Research and Evaluation

The WeCAN collaboration aims at understanding, evaluating, and improving how Community Reviews work and help participating communities see greater success in achieving their goals. Learn more about some of the research and evaluation tools we are using here.

The Community Satisfaction Survey is designed to provide information to community residents and leaders about how most people feel about the different services, physical features and leadership systems in their community.  By compiling survey data across communities and states, we can observe patterns in the ways that residents see their strengths and challenges, information that is helpful to community review delivery organizations and policy makers across the region.

Being able to make reliable claims based on compiled survey data relies on use of a standardized instrument.  A major activity in the first six months of the project has been to create that standardized survey.  We recognize that each community is unique and may have issues they want to hear about from residents that would not be captured by our survey, so each community can choose up to four questions from an optional questions bank in order to tailor the survey to their particular needs.

Ripple Effects Mapping (REM) is a versatile participatory evaluation tool. The intent of REM is to identify the intended and unintended activities that ripple out from the community review process.  REM:

  • Is designed to gather evaluation data from community review participants in a focus group setting
  • Identifies unanticipated positive benefits from the community review by mapping causal chains of results
  • Provides an opportunity for residents to visualize their own and others’ roles in creating community change
  • Patterns emerge from mind maps, providing insights leaders need to design future activities strategically

Download a free copy of the book, Field Guide to Ripple Effects Mapping.
Tri-State project PI, Lorie Higgins is a co-editor of the book

people listening to a presentation