Equitable Evaluation: Voices from the Global South

Volume editor
Steven Masvaure
Volume editor
Takunda John Chirau
Volume editor
Tebogo Fish
Volume editor
Candice Morkel


The World Health Organization (WHO) defines equity as the absence of preventable or remediable disparities among various groups of individuals, regardless of how these groups are delineated, whether by social, economic, demographic or geographic factors. The goal of equity is to eliminate the unfair and avoidable circumstances that deprive people of their rights. Therefore, inequities generally arise when certain population groups are unfairly deprived of basic resources that are made available to other groups. A disparity is ‘unfair’ or ‘unjust’ when its cause is due to the social context rather than biological factors. Equitable evaluation contends that conducting evaluation practices with an equity approach is more powerful, as evaluation is used as a tool for advancing equity. It emphasises that context, culture, history, and beliefs shape the nature of evaluations, specifically in the diverse and often complex African reality. Equitable evaluation can render power to the powerless, offer a voice to the silenced and give presence to those treated as invisible. Evidence from various sources shows that inequality is prevalent on the African continent, hence the need to focus on evaluative solutions that address the structural issues that contribute to the different forms of inequality, such as economic, political and social inequality. Despite a plethora of development interventions on the African continent, a large proportion of the population on the continent is still lacking access to basic goods and services for survival. The effectiveness of developmental programmes in sub-Saharan Africa has been elusive, to the extent that minimal inroads have been made in addressing key challenges such as poverty, inequality and the effects of climate change. This scholarly book aims to invigorate academic discussions surrounding developmental programmes, with the goal of generating insights that can be utilised by evaluation commissioners and decision-makers to help address inequality and promote a more equitable society in Africa through improved evaluation processes.


  • Chapter 1
    Inequality through the evaluation lens
    Steven Masvaure, Tebogo Fish, Samukelisiwe Mkhize, Takunda Chirau, Candice Morkel
  • Chapter 2
    Holding space for social justice and equity: The relational work of evaluators implementing a Made in Africa Evaluation approach
    Amy Murgatroyd, Cecile Feront
  • Chapter 3
    Programme evaluation as a reflection and perpetuator of inequality in the global political economy
    Ayabulela Dlakavu
  • Chapter 4
    ‘Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?’ Un(masking) inequality by international institutions
    Takunda Chirau, Umali Saidi
  • Chapter 5
    Unlocking climate change adaptation injustice through using intersectional analysis as an evaluation approach
    Steven Masvaure
  • Chapter 6
    ‘Whose agenda is it?’ Reframing equity and justice in the evaluation of climate-smart agriculture
    Samukelisiwe Mkhize
  • Chapter 7
    Rethinking how gender inequality is framed in GBV prevention interventions: Learnings from a South African evaluation of interventions
    Matodzi Amisi, Penny Parenzee
  • Chapter 8
    The role of evaluation practice in promoting the prioritisation of mental health equity on the public health agenda in Africa
    Tebogo Fish
  • Chapter 9
    Mechanisms and strategies perpetuating evaluative inequalities in policy practice in Zimbabwe
    Zacharia Grand, Sybert Mutereko
  • Chapter 10
    Why emphasis on randomised controlled trials is a flawed approach to evaluation for a more equitable society
    Seán Mfundza Muller
  • Chapter 11
    Transformative Equity: Promoting systemic change through a new evaluation criterion
    Jennifer Norins, Desiree Jason, Ian Goldman, Kguagelo Moshia-Molebatsi, Sinenhlanhla Tsekiso, Thandolwethu Lukuko, Zulaikha Brey
  • Chapter 12
    Evaluation in service of equity? A synthesis of the conceptualisation of inequality and evaluation approaches to address inequality
    Tebogo Fish, Samukelisiwe Mkhize, Steven Masvaure


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