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Virtual Pre-Conference Presidential Town Hall Series

PAST TOWN HALLS

Why Feedback is Essential to Equitable Evaluation 

A growing number of researchers, evaluators, nonprofits, and funders are recognizing that feedback that centers the opinions and perspectives of people who are most impacted but often least consulted by philanthropy and nonprofits is a powerful tool for reshaping evaluation. Feedback provides immediate, actionable data that can help evaluators design better evaluations and draw more meaning from their results. In this town hall, you’ll hear from evaluators about why listening and feedback are essential to creating more equitable evaluation and, ultimately, more equitable outcomes. Join us to learn how feedback from the people who participate in nonprofit programs leads to stronger, more equitable evaluation. WATCH

New Actors: Can We Transform Capital with Evaluative Thinking?

We’re seeing an emergence of new actors and social finance actors implementing measurement and evaluation activities, and will be doing so shortly in the future. There are more than 715 billion dollars per year directed to “doing good,” outside of traditional government finance. The “impact” of these dollars goes largely unaccounted for or are superficially assessed, creating what has come to be known as “impact washing”.  As evaluators, there is an opportunity to consider how we can add-value to these new players as they seek to contribute to the people and the planet. We are hosting a facilitated panel with different types of stakeholders who will discuss, firstly who the New Actors are, and what is this world of social finance?  We will then speak about how evaluative thinking and better impact measurement and management can be used to put the various types of social finance instruments to better social, economic, and environmental good. WATCH

What Do You Mean When You Say Equity, Social Justice, & Decolonization? A Roundtable Discussion

As we work to Reshape Evaluation Together, this conference theme challenges us to ask ourselves how we can bring an in-depth understanding of systemic oppression to our work. One way we can do that collectively is to explore our shared – or not shared – understanding of Equity, Decolonization, and Liberation.

This Town Hall invites members into a roundtable discussion with six people who work to illuminate these issues in both their own work and the broader field of evaluation. Each of these guests was asked to write an aea365 blog post on this topic, sharing their unique perspective on how these concepts are driving social change and helping to reshape evaluation. We explore the commonalities in these perspectives and the implications of the differences. WATCH

Convergence in Digital Data and Technology: Trends and Implications for Evaluation

Digital data platforms and technology play a key role in the ways evaluation data is collected, managed, analyzed, visualized, and shared. The emergence of new tools, platforms, and open data sources have made complex analytics, big data, and elegant data visualization more feasible than ever across our field - which comes with a myriad of challenges.

Ethical questions around the access and use of big data and machine learning challenge us to center the people represented in the data and impacted by our analysis findings. Availability of new technology and platforms may be more accessible in already-privileged circles, leaving out emerging cohorts within the evaluation field around the world. The collection of more data doesn’t always address issues of data literacy, data use, and the ways our learning can fail to influence program strategy and policy, despite the ease with which we can post and share reports, findings, charts, and more.

The rapid pace of change in technology, digital data, and design requires that we think beyond our evaluation community and learn from other professional associations and disciplines complementary to our own, who have grappled with similar challenges and offer opportunities for collaboration and knowledge sharing.

This Town Hall provides provoking insights around the theme of convergence in digital data and technology, with three talks on the trends, challenges, and collaboration opportunities we face as a field looking to advance our work. WATCH

Localization and the Future of Evaluation

Locally-led monitoring, evaluation, and learning (MEL) have been gaining momentum in recent years. While the principles have been around for some time, meaningfully implementing it is a whole other matter. This interactive Town Hall discusses the implications of shifting to locally-led MEL and how that will reshape evaluation more broadly.

Panelists and participants provide input on the gaps and opportunities of locally-led MEL in development; which will serve as the foundation for a Presidential Strand discussion at Evaluation 2022, taking place later this year. WATCH

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