AEA Newsletter: May 2019

Message from the President 

Reflecting on Recent Conferences, Upcoming Town Halls and Our Work in Diversity & Inclusion

From Tessie Tzavaras Catsambas, AEA President
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Greetings, AEA Community!

I just returned from the Eastern Evaluation and Research Society (EERS) conference where I gave a keynote presentation on the way the AEA competencies position us to be effective in the future. I learned a lot from evaluation champions who are building evaluation capacity in their organizations, including the systematic efforts of the evaluation unit in the Corporation for National and Community Service, and the ongoing use of new methods by evaluators in the U.S. Agency for International Development to strengthen their monitoring and evaluation efforts — key endeavors in our practice.

In late March, the Center for Culturally Responsive Evaluation and Assessment (CREA) leaders, Drs. Stafford Hood and Rodney Hopson, graciously hosted Executive Director Anisha Lewis and me at their fifth international conference. We took part in rich and provocative conversations on the topic of intersectionality and the importance of refining our lens for a culturally responsive practice. While at CREA, Anisha and I also had the opportunity to connect with the Chicagoland Evaluation Association and discussed issues important to its members and ways forward for meaningful and mutual collaboration.

I was struck by how both conferences — due to their smaller size — offered opportunities for deeper exploration of issues. These complement and most certainly enrich the conversations we have at our larger AEA conference.

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 AEA President Tessie Tzavaras Catsambas and Executive Director Anisha Lewis with the Chicagoland Evaluation Association for an evening of informal conversation over Chicago pizza. 

The Virtual Town Halls

Did you miss our Town Hall in April? You can watch it here. Both Anisha and I provided insights on the inner-workings and benefits of the AEA governance system and practices. A key message we wanted to share with you is the importance of the collaboration that exists between the board and the executive director in governing. We appreciated the questions and encouraging comments by our participants as this helps us improve our system.

Our next Town Hall will take place on June 21, 2019 from 2-3 p.m. Eastern Time (ET), featuring Nick Hart, chair of AEA’s Evaluation Policy Task Force (EPTF) and CEO of Data Coalition, as well as EPTF members Demetra Nightingale of the Urban Institute, and Tom Chapel, Chief Evaluation Officer of the CDC. During this session, participants will learn about the new direction in evaluation policy in the government, as well as the critical and meaningful work of the task force that informs and positions us to respond to key changes in evaluation policy within different systems. Please register for this Town Hall here.

Our Continued Work in Diversity & Inclusion

Diversity and inclusion is a very important lens that we use in governing the AEA and it is integrated in every conversation we have on the board. In 2018, the board received a report from the AEA Task Force on Member Engagement, Diversity and Leadership Development. We are pleased to report that our current progress is in line with their four recommendations outlined in the report. We have ongoing discussions on how to integrate a culturally responsive lens in our board deliberations and in AEA practices, and have established a working group to continue to deepen the AEA’s commitment and adoption of culturally responsive and inclusive practices. The AEA Board is very grateful to task force leaders Melvin Hall and Robin Miller as well as all of its task force members for their work. You can find the board’s appreciation, response and update on the report recommendations here.

These ongoing discussions to continue to build an inclusive community have also included the negative experiences of some our members at the Evaluation 2018 conference during a plenary session. Unfortunately, despite immediate efforts by AEA Past President Leslie Goodyear to address the negative experience our members faced, her communication was not distributed due to a technological problem, and this became further delayed for other reasons. Please receive our sincere apologies for those hurt by their experience in that session, and our commitment for ensuring future safeguards in a letter that Anisha and I share here.

For me, I find that this level of mindfulness and awareness of culture, as well as power and implicit bias, can be challenging. I feel very blessed to be working with Anisha and colleagues on the board who are open, respectful, insistent, forgiving and committed to our joint endeavor for member engagement in a way that is inclusive and culturally responsive. I am also grateful to all of our members who continually approach members of the board directly or through the AEA Ideas and Issues Portal with feedback, ideas and encouragement during these years of our service to the AEA.

We have much to look forward to in the coming months, between virtual Town Halls and in-person events like the Summer Evaluation Institute. I want to thank you all for your continued support and contributions to AEA, which help us move the association forward in a positive direction.

