If Not Us, Then Who? Evaluators of Color and Social Change

Aileen M. Reid, Ayesha S. Boyce, Adeyemo Adetogun, J. R. Moller, Cherie Avent

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The fiercest advocates for change are often program managers, policymakers, community members, and evaluators who themselves come from the minoritized communities they serve. As evaluators of African descent, we ask, “If not us, then who?” and are compelled to understand how our identities impact our perceived role and evaluation praxis. A survey conducted among evaluators of color who are diverse in age, gender, sector of employment, nation of origin, and years of experience revealed that an evaluator's identity influences their role and evaluation praxis. We argue all evaluators, commissioners of evaluation, and evaluation stakeholders must critically understand how their backgrounds influence the work they do, given that this impacts their engagement and responsiveness to the varying contexts and cultures encountered. We encourage readers to be reflective about how our identity impacts our role, and more importantly, ways we can work to intentionally incite change when working with historically marginalized populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)23-36
Number of pages14
JournalNew Directions for Evaluation
Issue number166
StatePublished - Jun 1 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management Science and Operations Research


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