The auditorium at AFDB Headquarters was vibrant with evaluation and development experts gathering at the IDEV Knowledge Café on the first day of Evaluation Week, Monday 07th November. The theme was the utilization of evaluations for enhancing the delivery and results of the ‘High 5’s’, and also for improving evaluation practice.
A knowledge café is a means of bringing a group of people together to have an open, creative conversation on a topic of mutual interest.
The IDEV knowledge café was set up in the lobby at AfDB Headquarters in Abidjan to discuss the specificities of evaluating each of the Bank’s High-5s.
Five thematic tables (one for each of the AfDB High-5s) were set up in ‘café’ style to create a relaxed, informal ambience. The facilitator, IDEV Evaluator Foday Turay, introduced the knowledge café and invited participants to choose a table to start the process.
The Knowledge Mentor on each table then gave brief guidelines, prompting the participants in their discussion. After 20 minutes, the participants rotated to the next table, while the host stayed behind to introduce the question once more and summarize the preceding discussion for a new set of participants. The new participants then add their insights to the question, refining or modifying the contributions of the previous group. A concluding plenary wrapped up the discussions.
"The Knowledge Café was an opportunity to brainstorm and put forward candid opinions on how to better use evaluation to achieve the High-5s. “On my table, it was put forward that beneficiaries of a development programme would be more inclined to take note of evaluation lessons learned if they were involved in the programme from the design phase. Perhaps this is one way to gain in sustainable development.”
Amadou Boly, participant at the “Quality of Life” table.
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