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Date and time: Wednesday 17th October 2018 5.30 - 7.00 pm
Topic: Evaluating place-based approaches
Presenter: Shannon Newman, Our Place
Venue: VicHealth Seminar Room, Ground Floor, 15‐31 Pelham Street, Carlton South
Register online by: lunchtime on Monday 15th October 2018

This is a free seminar organised by the VIC Regional Network Committee of the AES. Our monthly seminar series provides an opportunity for you to meet with AES members and others in Victoria and to share and learn from the experiences of fellow evaluators. Members are encouraged to bring along colleagues with an interest in the topic even if they are not yet members of the AES. Please pass this onto your colleagues and networks.

Seminar overview

Our Place is a place-based initiative of the Colman Foundation, working in partnership with the Department of Education in 10 schools across Victoria. Over the past 5 years Our Place has been implemented at Doveton College with promising results (see

In this seminar, Shannon Newman will discuss how the Our Place model is being scaled up and out to new sites, including how different arms of the Our Place engine room support implementation, evaluation, research and translation. Shannon will explore the planned evaluation and research approach so far – from theory of change thinking, to the development of an outcomes-based evaluation framework and the data collection and evaluation cycles intended to support evaluation on the ground.

Finally, Shannon will reflect on what has been learned from this adventure to date – from the power of embedding evaluation within a placed-based initiative, the need to ‘do with community’ not ‘to’, and lastly, the many and varied challenges faced in taking such a model to scale!

Presenter background

Shannon Newman has a deep interest in the early years and education sector, and a keen passion for supporting local communities to better use data and learning to evaluate their efforts and improve outcomes for children and families; be this at the program or service level, or more broadly at a systems and policy level.

Holding qualifications in behavioral science and training, she has worked in research, evaluation and consulting roles for more than 15 years supporting research orgnaisations, local councils, school entities and philanthropic ventures within Victoria.
Shannon is excited by her role as Research and Evaluation Manager at Our Place as it provides the opportunity to extend on the experiences and community-school model at Doveton College, to share these learnings and ways of working with other communities who are striving for change, and to ultimately drive action and contribute to long-term change at a larger scale. 

AES Evaluator’s Professional Domain of Competence:

This seminar relates to the Research Methods and Systematic Inquiry domain.


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