FAVOURITE IDEAS, RESOURCES AND TOOLS
A collection of items that we use, recommend or want to explore further.
'Abduction is a kind of reasoning used for the discovery of hypotheses or theories that differs from inductive and deductive inference' according toEvaluation theorist Thomas Schwandt. 'In many forms of qualitative inquiry influenced by grounded theory, the aim is not to test hypothesis in a deductive fashion, nor to generalise from cases to a wider population (via inductive inference), but to discover or generate theory. Abduction is a way of relating observation or case to a theory (or vice versa) that results in a plausible interpretation’ (2015, p. 1).
Often in our evaluations we apply abductive reasoning to develop maps, and findings and suggestions, using evidence from institutional documents, survey and interview data, observations, evaluative discussions, and from selected academic and theoretical literature. (GS)
Behaviour Change Wheel (BCW)
'Interventions and policies to change behaviour can be usefully characterised by means of a BCW comprising: a 'behaviour system' at the hub [i.e. behavioural drivers such as "motivation", "capability" and "opportunity"], encircled by intervention functions and then by policy categories.'
The developers of this model, Susan Michie, Maartje M van Stralen and Robert West expect that the BCW will lead to 'more efficient design of effective interventions', and are looking to further research to identify the extent to which this occurs.
We believe that the BCW provides a useful diagnostic function that helps identify constraints to behavioural change and indicates appropriate intervention mechanisms (from the synthesis of many behavioural theories), that are likely to address constraints and improve social situations. This model has become a cornerstone of our work when linking service design and evaluation. (GS)
Demonstrating the complexities of being poor; an empathy tool.
The Family 100 Research Project is a groundbreaking collaborative study undertaken by the Auckland City Mission in conjunction with a group of researchers from Waikato University, Massey University and the University of Auckland. It is born out of the belief that a more constructive dialogue about the plight of people living in poverty is best be achieved by hearing directly from the people who live in those circumstances. The empathy tool communicates these experiences through a set of diagrams to tell a powerful story.
An international collaboration to improve evaluation practice and theory by sharing and generating information about options (methods or processes) and approaches.
MSP Resource Portal: Building your capacity to facilitate multi-stakeholder processes and social learning. This site has a wealth of information and guidance on multi-stakeholder processes, methodologies, tools, facilitation skills, examples and case studies, and links.
A news service focusing on developments in monitoring and evaluation methods relevant to development programmes with social development objectives. Managed by Rick Davies in the UK, since 1997
Open Policy Making Toolkit
This manual includes information about Open Policy Making as well as the tools and techniques policy makers can use to create more open and user led policy.
NICE Pathways - mapping our guidance
An online tool provides quick and easy access, topic by topic, to the range of guidance from NICE, including quality standards, technology appraisals, clinical, public health and social care guidelines and NICE implementation tools.
This web-based directory includes some important cross-cutting topics such as changing behaviour, community engagement, 'domestic violence and abuse', mental wellbeing and child maltreatment. The interactive depiction of pathways is especially well laid out. GS)
An easy to use online tool for group decision-making. It allows dispersed groups to reach decisions quickly and take constructive action. We promote Loomio as a platform for sense-making when undertaking an evaluation. We also see Loomio as a useful tool for coming to a well considered agreement about something in a group - a policy or action. (GS)
Online diagramming application.
We particularly use this for concept mapping and presenting theories of change and programme logic diagrams. (GS)
Pocket Guide for Organizational Assessment. This guide is intended to provide a framework for rapid organizational assessment (OA) during brief (one to two day) visits to an organization.
The framework covers the following dimensions: environment, motivation, capacity and performance. For more info check out Universalia's Reflect and Learn website. (GS)
Design Abacus. An evaluation tool enabling students too add their own evaluation criteria, to analyse and compare the sustainability of designs and products.
Generally suitable for comparing and contrasting anything, taking into consideration confidence, or strength of evidence, in support of your judgement. (GS)
Activity-based assessment is a method that integrates evaluation into educational curricula. It is a simple methodology that places at its center activities that are already designed for educational purposes and draws from them useful information for facilitation guidance and program improvement.
Specifically it has templates for checklists, counts, rubrics, scales, and continua useful to gathering data for assessment or evaluation. (GS)