It’s that time of year again. The team at Clear Horizon have returned from their respective holidays—hiking the Andes nourished only by water and thoughts of the year to come; making prides of lions more efficient in the African savannah; lying on a desert island accompanied by the wisdom of the latest publication by a celebrity evaluator—and are excited to jump in to 2018 with gusto. 2017, wow. What a year, right? Wrong. If 2017 was a confusing poster of a dolphin with an inspirational quote...
Last month Clear Horizon and The Australian Centre for Social Innovation (TACSI) had a great time delivering our new and sold out course on reconciling the worlds of Human Centred Design (HCD) & evaluation. Hot off the press, we’re proud to introduce the Integrated Design, Evaluation and Engagement with Purpose (InDEEP) Framework (Figure 1) which underpinned the course. (Figure 1) The InDeep Framework The Integrated Design, Evaluation and Engagement (InDEEP) Framework (Figure 1) has been dev...
Day 3 started for me at 8am on evaluation failures. It was a very honest session, (felt a wee bit like giving confession) but a great way to open up the field differently. Stephanie Evergreen shared failing to get people to use effective data visualization, Patricia Rogers got up there and bravely spoke about persisting when an evaluation became symbolic and bombed. Then we all felt better by singing along with Michael Patton and Leonard Cohen with evaluation lyrics... "You never really care...
Wednesday afternoon at the #Eval17 AEA was quite extraordinary - I sat there with over 4,000 evaluators in the plenary as Kathy Newcomer, president of the AEA presented her crisp 7 challenges and 7 solutions for learning and evaluation. The last of her 7 challenges was about evaluation being blind to bias and racism – and that these are baked into policies and programs. We are not immune. She urged us to incorporate equity into our evaluations. Then this morning our keynote was Melvin Hall ,...
I had the privilege of attending Michael Quinn Patton's workshop on principles-focused developmental evaluation. To be honest, it wasn't what I was expecting; I was thinking I would learn more about developmental evaluation. While I did this,  it was also a different and fascinating journey into re-thinking not just how we evaluate programs, but also how we might design more learning-focused (emergent) and holistic programs or even organizations. This was aimed at complex settings. It makes ...
It was a privilege to present in front of a full room at AES 2017! Who knew so many people were interested in behaviour change! Slides from the presentation are here. Behaviour change interventions undertake activities to bring about change. So how should we select what activities to undertake to influence behaviour change? Should activities be based on what we have been done before? What we are good at? Based on an idea about what works? Based on research about the target group? I first bec...
Ask M&E professionals about technology in M&E and you will get a mix of excitement and uncertainty. There is excitement about the possibilities that technology can offer, but uncertainty about which technologies to use. Before we wade into this, let’s actually define what we mean by technology. I mean software programs, such as Excel, Tableau and Open Data Kit and the associated hardware, such as laptops and mobile phones. Now you may ask what the fuss is all about, we use technology in M&E ...
The themes I noticed at #AES17 included quite a few disheartening ones: the powerlessness of evidence and knowledge (our fine evaluation products!) in the current socio-political environment; the constraints on evaluators imposed by commissioners (she/he who pays the piper, calls the tune); and policy making by twitter and other quick fixes rather than through the deep deliberations that evaluators hope to encourage. Dugan Fraser, who gave the keynote address on the last day of AES17, painte...
Tired but encouraged after 5 days at the #AES17CBR conference. The keynote speakers were outstanding this year. Three main themes stood out for me. In different ways, all the keynote speakers challenged us to question the definition of evaluation being about equipping decision makers – instead we should have higher ambitions and aim to serve the needs of society and the natural world not just the bureaucracy . Sandra Mathison walked us through how the dominant political movements that have i...
There were two stand-out presentations for me at the #aes17CBR, which concludes in Canberra today. On reflection I’ve realised a large part of why these resonated with me has to do with the values of our business, Clear Horizon Consulting, which aspires to work with people and organisations to create a better, more socially just and sustainable world. Specifically, this includes environmental sustainability and Indigenous reconciliation, along with social justice more broadly. Andy Rowe’s ke...