Decolonization in Evaluation Week: What is Your DEI Journey? What Shaped Your Ancestors’ Journeys? by Vidhya Shanker and Diana Siegel-Garcia

Greetings from Vidhya Shanker and Diana Siegel-Garcia, inviting you on behalf of the American Evaluation Association’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Working Group and The May 13 Group to co-create the first “People’s History of Evaluation” at Eval 22: (re)shaping evaluation together! Still just an idea a few short months ago, The Power of Perspective: Generations of Evaluators Generating Change has since been brought to life in collaboration with Isadora Collins, Teresa Inés Cruz, Libby Smith, and others. 

Profiled Scholar-Practitioners Dr. Denice Ward Hood and Dr. Denice Cassaro

The Power of Perspective presents a timeline from 1972 to 2022 featuring pivotal world events, US happenings, developments in evaluation’s professional associations and institutions, and milestones in evaluation literature—all in relation to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). The interactive journey map creates space for attendees to share their own DEI journeys. Add your personal and community milestones—as well as your dreams for evaluation’s future—to the timeline to co-create with fellow conference attendees a fuller narrative and vision for the field. Your milestones and vision will shape the AEA DEI Working Group’s efforts.

In addition to the timeline/people’s history, key scholar-practitioners who introduced or furthered DEI-related concepts within evaluation will be profiled. At a corresponding Table of Artifacts, attendees can (re)acquaint themselves with primary sources written by the featured visionary and influential, often obscured, evaluation scholars. 

As these topics in and around evaluation and significant world/ United States events can be personal, triggering, and overwhelming, a Reflective Corner will allow attendees to process the installation solo or with others. Quiet space, some guiding questions, and other materials will facilitate attendees’ ability to unwind and reflect before returning to the conference activities.

Get involved!
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Look for more information about how to visit The Power of Perspective in upcoming AEA communications and at the conference.

Whether or not you can join The Power of Perspective in-person or can post your milestones physically, you can contribute digitally towards “A People’s History of Evaluation”. Follow #PeoplesHistoryOfEvaluation, #PowerOfPerspective, #TheMay13Group, and #Eval22 on social media for ways to share milestones in English or Spanish and in alternative formats.

Acknowledgments and Gratitude

Dissemination of the research featured in the Power of Perspective was funded in part by The Annie E. Casey Foundation, Inc., and we thank them for their support; however, the findings and conclusions presented are those of the author(s) alone, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Foundation. We would also like to recognize the Barr Foundation and Humanity United for their financial support, the Evaluation Center at Western Michigan University for their in-kind support, and countless individuals who contributed their labor and thought partnership.


The American Evaluation Association is hosting Decolonization in Evaluation Week with some of our colleagues. 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.

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