Skip to main content


Program evaluation can be very complex, especially for comprehensive community initiatives, which have multiple goals, programs and implementing agencies.

There are many sources of basic guidance on how to do program evaluations, as a simple Internet search will show. The materials on this site exemplify one effort to evaluate a comprehensive community development initiative – LISC’s Building Sustainable Communities (BSC) program.

Because of their very different purposes, methods, analysis strategies and needed research capabilities, we have distinguished between quantitative and qualitative approaches to evaluation. The former is devoted almost entirely to tracking “population-level” outcomes in neighborhoods. The latter focuses on the changes in community process that resulted from the BSC program.

Institute Articles

Read our coverage of Evaluating issues and ideas in the "In The News" section of this website.

Practitioner Resources

The Evaluating resources are organized into these categories:

Living Cities Introduces New Urban Practice Toolbox
Innovative tools and resources help leaders and practitioners work together to improve the lives of low-income people
MeasureUp Helps Evaluate Health Impacts
New webpage offers resources and tools to help practitioners measure their programs' health impacts
Community Development Data Guidebook
A new guidebook identifies sources of community development data and advises on effective use of the information they contain.
Webinar: Ripple Effect Mapping
This archived webinar, originally presented on February 11, 2015, explores the what, why and how-to of using Ripple Effect Mapping to understand the results of an initiative.
"RFP for Evaluators - Qualitative Assessment"
A template for putting together a team for a larger evaluation study.
"RFP for Evaluators"
An RFP to help practitioners hire an envaluator to review planning processes, neighborhood-level outcomes or the impact of a specific project.
"Success Measures - Indicators and Tools"
Indicators to measure impact of housing, economic deveopment and community-building programs.
"Evaluating Comprehensive Community Development"
Methods and models used to measure CCDs.
"Quantitative Analysis of Neighborhood Change"
An outline of the research questions, data sources and analysis methods for examining neighborhood change over time.
"Qualitative Analysis of Target Neighborhood Outcomes"
An outline of the core elements of the BSC approach, the framework for obtaining answers to questions about that approach and the actual data collection forms to be used.
"Sustainable Communities Quantitative Analysis Summary"
Quantitative assessment strategies for the LISC Sustainable Communities Initiative.
Stay connected

Stay up to date with news and events related to the Institute: