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Transform Issue #10 – Gender-responsive evaluation

Transform Issue #10, the first magazine exclusively dedicated to gender-responsive evaluation, focusing on gender mainstreaming in the United Nations. This issue focuses on UN Women’s strategic partnerships. Partnerships are essential to our work but are often overlooked when we evaluate the results of our efforts. The skill sets, time and resources necessary to ensure truly effective strategic partnerships are often underestimated.

Theories of Change in a changing world

In 2016 the CDRA convened and facilitated a group of twelve practitioners for six sessions of a “Theories of Change Learning and Study Circle”. This paper uses the experience as an opportunity to draw questions and insights and to further explore and provide comment on the phenomenon of Theory of Change that has become quite fashionable in the development world, positing some insights into its value and use.

Realising the SDGs by reflecting on the way(s) we reason, plan and act

Systematically evaluating policies, programmes and strategies is an essential feature of ongoing follow-up and review processes for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. But although it may be shocking to say, evaluation on its own is not enough. If follow-up and review frameworks and mechanisms are to address challenges, gaps and successes, they must be grounded in evaluative thinking.

The 2030 Agenda and evaluation: opportunities and challenges for parliamentarians

This briefing discusses parliamentarians’ efforts to build national evaluation capacity and use evaluation effectively. Such tasks are not without challenges, but these, we argue, can be reframed as opportunities.

Value for money in ActionAid: Creating an alternative

ActionAid committed to understanding how the concept of Value for Money (VfM) might be used in a human rights based organization that works to empower the most vulnerable and excluded, in particular women, in very remote areas. Through its VfM Pilot Project, ActionAid developed an alternative approach to VfM, building on practice, learning-by-doing with ActionAid frontline staff, partner staff and the women and men it works with on the ground.

A ‘How To’ Guide to Measuring Women’s Empowerment

Empowering women and supporting gender equality are the stated aims of many development projects; this is an area of focus that is also expressed in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Different understandings and definitions of ‘empowerment’ abound and the contested nature of the concept makes it challenging both to define and to measure, with the added complexity that different measurement approaches can themselves serve to strengthen or undermine empowerment.

Thinking Evaluatively in Peacebuilding Design Implementation and Monitoring

This Guide provides tools and guidance for integrating greater EVALUATIVE THINKING into design, implementation and monitoring of PEACEBUILDING initiatives, to enhance program quality, ensure that they maximize their potential for impact and are prepared for a formal evaluation when it is necessary.

Stakeholder power analysis

Stakeholders are the people who matter to a system. Stakeholder power analysis is a tool which helps understanding of how people affect policies and institutions, and how policies and institutions affect people. It is particularly useful in identifying the winners and losers and in highlighting the challenges that need to be faced to change behaviour, develop capabilities and tackle inequalities.

Evaluation Matters: Value for Money in Development

eVALUation Matters is a quarterly publication from Independent Development Evaluation at the African Development Bank Group. It provides different perspectives and insights on evaluation and development issues. This issue focuses on the concept of value for money in development work.

Understanding the organisational context for evidence-informed policy-making

Efforts to improve the use of evidence in government policy-making across the world have tended to focus on different groups and organisations. But while a good deal of work has been done to improve the supply of evidence from entities such as research centres and academia, less attention has been paid to improving demand for, and use of, evidence by government policy-makers.

This working paper describes the framework used by a team of ODI researchers and officials from the South African Department of Environmental Affairs to analyse how DEA’s internal structures and processes and the external policy environment in South Africa affect how its policy-makers source and use evidence.