Dr Paul Duignan presents workshops, seminars and keynote presentations on public and not-for-profit sector strategy and outcomes thinking. Some of the topics he presents on are listed below. In these workshops he draws on examples from the many sectors he has worked in, including: health; environment; social and community; sustainability; arts, culture and heritage; defense; and indigenous development. It is possible to combine aspects of these workshops for particular audiences and to focus in on particular sectors in more detail. Contact email@example.com. A brief Bio is available.
1. Use of Visual Outcomes Models to "front end" web-based evidence-based practice web sites.
One of the major dilemmas in facilitating on-the-ground evidence-based practice is to somehow make it easy and immediate for practitioners to access evidence in regard to their day to day practice. Any such facilitation needs to be based on ways of working which are relevant to practitioners in the field. It cannot be yet another extraneous task they are unlikely to find the time to do. The increasing use of outcomes models (variously called DoViews, logic models, program logics, theories of change, program theories, strategy maps) in a range of sectors presents intriguing possibilities for strengthening the link between practice and evidence. The use of outcomes models is being driven by funders interested in ensuring that providers have clearly thought through all of the steps they are planning to use within a program. Providers, faced with such demands from funders are highly motivated to prepare and use outcomes models as part of their practice. Such models, if visualized in the form of DoViews can then also be used to link out to evidence databases. This is done by putting hyperlinks beneath the link lines between steps and outcomes within a DoView. Generic, or specific, versions of such 'evidence-populated' DoViews can be made available on web sites. If, at the same time, those browsing such models are able to immediately download and amend a version of the original DoView from which the web model was created, there is a powerful mechanism for rapidly spreading evidence-based practice across a community of practitioners. This seminar discusses cutting edge developments in this field. An example of such a model is provided at http://www.server61.net/projects/nrm/logics/logic1.html.
2. Visually overlaying multiple projects onto a common outcomes model to assist stakeholder strategic discussions.
A general problem across a number of sectors is how to coordinate the activity of a number of projects which are directed at influencing a common set of outcomes. For instance, this problem is often faced where a geographical community is attempting to coordinate aspects of community development taking place within the community, which are run by a number of different players. In the past, strategic and prioritization discussions amongst stakeholders have relied on tabular lists in narrative documents and verbal discussion. Such narrative documentation for each of the different projects will often include varied formulations of objectives and outcomes, making it very difficult or impossible for stakeholders to actually grasp where there are overlaps and gaps. This seminar reports on recent developments in using visualized outcomes models to overlay the multiple projects taking place within a community (the same approach could be applied to a range of project coordination problems in a range of sectors). Each project is linked to outcomes within the same visual outcomes DoView (a type of visual outcomes model). This provides a method for stakeholders, when discussing overlaps and gaps, to work with a dataprojected visual model which allows them to very quickly identify possible overlaps and gaps which they can then talk through.
3. Guidelines for building multi-purpose outcomes models (DoViews, logic models, program logics, program theories)
Building outcomes models (also known as DoViews, program theories, logic models, theories of change) is more of an art than a science. The current state of the art is confused because of a number of unexamined conventions regarding drawing such models (e.g. that they should contain discrete vertical levels (e.g. outputs, intermediate outcomes, high-level outcomes). In addition, the heroic attempt is often made to fit such models onto a single sheet of paper. This seminar outlines a radically different approach to drawing outcomes models which focuses on drawing 'world-centric' rather than 'program centric' models. As a consequence of being drawn as 'world-centric' such models can be used for a range of purposes, including strategic prioritization, overlaying multiple projects onto a single common outcomes model, monitoring planning and reporting, evaluation planning and reporting, economic evaluation and contracting. This seminar outlines a recently developed set of guidelines for developing such models. For information on the guidelines see http://www.easyoutcomes.org/guidelines/outcomesguidelines.html.
