The Evaluation Revolution in Public Diplomacy

Carissa Gonzalez, a public diplomacy officer for the U.S. Department of State and a CPD Summer Institute alumna ('14), has published a new article. Her piece, “The Evaluation Revolution in Public Diplomacy” appeared in the fall 2015 issue of The Ambassadors Review, a publication from the Council of American Ambassadors. The piece unpacks the importance of evaluation in understanding programmatic impacts, and highlights the continued misunderstanding between outputs—which Gonzalez refers to as an organizational “reporting culture” of numbers-based data—and outcomes, the “lasting impact on our intended audience” as a result of the PD activity. Gonzalez deconstructs current issues hindering public diplomacy evaluation, and outlines four “mental shifts” that need to take place in order for “PD evaluation to actually be successful.” She concludes with a look at alternative platforms that public diplomacy practitioners can learn from, including Amazon, Craigslist and Uber, noting their emphasis on clear operational goals, value-added benefits for the user, and measurable benchmarks of organizational progress.

The full article is available here.

Photo by r2hox | CC BY-SA 2.0


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