Evaluation 2017: From Learning to Action

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It's All About Relationships: Trust and Partnership in Evaluation Capacity Building

Session Number: OL-ECB4
Track: Organizational Learning & Evaluation Capacity Building
Session Type: TIG Multipaper
Session Chair: Matthew J Birnbaum [Supervising Social Scientist - Institute of Museum and Library Services]
Presenter 1: Natalie Lacireno-Paquet [Senior Research Associate - WestEd]
Presenter 2: Matthew J Birnbaum [Supervising Social Scientist - Institute of Museum and Library Services]
Presenter 3: toumnakone Annie hester [Program Evaluation Specialist - US Army, Maneuver Center of Excellence]
Presentation 1 Additional Author: Rebecca Carey
Presentation 1 Additional Author: Karen Shakman [Senior Research Associate - Education Development Center]
Presentation 2 Additional Author: Lisa M Frehill [Senior Statistician - Institute of Museum and Library Services]
Presentation 2 Additional Author: Marisa Pelczar [Institute of Museum and Library Services]
Time: Nov 10, 2017 (03:30 PM - 04:15 PM)
Room: Madison A

Abstract 1 Title: Lessons Learned About Engaging with Evaluation Stakeholders Through Partnerships and Research Alliances: Experiences of the REL-NEI
Presentation Abstract 1: In 2012, the REL program required that researchers work in substantive partnership with practitioners through research alliances. These alliances included state and local educational leaders, representatives of higher education, and school-based practitioners. The purpose was to build research and evaluation capacity through deliberate partnerships and to conduct research and evaluation that was useful to stakeholders by addressing problems of practice or policy. REL-NEI alliances addressed four regional priority topics. We will share experiences and examples of different ways our researchers and evaluators engaged alliance members to identify, develop, execute and use evaluation and research. Panelists will share strategies and experiences collaborating with stakeholders to use evaluation and research findings to enhance evaluation capacity at the local and state levels. They will share lessons learned and reflect on how they will continue to work with stakeholders in partnerships and alliances to ensure research and evaluation conducted by REL-NEI continues to be meaningful to stakeholders.
Abstract 2 Title: Trust Building with Boundary Spanning: Case Study in One Small Federal Agency
Presentation Abstract 2: Developing trust in settings generally characterized by hierarchical control and power as in public sector agencies presents a challenge for evaluators. We explore how various boundary-spanning practices can be used for building trust when responding to inherited legacies of collaborations between earlier evaluators and partners in such settings. We use grounded theory to develop three comparative case studies to examine three sets of research questions surrounding; (1) connection of internal evaluator boundary spanning efforts to external peer evaluator activities; (2) connection of internal evaluator boundary spanning efforts with partner non-evaluator practitioner activities within the organization; and (3) use of boundary spanning for repositioning an organization’s evaluation function. A series of reflections are offered in generalizing how these different boundary spanning activities relate to trust building for evaluators.
Abstract 3 Title: How Can You Effectively Gain Leadership Support for Evaluation Capacity Building?
Presentation Abstract 3: The importance of organizational leader’s involvement in evaluation capacity building (ECB) is well established in the evaluation field. Leaders can directly influence how resources are used in evaluation practices and activities and provide the infrastructure needed to facilitate evaluation activities into daily routines (Garcia-Iriarte, 2011). However, one barrier to building evaluation capacity building is the lack of leadership support (Taut, 2007). What happens to ECB efforts when organizational leaders are unaware of how important their roles are in the success of ECB or how they can support ECB activities? How can practitioners garner leadership support and what are some effective strategies? This presentation will describe the results from a study that was conducted by interviewing organizational leaders and surveying team/staff members involved in evaluations. Strategies for gaining leaders’ support for ECB efforts and the affects leaders have on the sustainability and organizational factors of ECB efforts will be also discussed.
Theme: Select one
Audience Level: None

Session Abstract (150 words):  It's All About Relationships: Trust and Partnership in Evaluation Capacity Building


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