Individually we know some things, collectively we know a lot. allows for learning to be shared beyond organizations and networks of organizations to convey many processes, stories, and impacts. As a result, stories and impacts are amplified to backbone support organizations, those in related fields, funders, and those considering entering the field. Collective evaluation means the journey is part of the learning. In this spirit, collective evaluation draws on multiple forms of knowledge, and allows for different approaches, outcomes, forms of measurements. Collective wisdom and evaluation efforts will benefit and strengthen environmental education for all. Funders can host convenings and run requests for proposals to help grantees aspire to and co-create collective evaluation networks and processes.Together, organizations and networks commit to critical reflection while demonstrating the positive impacts of our collective EE efforts.
Equity In Motion
In EE evaluation, is an aspirational value for both evaluation processes and program results. Groups and individuals differ in their to create and enjoy healthy communities, and evaluators must acknowledge this disparity. Different life experiences lead to different ways that people make sense of the world. Evaluations have to influence which viewpoints are reflected in decision-making processes and through resource allocation. Persons operating in an evaluation role need to design studies and protocols that recognize , and the reality of white and . On the back end, reports should resist simplistic stereotypical representations of people. , such as funders and supervisors, who commission and oversee evaluations have an obligation to establish and support policies and practices that contribute to equitable processes and outcomes by design (e.g., require grantees to employ people who share lived experiences in communities of interest, allow time for relationship building, support research designs that are relevant and responsive to stakeholders, invest in longer-term capacity-building for organizations and communities).
Authentic is essential to EE evaluation. It requires humility and sensitivity, recognizing the inherent strengths and wisdom present in all evaluative contexts. NAAEE Community Engagement Guidelines remind us that authentic engagement is oriented toward collaboration, inclusivity, capacity-building, and civic action that contributes to healthier communities and equitable outcomes for all. Authentic engagement includes persons impacted by the program directly and indirectly (e.g., program providers, program participants, non-participants, supervisors, funders), paying special attention to issues of power and privilege. Ideally, stakeholders are involved in evaluations as team members, designers, decision-makers and implementers of the evaluation (rather than as data sources only). This means setting aside , time, and -centered support systems to build trusting, respectful, and genuine relationships to ensure multiple voices are incorporated in meaningful ways. Given their day-to-day demands, practitioners may wrestle with the pressure to slow down the process for systemic change to happen. Funders can support this process by providing capital, creating connections, or supporting the equitable involvement of stakeholders.