Story-telling and other new methods of evaluation

C_IMG_0735The three presentations demonstrated very different approaches to evaluating media/communication projects, hence in each of them storytelling is an important aspect.

Sally Gowland worked on a national survey of mothers and their key influencers in Bangladesh. Structural equation modeling was combined with in-depth qualitative data from a panel of pregnant women, to provide a picture of both drivers and barriers to ensuring birth preparedness in Bangladesh. Sally and the team designed a story of one typical target audience member, and crafted a story of her journey through pregnancy and childbirth, to effectively communicate to project and production stakeholders the needs of their target audience.

Bernardette van Dijck and Han Rakels introduced SPROCKLER, developed as an innovative inquiry tool to make sense of what happens in organizations and communities, using qualitative and quantitative information gathering. A collection of stories is categorized, to produce user-friendly statistical information, backed up by real-life stories. In fact, SPROCKLER is used also to evaluate the FoME Symposium.

Christoph Spurk provided several examples of how to “bypass” the lack of baseline data and control groups in evaluations, i.e. checking stories of impact or delivering a “theory-based evaluation”, in which project results are compared with evidence from previous research to deliver “plausibility of impact”.

Resource Persons
Bernadette van Dijck | Consultant and Former Head of Development at RNTC
Sally Gowland | Research Manager, BBC Media Action
Han Rakels | Developer, SPROCKLER, Perspectivity
Christoph Spurk | Media Researcher, Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW)

Sofie Jannusch | Consultant, CAMECO

Hosted by
DW Akademie


Sally Gowland, BBC Media Action: Influencing Production through Insight: Development of Bangladesh Maternal and Child Health TV Programming

Han Rakels, SPROCKLER/Perspectivity & Bernadette van Dijck, Consultant: Sprockler

Christoph Spurk, Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW): What to do without baselines? Not often used methods in media evaluation


Christoph Spurk is Media Researcher at the Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW). In this interview, he sheds light on the added value of story telling in media evaluation and suggests alternatives when carrying out evaluation where baseline data is absent.