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  • Using Space and Place to Enhance Program Evaluation

Using Space and Place to Enhance Program Evaluation

  • 06/13/2023
  • 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
  • Virtual


  • Non GBEN member.

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How can we use space and place to enhance program evaluations designed for the public good? We will discuss the ways geography and its concepts of space and place allow us to see programs and results through different lenses. Evaluators will learn how and where geographic concepts inform traditional evaluation methodologies, like logic modeling. We will explore how geographic information helps answer evaluation questions and how to develop your own geographic information sources during an evaluation. We will learn a few easy-to-access introductory techniques for displaying and analyzing geographic information. Finally, we will discuss a few caveats for taking care of geographic data as an evaluator.

Kathlene (Katie) Butler

Katie is an environmental scientist and geographer who has been evaluating environmental programs and mining environmental data for more than 25 years. Katie has published over 30 program evaluations of EPA programs covering a broad range of environmental topics. Among others, she has evaluated programs designed to support underserved communities, enforce petroleum refinery compliance, protect drinking water safety, and effectively respond to natural disasters.

Katie loves solving tricky environmental puzzles using interdisciplinary strategies. Katie started her career investigating the mysterious drainage of a large central Florida lake. As a US Peace Corps Volunteer, she developed the first-ever monitoring and evaluation plan for an internationally protected wetland site in the Moroccan Middle Atlas Mountains. Katie led the US Environmental Protection Agency’s oversight effort to determine what went wrong in the Flint, Michigan drinking water crisis and led the oversight effort to develop strategies for improving drinking water services in Puerto Rico following Hurricanes Irma and Maria. Katie holds master’s degrees in environmental engineering sciences and geographic information sciences and has conducted academic research ranging from the ancient (paleolimnology) to the futuristic (satellite remote sensing). Katie founded the GeoLiteracy Project in 2021 to help people get better, faster environmental results using program evaluation techniques. 

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