EnCompass Insights

July 15, 2014

Kostas Hatzis 2010*

The European Evaluation Society (EES) has selected an inspiring topic for the upcoming EES 2014 Conference, “Evaluation for an Equitable Society,” because as evaluators we need to think about and discuss the role evaluation can play in equity, gender equality and social justice. So, I have been thinking about how I build equity in my own practice, the challenges I face, and the questions this raises for my own practice.

My reflection of issues of equity and social justice brought to mind an old favorite Greek song called “We, the humble people”. It is sung by Kostas Hatzis, and written by lyricist Sotia Tsotou, who has written several really powerful songs around issues of social justice. Hatzis was born in...

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June 23, 2014

Lyn with Priscilla Usiobaifo, founder of Braveheart Initiative, an NGO in rural Nigeria empowering young people with information and skills on sexual and reproductve health and rights.

When I was a Peace Corps volunteer in Lesotho, about 90 percent of the male workforce  worked in South Africa, primarily in the gold mines, with few opportunities to return home to their families. One of these men was married to a neighbor of mine. She was raising their children in a one-room mud hut, never knowing when her husband might be back or when she would hear from him. They had nothing— no furniture, hardly enough food, few clothes for the children.

One day my neighbor came to me to ask what to do: a letter from her husband had arrived with cash inside. The money, he had written, was to buy a table and four chairs. She was beside herself. She was struggling to feed their children and keep clothes on their backs, and he wanted her to buy furniture. And...

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April 23, 2014

Grantees developing evaluation questions using a facilitation technique called Brainwriting.

Written by Jonathan Jones

Michael Quinn Patton’s publication, Utilization-Focused Evaluation, catalyzed a discussion on evaluation use that has continued for over 30 years. The first step in operationalizing this discussion is to glean the priorities of the client and evaluands in the design process. Fully understanding and eliciting their priorities can be done in a creative, respectful, and fun way that is rewarding for all involved- and that’s exactly what we set out to do for the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

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January 29, 2014

It is easy to abhor gender-based violence. Who would not be against rape, torture, mutilation, sexual slavery, forced impregnation and murder [1] of women and men on the basis of their gender? Apparently, many people. That is, many people are not against gender violence. According to the World Health Organization [2], in 2013, 35% of women have experienced violence in their lifetime. Thirty percent (30%) of women have experienced violence in an intimate relationship; and 38% of all murders of women are by an intimate partner. Support for violence against women is reflected in the following proverbs [3]:

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July 01, 2013

man drawing a diagram
We are at an important moment in evaluation. All kinds of people are engaged in evaluation, and sometimes they do not even call it evaluation. FastCompany named Nate Silver as 2013 #1 Most Creative Person in Business http://www.fastcompany.com/3009258/most-creative-people-2013/1-nate-silver. In this interview, Silver—followed because of his excellent predictive algorithms based on large data sets—said:

"There's a lot of ways to take a lot of data, mangle what you're doing with it, not ask good questions, and get yourself in trouble."

Evaluation's...
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