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Wednesday, September 19 • 12:00pm - 12:30pm
Transforming research organisations via monitoring, evaluation and learning: how can we evaluate our own work?

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Larelle McMillan (CSIRO), Samantha Stone-Jovicich (CSIRO), Toni White (AgResearch New Zealand), Helen Percy (AgResearch New Zealand), Lan Chen (AgResearch New Zealand)

The potential for monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL) to enhance innovation and impact is receiving increasing attention in practice and research. AgResearch NZ and CSIRO Agriculture & Food are working with our biophysical researchers to transform our organisations to achieve increased innovation and impact through embedded monitoring, evaluation and learning at the project and programme level. Lessons from CSIRO and AgResearch NZ has shown that it is difficult to systematically show the value of MEL in practice, with many researchers and managers asking "Is it worth the effort and resources?".  While there are an increasing number of case studies and anecdotes pointing towards the role of MEL in helping deliver social, economic and environmental impacts, there is limited evidence, collated through systematic and rigorous methods, to substantiate this. In this paper we present an evaluation framework we developed drawing on insights from complexity science (the Cynefin framework) and reflective practices (the 'what, so what, now what' evaluation inquiries). The aim of the framework is to enable our organisations to gather empirical evidence, to track our MEL processes and outcomes in ways that enables organisational learning and informs research strategies and actions; and to enable comparative analyses. We share insights from piloting this framework and provide reflections on how it can support researchers and science organisations to transform the way impact and innovation is framed and delivered.

avatar for Anne Markiewicz

Anne Markiewicz

Director, Anne Markiewicz and Associates
Anne Markiewicz is a leading monitoring, evaluation, and training specialist with over 20 years’ experience designing monitoring and evaluation frameworks and developing and implementing a range of evaluation methodologies. She has designed and delivered M&E capacity development... Read More →

avatar for Larelle McMillan

Larelle McMillan

Research Impact Broker, CSIRO
Larelle’s role in CSIRO Agriculture & Food is a Research Impact Broker – she has particular agency in building relationships and partnerships for research impact. Her mix of project management, partnership brokering, writing and communication skills, complemented by her growing... Read More →
avatar for Helen Percy

Helen Percy

Science Impact Leader - Adoption and Practice Change, AgResearch Ltd
Helen Percy is a Science Impact Leader – Adoption and Practice Change at AgResearch. She is currently leading a cross-organisation programme implementing the recommendations of AgResearch’s Adoption and Practice Change Roadmap, which includes developing organisational capability... Read More →
avatar for Toni White

Toni White

Evaluator & Social Researcher, Plant and Food Research
•Strong background in biological sciences•Focus on bringing evaluation into the sciences in NZ•Loves working in the ECB space•Keen on learning and using new methodologies•Passionate about the social sciences•Co-facilitates the Waikato/BOP branch of ANZEA•Loves cats and... Read More →

Wednesday September 19, 2018 12:00pm - 12:30pm AEST
Chancellor 3