Enhancing Evaluation and Programming: evidence from workforce development RCT in Honduras

Session Number: 2414
Track: Use and Influence of Evaluation
Session Type: Panel
Tags: evidence based decision making, Impact evaluation, Latin America, randomized control trials, workforce development, Youth
Session Chair: Mateusz Pucilowski [Program Director - Impact Evaluation - Social Impact]
Presenter 1: Karen Lynn Towers [Education Team Leader - USAID]
Presenter 2: Mateusz Pucilowski [Program Director - Impact Evaluation - Social Impact]
Presenter 3: George Michael Duthie [Impact Evaluation Practice Leader - Social Impact]
Presenter 4: Erin Murphy [Associate Adjunct Professor - UC Berkeley]
Time: Nov 09, 2017 (03:15 PM - 04:15 PM)
Room: PARK TWR STE 8211

Abstract 1 Title: Designing Evaluation for Utilization
Presentation Abstract 1:

As the Education Team Leader of USAID’s Bureau for Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), Ms. Karen Towers will speak on the motivation behind USAID’s decision to commission the two impact evaluations. She will discuss the utility of impact evaluations in the decision-making process in general, and will describe the value of this particular evaluation in the LAC context. The evaluation is the first youth-focused workforce development impact evaluation to provide evidence about the effectiveness of sport-for-development programs. It additionally seeks to provide evidence on the sustainability of program impacts and sheds light on how the program and program targeting can improve.


Abstract 2 Title: The A Ganar Approach
Presentation Abstract 2:

(This speaking role will actually be taken by Ms. Anna Barrett, the Senior Program Officer of A Ganar at Partners of the Americas. We are having technical difficulties inserting her name into the application form at the moment, but will make this correction later on.)

Ms. Anna Barrett will discuss the A Ganar program as a potential solution to the “nini” issue in the LAC region. A Ganar, implemented by Partners of the Americas, combats youth unemployment through the application of an integrated four-phase job training program, transforming lessons and skills developed through sports into marketable job skills. The program targets at-risk youth, ages 17 to 24 from high-violence, under-served communities.


Abstract 3 Title: Workforce Development Program as Path to Improve Job Quality
Presentation Abstract 3:

Mr. Mike Duthie will discuss the quantitative findings of the evaluation as well as methodological techniques for tracking a highly mobile population in high-risk context. He will describe the program’s impacts on employment, education, socio-emotional outcomes, and risk behaviors. In order to best illustrate what works and what doesn’t in workforce development in the region, he will contextualize these results by comparing with the findings from IEs of similar programs in the region.


Abstract 4 Title: The A Ganar Experience: How Youth Perceive the Program
Presentation Abstract 4:

Ms. Erin Murphy-Graham will discuss the qualitative findings of the evaluation with a focus on socio-emotional outcomes and other intermediate outcomes that are widely thought to lead to improvements in long-term impacts such as employment. Using case studies, she will illustrate causal pathways for impact through the experiences of a few specific youth.


Audience Level: All Audiences

Session Abstract (150 words): 

An interactive panel, including speakers from donor, implementer, and evaluator organizations, will discuss evidence on what works and why in youth workforce development in Latin America and the Caribbean. They will share findings from a RCT of A Ganar, a sports-based job training program that strives to transform lessons and skills developed through sports and classes into marketable job skills. USAID has invested in A Ganar to help over 6,000 youth in 8 countries. This evaluation will focus on program findings in Honduras. Based on a longitudinal, mixed-methods design, panelists will describe quantitative and qualitative evidence from tracking almost 2,000 youth over a period of over 2 years.

Panelists will additionally share lessons learned on collaboration between the different parties to develop a highly informative impact evaluation with utilization potential.