Supporting good evaluation

This presentation and paper from the Bruner Foundation guides the reader through the evaluation process and provides a step by step process for commissioning an evaluation.

The resource clarifies the differences between research and evaluation; what evaluations should cost; and further things that need to be considered before implementation.


  • What’s the difference between evaluation and research?
  • What should evaluation cost?
  • What should you ask external evaluators?
    • What do you need to know to properly design an evaluation for this program/initiative?
    • What evaluation questions would guide your effort?
    • What strategies would you use to address the evaluation questions?
    • How will you handle common challenges? 
    • What timeline is expected for the evaluation project?
    • Who will conduct the work and what other relevant experiences do they have?
    • How and when will the findings from the evaluation work be communicated
    • How will evaluation resources be used including professional time, travel, other direct, and indirect costs
  • What should grantmakers do before commissioning an evaluation?
    • Talk to a few trusted grantmaker colleagues
    • Think about how you will identify evaluators
    • Determine the best strategy and requirements for proposal
    • Determine the timeline for finding evaluators
    • Determine the format for response
    • Determine who will be involved in making the selection and how
  • What should grantmakers ask grantees before commissioning an evaluation?
    • Contributions to mission or broader field
    • Implementation and feasibility
    • Project design/staging
    • Finances
    • Outcomes and evaluation
  • What should grantmakers avoid when working on evaluation projects?
  • How do you stay informed about evaluation status?


Baker, A., & Bruner, B. Bruner Foundation, (n.d.). Supporting good evaluation. Retrieved from website:

'Supporting good evaluation' is referenced in: