Key to building a community interested in evaluating complex interventions is to create dialogue spaces where ideas on evaluation and learning are exchanged and plans for action emerge.

Future Events

Future events will appear here.

Past Events

April 30, 2020 – Adaptation and Nimbleness in the Time of Crisis

The Evaluation Centre for Complex Health Interventions is pleased to hold a webinar on how community programs are adapting to the changes necessitated by the pandemic. The responses to the pandemic provide an opportunity for evaluators and program implementers to learn from each other how programs and policies can adapt and still serve the needs of disadvantaged clients and community members. It’s a time in which cracks in the network are most visible, and programs are being challenged to be imaginative and responsive despite tremendous constraints and challenges.  This webinar will provide an opportunity to hear from three program leads whom the Evaluation Centre is working with closely:

Diane Walter, Executive Director of Margaret’s Housing and Community Support Services

Joëlle Favreau, Community Development Coordinator and Nourish Project Manager, YWCA Peterborough Haliburton.

Sarah Robichaud, Founding Director of Dancing with Parkinson’s

May 28, 2020 – Towards Responsive Evaluations: Telling Stories that Promote Action

Good evaluations often tell a story of how programs, organizations, systems impact individuals. Such stories include descriptions of contexts, processes, and impacts. Given the disruptions and derailments caused by the pandemic, it is important for evaluations to tell stories about how individuals’ needs have changed and how systems need to respond to such changes.

In this webinar we seek to better understand from our partners who work in policy and practice environments and leading evaluators, the types of evaluation stories that will be meaningful in being responsive to those who are impacted by this pandemic. The focus of this webinar is on learning what constitutes features of both a rigorous and actionable evaluation story. Key questions that motivate this webinar include:

  1. What are examples of informational needs of policymakers and practitioners at this time that could be captured through evaluation stories?
  2. How do such stories capture the impacts of the pandemic on the most disadvantaged individuals?
  3. What are examples of ways in which evaluators can help construct such stories?

Kirk Nylen, Vice President, Integrated Discovery & Informatics, and Saskia Kwan, Program Lead, Knowledge Translation, the Ontario Brain Institute

Tim Warren, Digital Lead in the Integration Directorate (Integration of Health and Social Care), Scottish Government.

Ailsa Cook, Co-founder of Matter of Focus, a Scottish company that supports organizations to make good use of data and information to learn, improve and tell a meaningful story about the difference they make.

June 11, 2020 – Incorporating Context into Our Solutions: The Utility of Realist Evaluation and Realist Synthesis

The pandemic has re-surfaced a recognition that context matters in deep ways. There is clearer insight that one-size solutions do not fit all. The pandemic also has served to reinforce existing inequities. There is a need for evaluation approaches that are sensitive to context and that promote solutions that might be needed across the different contexts. One such evaluation and synthesis approach is realist evaluation and realist synthesis.

The pandemic has created a clear recognition that contexts matter in deep ways. Any solutions do need to incorporate context in precise and well thought out ways. There is also a need to think about solutions that pay attention to the intersectional contexts that exacerbate vulnerabilities and also be aware of the dynamics of such vulnerabilities. The utility of realist thinking both in understanding the contexts of the problem space and the solution space will be explored. 

Ray Pawson, one of the key developers of realist evaluation and the developer of realist synthesis

Diane Walter, Executive Director of Margaret’s Housing and Community Support Services

Abhijit Das, Managing Trustee of the Centre for Health and Social Justice and Global Co-Convenor of the Community of Practitioners in Accountability and Social Action in Health based in Delhi, India

Sanjeev Sridharan, Country Lead, Systems Evaluation and Learning Systems, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. 






February 15, 2017

Evaluation Round Table

Identifying Evaluation Questions that Most Policy Interventions Need to Answer

The Evaluation Round Table Workshop was focused on identifying classes of evaluation questions that policy and practice interventions need to answer.  Several strategies were highlighted such as:  the Toronto Strong Neighbourhoods Strategy 2020, the Toronto Newcomer Strategy, the Toronto Seniors Strategy, the Toronto Youth Equity Strategy, and ProsperityTO: the Toronto Poverty Reduction Strategy.  Heath Priston spoke on the challenges that are encountered in evaluating these strategies.  He highlighted the types of questions and information needs that the City of Toronto encounters during its evaluation efforts.

The workshop also included open dialogue around matching evaluation approaches, methods and design in response to such evaluation questions.