Participants Leverage Network Collaboration to Identify and Capture Value from Resources
As part of the 2015 International Year of Evaluation, the Washington Evaluators (WE) Group and the American Evaluation Association (AEA) are working with EvalPartners, a global initiative also known as “International Evaluation Partnership Initiative to Promote Civil Society Evaluation Capacities,” to support exchanges with M&E experts worldwide. These experts represent the Voluntary Organizations of Professional Evaluators (VOPES)--professional associations for evaluators--of their respective countries.
Representatives from two VOPEs in Central Asia visited USAID on March 18 to share how Missions and VOPEs can collaborate. The visitors represented the National Monitoring and Evaluation Network of the Kyrgyz Republic and the Monitoring and Evaluating Community of Practice of Tajikistan. During the briefing, USAID learned how these local networks are finding solutions to local challenges by providing two fundamental benefits to their members and stakeholders.
Per Morten Hansen’s Collaboration, the first fundamental benefit to participating in a network gives people opportunity to identify resources – such as technology, an idea, an expert, or collaboration partner – using existing professional relationships.
In the Kyrgyz Republic, a member of the community of practice is now in parliament and collaborating with the network to incorporate monitoring and evaluation practices into government policies and program management. In Tajikistan, members rely on their professional relationships to improve monitoring of reform progress and develop socioeconomic indicators for district development plans.
Capturing value from resources identified is the second fundamental benefit of participating in a network. In the Kyrgyz Republic, the parliament member is receiving support from experts in the network to develop national-level evaluation policies and practices. In Tajikistan, members are generating demand for information and uncovering gaps in knowledge to be filled by members in and outside of the network.
Barriers to collaboration are reduced when people are presented with benefits to participating in a network. By fostering relationships and sharing resources with solutions to pressing challenges can be found through network collaboration.