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12th EES Biennial Conference: Evaluation futures in Europe and beyond. Connectivity, Innovation, and Use

Sep. 26, 2016 - Sep. 30, 2016

The 12th EES Biennial Conference will take place in Maastricht, The Netherlands, during the first year of the implementation of the global evaluation agenda 2016-2020. There will be pre-conference workshops on 26-27 September, followed by the conference itself from 28-30 September 2016. The EES Conference will be the opportunity for lively discussions on the contents of the agenda and for in-depth thinking on how to achieve its goals. The overall programme of the EES Conference is divided into 4 thematic strands, with two cross-cutting themes (Europe and Gender Equality). Abstract submission deadline: 25 March 2016.

You can still subscribe for the conference and the pre-conference workshops, including one by our colleague Jan Brouwers. Jan will give a full-day session on Theory of Change for evaluators, which includes the introduction of WikiChange, an new online programme to draw your Theory of Change. 

CDI's Dieuwke Klaver will also present at the confernce, in the session 'Applying Process Tracing to Evaluations'. The presentation is called Enhancing Confidence in Contribution Claims by Lobby and Advocacy Programs. 

You can find more information about both sessions in the Documents section on the right handside of the screen.

The four thematic strand of the conference include:

Evaluation Ethics, Governance, and Professionalism

  • Ethical and Professional standards
  • Evaluation-specific capacity, skills and training
  • Evaluation Associations, policies and Politics

Evaluation Systems, Organisations and Partnerships

  • Evaluation Systems in organisations and administrations
  • The organisational architecture of evaluations: networks and partnerships
  • Information Technology for Evaluation Teamwork

Evaluation Methods and Research

  • New evaluation methods and criteria to mix / combine methods in evaluations
  • The role of academic disciplines in evaluation
  • Information Technology for data collection and analysis

Evaluation Use, Communication and Outreach

  • Evaluation audiences and uses
  • Evaluations that make a difference
  • Information Technology for Evaluation Communication

More information on the four strands:

  • Strand One “Evaluation Ethics, Governance, and Professionalism” addresses “the rules of the game”: high-level standards and normative frameworks for evaluators as well as commissioners and policy makers.
  • Strand Two “Evaluation Systems, Organisations and Partnerships” relates to the institutional architecture of  evaluations, for example the development of evaluation systems or multi-partner and complex network configurations.
  • Strand Three “Evaluation Methods and Research” reflects on innovative ways to design and conduct evaluations, as well as evaluation theories and approaches based on academic, discipline-based traditions.
  • Strand Four “Evaluation Use, Communication, and Outreach” highlights experiences showing that evaluations can have an impact, not just on policy making but also on community empowerment or other desirable (or undesirable) outcomes.

The keynote and plenary session speakers will take us on a memorable journey of entertaining enlightenment (and enlightening entertainment).

  • Hans Rosling, the man who makes “statistics sing” and “data dance”, will teach us a thing or two about communicating evaluation findings. But most importantly Hans Rosling, the man who never tires of uncovering and denouncing the widespread ignorance, knowledge gaps, and deep-seated biases afflicting even that part of humankind who think of themselves as educated and knowledgeable, will make us realise how easy it is to be wrong. Even for professionals priding themselves of, and making a living out of, creating “evidence”. Even worse: how easy it is to be wrong without even suspecting that we are. For increasingly respected professionals like evaluators, nothing is more precious, as an investment for future growth, relevance and prestige, than the awareness of our own weaknesses.
  • Elliot Stern will represent “evaluation” in a plenary panel chaired by Frans Leeuw, joining two high-level representatives of other social sciences who will compete, or perhaps cooperate, between themselves and with “evaluation”, to provide the most appropriate and highest quality advice to a fictitious prime minister about to design a new policy. The distinctiveness of evaluation in relation to social sciences should brilliantly emerge in a real-time simulation of evidence-based policy making.
  • An EU keynote speaker will remind us what’s at stake for Europe: the value Evaluation holds for Europe-wide cohesion, democracy and accountability.
  • Finally, Claire Hutchings will pull the threads of the conference together and draw on her experience as an NGO commissioner of evaluations, as a methodological innovator, and as an M&E community developer, to tell us what it takes for innovation in evaluation to spread,and for evaluations to be pervasive and persuasive, making a difference “on the ground”.

Date: 26-30 September 2016
Location: MECC Maastricht, the Netherlands