 

An Update from the AEA Board of Directors 

From Leslie Goodyear, AEA Past President, on behalf of the AEA Board of Directors

LGoodyear-extra space for formatting.pngHello AEA, and happy Spring! As we mentioned in January, we will regularly share updates from the AEA Board to give members a window into what we’re considering, actions we’re taking, and how we’re making the most of our time together to move the organization forward.  

Our May 2019 board meeting was jam-packed with discussions and decisions. Highlights include: 

Votes

  • We are excited to announce that we voted to approve a new Topical Interest Group (TIG), the University Based Centers TIG, and a new Local Affiliate, the Northern California Evaluation Network. As we considered these applications, we realized it would be a good time to hit pause and think about how we might update the criteria for accepting new TIGs and Local Affiliates. As a result, we agreed to put a hold on new applications for TIGs and Local Affiliates until the end of 2020. This will give us a chance to engage members in a deliberative process for developing nimble yet inclusive criteria for acceptance, as well as ensuring that the role these important member groups play is integrated into the association’s strategic planning.
  • We thanked the Nominations and Elections Working Groups, as well as staff member Zachary Grays, for their hard work putting together a terrific slate of candidates for the president, treasurer and at-large board positions. We voted to approve the slate and look forward to your participation in the upcoming candidate forum, as well as our get-out-the-vote activities. Stay tuned!
  • It’s that time of year when we review and deliberate on the AEA budget. After a presentation from Susan Tucker, AEA treasurer, and Anisha Lewis, AEA Executive Director, which laid out budget assumptions and detailed the input from the financial advisors to the board, we voted to approve the FY 2020 budget for the association. FY 2020 starts July 1, 2019. Anisha helped the board understand how she, on our behalf, put together a budget aligned with our values and strategic areas, how fees are in service of our membership, and how she reviews terms with our contractors regularly for renewal and renegotiation. 

Deliberations

  • Importantly, we deliberated on the findings from the Membership Engagement, Diversity and Leadership Development Task Force. When the report was first delivered to the board, we asked Anisha to review it for ways in which she and staff could take action on the recommendations. In parallel, we ensured that its content and recommendations were part of our board discussions, regardless of the agenda. This time, however, we used part of our meeting to revisit the report’s findings and discuss ways we can more directly and publicly demonstrate our commitment to the values and actions the task force recommended. We also recommitted to live our values in our daily work for the association. One way we’re doing this is to constitute a working group that is focused on bringing the recommendations of the task force to life. Anisha and staff are in the process of starting up that working group and will share updates soon.
  • The board began a conversation about the future of the association and considered a proposal to engage an expert facilitator to help us “future.” Questions that emerged include: Who should we serve? Who should we influence? What will the field of evaluation look like in 10 or 20 years? We look forward to engaging with you about these questions and more as we hone our “futuring” agenda. Look for opportunities both in virtual Town Hall meetings and at the upcoming Eval 2019 conference in Minneapolis. 

Kudos

  • Congratulations to our staff, Zachary Grays and Natalie DeHart, who received promotions. They work tirelessly on our behalf, and it’s great to see their hard work recognized. We look forward to continuing to work with them. 

Updates

  • Nick Hart, chair of the Evaluation Policy Task Force (EPTF), joined the meeting to share an update on the exciting ways that group is influencing evaluation policy at the federal level. He shared a draft of the revised Road Map for Effective Government, which will be available to all members and the public soon.
  • As always, we heard updates from Anisha regarding new initiatives and plans for the Summer Institute, the conference and new approaches to revenue generation and member engagement. 

All in all, it was a dynamic meeting with plenty of great information and ideas. 

As we do our business, we maintain a strong commitment to you, our members. Members are “IN” the board meeting — we talk a lot about what members think and want, we care about members’ needs and we want to be good stewards of your trust. 

So, what do you think? What kind of information would you like to hear from the board? We’ll be using the newsletter to communicate ideas, questions, and information on a regular basis. 

You can always share your insights, ideas and point to important issues for AEA and the field by visiting the Issues and Ideas portal on the AEA website. Login and find this in the “Members” dropdown menu. 

Lastly, in case you were wondering, the AEA Past President is, by policy, the Board Secretary. In this role, I’ll be keeping track of Board activities and sharing updates with members. 

