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  • 1. Empowerment Evaluation
    Presented By:
    Christopher Clausell
    Diana Davis
    Lyndsey Gray
    Ulrike Schaupp
  • 2. Empowerment Evaluation
    Empowerment Evaluation is a participatory evaluation model that focuses on the use of evaluation concepts, techniques, and findings to foster improvement and self-determination.
    Defined, Empowerment Evaluation is:
    An evaluation approach that aims to increase the probability of achieving program success by (1) providing program stakeholders with tools for assessing the planning, implementation, and self-evaluation of their program, and (2) mainstreaming evaluation as part of the planning and management of the program/ organization.
  • 3. Empowerment EvaluationFurther Explained
    In an empowerment evaluation, professional evaluators balance a number of roles, including those of facilitator, coach, critical friend, teacher and evaluation expert. They actively support the purpose of the program and openly want it to succeed. Unlike the traditional objective program evaluator, the position taken by the empowerment evaluator is therefore not neutral or impartial.
    According to Fetterman, when evaluators have a vested interest in programs, it enhances their value as critics and evaluators. They will be more constructively critical and supportive of the program because they want the program to work.
  • 4. The 10 Principles of Empowerment Evaluation
    Modified from: Centers For Disease Control And Prevention [CDC]. (2010). Evaluation for Improvement: A Seven-Step Empowerment Evaluation Approach For Violence Prevention Organizations,
  • 5. The 10 Principles of Empowerment Evaluation
    Modified from: Centers For Disease Control And Prevention [CDC]. (2010). Evaluation for Improvement: A Seven-Step Empowerment Evaluation Approach For Violence Prevention Organizations,
  • 6. The 10 Principles of Empowerment Evaluation
    Modified from Centers For Disease Control And Prevention [CDC]. (2010). Evaluation for Improvement: A Seven-Step Empowerment Evaluation Approach For Violence Prevention Organizations
  • 7. Five Defining Characteristics of Empowerment Evaluation
  • 8. Defining Characteristics
    Training- evaluators teach the program staff how to conduct evaluations
    Facilitation- evaluators act as coaches during the evaluation process
    Advocacy- program staff use evaluations as tools for change
  • 9. Defining Characteristics
    4) Illumination- new insights developed by program staff by utilizing evaluations
    5) Liberation- programs and organizations free themselves from past constraints by utilizing evaluations
  • 10. Roles Within Empowered Evaluation
    Evaluator: Establish a collaborative partnership. Serve as consultant, teacher, coach, trainer, advocate, and/or facilitator
    Stakeholders: Partners, involved in the evaluation in meaningful ways
    Evaluation Process: Democratically managed. Stakeholders take over the evaluation in time.
  • 11. 3 Steps of Empowerment Evaluation
    Fetterman developed empowerment evaluation as a three step approach:
    (1) Developing a mission, vision or unifying purpose for the program,
    (2) Taking stock of the program, including its strengths and weaknesses, and
    (3) Planning for the future by developing goals, strategies to reach these goals, and identifying the evidence required to assess whether these goals have been reached.
  • 12. Empowerment Evaluation: Step 1
    Facilitate Development of the Mission Statement
    Group Values
    Democratic Process
    Develop Meaning
    Full involvement of all required
  • 13. Empowerment Evaluation: Step 2
    Taking Stock
    List Activities
    Prioritize List
    Rate Activities (scale of low to high)
    Democratic process
  • 14. Empowerment Evaluation: Step 3
    Planning for the Future
    Transition responsibility to stakeholders
  • 15. An Example of Empowerment Evaluation
    According to the CDC, every year close to five million women are victims of intimate partner-related assaults and rapes
    In 2005, 1500 people died as a result, 75% of them women
    Since 2003, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has supported local coordinated community response coalitions (CCRs) in 14 states to prevent intimate partner violence (IPV) through its Domestic Violence Prevention Enhancements and Leadership Through Alliances (DELTA) Program
  • 16. An Example of Empowerment Evaluation
    The CDC
    Used empowerment evaluation to build evaluation capacity at the state and local levels through a learn-by-doing process and integrated continuous quality improvement
    Utilized quantitative and qualitative evaluation data from DELTA-funded CCRs (N = 59),
    Reported on improvements in internal CCR capacity and external supports that can affect the ability of CCRs to prevent IPV.
