An Exploration of Foundation and Nonprofit Partnerships in Empowerment Evaluation

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Title: An Exploration of Foundation and Nonprofit Partnerships in Empowerment Evaluation
Author: Sharkey, Sarah-Kate G., 1979-
Abstract: Evaluation can enable nonprofits to more effectively compete for performance-based funds and improve programs. Limited resources for internal evaluation and shortcomings of external evaluation, however, challenge the sector’s capability for accountability and self-reflection. Several foundations have responded by incorporating empowerment evaluation into their grantmaking. The evaluation approach builds on a history of participatory and collaborative methods, and aims to increase evaluation capacity by coaching agencies to take ownership of the process. This study explores the practice and outcomes of these empowerment evaluation partnerships through telephone interviews with foundation personnel , nonprofit staff, and evaluation coaches from across the country. Results demonstrate that nonprofits have acquired only partial ownership of the process, leading to mixed outcomes that are limited by resources and vary depending upon the culture and capacity of the agency. Foundations interested in empowerment evaluation are advised to first assess the grantee’s readiness and the foundation’s goals.
Description: Examining committee chair: Renee Irvin, Ph.D.A print copy of this title is available through the UO Libraries under the call number: KNIGHT HD62.6 S53 2005
Date: 2005-06

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