On behalf of the AEA Board, yours in service,
Leslie Goodyear, AEA Past President

 

Walking the Talk with Bailey Maryfield

Building an Evidence Base for Victim Services

From Bailey Maryfield, research analyst for the Justice Research and Statistics Association and the Center for Victim Research

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Crime victim services are now beginning to engage in evaluation and data analysis, following a substantial increase in funding and the recognized need for an evidence-base in the field. Service providers want to demonstrate that their work matters and improve their impact and reach. Evaluating victim services and demonstrating their impact is supported by federal funders and increasingly demanded by private funders. Because this is a new area for victim services, the Center for Victim Research (CVR) was created with funding from the Office for Victims of Crime to help guide service providers, connect them with evaluators and other researchers, provide sample memorandums of understanding (MOUs), and guide them in developing productive researcher-practitioner partnerships. 

CVR is designed to serve as a one-stop shop for victim service providers and researchers to connect and share knowledge to increase access to and the utility of victim research and data to crime victim services nationwide. CVR utilizes the following strategies to improve the response to victims:

  • Promoting the collection and use of victim data.
  • Increasing access to research evidence on victim policies, programs and practices.
  • Supporting the translation and dissemination of victim research as usable information.
  • Improving opportunities for researchers and practitioners to work together. 

As a research analyst with CVR, I have the opportunity to work on a variety of initiatives supporting the above strategies. Our work takes many forms — including podcasts and quick reference guides — and is always striving to meet the needs of the field. AEA’s Guiding Principles are woven into much of CVR’s work. For example, CVR promotes contextually relevant evaluation and interpretation of findings through close partnerships with practitioners and aims to facilitate adherence to the highest technical standards through the sharing of resources such as example data collection instruments. 

Recognize the Value of Bringing Researchers/Evaluators and Practitioners Together 

The various interests of all stakeholders must be carefully balanced in this work. The vast amount of knowledge and perspectives that each party has to share are invaluable to ensuring projects produce valuable results that speak to all. Furthermore, the cross-learning that occurs when researchers/evaluators and practitioners work closely together allows all parties to expand their knowledge and skills. 

Victim researcher-practitioner partnerships are emphasized throughout CVR’s work. One of the ways that CVR is helping to promote these collaborations and research in the field of victim services in general is by building a directory of victim researchers and evaluators. Individuals with expertise or interest in research and evaluation in the field of victimization and/or victim services are invited to join the directory to help facilitate their connection to practitioners. We feel that facilitating these connections is a first step toward the ultimate improvement of services for victims of crime.  

Utilize the Existing Knowledge and Lessons Learned from the Field 

While research and evaluation are relatively new to the victim services field, many tools, trainings, and other resources have been produced to facilitate this work. CVR works to promote these existing resources, facilitate translation to practitioners and fill any gaps that may exist. 

CVR is promoting the sharing of this knowledge in many ways, including through the development of an instruments database. We aim to provide example survey instruments and interview/focus group protocols along with victim service program logic models. Making victim-focused instruments openly accessible and intuitively catalogued can greatly assist victim service providers and researchers alike in conducting various forms of research and evaluation. 

 

Strengthening the Foundation of Evaluation Practice

The Vital Work of the Research on Evaluation TIG 

From Kathleen Doll, Xiaoxia Newton, Dana Wanzer and Michael Harnar 

Who We Are

The Research on Evaluation (RoE) Topical Interest Group (TIG) seeks to advance the practice and standing of research on evaluation among members of the American Evaluation Association (AEA). Launched in 2011, RoE has approximately 415 members. 

Our TIG works to provide a venue for discussing, learning about, and promoting the use of research on evaluation amongst evaluation practitioners and academics, with the goal of supporting evaluators to explore and adopt high quality evaluation practice. Key areas of interest include: (1) defining research on evaluation, (2) research on evaluation practice, (3) research on evaluation methodology, and (4) research on evaluation theory.

What is RoE?

If you are like many AEA members, you might be asking, “What the heck is research on evaluation?!” RoE is can be thought of as any intentional, systematic, and empirical investigation that tests existing knowledge, contributes to existing knowledge, or generates new knowledge. Specifically, RoE examines things like evaluation processes, products, evaluation theories, methods, or practices (Coryn et al., 2015).

What’s So Important About Doing Research About Evaluation?
RoE is intended to generate a stronger evidence base and infrastructure from which we can improve our evaluation practice. As Mark and Henry (2003) note, RoE enables us to explore what theories and practices are most effective so we can use this information to guide our work, self-reflect, and improve our profession.