4. Developing visual evaluation plans
In many ways, the development of program evaluation plans is currently in a 'craft' phase with each evaluation plan set out in often differing narrative formats determined by whoever is writing the plan. This seminar will outline an approach to visual evaluation planning using the DoView Visual Evaluation Plan approach. DoView Visual Evaluation Planning is a standardized approach to evaluation planning which allows the evaluation planner to quickly make the key evaluation strategy decisions needed in any evaluation planning. It works by identifying evaluation questions and placing them on a visual outcomes DoView the program being evaluated. Using this visual approach is a powerful way of reducing confusion which is often caused by the same evaluation question being formulated in different words. The approach also encourages the evaluation planner to identify and document the evaluation questions they are NOT going to answer as much as the evaluation questions they ARE going to answer. If also helps the evaluation planner ensure that they have considered all evaluation design possibilities by, for instance, listing the 7 possible outcome evaluation designs, and the 10 possible economic evaluation approaches. By developing the evaluation plan in DoView software, the evaluation planner can continue to update and use their plan as a way of controlling the implementation of the evaluation as it is rolled out. Experience has shown that evaluation plans developed in this way can be developed in about 1/2 to 1/3 of the time it takes to normally develop an evaluation plan set out in a narrative textual format. An example of a web-based visual evaluation plan is available at http://www.server61.net/demo/visualevaluationplan.html, more information on DoView at http://www.doview.com.
5. Using DoView outcomes and evaluation software
DoView is a new type of software which has been explicitly designed for building outcomes models (DoViews, intervention logics, logic models, theories of change, program theories, strategy maps). It allows the user to quickly develop outcomes models in real-time when dataprojected in meetings. Models can be of any size because the model is broken up into a set of interlinked compact sub-diagrams which it is easy to navigate through. Because it is based on constructing an underlying model, rather than just a drawing of a model, the software can include elements such as links between steps and outcomes even in those instances where there is not enough room to fit such links onto a normal page.Notes can be kept in regard to any element in the model (e.g. steps, outcomes and links). In addition, indicators and evaluation questions can be inserted onto the outcomes model for use in monitoring and evaluation planning. Models can be output as PDF and as a web page version of the model which can be put up on an intranet or the internet. Web page versions of a model can also allow those browsing them on an intranet or the internet to immediately download the original DoView file from which the web page model was created. DoView models are now being built in a wide range of sectors and in a number of countries. They are being used for evaluation, monitoring, strategic planning, and evidence-based practice. See http://www.doview.com.
6. Structuring outcomes-focused funding and contracting around visual outcomes models
Outcomes-focused funding and contracting is very demanding and many mistakes have been made in setting up such funding and contracting systems. If a system is to be truly outcomes-focused, it needs to be based on building the capacity of providers within the sector in developing usable outcomes models. Visual outcomes models (DoViews, program logics, logic models, theories of change, program theories) are the best way of representing and working with outcomes. This seminar will present an approach to funding and contracting based on using a visual outcomes DoView. If a visual approach is not used, then funders need to resort to using a tightly controlled language (e.g. outputs, intermediate outcomes etc.) to control the way in which provider proposals are submitted. Experience has shown that such non-visual approaches attempting to use controlled terms (e.g. "describe the intermediate outcomes you will be seeking to achieve...") are often difficult to implement in practice. The central problem is the lack of time for providers to fully familiarize themselves with the particular controlled language which is being used by a particular funder. An alternative approach, which uses visual outcomes models cuts through the traditional problems of outcomes-focused funding and contracting by using a visual outcomes model at the heart of the funding and contracting process. This allows funders and providers at all stages of their discussions and contracting to be aware of the full hierarchy of lower-level steps and outcomes which the project is attempting to influence. In contracting or funding discussions, it is then a relatively simply matter for the steps for which the providers will be contracted for (held to account for changing) to be visually identified and the steps and outcomes they may be asked to measure (but not held to account for) to also be visually identified. This approach is based on the DoView Planning approach.
7. Assessing the comprehensiveness of a set of performance indicators
Performance indicator sets, in one form or another are used in almost all organizations. Assessing the comprehensiveness of such lists is a significant challenge. At the current time this is done by an individual or a group looking through the performance indicator list and trying to work out if there are any important measures which have not been included. This is difficult to do because it requires that those doing it hold in their minds both the list of indicators they are assessing and also a mental model of what it is that the project or organization being measured is trying to do. A much more efficient way of working is to build a visual outcomes model of what it is that the project or organization is trying to do and to map onto this the current list of performance indicators. This enables any gaps to be quickly identified - these are where there is a step or outcome in the model which currently does not have a measure. This visual approach then immediately reveals the areas where potential indicators may be found. This workshop outlines this process and illustrates it with examples brought by workshop participants. For further information see a short video on mapping performance indicators onto an outcomes model and an article on reviewing a list of performance indicators.