Resources

The Annotated Guide to Tools & Resources provides tools, frameworks, and resources to help you develop and implement your evaluation. It’s a repository of useful, practical materials that can help you create an evaluation plan; design your evaluation approach; develop or adapt tools and instruments; and otherwise move your evaluation forward.

This Guide was originally assembled from many sources and fields and annotated by evaluator Suzanne Callahan of Callahan Consulting for the Arts. We continue to add resources. Your suggestions are welcome!

Do you have a useful tool or resource to add? Contact animatingdemocracy@artsusa.org.

Authors: National Endowment for the Arts
Publication Date: July 22, 2015
Resource Format: case study
Nearly 28 million U.S. adults have some type of disability related to hearing, sight, cognition, walking, and other activities of daily living. The latest NEA research offers the first, nationally representative analysis of arts-participation patterns among people with disabilities. A Matter of Choice? Arts Participation Patterns of Disabled Americans offers several insights on how adults with disabilities engage with the arts. Among the key findings:
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Authors: William Cleveland
Publication Date: March 1, 2015
Resource Format: case study
The San Diego Foundation has a long history of support for community cultural development. It has also actively supported the idea that investment in the purposeful growth of civic engagement can stimulate both social entrepreneurship and committed community leadership.
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Authors: Jay Rothman
Resource Format: book / article, practical tool
This 5-page article on Action Evaluation from the Beyond Intractability website provides a knowledge base and tools regarding social conflict resolution and community reconciliation. This article assists participants, funders, and facilitators in reaching consensus about what they seek to accomplish (people's goals), why (their values and beliefs), and how (suggested account strategies). The article addresses the process in three stages: establishing the baseline, formative monitoring, and summative evaluation.
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Authors: Jane Wales; Luis A. Ubinas; Matt Bannick and Eric Hallstein; Judith Rodin and Nancy MacPherson; Paul Brest; James E. Canales and Kevin Rafter
Publication Date: May 16, 2012
Resource Format: book / article
This piece sheds light on the philanthropic sector’s efforts to improve measurement and evaluation (M&E), specifically within the context of foundations involved in social change work. The broad observations of the six contributing authors are that purpose; cost-benefit ratio; culture, context and capacity; unit of analysis; timing; feedback; and transparency matter to measurement and evaluation. Luis A.
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Authors: Innovation Network, Inc. (Innonet)
Resource Format: database, practical tool, website
The Advocacy Evaluation Project, orchestrated by Innovation Network (Innonet), began in 2005 to move the field of advocacy evaluation beyond assessing policy change into one that considers more fundamental and contributory components of advocacy efforts: capacity building, network formation, relationship building, communication, issue framing, and leadership development. In Phase I  the Advocacy Evaluation Resource Center was created. Now a part of Innonet's Point K Learning Center (which requires a free login), the Resource Center is a database .
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Authors: Alan Brown
Resource Format: book / article
In this article, author Alan Brown revisits and interprets the 2005 report, The Gifts of the Muse, published by the RAND Corporation and commissioned by the Wallace Foundation, with valuable analysis of how public value occurs from the core artistic experience.  Starting with an individual experience, the cumulative impact of exposure to the arts can ripple through a community. Brown argues that artists and practitioners need a consistent language to communicate the transformative experience of the arts to funders and policymakers.
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Authors: Maria Rosario Jackson, Joaquin Harranz
Based on several years of field research in communities around the U.S., this six-page brief presents an insightful framework for better capturing and measuring arts, culture, and creative expression at the neighborhood level.
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Animating Democracy resource
Authors: Chris Dwyer
Resource Format: practical tool
This item relates to the Preliminary Menu of Possible Outcomes/Indicators/Measures from the Starksboro Art and Soul Project, as both are part of the Art and Soul Project. This item is a ten page community survey with thirty questions. The survey is an adaptation of a standard survey developed by the Orton Family Foundation to use in tracking changes in perceptions about land use planning in all their Heart and Soul community projects.
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Animating Democracy resource
Authors: Maranatha Bivens
Publication Date: May 7, 2013
Conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan have produced a wave of returning veterans suffering from both physical and emotional traumas as well as families, communities, and a society in need of ways to understand, adjust, and heal. Writer and “former military kid” Maranatha Bivens characterizes ways that art is raising awareness of the issues facing service members, bridging gaps in knowledge and communication between veterans and civilians, and offering veterans paths to healing and reintegration in family and community life.
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Animating Democracy resource
Authors: Chris Dwyer
Resource Format: book / article, practical tool
Written for Animating Democracy's Arts and Civic Engagement Impact Initiative Working Group, this 14- page paper presents a conceptual framework (or logic model) for arts-based engagement. It offers a discussion of the components of the framework, and a list of questions to guide research explorations.
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Authors: Maria Rosario Jackson, Florence Kabwasa-Green
The site offers an overview of Urban Institute's Arts and Culture Indicators Project, defines cultural vitality, briefly addresses cultural vitality indicators, offers case study examples, and gives abstracts and links to high-quality relevant research studies. The site is a beautiful resource for arts and civic engagement practitioners and policymakers. Graphically strong with top notch research, it is a model for the field.
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Authors: Helen Jermyn
Resource Format: book / article
This 43-page report is a literature review commissioned by the Arts Council of England to support its two-year social inclusion research program. It examines the impact of arts in addressing social exclusion with the purpose of informing the design of the research and placing it in a policy context. The first section attempts to define social exclusion, offers ideas and obstacles to measuring it, and relates it to the arts.
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Authors: Arts for All
Resource Format: case study
