Evaluation & Assessment

This cross-cutting theme focuses on improving the effectiveness, sustainability, and scale of programs by sharing data on what works and what doesn’t, and methodologies for monitoring, evaluation, and impact assessment.   Improved practices in this area promise to provide stakeholders with enhanced understanding of which interventions have meaningful impact, what the likely return on investment will be, and how to design and implement improved monitoring and evaluation initiatives.

Where are we now?

As the YEO field matures, pilot programs and anecdotal data have given way to increasingly sophisticated approaches to program measurement and learning. These advances are critical to scale, replication, policy and government partnership initiatives. However, more work remains. Confusion about the purpose and practice of monitoring, evaluation and assessment, and the way it can contribute to learning with an organization or program still exists.  A common language for this area along with standardized measures of cost and benefit are also necessary to ensure discussions are productive and evaluations reflect a common framework of practice.

Trends and emerging practices

  • Donors are advocating for more rigorous evaluation to ensure greater accountability and learning.
  • Although randomized controlled trials (RCTs) are the gold standard, they can be expensive and time consuming, leading some donors to find quasi-experimental and impact evaluations very appealing, while others invest more significantly in M&E activities.
  • For corporations and foundations, evaluations are important to measure the social value proposition and social impact of their investments to consumers, customers, and employees.
  • More implementers are recognizing the importance of investing in good M&E, so they can demonstrate to donors their organization's social value proposition, particularly to impact investors.
  • More organizations are successfully using mixed methods approaches (both quantitative and qualitative data) to M&E.
  • Survey and focus group tools should be tested and finalized with young people for tools to achieve greater reliability and validity.
  • Data from young people should be triangulated with data from significant adults in their lives (such as parents, guardians, and teachers) to contextualize its meaning and importance.
  • More organizations are recognizing that existing M&E staff may not have the skills set required to engage young people, so training on how to conduct youth-inclusive M&E is important. 
  • Young people are not homogeneous, so questions need to be framed differently for young men and young women, youth from urban and rural communities, and/or youth from different socio-economic groups.

 

Five Steps to More Meaningful Youth Engagement

My name is Matthew French and I work for JBS International, Inc. This blog draws upon research conducted under contract with USAID’s office of Education (read the full youth engagement report here), as well as my own experiences working with young people.

July E-Bulletin: Smart Investments to Expand Youth Economic Opportunity

Making Cents International offers this newsletter for the donors, policy makers, corporations, researchers, implementers and youth leaders increasing the scale, sustainability and effectiveness of youth economic inclusion programming. 

Measuring Adolescent Girls' Education: Benchmarking Creative Approaches to Monitoring and Evaluation

Event host(s)/organization(s): 
Millennium Challenge Corporation
Event Date: 
Jul 30, 2015 (09:00am to 05:00pm)

This benchmarking session will bring together partners from the Collaborative for Harnessing Ambition and Resources for Girls' Education (CHARGE) Initiative, resource experts and stakeholders to discuss creative indicators, tools and strategies on projects that aim to support girls' learning, empowerment and social transformation within their communities.

The one-day event will include sessions on general monitoring and evaluation topics as well as sharing tools and resources relevant to the five CHARGE priorities: access, safety, quality learning, transitions, leadership. 

Global Youth Economic Opportunities Summit

Event host(s)/organization(s): 
Making Cents International
Event Date: 
Oct 6, 2015 (All day) to Oct 8, 2015 (All day)

Now in its 9th year, the Global Youth Economic Opportunities Summit is designed to increase the impact, scale, and sustainability of youth economic opportunity programming. 

On October 6-8, 2015, the Summit will convene 460+ leading stakeholders from 70 countries to exchange knowledge that results in changed practices and improved performance. 

Summit participants represent multiple perspectives across sectors that include economic growth, education, food security and health.

Monitoring & Evaluation for Knowledge Management Panel Discussion

Event host(s)/organization(s): 
USAID Learning Lab
Event Date: 
Jun 24, 2015 (10:00am)

Please join the KM Reference Group and special guests Making Cents International and the Knowledge-Driven Agricultural Development (KDAD) project in a discussion of their approaches to measuring and learning for knowledge management.

USAID Awards YouthPower, an Agency-Wide Mechanism to Achieve Positive Youth Outcomes

Over the past few months, USAID Bureaus for Global Health (GH); Economic Growth, Education, and Environment (E3); and Democracy, Conflict, and Humanitarian Assistance (DCHA) announced the awards of the long-awaited YouthPower: Implementation and YouthPower: Evidence and Evaluation contracts.

Advancing an Evidence-Based Agenda for the World’s Young Women & Girls (and Boys!)

Originally published NRG Advisory on April 11, 2015  

Last month at the United Nations, as Women’s History Month was drawing to a close, Intergovernmental negotiations continued toward a post-2015 framework to follow the expiring Millennium Development Goals with a focus on goals, targets and indicators. Promoting gender equality remained one of the top priorities.

New Vision for Education: Unlocking the Potential of Technology

To thrive in a rapidly evolving, technology-mediated world, students must not only possess strong skills in areas such as language arts, mathematics and science, but they must also be adept at skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving, persistence, collaboration and curiosity. All too often, however, students in many countries are not attaining these skills. In this context, the World Economic Forum has taken on a multi-year initiative, New Vision for Education, to examine the pressing issue of skills gaps and explore ways to address these gaps through technology.

Resource Type: 
Report

Webinar Recording: Leveraging Labor Market Assessment Tools to Address the Youth Unemployment Challenge

USAID’s Workforce Connections (WC) is a program that promotes evidence-based learning and peer-to-peer knowledge exchange with the goal of improving the capacity of USAID and its industry partners to deliver quality workforce development programming. One of WC’s activities has been the creation of labor market assessment (LMA) tools.

Resource Type: 
Presentation

Zimbabwe Labor Market Assessment

In October 2014, the FHI 360 Workforce Connections project condu

Resource Type: 
Report

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Evaluation & Assessment