Welcome to the Community Pages of the DE Toolkit. The pages in this section have been created by evaluators and partners of developmental evaluation who want to share their resources on developmental evaluation. Please contact us if you’re interested in contributing to the Community Pages
Learning Circles, covered more fully in the Structure for Learning, were created Carolyn Cohen. They are a facilitated process for engaging an organization’s leadership, project staff, and key partners in collectively examining and reflecting on real-time data.
For an exploration of how developmental evaluation is a tool for innovation in the social sector, visit this article in the Stanford Social Innovation Review by Meg Long, President of the OMG Center for Collaborative Learning: “Impact by Design: Making R&D Work for the Social Sector.”
FSG’s resources below will help you to explore when and how to apply developmental evaluation, including in the context of social innovation and collective impact.
Evaluating Social Innovation (FSG, Hallie Preskill & Tanya Beer). This report challenges grantmakers to explore how common evaluation approaches and practices constrain innovation, and examines a new approach to evaluating social innovation known as “developmental evaluation.” The report suggests when to use developmental evaluation, describes conditions for successfully implementing this approach, and offers insights from funders and evaluators who have tested developmental
Guide to Evaluating Collective Impact (FSG, Hallie Preskill, Marcie Parkhurst, and Jennifer Splansky-Juster). This evaluation guide offers practitioners, funders, and evaluators’ advice on planning performance measurement and evaluation activities to assess a collective impact (CI) initiative’s progress, effectiveness, and impact. The guide includes a conceptual framework as well as practical guidance to support the design and implementation of CI initiative evaluations, including sample performance indicators, evaluation questions, outcomes for CI initiatives in different stages of development, plus four case studies. Developmental evaluation is one of the evaluation approaches recommended, including an exploration of how to apply it in the context of CI.
Evaluating Complexity: Propositions for Improving Practice (FSG, Hallie Preskill & Srik Gopal). This brief brings together what we know about systems change, complexity, and evaluation, in a way that further clarifies and describes how the practice of evaluation needs to evolve to better serve the social sector. It includes characteristics of complex systems, and a set of nine propositions for how one might evaluate initiatives in complex environments and/or complex initiatives, including exploring when and how to use developmental evaluation.
Spark Policy Institute does not endorse the practices encouraged by authors in their individual Community Pages. Copyright of materials on the Community Pages remains with the authors of each page and any references to the content should be cited to the authors.