Involving users in evaluation

Over the last few years ESS has been supporting third sector organisations to involve people they work with in evaluation.

In 2015 we developed a workbook ‘Why bother involving people in evaluation? Beyond feedback’ which came out of our work ‘Support in the right direction‘.

Involving young people in evaluation (2018 – 2019)

ESS is working with the National Lottery Community Fund to provide learning and self-evaluation support to their grantholders in Scotland.  We ran the learning programme in two phases. Read more about Phase one and Phase two in the sections below.

We know that while it isn’t always smooth sailing, project leads have told us involving young people they support has helped their organisation as well as benefiting young people. Young people are fantastic evaluation problem solvers! 

Check out these videos below where young people talk about their experience of taking the lead on evaluation!

Phase one

In the first phase, young people told us that getting involved in designing evaluation questions and methods was:

“It was an honour to be asked and included in something that is ultimately going to help future service users”

“I felt like this was good and it’s changed my view of what you guys do for us”

“Designing our own evaluations makes us feel good”

“I had fun!”

The project leads felt that by getting young people on board with shaping evaluation methods had helped them gather more authentic and richer feedback as well as increasing participation in evaluation.

Case studies from phase one

Phase two

In the second phase of the learning programme we are working with the following projects:

  • In June 2019 we came together and ran a learning session, where we supported project leads to develop an action plan, using Why bother involving people in evaluation – beyond feedback as a guide.
  • From June to November 2019 – project leads carry out their actions
  • In December 2019 – we came back together for a sharing the learning session.

Case studies from phase two

Further resources on the NPC website

You may also be interested in reading this NPC blog and resource about user involvement:

Full list of related resources