Student Awards
Each year, the RoE TIG awards one Student Research on Evaluation Award to an outstanding student presentation at the AEA annual conference. If you are currently a student and have submitted an RoE study for the conference, Evaluation 2019, we encourage you to apply for this award. Notifications regarding this award will be sent in the coming months.

Hungry for More Information?
To learn more, visit our website: http://comm.eval.org/researchonevaluation/home. Or, reach out to us: Xiaoxia Newton (xnewton@uncc.edu), Kathleen Doll (kathleen.doll@cgu.edu), Dana Wanzer (Dana@danawanzer.com), or Michael Harnar (michael.harnar@wmich.edu).

We look forward to connecting with you virtually or at Evaluation 2019! 

Call for Articles from Topical Interest Groups (TIGs)

Submit an Article or Update for an Upcoming AEA Newsletter 

Do you lead or participate in one of AEA's Topical Interest Groups (TIGs)? We want to hear from you and spotlight your work. Send an email to the AEA editor, Kristin Fields (kfields@eval.org) to share news, updates and articles for consideration in an upcoming AEA newsletter.

Potent Presentations Initiative

Practice Your Presentation, but Don’t Train for the Auction

From Sheila B. Robinson, Potent Presentations Initiative Coordinator 

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Auctioneers speak at a rate of about 250-450 words per minute. Presenters shouldn’t. Speak too fast and your audience will become confused. Speak too slowly, and they will get impatient. Either way, you’ll lose them. 

How Fast Should You Speak During a Presentation? 

The answer is a comfortably energetic pace — but not rushed. Speak in a way that feels natural and conversational, although it might be a bit faster than casual conversation. Conversations tend to be around 100-150 words per minute. Professional voice artists and audiobook readers speak about 150-160 words per minute, and some famous TED talkers have been clocked up to 200 words per minute. President John F. Kennedy once spoke 327 words in one minute during a 1961 speech! So, how do you find your sweet spot for presentations? 

As AEA’s Awards Working Group Chair, I had only one minute at the Evaluation 2018 Awards Luncheon to introduce each awardee. This was no small matter. We had an ambitious agenda for the event and it had to end on time for attendees to get to their afternoon conference sessions. My parts (as well as everyone else’s) needed to be exact for the event to go off as planned. 

I drafted each speech and practiced until I could do it in exactly 1:05 or less, knowing that I tend to speak just a touch faster in person than in practice. After practicing once or twice, I knew my comfortable speech rate was around 140 words per minute. But different names and different words are spoken at different rates, so a strict word count wouldn’t necessarily work for each intro. Also, each would include pauses of varying lengths (see last month’s article on the art of the pause), and variations in speech rate as the content varies. Sometimes I slowed down to let a point sink in one word at a time. Other times, phrases or sentences lent themselves to being spoken more quickly. I had to practice each one aloud with a stopwatch and massage each script until it worked in exactly that amount of time. 

The result was that the 13 introductions varied from 126 to 162 words. I admit that the one with 162 words felt a bit rushed for me, so I know my comfortable speech rate range is somewhat less than that. 

Figure Out Your Speech Rate 

Just grab any text — a newspaper article, journal article, blog, etc. — and time yourself reading it aloud (as if you are presenting to an audience) for one minute. Try practicing a one-minute read with multiple texts to get a general sense of your range with different material. If you copy a chunk of an online article into Word or a Google Doc, you can use the word count tool so see how many words you read in a minute. Then, when you know how much time you have for the actual presentation you’re preparing for, you do the math and aim for about that many words. Don’t forget to practice and time yourself with your actual presentation. Your reading rate and speaking rate (especially if you are not reading a script) will likely be a bit different. 

Have an Ignite presentation to prepare? Consider your comfortable speech range, find the mean, divide by four, and aim for about that many words per slide for a first draft. You still must practice to get it just right. And while we’re on the subject, don’t forget to check out P2i’s Ignite Presentation Planning tool

Vary Everything 

Just as you should vary your speaking volume and intonation, you should also vary your pace. If you decide 160 words per minute is about right for you, don’t try to keep that exact pace for the entire presentation. Identify the places where you may want to speed up and slow down to highlight content and keep the audience’s attention. 

