Happy Birthday! May Covid 19 not take away the joy of our birth and growth as a community!

Around this date, just one year ago, EvalParticipativa opened its doors for the first time. And ever since, there has been much interest and many participatory evaluation experiences carried out in the region. EvalParticipativa invited us to connect, contribute our knowledge and keep learning together.

If you have time to look through and re-read, you will see that the first blog post on the page invited us to do just that, get involved. And the response, your response, was outstanding!

Whilst it is true that the initiative began with 4 or 5 organisations that were already committed to contributing, the number of people who participate in the forum, follow our publications or interact through social networks has continued to increase.

Today the page is followed by 176 people from 18 countries and it has been visited by 20 million visitors during its first year. Furthermore, the virtual forum has 92 subscribers. And it even became clear that it was not enough to only publish in our mother tongue! EvalParticipativa had to learn English so it could also share knowledge further afield from Latin America.

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By reason or by force. Documentary on Santa Teresa Settlement Participatory Evaluation (Chile)

One of EvalParticipativa’s main aims is to share evaluation experiences that have not been shared before and learn from them. Another aim is to make public stories of lived experiences, struggle and social organisation which often go unnoticed by society even though they exist right under its nose. It is our great pleasure to share this documentary “By reason or by force”, an initiative which fulfils both these objectives.

It relates to an experience promoted by TECHO, an organisation which works in 19 Latin America countries which seeks to overcome the poverty experienced by millions of people living in informal settlements through the collaboration of inhabitants with young volunteers.

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ANSWERS TO THE QUESTIONS RAISED IN THE WEBINAR “EXPERIENCES OF PARTICIPATORY EVALUATION IN LATIN AMERICA”

Dear colleagues and friends, We hope you are well! We want to share with you the answers to questions that were not answered in our webinar held during the Evaluation Week.

We hope these responses will be useful as we continue to share and learn about this exciting topic and add new participants to this community of practice and learning.

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WE ARE WORKING ON THE ENGLISH VERSION OF THIS WEBSITE

Dear EvalParticipativa friends and colleagues, we are very pleased to announce that EvalParticipativa is growing.  Due to several requests from people and organisations interested in the topic who do not speak Spanish, we are working on creating and updating the English version of this website.

It is possible that there will be moments, such as early this morning, when you will see test publications. Do not worry, they are only small hiccups. The Spanish version will remain the same, and soon you will be able to access its twin version in English.

All growth implies a few setbacks. We will keep in touch as we continue with our efforts to build this community of practice and learning in evaluation and participation.

See you soon! ! !

EvalParticipativa Coordination Team

WEBINAR: “EXPERIENCES OF PARTICIPATORY EVALUATION IN LATIN AMERICA”

On Tuesday 2 June, we held the EvalParticipativa seminar as part of the 2020 gLocal Evaluation Week. The slogan for the week was “Sharing local and global M&E knowledge”.

The main purpose of the seminar was to publicise and expand the community of practice and learning on participatory evaluation by sharing experiences and reflections on the potential and challenges inherent in this evaluation approach across the region.

Juan Carlos Sanz, from DEval, moderated the seminar with the support of Daniela Miranda from the Poverty Alleviation Foundation/Servicio País and Esteban Tapella from the EvalParticipativa coordinator team. Alejandra Gomez and María Carolina Sandoval from Focelac facilitated the recording and live transmission of the meeting.

The seminar had the pleasure of hosting the following four speakers:

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EVALPARTICIPATIVA WILL BE GIVEN SPACE IN THE 2020 INTERNATIONAL GLOCAL EVALUATION WEEK. JOIN US!

On Tuesday 2 June from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. (CST) we will have the opportunity to present our community of learning to the world and converse with other colleagues on this evaluation method that excites us so much.

If you are interested in participating, sign up to the event through this link

On the actual day, you can access the webinar through this link

If you have any doubts, ask us by clicking on ‘RESPOND’ (below) or by sending an email to  eval.participativa@gmail.com

Don’t forget to check your time zone! You can check here. See you there!

PARTICIPATORY EVALUATION OR EVALUATION WITH PARTICIPATION? CONVERGENCE AND DISVERGENCE

Greeting colleagues,

We greet you on behalf of the Evaluation with Participation, team, a joint initiative between Ministry of Planning evaluation units in Costa Rica (MIDEPLAN) and the state of Jalisco in Mexico. As with EvalParticipativa, we have technical and financial support from the FOCELAC project. Yet we feel linked to this project for more than just these reasons: a central hypothesis of our work is that an openness to bringing different interest groups to participate in projects and programs puts to use evaluation methods that better respond to some of the core 2030 Agenda principles.

We are convinced that mutual learning lies not only in what we have in common, but also, perhaps even more so, where we differ. For this reason, we hope you will take advantage of the fantastic opportunity that this forum offers to identify similarities and differences between both initiatives. Thus, in this post we will briefly describe our work and invite you to join us in reflecting on some questions that can guide us. We are already very grateful for your participation.

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2020 GLOCAL EVALUATION WEEK IS COMING

Dear Colleagues, we hope that despite the COVID 19 pandemic and the difficulties brought about by the lockdown and social isolation, you are in good health and motivated to continue learning and sharing information on this evaluation topic that excites us so much.

We are pleased to announce that the events calendar for Evaluation Week #EVAL2020 is now available. As already announced in several forums and networks, this year it will be totally online.

You can see the interactive map on this site , where you can see the online activities that will take place between 1 and 5 June. As you can see, they are ordered by country, but it is possible to participate in any of the events from any of the countries. You will note that there are a number of activities closely related to the broad theme of evaluation and social participation.

Best Wishes!

WE ARE NOT STARFISH, WE ARE CRAYFISH…

who turn up all wet, to walk against the current, stumbling along the way

Hear, hear colleagues!

Here we share the video/memoire of the Gathering of Participatory Evaluation Experiences in Quito, which we have talked extensively about in this community of practice and learning.

The video recalls our work in Ecuador over five days, covering five modules, in order to remind ourselves of the activities and results achieved. It is hopefully useful for communicating what we were doing there, remember each other’s faces and re-live those intense moments of sharing and learning.

Many thanks to Ana Clara Bustelo, from the PETAS team, who managed to summarise five days of intense work in just five minutes. We would love you to share it with your networks and contacts to encourage others involved in participatory evaluation and motivate them to join our community. In the near future, we will share a document summarising the gathering’s contents and conclusions, as well as the work plans for 2020.

Greetings from the EvalParticipativa team! Let’s stay in touch!

EVALUATOR, WHO ARE YOU?

Hello colleagues,

After a short break following the intense end of year activity at EvalParticipativa, I’m back to encourage us to keep discussing the same evaluation approach that excites so many of us. Today, I want to reflect not so much on evaluation itself, but rather on those who conduct it. In other words, the evaluators, those who have made evaluation their profession.

Those who attended the gathering in Ecuador will recall that this issue was not really highlighted in any of the cases presented. Rather, it was a new topic which emerged as a key to successfully conducting participatory evaluation: the facilitator. As we began to talk about the professional profile, the importance of training and experience in evaluation came to the fore in order to integrate the necessary rigour in participatory evaluations. But above all, we emphasised attitude and the ability to manage informed and equal participation during the constant decision-making that takes place in evaluation.

So, how is the participatory approach seen in the wider evaluation community? If the focus on participatory evaluation is on other groups, is this approach considered to be professional intrusion? Or rather an opportunity to extend the culture of evaluation and expand the professional evaluator’s tool box?

Greetings to you allwe are keen to hear your opinions!

Juan Carlos Sanz Vaca | Evaluator, Focelac Team DEval (Germany)