Arts for All, a partnership between the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, Office of Education, and local partners, developed the School Arts Survey to measure the availability and quality of arts education throughout Los Angeles County. The survey was administered as a pilot to five Los Angeles County schools. Using 16 indicators of quality, access, and equity, the survey can be used to compare arts programs at different schools. Indicators of pedagogy, student learning, school environment, and community engagement were evaluated by school staff using a 10 point scale.
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Authors: Nancy Fushan
Publication Date: March 1, 2012
Resource Format: book / article, case study
Arts Integration as Pathway to Unity in the Community: The (Ongoing) Journey of Pillsbury House + Theatre tells the story of how a nonprofit theater and a social service agency rediscovered their shared history and unified operations to become a Center for Creativity and Community.  The report cites continual assessment as one factor of success for the merged organization and includes information on its evaluation efforts.  
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Authors: Diana Barrett and Sheila Leddy
Publication Date: December 31, 2007
Resource Format: book / article
In order to better understand film as an agent of social change, this article offers examples of documentary films that have led to change in viewer behavior, public policy, and discourse.  After examining the successful impact of these examples, the authors offer planning tools for outreach campaigns, an approach to assessing impact, and lessons learned.  This article may be useful to the strategic design of programs and outreach efforts that aim to affect change.
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Authors: Jonathan Hollander, Artistic & Executive Director
Publication Date: March 31, 2012
Resource Format: case study
Battery Dance employed a pre and post program participant survey to assess its program, Dancing to Connect - Iraq. In doing so, the dance company and the program participants explored areas of self-expression, attitude and perception changes, and conflict resolution. Three attached documents provide more detail of these evaluation tools: 1) a final program report, 2) an executive summary of an evaluative report with survey questions and results, and a graphical representation of survey results.
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Authors: Boston Youth Arts Evaluation Project
Resource Format: practical tool
The Boston Youth Arts Evaluation Project (BYAEP) Framework responds to the need for an evaluation model that considers the combination of education, youth development and social services outcomes and that does justice to the beauty, complexity and holistic nature of such integrated work. The BYAEP model has the potential to provide useful comparisons of program evaluations between organizations and across disciplines.
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Authors: Robert D. Putnam
Resource Format: book / article, case study
This 544-page book by sociology professor Robert D. Putnam makes the case that the social capital of American citizens is declining because of increasingly diminished connections with their communities. He supports this claim with extensive interviews and research, much of which is arranged in charts and graphics.
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Authors: Alliance for Justice
Resource Format: practical tool, website
Published by the Alliance for Justice, this highly useful, interactive guide has two major parts: the Advocacy Capacity Assessment Tool (13 pages) and the Advocacy Evaluation Tool (11 pages). The graphically pleasing guide is made for foundations and grantees to help improve evaluation methods given the difficulties of showing cause-and-effect between advocacy and policy change. A user-friendly introduction explains the purpose of the tools, suggested uses, a definition for advocacy, how the tools can guide grantmaking decisions, and how the tools can be customized.
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Resource Format: practical tool, website
The California Endowment believes that evaluation represents an important opportunity to assess achievements, generate knowledge and cultivate learning. It works to support grantees, evaluators and others interested in learning more about culturally competent health evaluation. Its website has a wealth of resources, reports, and articles useful to both funders and practitioners. Of particular relevance are items related to storytelling approaches to program evaluation, multicultural concerns in evaluation, and understanding impact of advocacy efforts.
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Animating Democracy resource
Authors: Mark J. Stern, Susan Seifert
Resource Format: book / article
Written for Animating Democracy's Arts and Civic Engagement Impact Initiative, this 69-page paper speaks directly to arts and civic engagement work, surveys current research, and makes recommendations for future practice. The paper has three sections. The first attempts to define and differentiate civic terms: civic engagement, social capital, public sphere, community engagement, community and civic capacity, arts, culture, humanities, social inclusion, cultural citizenship, and the cultural public sphere.
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Authors: Craig McGarvey
Resource Format: book / article, case study
Drawing from Craig McGarvey’s seven years of professional experience as Program Director in Civic Culture at The James Irvine Foundation, a California-wide philanthropy, Civic Participation and the Promise of Democracy explores civic engagement strategies (faith-based and community organizing, popular education, collective learning) through providing an overview of their use in California. During McGarvey’s time at Irvine’s Civic Culture, the program supported Californians who were working to build a durable pluralism from the State’s unprecedented demographic diversity.
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Authors: Collective Encounters
Resource Format: case study
Collective Encounters (CE), a theater based in Liverpool, England, uses evaluation tools to measure its efforts to affect social change. This seven-page primer details CE’s evaluation policy framework, which distinguishes between feedback, monitoring, evaluation and advocacy.
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Authors: John Kania and Mark Kramer
Publication Date: December 31, 2010
Resource Format: book / article
The authors cite nonprofits collaborating in an education system to introduce the concept of collective impact, defined as, “the commitment of a group of important actors from different sectors to a common agenda for solving a specific social problem.”  Collective impact is unlike collaboration efforts and partnerships in that its “initiatives involve a centralized infrastructure, a dedicated staff, and a structured process that leads to a common agenda, shared measurement, continuous communication, and mutually reinforcing activities among all participants.”  In short, large-scale, complex
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An online service based at the University of Kansas, this extensive site aims to promote community health and development by connecting people, ideas and resources. With over 7,000 pages presented in user-friendly language, the Community Tool Box (CTB) hopes to build capacity for those who wish to change their communities for the better. Users can approach the site in five different ways: To read about specific skills in community work, users may click on the Table of Contents to locate the 46 chapters and nearly 300 distinct CTB sections.
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