Around the Institute

Canine Stories and Other APEP Tidbits

January 17, 2014

Hungry?  Sleepy?  APEP’s First Breakfast of the Year is Coming Soon

According to a new study by the Society of International Development and Charney Research, development practitioners struggle most with evaluation methodologies.  Heather Britt’s brief on “complexity-aware monitoring” is one effort by USAID to provide the field with promising evaluation strategies.  In fact, we were so excited about this work that we invited Heather and her USAID colleague Melissa Pataslides to present their findings at our first breakfast event of the year on Feb. 3rd.  Please help us help you: RSVP here so we know how much coffee to buy.  And we’ll throw in some croissants to boot.

Theory of Change—Going to the Dogs

Having trouble generating a theory of change?  Or need a refresher?  We’d recommend this quick and easy guide by Lightbox Collaborative’s Holly Minch.  Not only is it a fantastic Power Point presentation—pithy and remarkably visual—but the questions and exercises are pretty neat and instructive.  We especially love Holly’s “canine procurement campaign.”  From the looks of it, she achieved her “epic win” (a Labrador); APEP’s David Devlin-Foltz, on the other hand, is still pushing forward with his “Dachshund acquisition campaign”…now approaching 30 years. #epicfail

Is MTV a Contraceptive?

This week, NPR had an exciting story about the power of media to influence teenage behavior in the US, focusing on the MTV reality show 16 and Pregnant.  Economists Melissa Kearney and Phillip Levine looked at Nielsen, Google Trend and Twitter data along with the national Vital Statistics database to answer a seemingly simple (but actually really tough) question: has this TV show contributed to the decline in the teen pregnancy rate?  They say yes and go a step further—roughly one-third of the decline nationally can be attributed to the show.  A bold statement and an innovative study!