This page provides an example of how a council could evaluate their progress in relation to a specific objective.
Council Plan 2015 – 2018
Objective 1: Improved community resilience, connectedness and social capital
How will we know that community resilience, connectedness and social capital in the shire have improved? How would know whether this was as a result of cultural development activities of the council?
If we have used a good planning process, we would have started at the beginning of the project determining what we thought success would look like. We would have chosen the appropriate domain of change and measures that would help us assess our progress. For this project, the policy domain would be social, given that we are looking for change to community resilience, connectedness and social capital. Some measures we could choose to assess this progress would be related to social capital, either bonding, bridging or linking capital. Given that the council has specified connectedness as well as social capital, we decide to assess bridging capital (positive connection to unlike others, including inter-generational and inter-subcultural connections). We decide to focus on this one measure as it covers two of the three parts of this Objective of council.
Because our work is in the cultural domain, it must also have cultural outcomes. We select Enrichment (Aesthetic enrichment experienced) as the measure we will assess along with the social measure. Therefore, we are clear as to what we are assessing of our work.
We now have two measures we will aim to assess:
- Social capital – bridging (positive connection to unlike others, including inter-generational and inter-subcultural connections)
- Aesthetic enrichment experienced
Then we must decide for whom we might expect increased bridging social capital and aesthetic enrichment. How many people would we be trying to influence through council’s programs? What type of people would they be (age, gender, geographic location, socio-economic or cultural background, disability identification, etc.)?
We want projects to meet participation targets that will be set when specific activities are decided upon. This might be that:
- 60% of engaged participants complete the project
- 80% of completing participants report increased bridging social capital (positive connection to unlike others
- 80% of completing participants report experiencing creative stimulation
- 80% of completing participants report increased confidence in their own capabilities
Evaluation Plan: To evaluate the contribution of our work on this objective, we will collect data about the outcomes for people who have participated against these measures, particularly young people. This will include numbers of participants, focus groups or interviews with active and creative participants in projects and surveys of receptive participants (audience members).