Resources

  • insight Jul 2019

    Are you really ready for developmental evaluation? You may have to get out of your own way.

    Developmental evaluation requires changing the way evaluation commissioners and evaluators work together. If it feels like business as usual, you’re probably not doing it. On May 31, 2019, Community Science sponsored the webinar “Developmental Evaluation: Rewards, Perils, and Anxieties.” A foundation officer (Kristi Ward, Bush Foundation) and two evaluators (Kien Lee, Community Science and Tanya Beer, Center for Evaluation Innovation) discussed … Continued

    By Tanya Beer

    Are you really ready for developmental evaluation? You may have to get out of your own way.
  • publication Jun 2019

    When the Best Offense is a Good Defense: Understanding and Measuring Advocacy on the Defense

    ORS Impact talked to advocates and funders to better understand how they thought about advocacy on the defense. This brief represents key takeaways from those conversations. It covers how advocates conceptualize five different types of defense, and how evaluators, advocates and funders should think about defense-specific outcomes, impact, and evaluation.

    When the Best Offense is a Good Defense: Understanding and Measuring Advocacy on the Defense
  • event Jun 2019

    Transitions and Transformations for Evaluation’s Role in Philanthropy

    The 2019 Evaluation Roundtable convening explored how evaluation leaders—working within or with foundations—can manage change not just defensively, but proactively and productively.

    Transitions and Transformations for Evaluation’s Role in Philanthropy
  • publication Jun 2019

    When Opportunity Knocks, Open the Door: Evaluation Amidst Transition at the Colorado Health Foundation

    The Colorado Health Foundation experienced multiple organizational transitions in a short period of time, including two strategy redesigns, culture and values shifts, new expectations and assumption about roles and performance, and a new CEO. This teaching case invites reflection on the role of evaluation staff and consultants amidst the uncertainty and ambiguity of organizational change.

    When Opportunity Knocks, Open the Door: Evaluation Amidst Transition at the Colorado Health Foundation
  • publication Jun 2019

    Realigning Foundation Trustees to Incentivize Learning

    A common barrier for the development of a foundation's learning culture is how staff and boards engage. The problem is that most of the routines in the board room are actually based on the mental model that social change is a technocratic problem-solving endeavor. There could be a lot of power in starting to change the routines and habits that hold that technocratic mental model in place.

    By Tanya Beer

    Realigning Foundation Trustees to Incentivize Learning
  • publication Mar 2019

    No Royal Road: Finding and Following the Natural Pathways in Advocacy Evaluation

    As efforts at driving change become more diffuse, involve more actors, and have more transformational goals, we need a radically different approach to thinking about and assessing effective advocacy. Clear answers, certain judgments, and simple tools won't result in good representations of reality. This brief proposes ideas for adjusting how we approach advocacy monitoring, evaluation, and learning.

    No Royal Road: Finding and Following the Natural Pathways in Advocacy Evaluation
  • event Feb 2019

    Evaluation Roundtable Convening 2019

    The centerpiece of the Evaluation Roundtable is our convenings, which allow participants to step back and delve into substantive issues that they rarely get a chance to discuss.

    Evaluation Roundtable Convening 2019
  • insight Jun 2018

    5-A-Day: Learning By Force of Habit

    Establishing a learning organization or culture is such a big goal that it can overwhelm our ability to act on it. This piece, published on Medium, explores how building learning habits into common routines makes it more manageable, and creates small wins that can lead to big change. Focusing on habits ensures that learning is not a separate activity, but rather is integrated into our day-to-day work.

    By Julia Coffman

    5-A-Day: Learning By Force of Habit
  • insight Jun 2018

    Precipitating Events and Rewards in Making a Habit of Learning

    Better habits around learning are critical to improving philanthropic practice. This piece looks at what needs to happen before and after habit change to make a new way of working stick.

    By Kat Athanasiades

    Precipitating Events and Rewards in Making a Habit of Learning
  • insight May 2018

    Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea: The Consequences of Small Failures in Learning

    It was the worst U.S. maritime disaster in three decades, involving an experienced captain with a reputation for safety. This article, published on Medium, explains went wrong and what it can teach us about the often-overlooked factors that affect our learning and decisions.

    By Julia Coffman

    Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea: The Consequences of Small Failures in Learning
  • publication Jan 2018

    Evaluation Coaching: Light Up Your Client’s Expertise

    The practice of coaching is gaining momentum in the evaluation profession, and more evaluators are including it in their skill set. This brief introduces the use of coaching in evaluation capacity building, and provides principles and three tools for integrating coaching into evaluation practice.

    Evaluation Coaching: Light Up Your Client’s Expertise
  • publication Jan 2018

    Addendum to On the Other Side of Complexity: The McKnight Foundation’s Collaborative Crop Research Program

    This addendum makes clarifications to the teaching case of The McKnight Foundation's Collaborative Crop Research Program and its evaluation. It adds detail on the program's developmental evaluation.

    Addendum to On the Other Side of Complexity: The McKnight Foundation’s Collaborative Crop Research Program