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Engaging with Stakeholders

Collaboration is a principle that is integral to all stages of the USAID Program Cycle, including evaluation. For an evaluation to successfully contribute to USAID development results, the Evaluation Point of Contact (POC) and other USAID staff involved in the evaluation must productively engage and collaborate with key stakeholders in the evaluation—USAID staff across various offices, implementing partners, host country officials, beneficiaries, etc. These stakeholders may contribute to the planning and implementation of the evaluation, serve as primary or secondary audiences for evaluation products, and/or serve as critical actors in ensuring that evaluation evidence is utilized effectively.

Consequently, it is prudent to start identifying and engaging with key stakeholders as early as possible in the evaluation process. A stakeholder analysis is one simple way to start the process of identifying stakeholders and determining how to best collaborate with them throughout the evaluation. At a minimum, Project Managers and AOR/CORs are responsible for ensuring that implementing partners (IPs) of the activity or project that will be evaluated are aware of any planned evaluations and the steps IPs need to take to ensure a successful evaluation.

Similarly, early dissemination planning for evaluation is critical. According to ADS "OUs also should distribute evaluation results widely, to both internal and external stakeholders” and “Missions and OUs should update and follow the Evaluation Dissemination Plan developed during the evaluation planning stage..." Evaluations of all types will include a dissemination plan. Such dissemination plans can help ensure that appropriate evaluation products are planned and developed to meet stakeholder needs and fulfill USAID’s commitment to transparency, accountability, and learning.

Guidance and Tools