Most organisations funded by Nominet Trust will use some form of survey or questionnaire in the process of evaluating their projects. The advantage to this approach is that it makes it possible to capture beneficiaries’ perceptions and subjective experiences, in addition to their observed external behaviours. This is an important aspect of the evaluation process as many of the changes that Nominet Trust projects are seeking to effect (e.g. increased confidence, greater awareness, reduced social isolation, etc.) can be difficult to measure purely by external observation. more >
At this point of the year, we expected to launch a new funding programme looking at how we can enable older people to benefit from using digital technology. We ran an open exploration of the key themes (led by the inimitable David Wilcox); pulling together existing research, practice and funding activity and aimed, through that process, to understand where digital technology could be most useful and, as such, where we should target our social investment fund.
Possibly...well I hope not, but there are some exciting possibilities being offered by digital technology to help researchers identify patterns and valuable insights in their evaluation data that might otherwise go undiscovered.
There are 7.4 million people in the UK who have never used the internet of which 5.2million are aged over 65. There are over 18,000 care homes in England with nearly 40,000 older residents. We do not currently have an accurate figure about how many care home residents have access to the internet.
People argue a lot about evaluation and ‘social impact analysis’ (see, they even argue about what it should be called). They especially love to argue about the ‘best’ way to do it. Like whether you should or shouldn’t have an external evaluator, or whether you should or shouldn’t do a Randomised Controlled Trial (RCT). Frankly, it can get a bit confusing – so how do you know the best way to ‘do’ an evaluation? Especially if you're working in social innovation. The answer is that there is no ‘best’ way. more >