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briefing paper

Piecing a story together

Learning and evaluation in trusts and foundations during Covid-19

May 2020

Ben Cairns, Houda Davis, Liz Firth


Covid-19 is changing the funding world like nothing before it. This briefing shares how evaluation and learning staff are supporting their foundations through the immediate crisis and with questions about what all this means for the future. 


Based on an approach we are using with VCSE organisations, in the last week of April, IVAR facilitated two online sessions of the Evaluation Roundtable Community of Practice, open to all foundation staff leading on evaluation and learning. Our aim is to create a space where they can share challenges and dilemmas, and learn from each other’s experiences in their efforts to put learning at the heart of their foundations’ response going forward. This briefing shares the experiences of the 20 staff participating in these first sessions and our reflections on the questions and opportunities for funders that they raise.


If you are interested in joining the Evaluation Roundtable, please email


Read more briefings from our Covid-19 series for Trusts and Foundations here


(Piecing a story together - Learning and evaluation in trusts and foundations during Covid-19 - IVAR - May 2020)

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