Writing for evaluation reports

Here is an interesting post from the Better Evaluation blog on writing evaluation reports, with their key points summarised as follows:

  • Get to the point
  • Develop the best structure for your report
  • Report strong findings
  • Write for your users
  • Be aware of how the evaluation’s scope can affect its useability
  • Allocate time for writing, editing, and quality assurance processes

In summary, the post highlights as key: “Evaluators need to communicate better and foster the utilisation of evaluation findings through clear and engaging writing“.

March 13, 2023 at 9:32 am Leave a comment

How to – outcome monitoring and harvesting

Often it’s useful in an evaluation during data collection to define or check what the given intervention sought to achieve in terms of outcomes – both intended and unintended. One approach that has become popular is outcome monitoring or harvesting. The World Bank has produced a very useful guide in this area that provides practical guidance – do take a look!

October 19, 2022 at 12:07 pm Leave a comment

Nudge theory and evaluation

There has been a lot of talk about “nudge theory”- basically people being guided, encouraged and nudged towards the right decision, rather than being told – and now the evaluation unit of the UN agency, WIPO has produced a guide on how nudge theory can apply to evaluation – interesting reading!

October 5, 2022 at 11:55 am Leave a comment

new e-learning modules for social impact organisations

I am happy to announce a series of e-learning modules I designed with em4 for social impact organisations that would like to learn more about monitoring and evaluation:

For volunteers, staff and board members working towards social impact, whether it be in health, environment, community initiatives or other focuses, these three modules will be of great interest and use. Each module is stand-alone and self-paced; taking about an hour per module to complete.

Learn more about the e-learning modules>>

June 7, 2022 at 3:22 pm Leave a comment

New resource: The communicators guide to research, analysis and evaluation

The Institute for Public Relations has produced an excellent new guide: “The communicators guide to research, analysis and evaluation“.

The guide highlights:

“The importance of communication research, analysis, and evaluation continues to grow due to the pace of change in the marketplace and the corresponding need to make smarter and better decisions at the speed of business. The ability for an organization to successfully transform during this time of dynamic change requires the active leadership of the Chief Communication Officer and the application of talent and technology to perform the work, measure its impact, and improve at each stage of the public relations process.”

View the guide here>>

April 16, 2022 at 10:28 am Leave a comment

New report: Effective risk communication for environment and health

I am very happy to be able to share a report I co-researched and authored with my colleague Dr Sarah Grosso for the World Health Organization on “Effective risk communication for environment and health” (pdf).

The report provides an overview of the latest trends, theories and concepts of risk communication for environment and health (EH), and key challenges and good practices are identified. The report’s findings are complemented by three cases studies: promoting indoor air quality in schools in Hungary; water contamination in the Veneto region, Italy; and heat health action in Styria, Austria.

View the report (pdf)>>

January 9, 2022 at 8:09 pm Leave a comment

Measurement Month: Proving & Improving Communications – Smoke Signals Podcast

As part of AMEC’s Measurement Month, I featured on the Smoke Signals Podcast with Paul Cheal, discussing about the practices and challenges of evaluating communications.

November 19, 2021 at 2:27 pm Leave a comment

Are communicators measuring the right things?

Here is an interesting post summarizing a 2021 roundtable discussion from the US-based Institute of Public Relations on “Are PR Pros [communicators] measuring the right things?”. Some highlights from the discussion:

Read the full post here>>

Katie Paine (Paine Publishing): All the things that we have traditionally measured don’t seem as valuable today.–Long ago, the “Grammy of Communications” went to the person who got the most impressions and reported the most hits or clicks or whatever. That’s not going to happen today. I don’t know a lot of organizations that measure on that. Generally, they’re measuring on some kind of change, whether it’s increased awareness, or increased traffic, or saving lives.