Learn about famous TED talkers’ speech rates and various influences on your speaking rate.

p2i Needs Your Help!

  • Have you successfully used p2i tools or p2i principles in your presentations?
  • Do you have “before” and “after” slide examples you would be willing to share?
  • Do you have ideas for, or are you interested in writing a blog article on Potent Presentations?
  • Do you have an interest in sharing your tips for Potent Presentations through a brief video or webinar?

Please contact me at p2i@eval.org and let’s talk! I’m happy to help, offer guidance, or collaborate on any of these.  

 

AEA Call for Awards Nominations

Deadline: Friday, June 28

Nominations are now being accepted for the eight American Evaluation Association Awards. Please take this opportunity to acknowledge outstanding colleagues and outstanding work. Through identifying those who exemplify the very best in the field, we honor the practitioner and advance the discipline. 

Aside from the Robert Ingle Service Award, all awards are open to non-AEA members as a way to recognize contributions to the field. It is imperative that the submitted nomination package demonstrates how the nominee meets the criteria for the awards for which they are being nominated. Self-nominations are accepted but should also be supported by a recommendation from an AEA member.

AEA awards recipients will be recognized at Evaluation 2019, to be held November 11-16, 2019, in Minneapolis, MN. The Awards Presentation will take place during the Awards Luncheon at the annual meeting. Each winner will receive a complimentary year of membership to the American Evaluation Association.

All nominations must be completed and received in the AEA office at awards@eval.org by the deadline, Friday, June 28, 2019 in order to be considered.

Learn about the AEA Awards Criteria and Submission Instructions.


More About the AEA Awards

AEA Marcia Guttentag Promising New Evaluator Award: Presented to a promising new evaluator during the first five years after completion of his or her Masters or Doctoral degree and whose work is consistent with the AEA Guiding Principles for Evaluators. Full Description and Nomination Requirements

AEA Robert Ingle Service Award: Presented to a member of AEA who has been particularly instrumental in promoting the interests and operations of the American Evaluation Association. Full Description and Nomination Requirements

AEA Advocacy and Use Evaluation Award: Presented to an individual or group whose work has been particularly instrumental in furthering the interests of evaluation through advocacy, sponsorship, management, or promoting the use of evaluation in governmental (including local, state and federal government), nonprofit, and/or private organizations and whose work is consistent with the AEA Guiding Principles for Evaluators. Full Description and Nomination Requirements

AEA Alva and Gunnar Myrdal Evaluation Practice Award: Presented to an evaluator who exemplifies outstanding evaluation practice and who has made substantial cumulative contributions to the field of evaluation through the practice of evaluation and whose work is consistent with the AEA Guiding Principles for Evaluators. Full Description and Nomination Requirements

AEA Paul F. Lazarsfeld Evaluation Theory Award: Presented to an individual whose written work on evaluation theory has led to fruitful debates on the assumptions, goals, and practices of evaluation. Full Description and Nomination Requirements 

AEA Outstanding Evaluation Award: Presented for an evaluation (completed in the past five years) that remains consistent with the relevant evaluation standards. Full Description and Nomination Requirements

AEA Enhancing the Public Good Award: Presented to an individual whose evaluation work has substantially contributed to the public good. The evaluation work could be focused on theory, practice, or use in any area of evaluation (e.g., Human Services, Health, International Development, Education). Full Description and Nomination Requirements

AEA Research on Evaluation Award: Presented to an individual who has made a significant contribution to the study of evaluation. Work will have increased the empirical knowledge of the factors and conditions that influence (a) evaluation practice or (b) the understanding of evaluation theory and practice. This empirical knowledge may include, but not be limited to, exemplars for how research can make evaluation more useful, exemplars for how research can improve evaluation practice, the links between evaluation theory and practice, development of new approaches to evaluation, and the understanding of evaluation as a method to gather credible evidence. Full Description and Nomination Requirements

Nominees Sought for AEA Representative to IOCE for 2020-2022

Applications Due Friday, June 7, 2019

The International Organization for Cooperation in Evaluation (IOCE) is an alliance of regional, national, and international evaluation organizations (associations, societies, and networks) from around the world that collaborate to:  

  • Build evaluation leadership and capacity, especially in developing countries;
  • Foster the cross-fertilization of evaluation theory and practice around the world;
  • Address international challenges in evaluation; and
  • Assist the evaluation profession to take a more global approach to contributing to the identification and solution of world problems. 

