October marked the official launch of the BetterEvaluation website, an impressive resource center for evaluation. The site serves as a useful guide for organizations and individuals who plan, conduct or commission evaluation activities, as well as those who use the data generated by the evaluation process. While the site presents general information on evaluation approaches and themes, it also outlines a comprehensive framework, detailing the steps to evaluation, and groups hundreds of tools and resources into one virtual location. Access to the site is free, so users everywhere can easily research and compare the resources and options (tools, methods and strategies) to find the ones that best suit their evaluation needs.
The BetterEvaluation site is structured around its own Rainbow Framework, which categorizes all the steps and tasks involved in evaluation into seven major “clusters.” This is intended to facilitate searches for specific resources and to provide a clear visual of the many tasks involved in conducting an evaluation. Among the resources available are a number of guides (ranked by user rating) on observation methods and data quality assessment, capacity development and impact evaluation, to name only a few.
In addition, BetterEvaluation presents a dynamic, collaborative approach to improving evaluation practices. The site’s founders encourage users – from the public sector, civil society, academia and organizations – to contribute original content or useful resources. Over the summer, for instance, Universalia shared its Institutional and Organizational Assessment Model on one of the site’s theme pages. Members also have access to a forum where they can ask questions and discuss their own evaluation experiences. In this way, BetterEvaluation is creating an international community of evaluation academics and practitioners at the very forefront of best practices.
To read recent blog posts and partake in discussions on gender-based approaches, conferences, new tools, resources, software and other topics related to evaluation, please visit the BetterEvaluation site.