The Division's evaluation projects are large-scale, 18-to-24 month studies designed to assess outcome achievement and long-term impacts, with respect to overall State Department, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and program goals. The evaluations are retrospective, examine cross-cutting themes, and employ both quantitative and qualitative research methods, including surveys, focus groups, interviews, and document review.
Alumni Engagement Innovation Fund (AEIF)
Since its inception, the Alumni Engagement Innovation Fund (AEIF) has supported more than 370 alumni-led initiatives around the world. In 2017, 61 grants of up to $25,000 were awarded to alumni teams worldwide to support their public service projects. This evaluation will offer an analysis of how the AEIF motivates alumni to operationalize skills and knowledge learned during their exchange program. The purpose of this evaluation is to examine the effectiveness of the AEIF in increasing the leadership capacity of alumni; furthering opportunities for alumni to implement the skills and abilities learned through their exchange program to improve their communities; increasing posts’ ability to interact with a wide range of alumni; and increasing the density of alumni networks both on a national, regional, and global scale. The evaluation will cover all Alumni-led initiatives funded through the AEIF since inception in FY2011 through FY2017. The Evaluation Division has contracted The District Communications Group, who will work in partnership with General Dynamics Information Technology (GDIT), for this independent evaluation of the AEIF.
Fulbright Foreign Graduate Students in the STEM Fields and the Lab to Market Enrichment Seminars
Fellowships for foreign fellows in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) have been a central part of the Fulbright Program since the Fulbright Hayes Act was enacted in 1946. Since 2007, the Fulbright Foreign Graduate Student Program has selected groups of fellows in the STEM fields to participate in Lab to Market Seminars on topics such as Science Technology and Entrepreneurship; Agriculture, Health, and Environmental Sciences; Public Health; Energy and the Environment. This retrospective evaluation of the program covering participants during the years 2007 to 2011 will investigate how the seminars have served to expose fellows to scientific innovations through the talks and presentations, opportunities to meet with experts, and visits to leading companies and organizations. The evaluation seeks to understand how this experience may have influenced fellows’ activities after the program, and if there is evidence of ongoing collaboration with U.S. institutions and/or scientists. The primary purpose of the study is to understand how the Lab to Market Seminars and the Fulbright experience overall have contributed to participants’ work, research, and other ongoing efforts to impact development issues in their home countries. The Division has commissioned ICF International to conduct the evaluation.
Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship
As part of the upcoming 40th Anniversary of the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program, this evaluation will offer an analysis of how the Humphrey Program fosters lasting change and will seek to link the impact of the program on Humphrey Fellows and U.S. citizens and institutions. Each year since 1978 approximately 160 Humphrey Fellows are funded by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) to engage in non-degree study and associated professional experiences at an American university. Some 46 U.S. universities have hosted Fellows over this period. The purpose of this evaluation is to examine the effectiveness of the program in fostering and strengthening the professional development of experienced mid-career professionals in critical fields; provide evidence-based data demonstrating how the Program may have served as a catalyst for change in the Fellow’s sector whether in their individual country or geographic region, and/or globally; and how the Program fosters/mitigates an intellectual exchange that encourages networking and collaboration between Fellows and U.S. citizens and universities. The Evaluation Division has contracted The District Communications Group, who will work in partnership with General Dynamics Information Technology (GDIT), for this independent evaluation of the Humphrey Program.
Professional Fellows Program (PFP)
The Professional Fellows Program (PFP) is a two-way, global exchange program for mid-level emerging leaders (approximately 25-40 years old) from select foreign countries and the United States. Since the FY2012 program cycle (calendar year 2013), nearly 2,323 individuals from over 70 countries and the United States have participated in the program. The purpose of this evaluation is to examine the PFP’s impact on advancing DOS strategic policy priorities and to the degree to which the program is meeting its stated goals. More specifically, the evaluation will offer an analysis of how PFP Alumni operationalize skills and knowledge learned during their exchange experience to create a multiplying effect in promoting mutual understanding, create positive changes in workplaces and communities both in the United States and in their home countries, and build a collaborative network for like-minded professionals addressing pressing challenges. This evaluation will cover alumni across seven primary thematic areas who came on the PFP between 2013 and 2017 (grants awarded FY2012 – FY2016). Themes have included: Economic Empowerment, Legislative Process and Governance, Tolerance and Conflict Resolution, Environmental Sustainability, NGO Development, Rule of Law/Administration of Justice, and Media. The Evaluation Division has contracted The District Communications Group, who will work in partnership with General Dynamics Information Technology (GDIT), for this independent evaluation of the Professional Fellows Program.