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Welcome to the AES Blog

Australasia has some excellent evaluators. More than that, we have an evaluation community full of ideas and a willingness to share. The AES has long provided a place for us to come together, at regional events and the annual conference, to develop our community together. Now we’re taking it online! The new AES blog will be a space for AES members – both new and experienced – to share their perspectives, reflecting on their theory... If you have an idea, please contact us on Please also view our blog guidelines.

All the take-outs from #AES18LST


By the AES blog team

The Launceston conference certainly set us some challenges as evaluators. The corridors of the Hotel Grand Chancellor were abuzz with ideas about how we can transform our practice to make a difference on a global scale, harness the power of co-design on a local level, take up the opportunities presented by gaming, and ensure cultural safety and respect. Since then, the conversations have continued in blogland. Here’s what some of our members had to say.

Elizabeth Smith, Litmus: The shock and awe of transformations: Reflections from AES2018 Conference – on the two challenges that struck a chord: the need to transform evaluation in Indigenous settings and support Indigenous evaluators and the need to focus globally and act locally to transform the world

Charlie Tulloch, Policy Performance: Australian Evaluation Society Conference: Lessons from Lonnie – on the evolution of AES conferences, from presentations about projects to sharing insights, including from failures and challenges 

Fran Demetriou, Lirata Consulting: AES 2018 conference reflections: power, values, and food – on the experience of an emerging evaluator and all those great food metaphors 

ARTD team: Transforming evaluation: what we’re taking from #aes18LST – on the very different things that spoke to each of us, from the challenge to ensure cultural safety and respect to leveraging big data and Gill Westhorp’s realist axiology 

Natalie Fisher, NSF Consulting: Australasian Evaluation Conference 2018 – Transformations – on measuring transformation (relevance, depth of change, scale of change and sustainability), transforming our mindsets and capabilities, the power balance and how we write reports 

Joanna Farmer, beyondblue: Evaluating with a mental health lived experience – on the strengths and challenges this brings, and breaking the dichotomy between evaluator and person with lived experience by being explicit about values and tackling power dynamics 

Byron Pakula, Clear Horizon: The blue marble flying through the universe is not so small... – on Michael Quinn Patton take outs – transformation should hit you between the eyes and we should assess whether this intervention contributed to the transformation 

David Wakelin, ARTD: AES18 Day 1: How can we transform evaluation? – on how big data may help us transform evaluation and tackle the questions we need to answer, without losing sight of ethics and the people whose voice we need to hear 

Jade Maloney, ARTD: How will #aes18LST transform you? – on Michael Quinn Patton’s call to action – evaluating transformations requires us to transform evaluation – the take-outs from Patton and Kate McKegg’s Principles-Focused Evaluation workshop 

Jess Dart, Clear Horizon: Values-based co-design with a generous portion of developmental evaluation – on Penny Hagan’s tools that integrate design and evaluation, including the rubric and card pack they have developed for assessing co-design capability and conditions. 

We’ve endeavoured to include blogs from all AES members. If you have a blog that didn’t make our list, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we’ll make sure you’re on our list

AES Blog Working Group: Eunice Sotelo, Jade Maloney, Joanna Farmer and Matt Healy

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