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  • Outcome Harvesting: Evaluation for Social Change

Outcome Harvesting: Evaluation for Social Change

  • Wednesday, July 13, 2022
  • 9:00 AM - 10:30 AM
  • Zoom


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As evaluators, many of us are exploring ways to bring our mindsets and toolkits into deeper alignment with the work of social justice and equity.  One potentially promising approach - Outcome Harvesting (OH) - may be unfamiliar because it’s rarely applied to programs in the USA.  

OH was developed by Ricardo Wilson-Grau to evaluate social change initiatives by focusing on shifts in behavior. OH uses retrospective logic for identifying emerging outcomes in complex systems. OH does not conform to the linear, predictive assumptions built into most culturally Western evaluation approaches, so it may also resonate as a form of cultural responsiveness. 

In this thought-provoking webinar, Michelle Garred (Ripple Peace Research & Consulting) will introduce the OH approach, and Min Ma and Susan Putnins (MXM Research Group) will illustrate how they are using OH to evaluate a New England community health coalition focused on the intersection of racial equity and mental health. We will close with a discussion centered on the question: To what extent do you see OH as potentially useful for evaluating social justice and equity efforts in the USA? 

If you’d like to read ahead, check out:

Min Ma is the Principal Consultant at MXM Research Group. Min brings experience with evaluation of coalitions and consortiums working towards common goals related to racial equity, mental health, and youth well-being; and process evaluations and continuous quality improvement for community health and education organizations. She also leads efforts to strengthen the application of racial equity principles in professional evaluation practice as President of the Greater Boston Evaluation Network and as co-PI on the Strengthening Capacity for Equity in New England Evaluation (SCENE) Collaboration.

Susan Putnins is an Evaluation Consultant at MXM Research Group where she leads measurement, evaluation, and learning activities for a portfolio of coalitions and nonprofit partners working for social change and improvements in social determinants of health. Susan is committed to developing equitable evaluation practices, including through her role as co-chair of the Greater Boston Evaluation Network’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee. 

Michelle Garred, PhD, is the Founder and Principal at Ripple Peace Research & Consulting LLC, which provides strategy, evaluation and learning services for the work of ‘just peace.’ She has used Outcome Harvesting around the world in social change programs that address ethnic, religous and power differences, and she encourages similar applications in the USA. She also facilitates Outcome Harvesting adaptations, as seen in “Change Inside and Out: An Outcome Harvesting plus Attitude Change Toolkit for Peacebuilders and other Changemakers.

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