A grantee of the National Democratic Institute (NDI), FEFA is an independent, nonpartisan Institution working to ensure that all democratic processes are implemented transparently through networking, citizen participation, and good governance. EnCompass assessed FEFA's program management, administrative and financial capacities, and offered recommendations for future organizational strengthening. EnCompass used an appreciative evaluation process that included individual stakeholder interviews and group visioning discussions.
As part of the learning strategy to develop a common management culture, EnCompass designed and delivered a series of workshops addressing communication skills for managers. Participants practiced active listening skills, and learned how to use a feedback model and an approach for conducting coaching conversations. They also explored probing techniques related to Appreciative Inquiry and advocacy.
In the fall of 2000, the World Bank Institute (WBI) presented a challenging evaluation task to EnCompass–to develop an evaluation methodology for its two primary training programs. WBI training programs were under increasing pressure to demonstrate results from both the internal evaluation unit and external donors. The desired outcomes of the training programs, however, had not been clearly defined and some of the workshop managers were hesitant to commit to the evaluation process.
As evaluators have increasingly experimented with integrating Appreciative Inquiry in evaluation, none has applied an appreciative evaluation methodology to study the impact of a full Appreciative Inquiry process in the context of an organization and community. This article presents what we believe to be the first contribution to the literature in both the AI and evaluation fields of just such an evaluation. It examines how elements of AI were successfully incorporated into an evaluation that assessed the results of an AI change process.
This forward-- by former EnCompass CEO Laverne Webb-- precedes a special edition of the academic journal AI Practitioner. The theme of the edition was applying Appreciative Inquiry into evaluation via case studies and assessments.
This case study, published in Consulting Today, was written by EnCompass President Sherry Rockey and former EnCompass CEO Laverne Webb. The article illustrates the successful application of Appreciative Inquiry (AI) to aid the Dubuque, Iowa Housing and Community Development Department in mediating disputes about housing policies with landlords in that city.
"David Harris, the Director of the City of Dubuque’s Housing and Community Development Department, is a strong and committed leader who has been able to accomplish remarkable changes by forming collaborative partnerships that embrace Appreciative Inquiry (AI). This story presents a strong case for how an AI process has been sustained over time in local government through committed leadership and exceptional partnerships."
Reframing Evaluation Through Appreciative Inquiry is the first book to introduce the application of Appreciative Inquiry (AI), an approach for organizational development and change, to the practice of evaluation. Authors Hallie Preskill and Tessie Tzavaras Catsambas lay out the theoretical foundation of AI and build a bridge between the theory and practice of applying AI to evaluation.