Saturday, October 27, 2012

Empowerment Evaluation in the Digital Villages: Hewlett-Packard's $15 Million Race Toward Social Justice

 Its official!  The new book is out.

Empowerment Evaluation in the Digital Villages:  
Hewlett-Packard's $15 Million Race Toward Social Justice

Stanford University Press formally announced the publication of Dr. Fetterman's new empowerment evaluation book.  They held a "chat with the author" session at the American Evaluation Association annual meeting to introduce it to the public.

The book is about a large-scale comprehensive community initiative.  The initiate was designed to bridge the digital divide in communities of color.  Empowerment evaluation, a self-assessment approach to monitoring and evaluation, was the engine selected to drive the initiative.


Empowerment Evaluation in the Digital Villages analyzes a $15 million community change initiative designed to bridge the digital divide in East Palo Alto, East Baltimore, and San Diego. Involving a partnership between Hewlett-Packard, Stanford University, and three ethnically diverse communities, this initiative enabled its constituencies to build their own technology-oriented businesses, improve their education systems, and improve their economic health. While examining this large-scale, multi-site case, Fetterman highlights the potential for empowerment evaluation to build local capacity and sustain improvements within communities. He provides deep insights into key steps in empowerment evaluation by exploring the way that each of these phases took place in the digital villages. Additionally, the text provides evaluators with real-world stories and practical advice from the front lines. The Digital Village case also demonstrates the social value of combining corporate philanthropy, academic prowess, and community empowerment—highlighting the role of evaluation in this process.


This book makes a significant contribution to the empowerment evaluation literature. It provides detailed cases of empowerment evaluation in action that will help practitioners to understand implementation issues, challenges, and the benefits of using this evaluative approach."—Stewart I. Donaldson, Claremont Graduate University, author of Program Theory-Driven Evaluation Scienceand Coeditor of What Counts as Credible Evidence in Applied Research and Evaluation Practice?

"Fetterman presents both positives and pitfalls to stress the lessons learned that had a positive impact on the project outcomes and stakeholders. While each evaluation context is different, the work practices presented in this book will help other evaluators to understand what is possible when they are working in a participatory paradigm."—Lennise Baptiste, M&E Specialist, Caribbean Health Research Council


David M. Fetterman is President and CEO of Fetterman & Associates, an international evaluation consulting firm. He is the Director of the Arkansas Evaluation Center at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff . Over 25 years of service, he held positions in Stanford University's administration, School of Education, and School of Medicine. Dr. Fetterman is the past-president of the American Evaluation Association and a recipient of the association's highest honors in theory and practice.  His recent books include Empowerment Evaluation Principles in Practice and Ethnography: Step by Step, 3rd Edition. To learn more about Dr. Fetterman, visit his website:

For a view of the first chapter see the Stanford University Press catalog on the web.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Collaborative, Participatory & Empowerment Evaluation Business Meeting

Collaborative, Participatory & Empowerment Evaluation Business Meeting (CP&E)
We started the meeting with a brief review of the highlights of the year.

They included Cindy's work on Facebook - keeping us up-to-date on the latest CP&E news:

We highlighted our tools to help people learn more about our group, including posters and fliers:

We also highlighted a few recent publications.

However, the CP&E business meeting was no ordinary business meeting.  

It was a consciousness raising activity designed to help us gain a better insight into our strengths and weaknesses as evaluators.

We asked everyone to stand by the type of tool that best represented their strengths or what tool they identified with as an evaluator:  a drill, a shovel,  or a tape, measure.  We also posted a blank sheet they could fill in.

To our surprise only one person stood by the tape measure.  She was committed to measurement - that part was not surprising.

Many of us thought that is where we would find the cluster of evaluators.  

The drill represented the next group - drilling down into the issues.

The shovel represented the second largest cluster of evaluators.  They wanted to unearth things, get the soil ready, and well I thought I had a good handle on what they were looking for.

Finally, the largest cluster of evaluators selected the blank sheet.  We are a fiercely independent lot.  Each evaluator selected a different tool that best represented their strengths.  The tool box was one of the best metaphors selected during the evening, highlighting how we look at the issue or problem first and then find the appropriate tools to address the issue (rather than letting the methodological tail wag the evaluation dog).

The CP&E TIG Business Meeting was hosted and orchestrated by the co-chairs:

David Fetterman and Liliana Rodriguez-Campos

See you next year.


AEA Empowerment Evaluation Workshop - Consultation - Meet the Author

AEA Empowerment Evaluation Workshop.

Dr. Fetterman facilitated an empowerment evaluation workshop at the annual evaluation meeting held in Minneapolis (October 24th).    Participants came from Israel, New Zealand, Norway, South Africa, and throughout the United States.  Dieudonne Mouafo, Chief Evaluation, UN Volunteers, Berlin, Germany is taking stock in the picture above.

Dave Phillips plans to bring back the approach to Montana.

Florence Etta (who just finished working with David Fetterman in South Africa) helped prioritize the self-assessment activities.

The dialogue was engaging and insightful, providing a number of real world suggestions and recommendations to improve the annual conference.

Dr. Fetterman announced the publication of his new book at the workshop and at the author's night session at the end of the day.  Stanford University Press has invited colleagues to chat with Dr. Fetterman about his new book on Friday between 9:30 and 10:30 at the Stanford University Press booth.

Professor Emeritus Wha-Joon Rho, Seoul National University and Professor Fetterman briefly meet between sessions to continue their collaborative New Village effort that was initiated during their Korean exchange (see earlier blog posting).

Associate Professor Rattana Buosonte and his students from Naresuan University, Muang Phitsanulok, Thailand meet with Dr. Fetterman at the AEA social and meet the author's night session to discuss his new book.

Day 1 of the Conference in Summary:  
This was a long, but productive and enjoyable day.  One might even say empowering.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

 Visual Note Taking.
Rachel Smith's TED lecture is called "Drawing in Class"

We use this technique (using Grove International) to document much of our empowerment evaluation work, illustrated in our new book, Empowerment Evaluation in the Digital Villages: Hewlett-Packard's $15 Million Race Toward Social Justice (Stanford University Press)