Thursday, October 27, 2011

Making Evaluations Matter - A Practical Guide for Evaluators

Recently, the Centre for Development Innovation, Wageningen University & Research Centre, Wageningen, The Netherlands, published Making Evaluations Matter: A Practical Guide for Evaluators written by Cecile Kusters with Simone van Vugt, Seerp Wigboldus, Bob Williams and Jim Woodhill.

This guide emphasizes participatory evaluation and draws heavily upon the work of Michael Quinn Patton, especially from Utilization-Focused Evaluation.

I think this is a very handy guide NOT ONLY for evaluators, but also a handy guide for country directors, project managers, and project directors to read PRIOR to implementing a project as well as toward the end of a project when planning an evaluation.

The contents are the following:

1. Core Principles for guiding evaluations that matter.
2. Suggested steps for designing and facilitating evaluations that matter.
3. Getting stakeholders to contribute successfully.
4. Turning evaluation into a learning process.
5. Thinking through the possible influences and consequences of evaluation on change processes.
6. Conclusion

Annex A: Examples of (Learning) Purposes, Assessment Questions, Users, and Uses of an Evaluation for a Food Security Initiative.

Annex B: Contrasts between traditional evaluation and complexity-sensitive developmental evaluation.


  1. hello larry, this is christie. I used to be the M&E officer of the EQuaLLS2 project of Save the children in the Philippines. we just have ended our project last september 30 and I am now working with the Catholic Relief Services. I find this material interesting. How can i have a full copy of this reading material?

  2. Hi Christie. Just click on the Title "Making Evaluations Matter" in my post above.

  3. Hello Larry, Thanks for your dedication to the practice, process and philosophy behind M&E. I have just finished reading the excellent 'Making Evaluations Matter.' As someone relative new to the practice and yet having followed the proceedings at the Busan HLF4 and other aid transparency/accountability initiatives, are their changes that you would envision in M&E theory or practice that would cause a reorientation in guidance such as that put forth in the CDI guide. Thanks, and Merry Christmas! Paul Serotkin, Boston MA

  4. This is a complex question; thus, I will let you read what other, more competent, people have to say on this topic. I have added the article, "Looking Ahead:The Future of Evaluation" in the DME Documents section.

  5. I m really appreciating your work. Thanks for your sharing such a nice info.

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