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Articles, blog posts and links to shift thinking and practice


Advocacy Strategy Framework

One-page tool for thinking about the theories of change that underlie public policy advocacy strategies.

Mapping Change: Using a Theory of Change to Guide Planning and Evaluation

Guide that explains why grantmakers use theories of change to guide their questions, unearth underlying assumptions, establish common language and develop strong action plans.

Learning and Evaluative Thinking

A User's Guide to Advocacy and Evaluation Planning

Guide developed for advocates, evaluators, funders or other stakeholders. The process described will help develop the core elements of an advocacy evaluation plan, including which outcomes will be measured and how.

Evaluation Capacity and Evaluative Thinking in Organizations

Monograph intended to inform, to spark discussion and to promote change in the fields of building evaluation capacity, organizational evaluative thinking and collaborative partnership.

Strategies That Address Culturally Responsive Evaluation

Excerpt from an introductory, practitioner-focused guide to evaluation. Provides a rationale for culturally responsive evaluation and process recommendations.

Transactions, Transformations, Translations

Report describing an approach for understanding the impact of social movements. Includes a frame for capturing the importance of narrative and politics, as well as numbers and policies. Specific metrics are included.

Learning as We Go: Making Evaluation Work for Everyone

Paper distilling what TCC Group has learned about evaluative learning. It provides information about the difference between accountability- and learning-focused evaluation and tools for implementation.

I2L2: A Formula for Change

Presents the elements of influence, leverage and learning as contributors to impact. Isolating these elements shifts attention to them, recognizing them as the factors that can enable, accelerate or amplify impact. This paper is intended to spur and expand thinking about the crucial elements in the change formula so that they are fully recognized.

Paradigm Shifting

Writing for a Liberation Psychology

This volume introduces readers to the questions and concerns re: the psychological dimensions of political repression, the impact of violence and trauma on child development and mental health, the use of psychology for political ends, religion as a tool of ideology and defining the “real” and the “normal” under conditions of state-sponsored violence and oppression, among others.

Transformative Mixed Methods, Addressing Inequities

The transformative paradigm provides a philosophical framework that focuses on ethics in terms of cultural responsiveness, recognizing those dimensions of diversity that are associated with power differences, building trusting relationships and developing mixed methods that are conducive to social change.



Tools culled from a variety of sources ready to use


Evaluation Glossary

Definitions for the most common evaluation concepts and terms.

Evaluative Thinking Indicators

Indicators of evaluative thinking across a variety of organizational domains and functions.

Evaluative Thinking Tool

Tool designed to help organizations assess evaluative thinking and practices. It is a useful blueprint for the issues to which a successful organization should attend. 

The Readiness for Organizational Learning and Evaluation Tool

Organizational self-assessment for learning and evaluation.

Luminare Group resources offering new ways to work


Raising the Bar – Integrating Cultural Competence and Equity: Equitable Evaluation

The Foundation Review: Vol. 6: Iss. 2, Article 8. 2014

This article seeks to open a discussion of how philanthropy can use an equitable-evaluation approach to apply the principles of the AEA statement, present the concept of equitable evaluation alongside an approach for building equitable-evaluation capacity and apply equitable evaluation capacity building to philanthropy.

Implementation Guide for Community Change

The Foundation Review. Vol. 5, Issue 2. 2013

A chronology of the evolution of the approach, lessons and tools that the First 5 Children and Families Commission of Marin has developed to implement and assess its work over time. Hopefully, other funders will find both the processes and tools useful as they develop and implement their own change strategies and assess their progress.

Data Visualization Pt 2. Graphic Recording

New Directions for Evaluation, Vol. 2013. Issue 4.: Chapter 7. 27–38

This chapter provides information on what the graphic recording process can look like and how it can fit into evaluation practice, particularly the role that graphic recording can play in increasing cultural responsiveness and stakeholder understanding.

Review of Implementation Guide for Community Change: Tools From First 5 Marin

The Foundation Review, Vol. 5, Issue 2, 2013

This easily accessible guide is an example of the role that evaluation can and should play throughout a community change initiative’s lifetime.

Dimensions of Change — A Model for Community Change Efforts

The Foundation Review. Vol. 4, Issue 3. 2012

The Dimension of Change Model (DOCM) is offered as a potentially useful tool for foundations, governments, bodies, consultants, coalitions and even individual organizations that are initiating or engaged in substantive efforts to bring about community change. It has relevance for design, implementation, adaptation and evaluation change initiatives.

Dialogue and Reflection in a Collaborative Evaluation: Stakeholder and Evaluator Voices

New Directions for Evaluation, 2000: 27–38

Dialogue and reflection among key stakeholders provide efficiencies in evaluation, contribute to its use and inspire a conviction to take action.


Evaluation as a Tool Towards Equity

Association for Black Foundation Executives, September 2015

Offers a frame for evaluation, aligned with the efforts of many foundations engaged in efforts to promote equity and equitable evaluation. It offers a brief overview of the evolution of evaluation and its relationship to philanthropy in order to contextualize the capacities and competencies needed to adopt an equitable evaluation approach.

Equitable Evaluation - Integrating Cultural Competence and Equity

Leadership Learning Community, December 2014

This webinar offers a way to integrate cultural competence and equity in evaluation practice and a capacity building approach, focused on philanthropy, to build the capacities and competencies to do so.