The Friday Funny: Evaluation Use in Africa

A couple of weeks ago we shared one of Mel Mark’s musical contributions to the AEA 2011 conference, “[Bye bye] Evaluation Pie”.

We’ve previously shared a couple of other musical gems, including:

This week it’s time for another great song that has been evaluationified – Evaluation Use in Africa (Michael Patton, Inaugural conference of the African Evaluation Association, 1999)  – sung to Ald Lang Syne


Evaluate in Africa

Capacity to grow

Each nation and the continent:

Effectiveness to know

We cannot wait another day

The needs are now so great

We organize so we can say:

Join us – EVALUATE!

From north to south

From east to west

New lessons we shall learn

What works right here in Africa

We’ll all work to discern

And as we mon-i-ter what’s done

We’ll strive not to confuse

We’ve joined the knowledge age to boost


And the revised version, sung at the Summer Institute course ‘Designing useful evaluations that actually get used':

May all e-valu-a-tions done

Be useful as they should

They tell us how to separate

What is poor from what is good.


We gather data near and far

To see what we can learn

The findings help us to decide

What to keep and what to burn.

There comes a time for each of us

When doubts may give us pause

We wonder what results will show

Will the world see naught but flaws

But be assured there’s naught to fear

If learn-ing is what you seek

Let outcomes guide your every move

Listen to the data speak.

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