“Elizabeth Rector (Cisco): I think it’s an “and.” I think some of the standard metrics aren’t going away, it’s just multiplied, and then we are asking how they come together. That’s blowing up in my world. And finding comms people…finding people who can have that mindset and that blend, because most of my kind of comms insights people have been very much traditional comms, and some of the outcome, like the reputation and brand and all of that. But as we’re getting into thought leadership, and driving to the website, and views, and paid media that’s all now under comms’ umbrella.”

“Joseph Czabovsky (University of North Carolina): I don’t think the fundamentals have changed. As you were saying Katie, it’s still the different elements of funnel, or whether we’re doing awareness, attitude, or behavior, essentially. I think that’s still the core of what we do and what we measure“.

Read the full post here>>

October 8, 2021 at 7:41 am Leave a comment

Campaign evaluation case study

Here is an interesting case study presenting an evaluation of a European-wide smoking cessation campaign (in other words, trying to get people to stop smoking) that I was involved with. Some interesting findings on campaigns and results in this challenging area.

August 6, 2021 at 7:01 pm Leave a comment

Evaluating Advocacy: Challenges, Methodologies and Solutions

Today I was very happy to be with the European Centre for Public Affairs for a training on advocacy evaluation.  For those who are interested, you can see my presentation slides below and I’ve also listed a range of advocacy evaluation and related resources.

Advocacy evaluation an related resources

Theory of change:
Julia Coffman & Tanya Beer (2015), The Advocacy Strategy Framework; A tool for articulating an advocacy theory of change

UNICEF (2014), Theory of change; methodological briefs 

Advocacy monitoring and evaluation methods/approaches:

Saferworld learning paper (2016), Doing things differently – rethinking monitoring and evaluation to understand change (outcome mapping and harvesting)

Robin Kane et al (2017), Contribution Analysis in Policy Work; Assessing Advocacy’s Influence

Harvard Family Research Project (2009), A User’s Guide to Advocacy Evaluation Planning

Julia Coffman (2019), Current Advocacy Evaluation Practice, Center for Evaluation Innovation.

Julia Coffman and Ehren Reed (2019), Unique Methods in Advocacy Evaluation

Intrac (2009), Tracking Progress in Advocacy: Why and How to Monitor and Evaluate Advocacy Projects and Programmes

Oxfam, Process Tracing – Draft Protocol


CARE (2018), Advocacy and Influencing MEL Guidance

UNICEF, Monitoring and evaluating advocacy; companion to the advocacy toolkit

CIPPEC (2011), Learners, practitioners and teachers; Handbook on monitoring, evaluating and managing knowledge for policy influence

ODI (2014), Monitoring and evaluation of policy influence and advocacy

Communicating monitoring and evaluation results:

Glenn O’Neil (2017), A Guide: Integrating Communication in Evaluation

CDC (2013), Evaluation Reporting: A Guide to Help Ensure Use of Evaluation Findings

“Think pieces” on advocacy evaluation:

Bodille Arensman (2019), Advocacy Outcomes Are Not Self-Evident: The Quest for Outcome Identification

Jim Coe and Rhonda Schlangen (2014), The value iceberg: weighing the benefits of advocacy and campaigning

Jim Coe and Rhonda Schlangen (2019), No Royal Road: Finding and Following the Natural Pathways in Advocacy Evaluation

Jim Coe and Juliette Majot (2013), Monitoring, evaluation and learning in NGO advocacy; Findings from Comparative Policy Advocacy MEL Review Project

Annette L. Gardner and Claire D. Brindis (2017), Advocacy and Policy Change Evaluation: Theory and Practice (a book!)

Examples of advocacy evaluation reports:

UNHCR (2019), Evaluation of Effectiveness and Relevance of Advocacy Approaches in Europe

Norwegian Refugee Council (2014), Evaluation of NRC’s 2012-13 protection and advocacy work in the DRC

Oxfam America (2015), Evaluation of global advocacy programme; Global Leaders Empowered to Alleviate Poverty

Norwegian Refugee Council (2015), Evaluation of global advocacy initiative on housing, land and property

Oxfam International (2013), Evaluation of global communications campaign GROW

March 4, 2021 at 12:39 pm 1 comment

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