Project: Civic Education and Civil Society Empowerment in Remote Areas in Myanmar
Evaluation Date: December 2012
Report: [report link]
Lesson Learned:

Research that addresses local concerns and brings them to the forefront of national debate is greatly needed. Although policy papers were drafted by September 2012, the papers’ quality was low, and the lack of dissemination wasted potential impact at states/regions level. The only distribution was a compendium of policy papers without foreword or explanation of the aim and the process which led to their drafting. Papers should be presented directly to local government, with abstracts published in local newspapers, and distributed widely to CSOs and political parties.

Theme: Community activism
Project: Civic Education and Civil Society Empowerment in Remote Areas in Myanmar
Evaluation Date: December 2012
Report: [report link]
Lesson Learned:

The methodology for the Core Leader Meetings (CLM) changed due to circumstances. The first CLM consisted of participants from previous training sessions. It was originally thought that different audiences would participate in the following CLMs. However the poor outcome of the first CLM and the need to prepare consistent and coherent papers by the end of the project led to a change of approach. The three remaining CLMs were carried out with a mix of original participants, and more experienced writers/drafters.

Theme: Community activism
Project: Deepening Democratization Processes Through Youth Leadership in Myanmar
Evaluation Date: September 2010
Report: [report link]
Lesson Learned:

Where academic research is useful to initiate policy dialogue with the authorities, action-research can provide the opportunity for capacity building of the fellows and can also be a useful tool in deciding, designing and promoting community initiatives. Reliable research by a recognized researcher is more likely to be usable in policy dialogue with the authorities; action-research facilitated by trained fellows is more likely to be valid for informing community-level actions and discussion. There should be a clear distinction between the two, and better strategizing/positioning of the research within the project design.

Theme: Youth engagement
Project: Cultivating Democratic Leaders from Marginalized Groups in Thailand
Evaluation Date: December 2010
Report: [report link]
Lesson Learned:

When project beneficiaries are marginalized not only by geography and ethnic origin but by mainstream politics and public attitudes, advocacy opens up a political space in which the aspirations and expectations of young people and their communities are more likely to be met. Survey results might have been of interest to the media generally – including international media – and media coverage might have contributed to putting some serious social issues on the political agenda

Theme: Youth engagement
Project: Nigeria Procurement Monitoring Project
Evaluation Date: April 2012
Report: [report link]
Lesson Learned:

The preparation and publication of the Procurement Observation Handbook built on previous efforts. It is also being used elsewhere in West Africa, and has been provided to the World Bank IDF program and Open Society Initiative for West Africa on request for translation to French for use in French-speaking West African Countries. Feedback on the manual from those interviewed for the evaluation was extremely positive.

Theme: Interaction with government
Project: Gender Equality and Equity - Follow Up to CEDAW and Romani women
Evaluation Date: November 2011
Report: [report link]
Lesson Learned:

The initiative to train young women activists to undertake research on the socio-economic conditions of Roma women in local communities was effective both in terms of the training and the value and relevance of the data collected. Working with two partners, the grantee was responsible for the development of the Shadow CEDAW Report in 2005, submitted to the UN CEDAW Committee. The document is regarded as highly credible and is widely used by both domestic and international organizations. It is also an effective advocacy tool. The new data will be used in compilation of the next Shadow CEDAW Report.

Theme: Women's empowerment