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The Evaluation Exchange

We are a partnership between UCL and voluntary and community sector organisations in Camden and East London that aims to improve evaluation practice.

People in conference

17 May 2021

What is the Evaluation Exchange? 

The Evaluation Exchange brings together voluntary and community sector groups wanting to improve their capacity to evaluate their work, with postgraduate students and researchers who want to put their research and evaluation skills into practice in a real-life setting. 

Postgraduate students and researchers work collaboratively with organisations based in or working with communities in Newham and Camden. This year, 12 voluntary or community sector organisations will be matched with small teams of postgraduate students and researchers. They will work together for 6 months, from September/October 2021 – April 2022. During this time teams will have contact at least once a month and will work on a specific task or issue that will be agreed at the start of the project. The student team will enable the organisation to complete the agreed task. A work programme will be tailored to the needs of each organisation and work will be completed in partnerships between the organisation and students.

Students and researchers: Why should I get involved?

An apportunity for you and those you work with
The Evaluation Exchange is an opportunity for you to enhance your research and evaluation skills outside of a university setting - a real world application of your knowledge that has the potential to make a difference to the workings of voluntary and community sector organisations. You will help embed the use of successful evaluation approaches leading to a lasting change in practice and making a valued contribution to an organisation. 

You will also be meeting and connecting with individuals outside of the university, establishing a new network. You will enhance your research and evaluation skills, tap into the workings of community and voluntary sector organisations, and have the opportunity to enhance your experience outside of the typical university setting.  

The Evaluation Exchange is worth 6 points on the doctoral skills development programme.

Read about the key impacts and lessons learn from our pilot programme in our PDF

Training and support  
After matching you with a suitable organisation, we will provide training throughout the programme to help you make the most out of your experience. We will also be on hand to provide ad hoc support and advice throughout the programme.  

Who can apply
Any postgraduate researcher at UCL who is keen to expand their skills outside of a university can apply to this programme - the only stipulation is that you must commit to a minimum of two days per month on this six-month project including being able to attend the relevant training days. The training days are listed in the application form.

Organisations: Why should I get involved?

An opportunity for you and those you work with
The Evaluation Exchange aims to help voluntary and community organisations, in Camden and Newham, build evaluation and learning into their work. By matching you to a team of UCL researchers, you will work collaboratively with them to tackle your evaluation challenge. Working together you can develop appropriate learning systems that help you understand what is going well and not so well and demonstrate the value of your organisation’s services. The team of researchers matched to your organisation will have a variety of backgrounds and interests and will be keen to learn from you too. 

Training and support
We can help you think through whether your evaluation challenge is appropriate for the Evaluation Exchange. If you would like to discuss your idea please get in touch before the deadline.

If you participate in the Evaluation Exchange, we can also help you prepare for the researchers working with you. We provide training over the six-month programme to help you make the most out of your experience. We will also be on hand to provide ad hoc support and advice.

Who can apply
Voluntary and community sector organisations in Camden and Newham are eligible to apply. We ask that you are able to commit to a minimum of one day per month on this six-month programme and be able to attend the relevant training events listed on the application form. 

Timeline
  • 23 June 2021: Applications close
  • End of July 2021: Find out if you will be participating in this year's Evaluation Exchange
  • September 2021: First training for organisations in Newham with their teams of researchers
  • October 2021: First training for organisations in Camden with their teams of researchers
  • March/April 2022: Placements end
  • April 2022: Celebration symposium

Find out more

Read our blogs 
Watch our videos 
Get in touch

Get in touch

FAQs

Read our FAQs

I am a postgraduate researcher and want to apply

Applications to participate in the Evaluation Exchange have now closed.
P
lease contact Ruth if you have any questions or want to learn more.


I am an organisation and I want to apply

Applications for organisations to participate in the Evaluation Exchange have now closed.
P
lease contact Ruth if you have any questions or want to learn more.


Who we work with

The Evaluation Exchange is delivered with Compost London and run with Voluntary Action Camden.

The Evaluation Exchange is part of the IoE led programme, ISIKLE.

People

Project leads: Dr Gemma Moore and Ruth Unstead-Joss

Outputs

There will be teams of researchers working with six organisations in East London and six organisations in Camden.