Evaluators have always worked in diverse communities, and the programs they evaluate are designed to address often intractable socio-political and economic issues. Evaluations that explicitly aim to be more responsive to culture and cultural context are, however, a more recent phenomenon. In this book, Jill Anne Chouinard and Fiona Cram utilize a conceptual framework that foregrounds culture in social inquiry, and then uses that framework to analyze empirical studies across three distinct cultural domains of evaluation practice (Western, Indigenous and international development). Culturally Responsive Approaches to Evaluation provide a comparative analysis of these studies and discuss lessons drawn from them in order to help evaluators extend their current thinking and practice. They conclude with an agenda for future research.

A Discussion of the Conceptual Framework Across Domains of Practice

A key conclusion from the first two chapters of our book is that there is nowhere evaluators can go that will not require them to be culturally responsive. In other words, there is nowhere—no place, no people, no community—that is culture-free. Everywhere, whether it be a nongovernmental organization, a community, a school, a local drama group, a health care provider, a government agency—to name just a few possibilities—there are people who will be somehow connected to other people. These people may reside in old or new places; be marginalized, forced out of or stolen from their original homes, or just looking for new opportunities in new lands; or they may remain in the lands ...

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