NPC, the Centre for Youth Impact, the Charity Evaluation Working Group (ChEW), and the Social Investment Consultancy (TSIC) are pleased to announce that we have come together to advance thinking and practice on more equitable evaluative practice in the UK social sector, through a collective model—the working title of our collective is ‘the Equitable Evaluation Collective’.
Why is equitable evaluation important?
The past two years have shed more light on systemic inequalities in the UK, and within the charity sector. There is increasing recognition that the way data is collected and used operates with unacknowledged biases that can be misrepresentative, exclusionary, and further disadvantage marginalised groups. Not only does evaluation practice need to evolve, there is a fundamental recognition that the evaluation sector lacks diversity—which also needs to be addressed. Evaluation is supposed to support organisations to understand and maximise social impact, but unless equitable evaluation is firmly embedded, it cannot achieve its intent. More broadly, we feel that the social sector needs to make changes to better align practice with diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) values, including in the creation and use of evidence.
How have we come together?
A series of previous events have brought our organisations together. Back in November 2020, NPC and ChEW organised an event titled, ‘Rebalancing data for the 21st century’ (the event summary can be accessed here), and invited Jara Dean-Coffey, CEO of the Equitable Evaluation Initiative (EEI), and Bonnie Chiu, Managing Director of TSIC, as speakers. That event had 230 sign ups, from an audience including funders and charities, and over 500 views on YouTube, and it was clear that there was a lot of interest and momentum in the UK to advance equitable evaluation. There was also a great opportunity to learn from the experience of EEI and their initiative seeding a field of practitioners of the EEF in the US. Throughout 2021, our four organisations have continued to collaborate on various events, including for ChEW members and the UK Evaluation Society, and we have worked closely to establish a relationship with EEI and their team. These collaborations evolved into an intentional coalition, coming together to form the Equitable Evaluation Collective
What are we trying to do?
Through collaborating, we aim to have influence, generate energy and momentum, and build a community of practice with intent. We are still in the development phase and we are discussing with interested stakeholders how best to resource future collective work and move forward, but our broad aims are:
- 1. Increase knowledge of the impact of inequities and biases in evidence and evaluation strategies, and examine how to commission and conduct evaluation that tries to address these inequities and biases.
- 2. Enable and promote changes to evaluation practice among charities and funders, through revised requirements, methods, and decision-making approaches.
How can you get involved?
If you’d like to be involved with the collective or informed about our work as we develop, please fill out this Google Form here and we will contact you in due course. We look forward to hearing from you and engaging with the wider sector.
Names of the Equitable Evaluation Collective members:
Amina Ali (NPC)
Bethia McNeil (The Centre for Youth Impact)
Bonnie Chiu (the Social Investment Consultancy)
Catherine Mitchell (The Centre for Youth Impact)
Jami Dixon (Charity Evaluation Working Group)
Karen Scanlon (Charity Evaluation Working Group)
Kaz Stuart (The Centre for Youth Impact)
Rosie McLeod (NPC)
Soizic Hagege (The Centre for Youth Impact)
Yu-Shan Chiu (the Social Investment Consultancy)