Step 2: Ex post approach

In the next step, during programme implementation, the ex post screening at the level of operations will be necessary to ensure implementation and to prove the ex ante indicated contribution. Such an assessment for all implemented operations is also required by the CPR, which requires information to be provided on summarised budgets of differently categorised operations at the level of specific objectives (reporting according to CPR Annex VII, Table 2).

In order to be able to state the extent of contributions on a sound basis, each operation should be assessed against the previously defined minimum criteria so as to state an adequate category according to the design of the respective operation (step 2a). This assessment will probably show variations between operations within the same intervention field. Operations might contribute more to gender equality targets than expected according to their classification per intervention field, but they might also contribute less (see examples below).

Based on this new assessment at operation level, it is possible to compare the ex ante intentions with the actual results during the programme’s implementation (step 2b). This will be done in the framework of evaluations after programme implementation. Nevertheless, an in-between comparison of ex ante and ex post values can be used to gather information about the ongoing implementation of single programmes and the overall reporting of the EU cohesion policy (e.g. for a midterm evaluation).