Webinar: Measuring What Matters: Outcome-based Evaluation in Arts and Social Justice Projects

How can evaluation help capture the change that those working in social justice strive to realize? Learn new ways to think about, and evaluate, your organization’s outcomes.

Artists and community organizers strive to touch emotions, spark insight, and change behavior. Their work prompts people to think, feel, understand issues on a different level, and to act (or act differently). As programs often have long-term goals, how can nonprofits identify the important indicators and outcomes to measure the impact of their work along the way? This webinar will help funders, administrators, artists, and others learn about the difference that their work makes, and how to measure what matters to tell the story of their impact.

This webinar intertwines stories and principles from Suzanne Callahan’s evaluation work in the area of arts and social impact, with tools that participants can use after the webinar. In addition to drawing from Callahan’s own book on arts evaluation, as well as the work of evaluation thought leader, Michael Quinn Patton, stories will highlight Rha Goddess’s “Hip Hop Mental Health Project”. Participants will gain a better understanding of how change can be measured, learn ways to tailor measurement to meet their own needs, and discover evaluation methods that illustrate the profound change that they have on the communities they are dedicated to serving.


  • Ways to express your organization’s work in outcomes
  • Examples of tools and techniques for collecting information that can measure outcomes of social justice work
  • How to think and speak differently about how your organization makes an impact


This webinar is a good fit for:

Program managers and nonprofit staff working in evaluation, research, community engagement, and/or development.


Speaker: Suzanne Callahan
Suzanne Callahan, CFRE, founded Callahan Consulting for the Arts, which serves funders and nonprofits through planning, fundraising, evaluation, and philanthropic counsel. She has run national funding programs for almost 25 years. As the NEA Dance Program until 1995, she received a Distinguished Service Award for chairing the agency's AIDS Working Group, responding to the needs of artists for health insurance. Her book, "Singing Our Praises: Case Studies in the Art of Evaluation," was awarded Outstanding Publication of the Year from the American Evaluation Association for its contribution to the theory and practice of evaluation. A frequent trainer in evaluation for foundations and associations, Callahan has conducted research or evaluation for the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Covenant Foundation, and Chicago Community Trust, in addition to many nonprofits. A former dancer and teacher, Callahan holds an M.A in Dance Education from George Washington University, where she completed her post-graduate study in evaluation, and a B.A. from Northwestern University. Follow her on Twitter at @callahanarts.