The term ‘impact’ is increasingly seen on products, from toilet paper to water bottles. But what does impact mean?

Impact is used widely in Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E), with a range of definitions depending on how the term is applied. There’s impact evaluation, impact as a criteria, and the term impact itself.

Clear Horizon’s Angelos Blackwood and Damien Sweeney recently developed and delivered a one day ‘Introduction to Impact Evaluation’ that aimed to bring clarity to the world of impact evaluation. The training covered definitions, when and why impact evaluations are done, different impact evaluation approaches, and planning for an impact evaluation.

In terms of approaches, we covered experimental (Randomised Control Trials) and quasi-experimental approaches, and non-experimental approaches, including General Elimination Methodology (GEM), Process Tracing, Contribution Analysis, Collaborative Outcome Reporting (COR) and Episode Studies.

We had 13 people attend the training, sparking good conversation, and generating good feedback on how to improve the training.

We have used the participant feedback to modify the course (‘learning’ from M&E!) so that we spend less time on experimental approaches, and more time on non-experimental approaches, which are more appropriate to the resourcing and types of programs that participants tend to work on.

We’re looking forward to running the revised training sometime in the future!

Until then, wishing you an positively impactful New Year.