Evaluation 2009 President's Welcome Deb

Evaluation 2009 President's Welcome Deb

237 Pages · 2009 · 1.42 MB · English

I encourage you to explore the sessions in the Strand and the broader program and engage in discussion in how we might as Response to Intervention (RtI) Training Among Coaches and Unique Challenges With International Monitoring and Evaluation Activities: Examples From the CDC.

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Evaluation 2009 President’s Welcome Welcome to Orlando and to Evaluation 2009! The annual conference is the one time each year where AEA colleagues gather en masse to learn, network, share, and grow professionally This year, there will be over 2000 of us weathering the storm of HiN1 and the financial downturn, and enjoying the lovely weather of our host city As you know, the conference theme this year, is fittingly, “Context and Evaluation” Context is a force in evaluation, both in shaping our practice and in affecting the programs and policies we evaluate Explicit understanding and study of both of these areas can propel our field forward Over the year, Ross Conner and Jody Fitzpatrick, this year’s program cochairs, have worked with me in developing a Presidential Strand that offers a diversity of sessions on the topic of context For the plenary sessions, we will have a kickoff with a panel chaired by Jody and featuring Len Bickman, Katrina Bledsoe, and Ross Conner discussing how context has impacted their practice, illustrated by three very different evaluation cases On Thursday, Jim Wright will share his insights on the role that context and the social, political, and research agendas of the evaluator can and should play in evaluation, based on his long history in evaluating homeless programs In my Presidential Address on Friday, I will outline a set of strategies for contextsensitive evaluation and how we might begin to study the effects of this practice on the nature and use of evidence produced I will also discuss ways in which we can include greater exploration in our evaluations of the “black hole of context” that surround the programs and policies we evaluate In Saturday’s plenary, Oumoul Ba Tall and Peter DahlerLarsen will provide African and European perspectives on important context issues, drawing on their own evaluation experiences and on those of their fellow evaluation colleagues from West, East, South and North Africa and from Eastern to Western Europe In addition to these plenaries, the Presidential Strand is rounded out by a variety of keynotes, panels, and think tanks on the various dimensions of context (social, environmental, political, cultural) and how they influence evaluation practice and utilization We have invited speakers from inside and outside the evaluation community, from near and far, domestic and global I encourage you to explore the sessions in the Strand and the broader program and engage in discussion in how we might as evaluators attend more to context both in how we work and what we study, with the goal of producing more actionable and generalizable findings I am honored to preside over this conference, but thanks and kudos go to the many people who helped to get us here First, a big ‘thank you’ to Ross Conner and Jody Fitzpatrick who helped me to turn the idea of “Context and Evaluation” into a strand of sessions that promises to advance our thinking in this fundamental area ‘Thank you’, in turn, to all the presidential strand speakers who have worked with Ross and Jody to hone their sessions and offer their insights into the role that context plays in our work Thank you’ to Con Katzenmeyer for his leadership of the local arrangements team and to the Southeastern Evaluation Association for assisting us in the Graduate Student Travel Awards selection ‘Thank you’ to Katherine McKnight for her leadership as Conference Chair ‘Thank you’ to the hundreds and hundreds of volunteers who have contributed as reviewers, program chairs, ambassadors, committee leaders, photographers, and onsite assistants And, of course, a huge ‘thank you’

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