AEA's representative to the IOCE works with IOCE colleagues while representing a stance in alignment with AEA's mission, vision, and values. He or she acts independently, yet brings questions or concerns back to the AEA Board. The IOCE representative submits a written report to the Board on her or his activities and relevant international evaluation issues each fall. AEA’s representative to the IOCE is also a member of the Management Group of the EvalPartners coalition. The representative will serve a three-year term beginning January 1, 2020, and ending December 31, 2022. In the past, the rising representative has shadowed the incumbent for up to six months prior to taking their position.

The person serving in this position is likely a senior member of the evaluation profession, dedicated to the field, and has the breadth and depth of knowledge and practice required to speak authoritatively about evaluation issues in the international context. Individuals seeking to serve need to have a demonstrated range of relevant experience in evaluation and a commitment to representing the diversity of people and the international perspectives represented in the field and in AEA's membership. 

The IOCE Board conducts most of its business through email and monthly conference calls that alternate between IOCE business and EvalPartners business. They also meet face-to-face once a year, usually in conjunction with the conference of one of its member organizations. A virtual Annual General Meeting takes place in mid-December. The AEA representative would have her or his expenses paid to attend the annual IOCE meeting and would be expected to attend this meeting and participate regularly in IOCE meetings and conversations. 

The AEA representative to the IOCE reports to the AEA President, and must, at all times, represent the AEA and actively promote positions that further the AEA mission and ends policies, and upholding the AEA goals. The representative should regularly inform the AEA President and Executive Director on updates on the IOCE Board and issues that emerge, seeking their guidance and offering advice on how best to approach important issues and decisions. The representative is de facto a member of the International Working Group (IWG), will attend IWG meetings and will support the Executive Director to coordinate the AEA’s overall international engagement in the EvalPartners coalition, IOCE task forces, and any other initiatives that emerge. 

To learn more about the work of the IOCE, please review the IOCE website. Our current representative, Cindy Clapp-Wincek, is completing her term in December and is available for inquiries if you have specific questions regarding the position at clappwincek@gmail.com

If you are interested in being considered as AEA's representative to the IOCE, please compile the following into a single file and submit it by Friday, June 7, 2019. 

  • A one-page statement of interest telling us why you would like to serve
  • A one-page bio reflecting your evaluation background, experiences in international contexts, and commitment to the mission, vision, and values of the association
  • A one-page letter of support for your nomination from another AEA member
  • A current curriculum vita or résumé 

Please send your submission as a single file via email to the AEA office at alewis@eval.org. The selection of the next IOCE representative will be made by the AEA President and President-elect, in consultation with the AEA Board. 

If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact AEA Executive Director Anisha Lewis at alewis@eval.org.

 

AEA Elections: Get Out the Vote!

Voting Opens Wednesday, June 26

AEA Elections.pngLater this summer, AEA will hold an election to fill the incoming President-elect, Treasurer and Board member at-large positions. This is an opportunity to cast your vote and inform the future of AEA. 

Save the date: You may vote at any time between midnight Eastern Time, Wednesday, June 26 and 11:59 PM Eastern Time on Thursday, August 1. You are allowed to vote one time. Candidates will be announced in late May/early June.

For more information, check out our elections FAQs and reach out to Zachary Grays at zgrays@eval.org. Viewing requires member login. 

   

Upcoming AEA Town Halls

Save the Date for These Virtual Town Halls in June 

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The AEA Board of Directors would like the opportunity to engage more with AEA members and discuss a variety of strategic and visionary topics with the membership. The virtual Town Hall approach allows a regular opportunity to pose strategic questions and topics to the membership for input.

Please save the date and register for the following Town Hall sessions taking place in June.

 

AEA Town Hall: Special Election Edition
June 5, 2019 | 2 p.m. Eastern Time (ET)
AEA President-Elect, Aimee White, will host this special election 2019 series town hall for a “Get Out the Vote” push for AEA elections. Join us to learn how to catalyze our own networks and engage more of the membership in voting for this year’s slated Board Members at Large, Treasurer, and President-Elect. Register today.

