This is an Eval Central archive copy, find the original at evalacademy.com.
Welcome to our July roundup of new and noteworthy evaluation news and resources – here is the latest.
New and Noteworthy — Reads
International Program for Development Evaluation Training – Evaluation Hackathon
For those of you on Twitter, you likely have been following IPDET’s Evaluation Hackathon. The Evaluation Hackathon took place from July 7-13 and was “a playground for creative individuals from around the world to unite their skills, knowledge and inspirations to find creative solutions to challenges of our times.” These solutions are ones that might help to empower the field of evaluation. Check out all the cool ideas on the project page.
Capacity4dev – Evaluation in Crisis
Capacity4dev is the European Commission’s platform for sharing information related to International Cooperation and Development. Its Evaluation Support Service team created the DEVCO/ESS Evaluation in Crisis Initiative. This initiative curates resources (documents, webinars, videos, blogs and podcasts) to help evaluators evaluate in crisis. Some of the topics covered include: How do we need to adapt our processes to move quickly? What data collection techniques are best suited in a crisis situation? Do we need to review our evaluation ethics? How do we check facts when using remote techniques? Can we still contribute to sustainability and if so, how?
Eval Forward – Evaluation in Times of COVID-19
If you are looking for more insights about evaluation during times of crisis then check out Eval Forward’s three-part blog series that describes reflections from leaders and managers currently engaged in humanitarian-development evaluations. Evaluation leaders from Action Against Hunger and the World Food Programme were interviewed and asked to reflect on how the pandemic is affecting the practice of evaluation and what they think it will mean for evaluation going forward. Interestingly, some speculated on a greater mix of national and international evaluators on evaluation teams as a result of COVID-19 (check out Engage R+D’s report mentioned below for why this is so important in our field.)
Engage R + D – Listening for Change: Evaluators of Color Speak Out About Experiences with Foundations & Evaluation Firms
In Engage R+D’s Listening for Change learning brief they state, “foundation staff and evaluators tasked with planning and assessing social change efforts do not reflect the demographics and cultures of the communities they serve” – there needs to be more attention to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). To make progress when it comes to DEI, we need to start by listening to ideas, insights and experiences of professionals of color. The learning brief reports on four key themes on what it will take to support leaders of color in philanthropic evaluation: 1) Outreach is key to opening a career pathway; 2) Attitudes and dynamics in the workplace affect retention of evaluators of color; 3) Demonstrated commitment to DEI attracts evaluators of color to evaluation firms and clients, and; 4) Employers have an active role to play in retaining staff.
Stanford Social Innovation Review – Ten Reasons Not to Measure Impact and What to do Instead
While we’re talking about ways to transform the evaluation field, let’s talk more about impact evaluation. There is a continued push for more and more impact measurement; however, this is not always appropriate and even problematic in a lot of circumstances. In this article, Mary Kay Gugerty and Dean Karlan outline the ten reasons or circumstances not to measure impact and the alternatives that can be adopted instead. Ultimately these reasons fall into four categories: 1) Not the right tool; 2) Not now; 3) Not feasible, and; 4) Not worth it.
New and Noteworthy — Tools
EvaluATE – Key Resource by Evaluation Topic
EvaluATE has many resources on its site; however, we all know clicking through and navigating to numerous resources can quickly lead you wondering where you are and how you got there. Instead, EvaluATE has compiled its resources into one PowerPoint file, organized according to evaluation topic areas, so you can quickly navigate to the resources you need. Topic areas include Finding and Selecting an Evaluator, Integrating Evaluation in Proposals, Getting Started with Evaluation, Evaluation Design, Data Collection and Analysis, and Reporting and Use.
Inspiring Impact – Review your existing data worksheet
Inspiring Impact created a worksheet that outlines a step-by-step process to help review data. The worksheet is helpful in determining what information you should continue to collect, what to stop collecting and what to start collecting. The worksheet is available in both Word and Excel formats.
Khulisa Management Services – Visual Methodologies in Evaluations
My favourite part of being an evaluator is when I can combine my analytical and creative sides – (so much so I coined the term Evalucreator!) For all you Evalucreators out there, check out this deck on visual methodologies and how to incorporate them into your evaluation practice.
DC Fiscal Policy Institute – Style Guide for Inclusive Language
We’ve mentioned DEI above in our New and Noteworthy reads. There are steps you can take for greater DEI when you write. This style guide provides guidelines for ways that we can employ inclusive language and integrate a racial equity lens in our writing. While the guide is targeted for the DC geography, it still provides useful terms and principles that can be applied in different settings.
New and Noteworthy — Courses, Events and Webinars
Claremont Graduate University – The Evaluator’s InstituteA variety of courses that are being conducted by various instructors, including some big names like Michael Quinn Patton, Ann K. Emery, and Ann Doucette.
Australian Evaluation Society – Fundamentals of Good Evaluation Reporting and PracticeFacilitator: Anne Markiewicz
Date and Time: August 17 & August 24; 9:30am – 11:00am AEST
Presenters: Kyle Hutchinson & Libby Smith
Date and Time: September 24; 12pm CDT
We have a free guide:
Program Evaluation Scoping Guide
This is a free digital download. The guide outlines questions evaluators can ask program managers or other stakeholders to better understand the scope of the program and its evaluation. The questions in the guide are intended to help evaluators begin formulating a quote and/or an evaluation plan; however, it can also be used identify disagreements or gaps in what is known about the program and/or the boundaries of the evaluation.