A New Visual Thinking Approach to Evaluation: Introducing EvaluVision by Keisuke Taketani, Katherine Haugh, Yumiko Kanemitsu

Katherine Haugh
Katherine Haugh

Greetings AEA365! We are Katherine Haugh, Yumiko Kanemitsu  and Keisuke Taketani, a group of individuals who are passionate about visual thinking and its applications in evaluation and adaptive learning. 

Yumiko Kanemitsu
Yumiko Kanemitsu

Yumiko is a Regional Evaluation Officer at the United Nations (UN) World Food Programme. Keisuke is a freelance facilitation and visualization expert who partners often with the Asian Development Bank. Katherine is a freelance organizational learning and visual design expert.

The three of us are thrilled by the possibilities of working at the intersection of visual thinking, facilitation, and evaluation. 

Keisuke Taketani
Keisuke Taketani

First things first, what is EvaluVision? 

EvaluVision is an approach to improving collective learning by combining evaluation and visualization techniques. It filters technical language, theories, and indicators and organizes them into comprehensible graphics that can more meaningfully and easily spark dialogue and learning. It was created by the UN with input from key evaluation and visualization experts and has been piloted and tested in Asia and the Pacific Region. 

How can you use it? 

You can check out the public EvaluVision ebook which walks you through the steps for using it at different stages of the evaluation process–from context analysis all the way through design, data collection, validation, and dissemination. 

Here are some examples of ways in which you can use the EvaluVision approach at any stage in the evaluation process: 

  • Program design phase: EvaluVision helps teams in co-creating a strategic vision for their project and a theory of change. 
  • Context analysis: EvaluVision can unpack a complex situation and clarify the relationships between different actors or systems dynamics, sourcing perspectives from various points of view to better understand the context and how that impacts the program design. 
  • Data collection: EvaluVision can be helpful to increase the quality of inputs from stakeholders, including community beneficiaries, such as through capturing stories in a graphic way or using other visual collection tools. 
  • Data validation: EvaluVision can visualize the key findings and lessons learned from the evaluation team and can use visuals to help teams co-create recommendations for collective action. 
  • Dissemination: In our experience, there is not enough feedback to community beneficiaires after evaluations conclude. Visual materials can explain the result of evaluation in a manner that everyone can understand.

Hot Tip: In our experience, every organization has at least one person who is open to using innovative methods like this one. Instead of spending effort trying to convince people who are not open to it, spend your energy working with a small group of people who are curious and open to the possibility of trying something new. Without that openness, the method is not as meaningful. 

If you are passionate or curious about working at the intersection of visual thinking, facilitation, and evaluation, please get in touch with us! You can reach out to Keisuke at keisuke.taketani@gmail.com,. You can reach out to Katherine at kat.haugh@gmail.com and you can reach Yumiko by emailing her at yumiko.kanemitsu@wfp.org

Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org. aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators. The views and opinions expressed on the AEA365 blog are solely those of the original authors and other contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the American Evaluation Association, and/or any/all contributors to this site.

3 thoughts on “A New Visual Thinking Approach to Evaluation: Introducing EvaluVision by Keisuke Taketani, Katherine Haugh, Yumiko Kanemitsu”

  1. Pingback: A New Visual Thinking Approach to Evaluation: Introducing EvaluVision by Keisuke Taketani, Katherine Haugh, Yumiko Kanemitsu | keisuke taketani

  2. Thank you for creating and sharing this framework. You have demonstrated concisely how the world of sketchnoting and doodling can be useful in a number of planning and reporting contexts.
    You may want to consider adding some guides to sketchnoting, like the Sketchnote Handbook, Dan Roam’s many books, Doodle Revolution by Sunni Brown, and Pencil Me In by Christina Wodtke. These invite folks who believe they have little visualization talent (e.g., me) to engage on comfortable levels. Thank you again. Jim

    1. Thank you so much for your suggestion. Yes, sketchnoting is a great method and much easier to start than full scale graphic facilitation. If there is a second edition to this book, I make sure we refer to the sketchnoting.

      This is helpful as we are wondering how to lower the barrier for those who think they can’t draw.

      Thank you again!


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