Local Affiliate of the American Evaluation Association
Have you ever puzzled over a spaghetti maze for a Theory of Change or been disappointed by an evaluation report that you felt oversimplified the program mechanism at play?
In the last several years, program and policy evaluators have become increasingly aware of the sources of complexity in their work and grappled with ways to handle it. In this session, we will review the fundamental ideas that distinguish complexity and inspire evaluators to discern which sources of complexity are the most critical to address in the course of an evaluation. I hope these key frameworks will help you as you consider complexity in your evaluation practice. Moderator: Annette Ghee, PhD, MPH
This event is our first Journal Club event! We plan to be hosting these monthly. Upon registration you will be emailed resources for reading/watching/listening and then join us for a discussion via Zoom. The discussion is scheduled over your lunch so feel free to grab some food before the discussion!
In preparation for the webinar-workshop with Beverly Parsons on July 14th, we will be discussing the first chapter of her book Visionary Evaluation. A book about 2030, social (r)evolutions and evaluation's role in transformative change. Explore the future with industry leading experts, follow the conversation about humans, nature, and technology, and deepen your understanding of evaluative principles.
Praise for Visionary Evaluation:
What might the world be like if it was inhabited by people imbued with evaluation? Here's a very interesting exploration of such a world. And it will additionally enrich your thinking about how to vote in 2020.
Founder, Faster Forward Fund
Humanity's current trajectory on Earth is unsustainable. Transformation is needed at every level and in every arena of action. The alternative may be no future at all. This book and its Visionary Evaluation Principles envisions evaluation as part of the transformation. Embrace the vision. Act on it. How? Start by reading Visionary Evaluation.
Michael Quinn Patton
Author of Blue Marble Evaluation
Note: A link to download the first chapter of her book (for free) will be provided upon registration.
Join the Seattle Evaluation Association for an in-depth discussion with Beverly Parsons, the 2014 president of the American Evaluation Association.
We are living in the Anthropocene - a time in which humanity is exerting its influence on all of the earth's ecosystems. At the same time, humans are more interconnected than at any other time. The significance, impact, pace, and nature of change (think pandemic) is unprecedented, leading us to new evolutions in our social and natural world.
The webinar-workshop begins with the hope-filled premise that evaluators and users of evaluation can humbly and compassionately contribute to the issues confronting us all in this uncertain world.
The webinar assumes that attendees are familiar with the six principles of living as a "Visionary Evaluative" through prior reading and webinars. The principles highlight a commitment to equity and the sustainability of nature; an orientation of humility, compassion, and transparency; and a view of the world as living, entangled systems with both obvious and hidden intersectionalities. The principles require Visionary Evaluatives to engage in deep praxis—mindful and challenging reflection on what is being learned through the intersection of values and through iterative action and inquiry.
This webinar-workshop goes beyond talking about these principles to actually applying the principles to evaluations currently being conducted by several attendees of the webinar-workshop who have worked with the lead presenter prior to the session.
The goal of the webinar-workshop is that you'll leave with a renewed sense that your evaluation work—and your life as an evaluator—can meaningfully contribute to a sustainable, equitable future.
About Beverly Parsons
Beverly has worked and lived nationally and internationally in rural, suburban, urban, and indigenous communities. She has worked closely with governors, legislators, local communities, philanthropy, universities, and businesses across social sectors particularly education, health, environment, and social services. Her PhD in educational research and evaluation (University of Colorado-Boulder) grounds a career of compassionately using mixed evaluation, research, and facilitation strategies to reveal ways to influence complex systems in support of learning, equity, and sustainability. Her background in medicine and science (BS in medical technology, instructor of physiological chemistry, University of Wisconsin) has strengthened her interdisciplinary interests and focus.
Beverly is executive director of InSites (www.insites.org). InSites works through inquiry-based evaluation, planning, and research to support learning, growth, and change in formal and informal social systems and their interface with natural ecologies. InSites pays particular attention to how social systems attend to environmental sustainability, social justice, economic well-being, and community development. She lives with her husband in Hansville, WA and enjoys hiking, organic gardening, and playing the harp.
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