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Standards, resources and tools to support evaluation

May 19, 2016 at 10:41 PM

Standards, resources and tools to support evaluation in Aotearoa New Zealand

*From the New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse*

The Social Policy Evaluation and Research Unit (Superu) has published a set of evaluation standards, and a series of resources and tools to support evaluation.

These are designed for: commissioners of evaluations, evaluators conducting evaluations, participants within evaluations and users of evaluation outcomes.

Many are useful resources for non-government organisations as well as government agencies and funders.

Evaluation standards

The Evaluation Standards for Aotearoa New Zealand (2015) were developed jointly by Superu and the Aotearoa New Zealand Evaluation Association (ANZEA). They are also available as a quick guide evaluation standards summary tool. The standards seek to ensure that evaluation in Aotearoa New Zealand is "high quality, credible, valid, cost effective, culturally sound and responsive, ethical and meets the learning, development and accountability needs of our organisations, communities, projects and initiatives."

Resources and tools supporting evaluation and the use of evidence

A series of resources and tools on using evidence were published in March 2016. These include:

Evidence checklist to assess funding applications - a checklist for decision-makers as they review funding applications. The document describes the scope of supporting evidence necessary to make an informed decision.
Evaluation guide for funders - a guide for funders who work with non-government organisation (NGO) providers of social programmes. The guide sets out what evaluation is, how it can be used, and how to evaluate using a collaborative approach.
Evaluation planning for funding applicants - a guide for organisations applying for funding for a social initiative, who have been asked to describe how they will evaluate it. This could be used as part of a government agency’s budget bid, or a non-government organisation’s application for government or philanthropic funding.
Finding and appraising evidence for what works - recognising the increased expectation that policy and practice in the social sector will be evidence-based, this documents assists policymakers, funders, and practitioners to locate and use appropriate evidence. Section 1 presents online resources that provide guidance on critically appraising research and evaluation evidence. Section 2 lists online resources that collate information on evidence-based policies, programmes and practices.


Background information

Superu says, "The Social Policy Evaluation and Research Unit’s (Superu’s) purpose is to increase the use of evidence by people across the social sector so that they can make better decisions – about funding, policies or services – to improve the lives of New Zealanders, New Zealand communities, families and whānau.

The Using Evidence for Impact project takes a big-picture approach and aims to inspire all those working in the New Zealand social sector to use evidence in decision-making. The objectives behind the programme are to drive:

  • greater accessibility to evidence
  • greater transparency of evidence
  • capability development and good practice in using evidence."
  • Further information on evaluation

The ANZEA Conference will be held in Wellington from 18-21 July 2016.

See the NZFCV story on a collection of resources on evaluation related to family and whānau violence, created in 2015.

See the NZFVC Library Quick Topic Search: Evaluation.