Welcome to the International Year of Evaluation! BetterEvaluation is very pleased to support the International Year of Evaluation as a partner organisation of EvalPartners, the global movement to strengthen national evaluation capacities, and we are planning a series of special events and initiatives during the year.
At the start of 2015, it's a good opportunity to plan how you can be involved too.
About the International Year of Evaluation
2015 has been declared as the International Year of Evaluation, following endorsement at a series of evaluation conferences in 2013 and 2014 and the UN's adoption of the resolution led by Fiji, 'Capacity Building for the Evaluation of Development Activities at the Country Level', which asks member countries to strengthen their evaluation capacity and report on the progress made in 2016. The resolution was approved through general consensus and cross-regional support of more than forty countries in the UN General Assembly Second Committee meeting of 13 November 2014 and unanimously endorsed by the General Assembly in 19 December 2014. You can watch Deborah Rugg (UNEG Chair) discuss this resolution here.
The 2015 International Year of Evaluation Torch was lit on the 17th of December 2014 by Ambassador Thomson of Fiji Mission to the United Nations (sponsor of the UN resolution on National Capacity Development), Deborah Rugg (UNEG Chair and OIOS Evaluation Director) and Marco Segone (EvalPartners co-chair and UN Women Evaluation Director). From here, the torch will be symbolically passed throughout the international evaluation community a number of events around the world celebrating EvalYear.
Here are 5 ways you can participate throughout the year:
1. Participate in official EvalYear events.
Check out the EvalPartners calendar of events throughout 2015 where the "evaluation torch" will be passed on. There are events across the year and across the world. Each of these events will include an ongoing conversation about these topics:
- Identifying the key future priorities for the global evaluation community to launch the 2016-2020 Global Evaluation Agenda;
- Bridging the gap between the evaluation community (supply side) and the policy makers community (demand side), including Parliamentarians, to ensure good quality, equity-focused and gender-responsive evaluations are demanded and used in policy making;
- Mainstreaming equity-focused and gender-responsive evaluations in Sustainable Development Goals at international level, and in national development strategies at national level;
- Developing equity-focused and gender-responsive National Evaluation policies.
If you can attend one of these events, share what you learn with others, especially contributing to a year-long conversation about important evaluation issues. If you cannot attend in person, see if you can participate in virtual sessions or follow on twitter. The EvalYear interactive crowd map (below) can help you find events in your area.
If your organisation or voluntary organisation for professional evaluation (VOPE) is holding a major event that is discussing at least one of the four 'Evaluation Torch' themes above, you can contact Asela Kalugampitiya to have it included in the map, or use the form on the website.
2. Promote the International Year of Evaluation.
Let everyone know about the international year of evaluation. You can add the logo in your language to your email footer or website. You can find the logos in different languages here. If you want to add another language contact Mr Asela Kalugampitiya (EvalPartners Executive Coordinator).
3. Support your local evaluation association or society.
Evaluation organisations provide important support to evaluators and those who use evaluation, including peer support, technical guidance, and advocacy for evaluation. Maybe this is the year you might volunteer to help with the management of one of these organisations or support their activities in other ways.
Check out your local organisation to find when their next meeting or conference is on. You can find lists of international, national and regional organisations on the website of the International Organisation of Co-Operation in Evaluation (check out their interactive map of organisations below).
EvalPartners have produced the VOPE Toolkit for evaluation organisations which contains descriptions, tools, advice, examples, software and toolboxes developed by VOPEs and other organizations working to support not-for-profit organizations.
EvalPartners have produced a free e-book for evaluation organisations -Voluntary Organizations for Professional Evaluation (VOPEs): Learning from Africa, Americas, Asia, Australasia, Europe and Middle East - which has advice and examples of how to establish and run an evaluation association or society.
4. Be an advocate for evaluation
Help to inform users and potential users of evaluation about what it can provide. All of us can decide to contribute to advocating for evaluation. For an example of how simple acts of advocacy can lead to important strides forward for evaluation, have a read of Alexey Kuzmin's blog post on the ECDG blog.
EvalPartners have recently produced Advocating for Evaluation: A toolkit to develop advocacy strategies to strengthen an enabling environment for evaluation. The toolkit contains guidance and tools on how to plan, design, implement, monitor and evaluate advocacy strategies. This toolkit helps users understand the role of advocacy in evaluation, and develop strategies to promote demand for evaluation services.
5. Share your knowledge and experience of evaluation.
Do you have a good example of an evaluation report? Some advice on using a particular method or process? A resource you've found really useful? Share your knowledge on the BetterEvaluation site by contributing content.
Ways to contribute to BetterEvaluation:
- Steward an area
- Improve existing content
- Write a guest blog
- Add resources
- Let us know about events
- Give us feedback
Check out our contribution information page for more information about how you can document and share what you have learned about choosing and using evaluation methods and processes.
Contributing to the International Year of Evaluation
We'll be sharing with you later details of special events and activities BetterEvaluation will be undertaking to support EvalYear. However, we're especially excited about the possibilities for everyone to become involved in EvalYear and would love to know your plans for the year. And if you have ideas for other ways of celebrating the year, please let us know in the poll or in a comment!