An Early Exploration of Evaluation Practices under Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy




Mack, Amanda

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The newly released Feminist International Assistance Policy (FIAP) aims to gender mainstream all stages of Canada’s international development projects with the goal of using a “truly feminist approach that supports the economic, political and social empowerment of women and girls, [making] gender equality a priority, for the benefit of all people” (Government of Canada, 2017). However, it is not clear what comprises a “truly feminist approach” in the policy or how this is being applied in the field. This thesis therefore aims to assess what feminist approaches can be found within the evaluations of projects that have been conducted under the FIAP and what type of feminism they portray. The methodology consisted of examining three case examples through a document review of key evaluation materials, an interview with a representative from each organization, and a ‘Feminist Evaluation Scorecard’ to summarize the findings. The analysis of these qualitative methods demonstrated that the evaluations, although found to be using some feminist approaches, align better with a technocratic version of feminism rather than a transformational one. It was also found that the participating organizations have limited knowledge of the FIAP and face barriers in implementing feminist approaches within their evaluation work. Some suggestions for future practice were provided including increasing clarity in the wording of the FIAP, providing additional resources to organizations through training and funds so that they may better implement feminist evaluations, and increasing overall communication on expectations so that a “truly feminist” approach may be used in evaluations going forward.



feminist evaluation, FIAP, evaluation, feminism, Feminist International Assistance Policy, international assistance