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  • insight Aug 2023

    Using Discourse Analysis to Assess Narrative Change: Humanistic Methods

    Discourse analysis is a valuable tool for understanding sociocultural narratives and learning how they can strengthen social justice efforts to work toward lasting change. The humanities offer a useful suite of methods for evaluating and contributing to the work of narrative change.

    By Sowmya Ramanathan

    Using Discourse Analysis to Assess Narrative Change: Humanistic Methods
  • publication May 2023

    Toward Power-Shifting Solidarity with Black-Led Change

    This research considers the question: What will it take for institutional philanthropy in MN and beyond to move at the speed of courage and invest wholly in Black lives?

    By Repa Mekha, Lyle Matthew Kanpez, Lulete Mola, Lori Villarosa, Dr. Chera Reid, Dr. Albertina Lopez, Chanda Smith Baker, Ben Francisco Maulbeck

    Toward Power-Shifting Solidarity with Black-Led Change
  • A black and white photo of a tree with abstract imagery overlaid. Abstract imagery is a series of random circles connected by lines.

    publication Nov 2022

    How to do Process Tracing: A Method for Testing “How Change Happened” in Complex and Dynamic Settings

    Process tracing is a causal methodology that can help us to understand how change actually happened within a complex dynamic environment.

    By Sarah Stachowiak, Jewlya Lynn, Jennifer Byers

    How to do Process Tracing: A Method for Testing “How Change Happened” in Complex and Dynamic Settings
  • publication Jul 2022

    A Tool for Systems Change that Supports Learning in Foundations

    Foundations are systems. They have their own cultures and related assumptions, norms, standards, and practices. We encourage foundations to take stock of their learning needs with a dispassionate (evaluative) look at themselves as systems and how people work within them.

    By Tanya Beer, Julia Coffman, Jane Reisman

    A Tool for Systems Change that Supports Learning in Foundations
  • A black and white photo looking up from the bottom of a brick or wood cylinder into the open sky. Includes abstract lines in CEI's colors (indigo, pink, purple, light indigo).

    publication Jan 2022

    Lost Causal: Debunking Myths About Causal Analysis in Philanthropy

    Causal analysis is not just for controlled programmatic work, it is also for dynamic and emergent strategies that include network building, field building, advocacy, organizing, or movements.

    By Sarah Stachowiak, Julia Coffman, Jewlya Lynn

    Lost Causal: Debunking Myths About Causal Analysis in Philanthropy
  • publication Nov 2021

    We need to articulate our assumptions so that we can test them. Here’s a guide to help.

    This four-page guidance defines assumptions, explains why it is critical to articulate them, and then offers a set of prompting questions to help elicit them. Examples are included.

    By Tanya Beer, Julia Coffman

    We need to articulate our assumptions so that we can test them. Here’s a guide to help.
  • event Dec 2020

    American Evaluation Association (2020)

    CEI staff presented at the virtual American Evaluation Association conference in October 2020.

    American Evaluation Association (2020)
  • insight Jun 2020

    It’s Time to Let Go of Tired Narratives about Talent in Evaluation

    Social sector conversations about talent often focus on increasing diversity, building skillsets, and improving hiring and management. But to solve tough social problems, we need to let go of tired narratives about talent and work together to dismantle oppression in the evaluation field.

    By Clare Nolan

    It’s Time to Let Go of Tired Narratives about Talent in Evaluation
  • presentation May 2020

    Why is Evaluation So White?

    In this presentation, Vidhya Shanker, PhD, and Carolina De La Rosa Mateo, MPH, explore how the field of evaluation has approached race, the implications of that approach, and the promise of generative networks to amplify the work of evaluators who identify as Indigenous, Black, or People of Color (IBPOC), as illustrated by one such network recently formed in Minnesota.

    By Vidhya Shanker, Carolina De La Rosa Mateo

    Why is Evaluation So White?
  • presentation Feb 2020

    Performance Measurement for Emergent and Complex Strategies [Webinar]

    Learn about four types of strategies—niche, integrated, emergent, and ecosystem—and the types of performance measurement and accountability systems best suited to each.

    Performance Measurement for Emergent and Complex Strategies [Webinar]