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The theme of the 2017 Canberra Conference is Evaluation Capital.

Our societies are undergoing profound economic, social and technological transitions. Complexity and turbulence have come to define our world. In these times, societies with more evaluation capital will be better off than those with less. We have chosen Evaluation Capital as our conference theme, as an invitation to discuss how we can grow this asset across Australasia.

While hinting at the national capital location, the 2017 conference theme Evaluation Capital captures two important but often neglected ideas in evaluation.

Firstly, evaluation is a durable asset for sound governance. That is, longevity and permanence should be built into our evaluation systems because societies with more evaluation capital are better off than those with less.

The second idea concerns the inherently political nature of evaluation, and that evaluation commissioners and practitioners must be sensitive to the effect of politics when making their evaluative choices.

When submitting a proposal for the main conference program, please ensure that your proposed presentation reflects the conference theme, Evaluation Capital. Think about the range of audiences who may be interested in your proposal and make sure you write it inclusively. Presentations should be very engaging, interesting and encourage audience participation.

Proposals are to be written in English and must be expressed in clear, accessible and grammatically correct language.

Proposals for conference presentations must be received no later than Monday 13 March 2017. No further extensions and no exceptions will be granted. It is your responsibility to meet this deadline.

Blind Peer Review: The AES conference uses double-blind review when assessing conference proposals. This means that author identities are concealed from the reviewers, and vice versa, throughout the review process. Please ensure that the proposal is prepared in a way that does not give away your identity.

1. Presentation format options 

The 2017 Conference will accept proposals in the following six formats:

  1. Short Paper 
  2. Long Paper
  3. Panel
  4. Skill Building Session
  5. Consultation and Collaboration
  6. E-Poster

Click here for an overview of presentation options.

In choosing a presentation format please consider the most appropriate format that allows for interactive input and stimulating discussion of issues. Presenters are strongly encouraged to develop a written paper, although this is not a requirement for participation or a factor in program selection.

It may be necessary to change the format of some proposals in order to provide a well-balanced, comprehensive program. If your proposal is accepted, you may be asked if a format change is suitable.

At the end of each session approximately five minutes is allowed for participants to move to the next session. This will be scheduled in addition to the time allowed for presentations and questions.

2. Innovative presentation styles

The Australasian Evaluation Society encourages innovative ways of presenting at the conference. Proposals for new formats will be considered and should be discussed with the Program Committee Chair.

Presentations will still need to meet the usual criteria for quality and relevance of content.

Innovations in presentation formats will be assessed on the basis of feasibility (including technological feasibility at the conference venue), innovation, and capacity to engage conference delegates in learning. Please keep in mind that conference venues don’t offer much flexibility with room set-ups and that the default room set-up will be theatre style. We are unable to offer alternate setups unless the venue agrees to do them as part of the hire agreement.

3. Criteria for assessment

In preparing your proposal’s Justification Statement please ensure you address the following criteria for assessment:

  • A. Relevance/Importance to AES Audience: The proposal should address topics that are of importance to a broad audience within AES, and if accepted, is likely to attract an audience.
  • B. Relevance/Importance to overall conference theme and to one or more of the sub-themes: The proposal should align with conference theme, Evaluation Capital, and this needs to be explicit in the proposal. A sub-themes will be identified when submitting and used to stream the presentations.
  • C. Technical quality: A proposal should meet high standards of technical quality in terms of methodological, conceptual and logical rigor.
  • D. Contribution to evaluation methods, theories, policies and practices: Proposals presenting the results, findings, and circumstances of a specific evaluation are welcome but should also identify how it contributes to the broader issues of significance for advancement of the evaluation knowledge-base.
  • E. Overall Assessment: When looking across the review criteria, and across proposals, reviewers are asked for their overall recommendation on each proposal.

NOTE: No individual may present in more than three conference sessions, including as a co-presenter.

4. Content

All proposals must include the presentation title and the primary author, along with the abstract and a justification statement to justify why the presentation should be included on the program based on the selection criteria. Proposal/s will be sent to reviewers for assessment and, if accepted, the presenting author may be asked to edit the abstract before inclusion in the conference program.

Upon acceptance of your proposal, we will request an updated list of your presentation's authors, and a list of those presenting.

All presenters will be asked to upload a short bio-note and photograph to the online program and for use by the session chair to introduce your presentation.

5. Abstract

The Abstract is a summary of the content of your presentation. It should include:

  • the purpose of your presentation 
  • an outline of the argument made based on the key concepts or research and evaluation methods or both
  • the main findings and/or conclusions
  • the implications for evaluation theory and/or practice.

You should keep in mind the criteria for assessment A to E in preparing your abstract.

Please write your abstract as you wish it to appear in the conference booklet.
Describe your proposed presentation or workshop in your abstract in no more than 300 words.

You will be presenting at the same time as up to 5 other sessions, so you need to make clear what you are covering and its importance. Your audience is diverse – across nations, disciplines, uses and knowledge of evaluation – ensure your intention will be widely understood. What are you adding to the field of evaluation? Please edit your work and ask for comment from someone not involved before submitting.

Abstracts will be edited to Australian Style Guide and Macquarie Dictionary. If you have access to those resources please comply with the conventions. Use the Australian or UK English version of spell check.

Tips for writing your abstract:

  • Don’t use an acronym unless it is well known internationally – especially ones you have made up. Many in your audience won’t know the acronym. Someone will have to edit it out.
  • Don’t use jargon terms – e.g. a new term you or your colleagues have created.
  • Have a colleague read over your work and make sure the sentences are grammatically correct – e.g. verbs and subjects agree.
  • bstract that have errors or are poorly written have a reduced chance of being accepted.

6. Justification statement

The justification statement immediately follows your abstract in the Abstract entry field. It presents the important concepts and facts to explain the proposals contribution to the conference theme. It outlines the relevance of your presentation to evaluation and the importance of what you are proposing as well as its relationship to the conference theme. This is your chance to persuade the reviewer that your presentation is worthy of a place on the program.

  • Please ensure that your statement responds to the assessment criteria and explains your contribution to the conference theme.
  • The justification statement should be no more than 300 words.

NOTE: Please keep a copy of the abstract and justification statement for your records prior to clicking ‘upload’. 

7. Room set-ups

The standard room set-up for conference presentations is theatre style. Other room sets can only be accommodated at the venue’s discretion.

How to submit your proposal

Click here for instructions on how to use and access the online submission system.