Australasian Evaluation Society 2011 International Conference: Evaluation and Influence


Date: 29 August – 2 September (workshops on 29-30th)
Venue: Hilton, Sydney, NSW, Australia

View the Conference website here

View the detailed outline of the program and please click here to view the detailed Pre Conference Workshop Program. Please note the Conference Program is subject to change.

Read more about the Keynote Speakers, their presentations and Conference main streams and ‘hot topics’.

Evaluation and influence

Evaluation claims to influence public policy, professional practice and the management of organisations. What is the nature and extent of this influence? How can evaluations be made more influential?  And conversely, in a rapidly changing world, what are the main influences on evaluation? To what extent is evaluation responding by taking on new approaches and technologies?

With the focus on influence, the conference builds upon the two previous conferences with their themes of evidence (Canberra 2009) and reflections on evaluation (Wellington 2010).

The conference will focus on three sub-themes:

The influence of evaluation on society

How much and in what ways does evaluation impact upon policy, practice and organisations? Where and in what circumstances does it have the most impact, and why? What are other important sources of influence, and how do they compare with evaluation?

Making an evaluation more influential

How can an evaluation be designed and conducted to increase its use and influence?  What are the most persuasive ways of communicating the results of an evaluation?What role can evaluators play in implementing evaluation results? What are the lessons for evaluation from theories of influence and diffusion?

Influences shaping evaluation

How is evaluation changing in response to emerging social, economic and political issues, to increasing complexity and uncertainty, and to new approaches and technologies? What are the important influences on evaluation, and how are they shaping evaluation?

The conference can explore its theme in streams around fields such as education and research, health, human services, justice, international development, Indigenous peoples, natural resource management and the economy. We also expect a stream on design and methodology.

Promoting Voice and Choice: Exploring Innovations in Australian NGOAccountability for Development Effectiveness

– Exploring innovations in Australian NGO accountability for development effectiveness

by Chris Roche, ACFID research paper, 2010

From the Preface

“This research paper represents the latest chapter in a body of work, led by ACFID’s Development Practice Committee (DPC), focused on Australian NGO program quality and effectiveness. Over the past 10 years DPC has engaged the sector in a series of consultations and discrete research phases to define our effectiveness and identify the principles, program strategies, standards of engagement and organisational management practices which underpin it.

The objective of the current research was to capture and share cutting edge practice in demonstrating Australian NGO effectiveness through innovative forms of accountability and social learning, in which the views of those who are ultimately meant to benefit were central. ACFID member agencies participated through submitting examples of their attempts to improve downward accountability.

The findings presented in this report will contribute to ACFID member agencies’ journey of continual improvement of our collective effectiveness. It will do this through engaging with senior NGO managers and AusAID in the analysis of the findings, as well as contributing to the international work on CSO Development Effectiveness. The next research phase will be in partnership with an academic institution to undertake a more rigorous examination of a sample of the case studies and the organisational enablers and obstacles to improving our effectiveness.”

See also Chris Roche’s new guest posting on the (Australian based) Development Policy Centre’s Development Policy Blog, titled “Changing the rules of the game?” In this blog he follows up on issues raised in the above paper.