Posts filed under ‘Evaluation reporting’

Evaluation results – what’s the message?

Normally for communicating on a project, we would consider what the main messages are we want to communicate at the initial stages.  However, when communicating evaluation results, we have to wait until the initial findings are being developed – as key messages will normally be on the findings and not on the evaluation itself (not denying it’s important to communicate before and during the evaluation…).

So when  results are being formulated, this is the moment to consider what the key messages to communicate from the evaluation are.

Seems easy? As Professor Cronbach said:

“Commissioners of evaluations complain that the messages from evaluations are not useful, while evaluators complain that the messages are not used.”

The challenge of communicating evaluation results is to determine what are the key messages you want to communicate from the (often) significant body of findings, conclusions and recommendations. Often it helps to do this in a systematic way – a messaging strategy:

  • What is the most significant message coming out of the evaluation findings?
  • What are the secondary messages (maximum four) coming out of the evaluation findings?
  • What is the supporting information for these messages?

It then helps to map these out, as seen in the example below:


It is also useful for some evaluations to determine messages per audience, for example, senior management, politicians, funders, project managers and staff.  Messages are simplistic and are not designed to be distributed directly to audiences. More so, they provide the template for all communication activities. Messaging strategies are all about making choices and determining what are the most important points you want to get across.

April 11, 2014 at 3:42 pm Leave a comment

10 evaluation infographics

Infographics are visual images used to represent information and/or data. Increasingly we see infographics used to communicate key evaluation findings. It can be an excellent tool to communication key findings quickly and to reach diverse audiences.  The presentation below contains 10 evaluation infographic  that I’ve collated from various evaluations. I think these examples show the different possibilities and options for how you can use this tool to communicate key findings.

(disclaimer – I’ve been involved in one of the evaluations  featured – that done by Oxfam)


March 26, 2014 at 9:34 am 6 comments

5 resources on communicating evaluation results

I had the pleasure last week to run a workshop for 2 days in Berne, Switzerland on the theme Integrating Communication in Evaluation organised by the Swiss Evaluation Society and LAUCO Training and Evaluation. In my research for the workshop, I discovered some new resources on communicating evaluation results, here are a selection:

1. Evaluation Reporting:  A Guide to Help Ensure Use of Evaluation Findings – from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, (2013) (pdf) >>

2. Evaluation guide – developing a communications plan for evaluation – from the Pell Institute (2014)>>

3. Communicating Evaluation Results – Presentation by the Asian Development Bank, 12th Meeting of the DAC Evaluation Network, June 2011 (pdf)>>

4. Communicating and Reporting on an Evaluation –  from the American Red Cross & CRS (2008), (pdf) >>

5. Tips for delivering negative results (blog post – J. Sinclair), 2013 >>

This photo from Patricia Goldschmid of myself explaining some points at the workshop – thanks again for all the participants for making it such an enjoyable experience!


March 17, 2014 at 2:54 pm Leave a comment

Data visualization – tips for evaluation reports

For those who use graphs in evaluation reports and other documents, here is an excellent presentation from Ann K. Emery of the Innovation Network – well worth a look!

November 5, 2013 at 10:13 am 2 comments

Two evaluation workshops in Switzerland – 2014

I’m happy to announce that I’ll be co-presenting a course on communications and evaluation in 2014 in collaboration with the Swiss Evaluation Association (SEVAL). Below are details about this course and another on complexity and evaluation by Patricia Rogers. Please find below a short outline of the two courses and the dates. More details about the courses will be available in January 2014.

1) Integrating Communication in Evaluation – March 13 and 14, 2014
An often-overlooked step in evaluation is ensuring that findings are communicated, understood and acted upon.  Equally important, however,is what, how and when we communicate with different stakeholders throughout the evaluation process.  Communicating effectively implies using different means,messages and methods to reach different groups with very different needs and expectations.
A mix of presentations, case studies and practical exercises will be used to introduce and discuss new approaches for communicating and engaging with stakeholders and presenting results to different audiences (for example social media, interactive presentations and data visualisation).  Participants are encouraged to bring examples of evaluations they have commissioned or implemented to be used as case studies during the workshop.
The workshop will be co-facilitated by Glenn O’Neil of Owl RE, Geneva and Marlène Läubli Loud of Lauco Evaluation & Training

2) Addressing complexity in evaluation – June 5 and 6, 2014
Increasingly evaluations have to address programs, projects and policies with complex aspects. The activities and objectives of these interventions are fundamentally dynamic and emergent in response to needs and opportunities, and they often involve multiple organisations with emergent and unpredictable roles. These characteristics present challenges to traditional evaluation approaches.

The workshop will examine the particular challenges that complexity presents and explore practical strategies for evaluation, including developmental evaluation, use of non-linear logic models, and emergent evaluation design. The workshop will include case studies of successful and unsuccessful attempts to address complexity in evaluation.  It will also provide opportunities to analyse participants’ own examples in terms of identifying the particular challenges that complexity presents and how the different strategies might be applied.

The workshop will be facilitated by Professor Patricia Rogers, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Australia.

Both courses will will be held in the Federal Office of Personnel, Bern, Switzerland.  Please note that there are no scholarships or travel funds available for these courses.

October 29, 2013 at 6:09 pm 1 comment

Evaluation reporting: A guide

From the US CDC, here is an interesting guide: Evaluation reporting: A guide to help ensure use of evaluation findings (pdf).

It contains many tips and advice on how to craft your evaluation report to make it more *usable*…

October 2, 2013 at 6:25 am Leave a comment

video reporting: realtime evaluation

I’ve blogged before about the use of video in presenting evaluation findings. Here is a good example of how video has been used to present the process and some key results of a real-time evaluation of the 2010 floods in Pakistan. The video tells the story well even if it is missing some background information for the viewer (what, why and for whom was the evaluation).

September 15, 2013 at 4:04 pm Leave a comment

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