Resources in this section share some of the different techniques groups use to make meaning of the patterns and trends they observe in the information they have accumulated. This is another point in evaluation or knowledge development where there is an opportunity to make a real difference – to maintain current patterns of thought or to interrupt them. This is a point at which it is important to ask some key questions. For instance: what constitutes success of this work, and who says so? What is the story in the data, if knowing that structural racism and privilege exist and influence opportunities, resources and individual and system behaviors? One way to find out more is to share data at this stage with multiple stakeholders, and with groups positioned differently with respect to the power and privilege dynamics of this work and the evaluation, and ask them – do you see yourselves in these data? What story are the data telling you?

This is also a stage where engaging in multiple ways of knowing can be useful, and often very exciting. Changing the way data are going to be presented, for example, art, video and film, theater, stories, infographics, etc. – sometimes opens up new ways to see patterns and trends, and to consider what they might mean. This is because each technique has its own strengths in terms of whether it draws out depth or breadth, and whether it relies on numbers, words and/or non-verbal communication. And, in a traditional group, changing techniques will take some people out of their comfort zones, opening up possibilities for new insights and transformative learning.

Also see: Communicating for Racial Justice and Framing sections and resources on the site. See examples from Racial Equity Learning (Kerry Washington clip) and OTHER for other creative ways of making meaning of knowledge and data, and the Sharing Findings section under the Evaluate Tab.


Also in this section: