Evaluating impact and defining success

A collection of resources on impact evaluation, with a particular emphasis evaluating complex social change and transformative development processes. Includes alternative and emerging approaches, and current debates around the politics of defining value.

Theory of Action/Theory of Change – From theory to practice….

Much of our work as evaluators and capacity builders integrates an approach called Theory of Action (ToA). ToA is similar to Theory of Change (ToC), and in practice there is often little difference between the two in implementation. Generally, ToA provides some boundaries to the process and focuses on an organization, initiative or program’s particular role […]

Theory of Change – Resources

A Review of the Use of ‘Theory of Change’ in International Development (UK Dept. of Int’l Development) Actknowledge  (an organizations in the US making important contributions to the mainstreaming of ToC) and their online tool –  TOCO New Philanthropy Capital guide to ToC An excellent collection of resources on ToC  by the Hivos Knowledge Programme Just Associates […]

Linking Theory with Action – An example

Background: We recently conducted a Theory of Action process with a capacity building organization, the Progressive Technology Project (PTP), which works with political organizing and social movement groups in the U.S. The group wanted to develop their Theory of Action, but also have a very focused discussion linking the process to decision-making over the next couple years. […]

Theory of Action/Theory of Change – Basic steps…

 When to use This process is best used at the beginning of a program or initiative or as an initial step in setting up an evaluation. It is a powerful tool to surface assumptions and support critical thinking and reflection  while also strengthening planning processes and sharpening strategies. It also provides a framework for monitoring […]

Theory of Action/Theory of Change- A few tips and lessons learned…

For a ToA to be more than just a map, the facilitator needs to be sure that the organization has the understanding and capacity to take on facilitation itself (for example by providing suggestions, a simple toolkit). The goal is for the   process of critical thinking to  happen independently of a facilitator, and for […]

Accountability and Learning

Exploding the myth of incompatibility between accountability and learning in evaluation.

Great new resource on metrics for social movements!

Transactions, Transformations, Translations: Metrics that Matter for Building, Scaling and Funding Social Movements

Considering Evaluation: Thoughts for Social Change and Movement Building Groups

By AEC consultants!  An introductory  guide for groups doing (or interested in doing) evaluation of social change, movement building, community-based work. Click here