of projects and policies. There is an increased demand for accountability by donors and other stakeholders.

Organizations are increasingly required to provide evidence of impact.

The CPIA program provides professionals with a thorough introduction to impact evaluation across the lifecycle of a project or policy. The courses provide individuals who are involved in identifying, designing, financing, implementing, monitoring, or evaluating social interventions, public policies, or international development projects, with the knowledge necessary to oversee evaluations of projects, from conception through completion. It provides consultants and analysts with knowledge of how their work fits in the bigger picture of a project’s life cycle. It provides financial professionals with the knowledge needed to take advantage of new funding opportunities in the social sector, including pay for performance and impact bonds.

CPIA Courses

The CPIA program offers three courses:

  • Foundations of Impact. Learn the fundamentals for measuring and identifying the needs of social projects and public policies
  • Evaluating Impact. Learn how to identify, define, monitor and use evidence to track and manage performance
  • Impact Analysis Capstone. Learn about impact analysis through applied work on policies and projects

The Certification

After completion of all three CPIA courses, participants will be eligible to write an exam to become Certified Professional Impact Analysts and to receive the designation CPIA-I.

Individuals with the CPIA-I designation have received training on:

  • Identifying quantitative tools for impact identification and measurement
  • Being accountable to donors
  • Offering transparency to the public
  • Applying cost-benefit and cost-effectiveness analysis
  • Assessing the quality of past and ongoing impact evaluations
  • Adjusting project design to meet learning and performance monitoring objectives
  • Assessing the appropriateness of projects for results-based-financing
  • Aligning project design, finance, with evaluation

    CPIA for Individuals

    We welcome participants of different academic and professional backgrounds. The courses are designed so that individuals at any level of an NGO, foundation, international development or finance institution, or municipal government will advance their knowledge of impact evaluation. Those wishing to further their studies, advance their careers or develop skills in these fields will also benefit from CPIA courses and certification.

    Participants who successfully complete the three courses Foundations of ImpactEvaluating Impact and Impact Analysis Capstone and pass the CPIA-I certification exam, are eligible to become Certified Professional Impact Analysts - Level I. Participants can choose their own path to their CPIA, and start with the course that matters most to them.

    CPIA for Organizations

    Training your employees or hiring those who have taken the CPIA courses or achieved the CPIA-I designation will allow you to:

    • Be confident your organization is on the cutting edge of rigorous impact analysis, innovative financing and project evaluation
    • Offer enhanced accountability to project funders and transparency to the public
    • Have better alignment in measurement, evaluation and financing across organizational units

    Organizations benefit from discounts if more than one individual attends the residential CPIA courses. Participants can bring their own projects from your organization to work on during the Impact Analysis Capstone course. This provides a great opportunity to apply new skills to your existing projects and policies and to receive high quality feedback from our faculty members. Case studies are subject to approval in advance of the course. Contact queens@cpia.global for case study eligibility.

    CPIA can also be customized! We can also design shorter or customized courses based on CPIA methods to better meet the needs of your organization. Please contact us to discuss options.

    Who Benefits

    Organization Leader - Promote the use of evidence in future strategies and ensure that your program team applies the correct, industry-standard impact measurement techniques across the project cycle. Improve your ability to maximize your organization’s impact and improve accountability to the public and donors. The program also provides a thorough introduction to the use of impact bonds and other performance-based financing opportunities.

    Project Manager & Project Staff - Learn how careful analysis can improve projects by informing decisions at all stages of a project cycle, from initial feasibility assessments during design and financing, to performance monitoring and impact analyses following implementation. The course will highlight how the various stages of the project are tied together and inform one another, as well as how to identify appropriate analytical approaches such as CBA, RCTs, and various quasi-experimental techniques.

    Technical or Subject Matter Expert - Learn how your area of expertise–whether it is economic analysis, M&E, health, nutrition, education, or engineering– depends on, and relates to, other analytical efforts and stages of the project cycle. You will also learn about the state-of-the-art techniques in your technical area, and how to apply your knowledge for the evaluation of projects funding through impact bonds or other pay-for-results financing.

    Impact Investor - Interested in financing impact? The courses can help you acquire the skills needed to properly assess, track, and report on the impact of your capital.

    Finance Officer - Identify and structure financing arrangements that ensure the social and institutional sustainability of projects and policies, and how to assess the quality of evidence regarding impact. In addition, you will learn how to take advantage of and structure innovative financing mechanisms such as results-based financing and impact bonds.

    Social Entrepreneur or Donor - Identify and measure the causal impact of your programs, and how to assess the quality of existing evidence regarding impact. To what extent can observed changes in outcomes be attributed to a project or policy? The program also explores how evidence can be used to increase impact by optimizing program design, and how one can take advantage of results-based financing arrangements.

    Public Servant - Learn about the leading tools and techniques for identification, design, financing, performance management, and evaluation of programs that make meaningful and sustainable impact on the society. Integrate evidence-based decision making into your department or organization, and improve its efficiency. The program also explores how governments may benefit from using impact bonds and other results-based financing opportunities to decrease the risks associated with public-sector projects.

    Application Process

    Online application

    Use the website to submit your application. You can apply on behalf of other participants and/or apply to multiple courses at the same time. If you choose wire transfer as your method of payment, you will be emailed an invoice with wire transfer instructions.

    Review and notification

    The University will review the application for admission within 10 business days. In this period you may be contacted for additional information about the participants and source of funding. Once approved, you will be notified by email.

    Payment and admission 

    The University will verify the payment process and issue the official admission documents once the fees are paid.

    Accessibility Statement

    CPIA @ Queen’s University is committed to the full inclusion and participation of persons with disabilities. Accordingly, we will take steps to facilitate the identification, removal, and prevention of barriers to persons with disabilities to ensure access to Queen’s University goods, services, facilities, accommodation, buildings, structures, and premises. Our commitment to achieving full accessibility for persons with disabilities also includes arranging academic accommodations for students with disabilities to ensure they have an equitable opportunity to participate in all academic activities.

    To read more about Queen’s University’s accessibility policies please visit