As organisations compete with each other to convince decision-makers at all levels and in any geography to take decisive action leading to measurable change in position, policy or behaviour, very few seem to take the time to evaluate whether their activities have led to actual change. Whether for-profit or non-profit, advocacy organisatons need to take evaluation more seriously since it both ensures that outputs (activities) lead to outcomes (impact) and that funding for these advocacy efforts are sustained financially by donors or Boards.
There are a number of ways to go about the evaluation of advocacy efforts, including :
- Review of strategy documents, annual reports, project assessments ;
- Research on third-party (partners, media, grassroots, institutions…) ;
- Assessment of changes in policies, budget allocation, behaviours, legislation ;
- Analysis of documented interventions with precise asks leading to change ;
- Interviewing external stakeholders to ensure third-party validation.
Obviously, looking back means assumptions are made during the evaluation – unless a measurement system has been put together when establishing the advocacy strategy itself – but this is a lesser evil than not evaluating at all. For an independent assessment of your advocacy efforts, contact us !