Media Making a Difference: Measuring the Impact of Film Campaigns

Session Number: 1329
Track: Advocacy and Policy Change
Session Type: Panel
Session Chair: David Devlin-Foltz [The Aspen Institute]
Presenter 1: Ellie Adelman [Independent Television Service, Inc.]
Presenter 2: Susanna Dilliplane and Robert Medina [The Aspen Institute]
Presenter 3: Dina de Veer Giannetta [Active Voice]
Time: Oct 17, 2014 (01:45 PM - 03:15 PM)
Room: 712

Level: None
Abstract 1 Title: Building Social Change Campaigns with Documentary Films: The Case of "Women and Girls Lead Global"
Presentation Abstract 1: "Women and Girls Lead Global" is a public-private partnership between USAID, the Ford Foundation, and ITVS, working in collaboration with international NGO CARE. The three-year, nine-country, 30-film media project promotes gender equality and women's empowerment worldwide, creating a ten-episode documentary film series each year about women and girls rising above dire circumstances to seek better lives for themselves, their families, and communities. Through partnerships with local NGOs, the films are used to engage audiences in conversations about the challenges they face, and to brainstorm their own solutions. ITVS' Ellie Adelman will present on the ongoing implementation of the campaign's model, programmatic lessons they have learned over nearly two years of activities, and the value of evaluation data for ongoing campaign development.
Abstract 2 Title: Evaluating "Women and Girls Lead Global" in Kenya and Peru: A Quasi-Experimental and Developmental Approach
Presentation Abstract 2: The Aspen Planning and Evaluation Program (APEP) at the Aspen Institute is leading the evaluation of the "Women and Girls Lead Global" film campaign, focusing especially on the activities in Kenya and Peru. In partnership with evaluation sub-contractors in these two countries, APEP has designed a quasi-experimental evaluation to assess the contributions of each national effort to changes in the perception of women's leadership (Kenya) and changes in the level of access to reproductive health resources for adolescents (Peru). APEP has also adopted a developmental approach by establishing protocols and practices that ensure actionable feedback reaches campaign staff for the purpose of ongoing program development. In this presentation, APEP's Robert Medina will discuss what we are learning from this evaluation around measuring impact, evaluating developmentally, and implementing a quasi-experimental design.
Abstract 3 Title: Measuring the Contribution of "A Place at the Table" in Communities across the US: A Quasi-Experimental Evaluation of a Film-Based Food Insecurity Campaign
Presentation Abstract 3: With support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Nathan Cummings Foundation and an advisory team of four leading evaluators, Active Voice designed a mixed methods evaluation to measure the contribution of the "Take Your Place" campaign---featuring Participant Media's "A Place at the Table"---in 22 cities and towns across the US. Active Voice partnered with key organizations in each community to host a community screening event and, in most communities, a strategy meeting as well. The evaluation measured whether the film, along with the campaign activities, contributed to: (a) awareness, dialogue and participation around hunger and obesity among community members who attended the community screening; and (b) coordination and collaboration around food insecurity among local organizations who attended the strategy meeting. Active Voice's Research and Evaluation Manager Dina de Veer will discuss the evaluation design, methodology, key findings, and lessons learned.

Session Abstract: 

In recent years, documentary filmmakers and funders interested in broad social change have moved past the old model of simply releasing a film and broadcasting it for maximum reach. Combining traditional film screenings with other in-person activities, film campaigns exhibit greater potential to influence the knowledge, attitudes and (in the longer-term) behaviors of key target audiences, among other outcomes. This panel presents separate efforts to evaluate the progress and impact of two such campaigns: "Take Your Place" (Active Voice) and "Women and Girls Lead Global" (ITVS). Both campaigns employ a model of film-based community engagement to raise awareness of critical social issues, stimulate local dialogue among various constituencies, and ultimately motivate future action to address these concerns. Active Voice's Dina de Veer, ITVS' Ellie Adelman and the Aspen Institute's Susanna Dilliplane and Robert Medina will discuss evaluation results along with ongoing challenges and opportunities in assessing the impact of films.