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Monday, September 16 • 11:00am - 11:30am
Evaluation governance: creating fertile ground

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Julian Thomas (Urbis), Ariane Hermann (AustralianGovernment Attorney-General's Department), Amanda Shipway (Queensland Department of Justice and Attorney-General), Adam Nott (Australian Government Attorney-General's Department), Kay Hackworth (Victorian Department of Justice and Community Safety), Alison Wallace (Urbis), Frances McMurtrie (Urbis)

This joint presentation by clients (the Commonwealth Attorney-General's Department and the Queensland Department of Justice and Attorney-General) and commissioned evaluators (Urbis) will show how inclusive evaluation governance arrangements for complex, large scale investments can create a strong foundation for collaborative future action.

This presentation demonstrates a case study the client and evaluator experiences during a national review of the funding for legal assistance services, which involved Australian federal, state and territory governments as joint-commissioning clients. The work focused on the extent to which the $1.3b National Partnership Agreement on Legal Assistance Services 2015-2020 (the NPA) supports shared interests among governments to "improve access to justice and resolve legal problems for the most disadvantaged people in Australia and maximise service delivery through the effective and efficient use of available resources".

For the commissioning governments, the review was an important precursor to inter-governmental negotiations over the future shape of national collaboration on legal assistance services, which can often develop into contested and sometimes protracted processes. Planning for the review was a catalyst for Commonwealth and State/Territory governments to establish a Steering Committee to formulate terms of reference and guide a procurement process. A by-product of this early collaborative work was the establishment of productive, multi-lateral relationships and a shared ownership of process and purpose. Following the appointment of the evaluator, the Steering Committee structure sustained a high level of engagement after appointment of the evaluator, with the participation of the evaluator introducing a new and constructive dynamic.

Our take-away observation is that well designed governance arrangements for large, multi-stakeholder evaluation projects addressing contested issues have significant benefits that extend beyond delivery of the evaluation. In facilitating relationship building around a collective purpose, effective evaluation governance promotes broader, post-evaluation collaboration.

avatar for Larissa Brisbane

Larissa Brisbane

Team Leader, Strategic Evaluation, Dept of Planning and Environment NSW
It was only a short step from training in environmental science, and a background in cross-disciplinary problem-solving, to evaluation where I still ask 'why' and 'how do you know that'. I love hearing your stories of what you've done and what you've learned, especially in the areas... Read More →

avatar for Julian Thomas

Julian Thomas

Director, Urbis
I'm an evaluator with a particular interest in policy/programs tackling complex social issues, and my work at Urbis is concentrated on health, education and justice portfolios.. My favourite evaluations have focused on how large scale/national investments are planned, delivered and... Read More →
avatar for Ariane Hermann

Ariane Hermann

Assistant Secretary, Attorney-General's Department
Starting my career as an organisational and counselling psychologist, I joined the Commonwealth Public Service in 2009. I have had a range of positions across the Attorney-General's Department, including leading the development of a National Impact Assessment Framework and a National... Read More →
avatar for Amanda Shipway

Amanda Shipway

Director, Legal Assistance, Strategy and Funding (LASF), Department of Justice and Attorney-General (DJAG)
Amanda Shipway has worked for the Department of Justice and Attorney-General since 2009, her fist role with the DJAG was at Victim Assist Queensland where she worked for five years as the Victim Services Coordinator, before moving to her current role as Director, Legal Assistance... Read More →

Monday September 16, 2019 11:00am - 11:30am AEST