EVM is basically a way of measuring progress in terms of actual work accomplished, not simply in terms of the number of discrete tasks that have been marked Done. It seems to me that EVM is just another word for honest accounting.
It boggles the mind that a project leader would use anything other than EVM to measure, assess and report progress towards their goals.
Some people try to say it's too complicated, too cumbersome and frankly too dang hard to do EVM. I've also heard that EVM isn't well suited for small projects, but in fact there are ways to do simple implementations, without relying on excessive overhead. For that matter, the simple implementations can probably be useful even on big projects.
Now, applying EVM to certain types of research projects, where future work paths are unknown, requires a slightly different tack... but it's possible to use some of the principles even in this area.
EVM - it's not just for breakfast anymore. Check it out!