  • 17. Some Practical Considerations:
    Those who have used empowered evaluation have identified the following:
    Empowered evaluation requires a lot of time from the evaluator and the evaluation stakeholders
    The stakeholders must be committed to take responsibility for the evaluation
    The evaluator needs to ensure that necessary internal and external supports exist before utilizing the empowered evaluation model
  • 18. Opposition to Empowerment Evaluation
    Scriven argues that empowerment evaluation is not evaluation because the evaluator is a coach instead of an objective judge
    Lackey, Moberg, and Balistrieri believe when control is given to program staff that evaluation standards are not clear or defined
  • 19. Opposition to Empowerment Evaluation
    Patton’s opposition to empowerment evaluation
    Conceptual and methodological clarity are lacking
    Key distinguishing factors such as; liberation and change are difficult to assess and measure
  • 20. Check This Out
    Empowerment Evaluation
    Empowerment evaluation is the use of evaluation concepts, techniques, and findings to foster improvement and self-determination. This blog (link above) provides links to its current use in practice. Its development has been pioneered by David Fetterman. Although it can be applied to individuals, organizations, communities, and societies or cultures, the focus is usually on programs. Empowerment evaluation is designed to help people help themselves and improve their programs using a form of self-evaluation and reflection.
  • 21. Discussion Prompt
    Discuss the opposition to empowerment evaluation. Decide if you believe these are legitimate concerns about empowerment evaluation. Explain any opposition opinions you may have about empowerment evaluation.
  • 22. Discussion Question
    Evaluators can stray from the principles when they assume too much control over the evaluation process and do not facilitate enough ownership among organizational staff. When this happens, many of the benefits of empowerment evaluation are lost. If the empowerment evaluation activities are not building the organization’s ability to integrate evaluation within the organization, then it is not really empowerment evaluation. It may be ‘easier’ to do a traditional let the evaluator do all the work, but a question might be, how does one prevent an organization from taking the easy route?
  • 23. Discussion Question
    Given that evaluators choose the model of evaluation they will use based on many factors including the customer, what type of community agency or program might be the best fit for empowerment evaluation?
  • 24. References
    Campbell, R. Dorey, H. Naegeli, M. Grubstein, L.K. Bennett, K.K. Bonter, F. ,et al. (2004). An empowerment evaluation model for sexual assault programs: Empirical evidence of effectiveness. American Journal of Community Psychology, 34, 251-262.
    Centers For Disease Control And Prevention [CDC]. (2011). Understanding intimate partner violence. Retrieved Feb. 2, 2011, from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA. Web site:
    Centers For Disease Control And Prevention [CDC]. (2010). Evaluation for improvement:A seven-step empowerment evaluation approach for violence prevention organizations, Retrieved Feb. 2, 2011, from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA. Web site:
    Cox, P. J., Finkelstein, D. M., Perez, V. E. & Rosenbach, M. L. (2010). Changes in capacity among local coordinated community response coalitions (CCRs) supported by the DELTA Program. Journal of Family Social Work, 13(4), 375-392. doi:10.1080/10522158.2010.492495
    Fetterman, D. (2011). Empowerment evaluation: Collaboration, action research and a case example. Retreived Feb. 2, 2011, from The Action Evaluation Research Institute. Web Site:
  • 25. References
     Fetterman, D. (2000). Foundations of Empowerment Evaluation. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications
     Fetterman, D., Kaftarian, S.J., and Wandersman, A. (Eds). (1996). Empowerment Evaluation: Knowledge and Tools for Self-Assessment and Accountability. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications
    Schnoes, C.J., Murphy-Berman, V., Chambers, J.M. (2000) Empowerment evaluation applied: Experiences, analysis, and recommendations from a case study. American Journal of Evaluation, 21(1), 53-64.
    Trice Gray, S. (1997). Evaluation with Power: Developing Organizational Effectiveness, Empowerment and Excellence. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
     Patton, M.Q. (1996). Utilization-Focused Evaluation: The New Century Text. (3rd Edition) Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
    Wandersman, A., Snell-Johns, J., Lentz, B. E., Fetterman, D. M., Keener, D. C., Livet, M., et al. (2005). The principles of empowerment evaluation. In D. M. Fetterman, & A. Wandersman (Eds.), Empowerment evaluation principles in practice (pp. 27–41). New York: Guilford Press.