Evaluating Consortium Activities
Why Evaluate CRGC?
- Assess CRGC progress and improve planning and operations.
- Demonstrate to funders, stakeholders, and other researchers what works and what doesn’t.
- Advance the field of program evaluation.
How Do We Evaluate CRGC?We first developed an “action-logic model” to specify how we think CRGC enhances community resilience. Acknowledging the multiple routes (mechanisms) to building resilience, we developed a model that organizes our integrated research and outreach activities around four functions:
- Support stakeholders: Communities need access to existing information, tools, and infrastructure.
- Respond to needs: Communities have unmet needs that we can help them address, such as clarifying problems, goals, response options, resources.
- Generate useable information: Communities need new information, tools, and ideas.
- Be critical: Communities need us to take an evidence-based approach to being critical about what does and doesn’t work.
What Are CRGC’s Short-Term Impacts?
In the first two years of the program, we found that CRGC has impacted communities in multiple ways. As expected, initial CRGC activities functioned to support and respond to stakeholders, so short-term impacts increased awareness, knowledge, and skills. CRGC uses mixed methods (including qualitative and quantitative data from online surveys, website analysis, and tracking sheets) to assess impacts. Examples are shown in the table below.
- Collect and analyze multiple sources of data to evaluate medium-term impacts of CRGC activities.
- Share findings about which aspects of CRGC activities work, and which aspects don’t work, and why.
- Make recommendations to stakeholders, other researchers, and funders about mechanisms by which integrated research and outreach may enhance community resilience.