Welcome to a new sub-group within the Gender and Evaluation Community focused on the emerging practice of using systems thinking to support evaluation practice in development contexts. The goals for this CoP are:
The idea of systems thinking is that linear cause and effect is insufficient to describe complex and changing situations. Systems thinking is characterized by an appreciation of the interrelatedness of parts within a wider system and the emergence of properties that cannot be fully comprehended by analysis of the system’s essential parts. For example, women, men, adolescent girls and boys all have important roles and contribute to the fabric of any community’s well-being. To strengthen a community, you might want to understand each gender’s social and economic contribution and needs, the cultural norms for those roles and contributions, and the hopes and concerns of each gender and age group. All of these individual elements are important to support a community development effort but additionally how the individual members interact with each other.
Drs. Anne Stephens and Ellen Lewis are currently working on a new UN Women Independent Office of Evaluation to create a new guidance using systems thinking to prioritize gender, marginalized voices and the environment. You might wonder why we have prioritized and linked gender, marginalization and the environment in this guidance. Each of these lenses urges us to consider how the current and historical exclusions of women, nature and voices from the margins (e.g. human or non-human) are interrelated and can be prioritized to drive social change. The new systems thinking guidance being developed will draw on the vast wealth of current evaluation practices and methodologies as well (e.g. feminist/gender-responsive evaluation practice, participatory evaluation, developmental evaluation) as a way to provide support to current practice.
Please note that Anne and Ellen are only moderators of this CoP, for all of us together, are equally facilitators and learners of knowledge. We welcome you to this group whether you are new or familiar with systems thinking.
How to join the sub-group?
If you are not a member of gender and evaluation community, please sign up on https://gendereval.ning.com/
Then sign in and click on the link https://gendereval.ning.com/group/developing-a-gendered-systemic-evaluation-guidance. Here on top right hand side click on +Join
Please visit our Anne's and Ellen's weekly blog about the development of a gendered systemic evaluation guidance. Comments are welcome there as well. Please join us in this journey.
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