“The owl can see that which others cannot; which is the essence of true wisdom”
- ancient lore
The Owl RE team writes and speaks regularly on evaluation and related areas. Our philosophy is to share as much as possible our know-how and beliefs on the exciting and topsy-turvy world of evaluation. We also encourage our clients to share their evaluation reports. On this page you will find all our available resources. Please feel free to share and use.
Often it’s useful in an evaluation during data collection to define or check what the given intervention sought to achieve in terms of outcomes – both intended and unintended. One approach that has become popular is outcome monitoring or harvesting. The World Bank has produced a very useful guide in this area that provides practical guidance – do take a look!
There has been a lot of talk about “nudge theory”- basically people being guided, encouraged and nudged towards the right decision, rather than being told – and now the evaluation unit of the UN agency, WIPO has produced a guide on how nudge theory can apply to evaluation – interesting reading!
For volunteers, staff and board members working towards social impact, whether it be in health, environment, community initiatives or other focuses, these three modules will be of great interest and use. Each module is stand-alone and self-paced; taking about an hour per module to complete.
The guide highlights: “The importance of communication research, analysis, and evaluation continues to grow due to the pace of change in the marketplace and the corresponding need to make smarter and better decisions at the speed of business. The ability for an organization to successfully transform during this time of dynamic change requires the active leadership of the Chief Communication Officer and the application of talent and technology to perform the work, measure its impact, and improve at each stage of the public relations process.”
The report provides an overview of the latest trends, theories and concepts of risk communication for environment and health (EH), and key challenges and good practices are identified. The report’s findings are complemented by three cases studies: promoting indoor air quality in schools in Hungary; water contamination in the Veneto region, Italy; and heat health action in Styria, Austria.
“Katie Paine (Paine Publishing): All the things that we have traditionally measured don’t seem as valuable today.–Long ago, the “Grammy of Communications” went to the person who got the most impressions and reported the most hits or clicks or whatever. That’s not going to happen today. I don’t know a lot of organizations that measure on that. Generally, they’re measuring on some kind of change, whether it’s increased awareness, or increased traffic, or saving lives.“
“Elizabeth Rector (Cisco): I think it’s an “and.” I think some of the standard metrics aren’t going away, it’s just multiplied, and then we are asking how they come together. That’s blowing up in my world. And finding comms people…finding people who can have that mindset and that blend, because most of my kind of comms insights people have been very much traditional comms, and some of the outcome, like the reputation and brand and all of that. But as we’re getting into thought leadership, and driving to the website, and views, and paid media that’s all now under comms’ umbrella.”
“Joseph Czabovsky (University of North Carolina): I don’t think the fundamentals have changed. As you were saying Katie, it’s still the different elements of funnel, or whether we’re doing awareness, attitude, or behavior, essentially. I think that’s still the core of what we do and what we measure“.
Here is an interesting case study presenting an evaluation of a European-wide smoking cessation campaign (in other words, trying to get people to stop smoking) that I was involved with. Some interesting findings on campaigns and results in this challenging area.
Today I was very happy to be with the European Centre for Public Affairs for a training on advocacy evaluation. For those who are interested, you can see my presentation slides below and I’ve also listed a range of advocacy evaluation and related resources.