*Note: this is NOT the meet-the-candidates town hall, which is scheduled for later in June.*


AEA Town Hall: Evaluation Policy in 2019 and Beyond
June 21, 2019 | 2 p.m. Eastern Time (ET)
The landscape for evaluation policy in government is rapidly evolving. In early 2019, a new law called the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act set up new processes and directives for government agencies, aiming to build evaluation capacity in government. In parallel, numerous other activities are underway to build more robust evaluation capacity in government. Join this webinar to learn about the new direction in government for evaluation policy and the activities of the AEA Evaluation Policy Task Force. Register today.

 

AEA Professional Development Corner 

On-Demand Resources Available

From the AEA Education Team 

The Digital Knowledge Hub is an online platform featuring professional development opportunities for evaluators, by evaluators. Check out prerecorded eStudies now available for purchase, including ones like eStudy 097: More Than Two Options: How to Collect LGBTQ Inclusive Data. 

Take a Coffee Break with AEA

Coffee Breaks are 20 minute presentations that provide insights into niche topics impacting evaluation practice and introduce new tools to evaluators. Coffee Breaks are offered exclusively to AEA members. If you are not a member, learn more here.

Take advantage of AEA's educational resources with the following June Coffee Break: 

Demystifying R: A Guided Tour
Presenter: David Keyes
Date: Tuesday, June 11, 2019, 2-2:20 pm (EST)

R is incredibly powerful software, but getting started with it can be confusing. In this presentation, David will discuss reasons why R is worth the effort it takes to learn. These include fast, efficient, and reproducible data analysis, high-quality data visualization, and doing everything from data importing to final reporting in a single tool. The presentation will include an overview of what R is, how it works, and what it can do for you. Register now

You can also access past Coffee Breaks though the Coffee Break Archive.

 

Events of Interest

Events for AEA Members, Suggested by AEA Members

In this section, we spotlight events that may be of interest to the AEA community, as suggested by fellow members. Please note these events are not sponsored by AEA. If you would like to suggest an upcoming event, email Kristin Fields, AEA newsletter editor, at kfields@eval.org.

The Atlanta-area Evaluation Association (AaEA) Presents: A Fireside Chat with AEA President Tessie Catsambas 
Monday, June 10 | 6-8 p.m. | Hudson Grille, 120 Marietta St NW, Atlanta, GA 30303

Join AaEA for a fireside chat with AEA President Tessie Tzavaras Catsambas. Tessie is associate director of business development and outreach for The Evaluators’ Institute and founder and CEO/CFO of EnCompass LLC, an organization that provides services in evaluation, learning, leadership and organizational development. She is an evaluation and organizational change expert with more than 30 years of experiences in planning, evaluation, quality improvement, and organizational development, and innovation. Ms. Catsambas has created and implemented an appreciative model for evaluating organization and program performance, and is co-author of the first text on this topic (Reframing Evaluation Through Appreciative Inquiry, Sage Publications, June 2006).

Learn more, register and submit questions for Tessie here

Third Biannual Western Balkans Evaluation Conference, Belgrade, Serbia – Call for papers
Submissions Due Monday, July 15

Western Balkans Evaluation Network is organizing the Third Biannual Western Balkans Evaluation Conference, which will be held on October 25 and 26, 2019 in Belgrade, Republic of Serbia.

The title of the conference is, "Evaluation – The Need or the Necessity?" The aim of the conference is to enhance the evaluation capacity building in the Western Balkans and to ignite the discussions about theoretical and practical aspects of evaluation at the regional level and internationally.

The submitters are encouraged to present:

  • Methodology, findings and recommendations of the evaluation reports in Western Balkans,
  • Contemporary methodologies for evaluating or assessing impacts,
  • Theoretical and practical aspects of evaluation culture and evaluation capacity building,
  • Intertwining of science, evaluation and public management in programming, monitoring and learning.

The organization invites submitters to send the papers of max. one A4 page (Word), either in one of the regional languages (Slovenian, Croatian, Bosnian, Serbian, Montenegrin or Northern Macedonian)  ​​or English to:

The deadline for submission is Monday, July 15th 2019, 23:59 CET.  

The participation fee for the selected submitters is 50 EUR.

 

Thank You to Our Longstanding Members

 AEA would like to recognize and thank some of its most longstanding members. Click here to view individuals who are celebrating 5+, 10+, 20+ and 30+ years with the association this month!

 

Welcome to Our New Members

 AEA would like to welcome those who have recently joined the association. Click here to view a list of AEA's newest members.

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