Evidence Approaches

Gathering and using evidence is core to understanding progress and impact - and helps us make better decisions about what to do next.

The process of gathering and using evidence should feel like a natural part of the work. Yet it often doesn’t. Instead, evidence can feel wrapped up in jargon and separate from the everyday decisions you encounter. What if instead, making sense of evidence was simply built into how work happens? What if the time you spent talking about evidence actually generated new insights that helped you make better decisions? I can support you to evolve your evidence practices into something that fits your strategy, team, and culture. 

Maybe you don’t yet have processes in place for gathering evidence, and getting started feels daunting. Or maybe you’re already experienced in gathering evidence, but you’re ready to evolve your practices to gain deeper insights. Together we can tackle whatever your organization needs right now – whether that’s developing an evidence approach for one body of work, of designing an entire organizational approach to learning and evaluation.

How might I support you? This could look like:

Supporting evidence practices

  • Designing an evaluation framework to clarify your key questions  and identify what evidence to gather
  • Helping you move from program-by-program evaluations to a portfolio or strategy-level evaluation approach
  • Advising on the plan and design of specific evaluation activities
  • Acting as a thought partner to define and measure your impact (including complex outcomes like systems change, shifting power, etc.)
  • Aligning your evidence approach with the type of strategy you have (i.e., planful to adaptive to emergent, and anything in between!)
  • Supporting you to embed principles of equity into approaches to evidence and evaluation (informed by the Equitable Evaluation Framework (TM))
  • Creating a guiding framework that explains your approach to thinking about and using evidence 

Evolving the evaluation function

  • Serving as a thought partner for executive leadership or evaluation staff to design or evolve the organization’s approach to evidence and evaluation (e.g., structure, staffing, framework, practices, philosophy)
  • Acting as a thought partner or coach for leaders who are new to leading the function
  • Helping you assess current practices around evidence, and supporting you to craft a path from where you are to where you want to go
  • Designing conversations about evaluation and evidence with your board

Evidence for action

  • Facilitating the development of a journey story for your strategy or an organizational initiative
  • Design and conduct research around philanthropic practices or issues to inform your next decision
  • Helping you craft ways to test hypotheses about what practices are effective (for either your external or internal practices)

Ready to chat? Contact me today.