Professionals in evaluation pay a lot of attention to how to evaluate. We are less thoughtful about exactly what to evaluate, why, and how we define ‘success’. Stakeholders’ interests and questions tend to determine what will be useful to focus on at a particular point in time. Or we use a predetermined set of criteria, usually the so-called DAC criteria - relevance, efficiency, effectiveness, impact and sustainability - to direct and focus evaluations. Yet this widely accepted practice can prompt us to neglect important issues that should be on our agenda if we are serious about the role of evaluation in supporting sustainable development, and understanding whether we are on track to achieve the SDGs. Failure to focus our evaluations appropriately can lull us into dangerous complacency about accomplishment and success.
DEADLINE EXTENDED TO 14TH FEB 2018
CECAN has published a new paper, 'Computational Modelling of Public Policy: Reflections on Practice.'
Authors: Nigel Gilbert , Petra Ahrweiler , Pete Barbrook-Johnson, Kavin Preethi Narasimhan and Helen Wilkinson
CECAN was represented at the recent Social Innovation Conference in Lisbon, by Professor Liz Varga of Cranfield University.
The University of Surrey has been awarded a three year RCUK Innovation Fellowship by ESRC. The Fellow to be appointed will develop, test, and apply an evaluation framework for the ex-post evaluation of Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) in food-energy-water-environment Nexus infrastructure domains. This will include specific projects with industry partners Anglian Water and the South Lincolnshire Water Partnership (SLWP). The Fellowship is associated with the Centre for the Evaluation of Complexity Across the Nexus (CECAN), www.cecan.ac.uk.
The Fellowship includes both a strong, independent research element and an extensive programme of training and skills development. The Fellow will be mentored by members of the University of Surrey, Anglian Water and the Department for The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).
This month CECAN proudly hosted an International Symposium on complexity approaches to evaluate global nexus policy challenges, at Barnett Hill Hotel in Surrey.
Delegates, including representatives from the European Commission and UK Government, came together to share expertise and join the debate.
We were thrilled to connect with leaders and influencers in the evaluation community, from ten different countries; Germany, USA, Switzerland, Australia, Senegal, Netherlands, South Africa, Belgium, Ireland and Italy.
Over the course of this two-day event topic areas included; The need for complexity sensitive evaluation, exploring complex thinking for sustainable futures, cutting edge evaluation methods and how to increase the uptake of them, and how to get government to deal with complexity.