Narrative Evaluations

Narrative Evaluation

Narrative Evaluation can reveal the more nuanced, human-scale impacts of your projects, aspects often missed by statistics.

Is your board, staff, and donors having trouble grasping what’s really going-on in your projects? Do you feel like the “numbers” only demonstrate one small aspect how your programs are having an impact or how various stakeholders perceive and relate to your organization and its work?

Village Earth’s Narrative Evaluation Services can help you collect, analyze and present data in a way that gives a voice all stakeholders within a project. Unlike statistical data, narrative evaluations collect and present data on a human-scale using the tools and techniques of documentary filmmaking, ethnography and storytelling. They are particularly valuable for understanding the nuances of your program – the aspects of it that can not be captured with surveys and statistical data. Narrative Evaluations can be particularly valuable as a tool for Appreciative Inquiry to share findings among clients, beneficiaries and other stakeholders, building greater understanding and cooperation.

Village Earth’s 4-phase methodology ensures you get a realistic assessment of what’s actually going on on the ground. 


Phase I: Initial Consultation
Using principles and tools of participatory evaluation and participatory action research,  Phase I is where we meet with you and your staff to discuss your goals and objectives for the evaluation. But to also discuss the political context within which this evaluation will take place. Understanding this helps our evaluation team better understand personalities and dynamics of power that may help or hinder our ability to create an accurate narrative.

Phase II: Stakeholder Mapping
This phase begins early-on and continues throughout the duration of the evaluation to create a picture of all the stakeholders of your program (intended and unintended).

Phase III: Strategic Frame Analysis
Strategic frame analysis is a process that utilizes participant observation,  interviews, focus groups, media analysis and other documentary film-making and ethnographic research methods to understand the myriad ways people understand the issue(s) your organization is focused on, your approach to addressing those issues, and the perceived impact you are having in addressing them. Our approach can either be very unobtrusive, conducting informal interviews under trees, around kitchen tables, etc. Or very engaging and participatory drawing utilizing tools such as community-based film, photovoice, and participatory learning and action (PLA).

Phase IV: Narrative Compilation
This is where we compile all the data we collected and package it into a compelling but accurate narrative that can be adapted for your organization’s leadership, staff, donors, and/or clients.

Call today for a free consultation: +1-970-237-3002 Ext. 504. 

Work Samples Below:

Children of the Anaconda
Children of the Anaconda was created by the indigenous Shipibo Community of San Francisco in Peru’s Amazon Basin during a 5-day workshop facilitated by Village Earth.

Por El Rio Tigre: Community Film (Tribal Link Foundation)

Por El Rio Tigre is a community-based film facilitated by Village Earth. Village Earth was hired by the New York based Tribal Link Foundation to tell a story of  remote indigenous communities it works with near the Peru/Ecuador border


Rezonomics is a documentary film commissioned by the Department of Anthropology at Colorado State University. Our team was asked to capture the diverse ways people participate in the formal and informal economies on the Pine Ridge Reservation.

CRP Enrollment_4

Mind map created during strategic frame analysis to understand decisions why farmers and ranchers in Montana participate in the USDA’s Conservation Reserve Program.