Validation workshop

Feedback workshop, sensemaking workshop

A validation workshop is a meeting that brings together evaluators and key stakeholders to review an evaluation's findings.

For a workshop focused on validation of draft findings, the findings can be presented either in the form of an aide memoire or a draft of the report, so that input from different parties can be incorporated in the final report.

"Feedback workshops help stakeholders and evaluators to (1) ensure consistency between the evaluation, stakeholder values, and program plans; (2) increase understanding of the evaluation and utility of the findings; (3) improve the accuracy and utility of the evaluation report; and (4) review and refine evaluation plans." (Gullickson & Stufflebeam, 2001, p.1)

Advice for choosing this method

Who should attend?

  • "Concerned working-level country office, government and IP staff, and beneficiaries. As appropriate, donors and United Nations agency representatives may also be invited. Ideally, the decision-makers for the operation should be present, but this is not always feasible when they are senior officials. In such cases, the operation decision-makers should be debriefed through a copy of the aide-mémoire and by technical staff who attend the feedback workshop." (United Nations World Food Programme, n.d., p. 10)

Advice for using this method

How to plan and prepare for the workshop:

  • "The date and venue for the workshop should be arranged well in advance in order to enable the maximum number of stakeholders to attend. Beneficiary representatives (women and men) should be invited and encouraged to consult with the people they represent, both before and after the workshop. As soon as they are available, an agenda, list of participants, the TOR and other relevant details should be communicated to all of those invited to attend.
    • It is advisable to use visualisation techniques, such as Visualisation in Project Planning (VIPP) cards, and moderation techniques, such as group exercises and buzz groups. This will require that the venue be of sufficient size with enough wall space to allow for “break-out” groups to undertake exercises and for group presentations to be posted on the wall for all participants to see. (As a general guide, 15 participants will require a room of at least 80 m2.)
    • Seating arrangements will have a great influence on the workshop. Formal seating with tables, name cards, microphones, etc. should be avoided as it is likely to constrain interaction, and may even intimidate participants who are unused to such meetings.
    • Visual aids, such as overhead slides, pre-formatted flip charts and handouts, will provide a focus both for the team’s presentation and for discussions with participants. Care should be taken to ensure that all such materials are clearly written and will be readable by all the workshop participants.
    • If a large number of participants are expected, it may be advisable to employ an experienced facilitator to chair discussions and maximise participation. If the workshop is expected to last more than half a day, refreshments and a meal will be required." (United Nations World Food Programme, n.d., p. 10)


United Nations World Food Programme (n.d.). Monitoring & Evaluation Guidelines: How to manage an Evaluation and disseminate its Results. Retrieved from:​​

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