Regional Seminar Cards 600 337 mm 4
Date and time: Friday 30 September 2022, 8.30 - 9.30am AEST
Topic: "Soul and Maturity: On Being Evaluators" an AES 2022 Conference Keynote Reprise
Presenter: Associate Professor Amy Gullickson, Centre for Program Evaluation, University of Melbourne
Venue: Online via Zoom Joining by Zoom details will be emailed to Zoom registrants just prior to the seminar start time
Register online by: 12pm Tuesday 27 September 2022

Please ensure you have access to your email address just prior to the start time to access Zoom details. Please also check your email address is correct on your registration form before submitting. 

This is a free event organised & hosted by the Victorian Regional Network of the AES. Our seminar series provides an opportunity for you to meet with AES members and others in the evaluation community and to share and learn from the experiences of fellow evaluators.

This seminar will be recorded for publication on the AES YouTube channel. Please subscribe to ensure you are notified when a new video is added.  

Seminar overview

Evaluation is woven throughout government, organisations, communities, and life. By its nature, evaluation is intimately connected with the values of those entities and their people because the act of evaluation deals with something they think is important. So, while values may not always be explicitly addressed in our evaluation processes, they are always at centre of the work. Thus, as evaluators, we are essentially touching the souls of these entities – their reason for being. Maybe this is why evaluative findings can provoke strong, varied reactions and responses from clients and stakeholders; protecting a soul is serious business.

So, what does it mean to be an evaluator, if we acknowledge that our work involves the souls of organisations and programs? The AES evaluator professional learning competencies focus on knowledge, skills, and techniques – but those do not necessarily prepare one for dealing with souls. What can we, as evaluators, weave into ourselves and our practice to be able to handle souls with integrity? I propose that attending to our maturity as individuals can help ensure evaluation honours and respects the souls with which we work, and thus, can help evaluation positively influence our world.

About the presenter

Associate Professor Amy Gullickson is the Director of the University of Melbourne Centre for Program Evaluation, which has been delivering evaluation and research services, thought leadership, and qualifications for more than 30 years. She is also a co-founder and current chair of the International Society for Evaluation Education, a long-time member of the AES Pathways Committee (and its predecessors), and a key architect for the University of Melbourne’s fully online, multi-disciplinary, Master of Evaluation program . She practices, teaches, and proselytizes evaluation as a transdiscipline - that is, as a discipline of its own, and a tool used in all other disciplines.

Her teaching and research are focused on creating clarity about what evaluation is and what good evaluation looks like: i.e., credible, systematic, and useful determinations of merit, worth or significance through the application of defensible criteria and standards to demonstrably relevant empirical facts. This means evaluation must surface and deal with values that underpin what good looks like, employ robust research to understand performance, and offer clear and transparent reasoning to arrive at judgements about how good that performance is. Following on from that, she is studying, thinking about, and experimenting with what people and organisations need to know and be able to do to deliver good evaluation, and what strategies and leverage points will help them learn how to do good evaluation. Amy does all that because she’s pretty sure evaluation is essential if we’re going to save the world.

Amy is a graduate of the Interdisciplinary PhD in Evaluation at Western Michigan University, where she learnt the logic of evaluation from Michael Scriven, the Program Evaluation Standards from Dan Stufflebeam, and Mainstreaming Evaluation from Jim Sanders. She’s a sociable introvert. Ask her about what she’s reading, or about the connections her brain is busy making among seemingly disparate things.


    • VIC, NSW, OLD, ACT, TAS: 8:30am
    • NT: 8.00am
    • SA 8.00am
    • WA: 6.30am
    • New Zealand: 11:30am

For other time zones please go to

Please ensure you have access to your email address just prior to the start time to access Zoom details. Please also check your email address is correct on your registration form before submitting. 

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