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The Evaluation Capacity Case Challenge (EC3) launched in 2023 and is dedicated to strengthening the evaluation capacity of institutions to foster and sustain high-quality evaluation practice. Every year, a real-world organization will present an evaluation capacity building (ECB) challenge to teams comprising the best and brightest minds from across the U.S. and Canada. These ECB teams will then develop a plan to address the challenge and present it to a panel of esteemed judges. This year the challenge will take place on May 24 & 25, 2024.


What does the case challenge involve?

  • Cross-disciplinary engagement to arrive at creative solutions
    • We will solicit applications from current students (senior undergraduate, graduate, or professional) and early-career professionals (graduated within the past 5 years) from any disciplinary concentration to take part in the case challenge.

Note: Participants who participated on an EC³ team in the past are not eligible to apply. However, if you previously applied and were not selected, you may apply for consideration again.

  • Once selected, participants will be assigned to an interdisciplinary ECB team that they will work with for all activities.

Note: Students/early-career professionals apply individually and are then assigned into teams; they do not apply as pre-formed teams.

  • Training from leading experts on evaluation capacity building
    • In the Winter and early Spring 2024, teams and representatives from the real-world organization selected as the case site will have the opportunity to learn about evaluation capacity building and related topics with leading experts in the field. These interactive, live-streamed sessions will focus on delivering foundational material and insights on “hot” topics relevant to the forthcoming case.
    • Each team will be assigned a coach to provide them with tailored assistance as they hone their skills to prepare for the case challenge. 
  • Experiential learning to strengthen an existing organization's capacity to support high-quality evaluation practice 
    • Organizations across Canada and the US interested in strengthening their capacity to support and use high-quality evaluation are invited to apply for consideration as the 2024 case site.
    • ECB teams have the unique opportunity to apply what they learn during the ECB trainings to develop and create (yet feasible) plan that provides detailed insights for the 2024 case site about how they might strengthen their evaluation capacity given their unique context and existing capacity.
    • Organizations receive up to five plans, that they can integrate all or components of after the case challenge event.

What are the products of the case challenge?

  • On the second day of the case challenge, participating teams will be asked to deliver a 25-minute presentation in front of the panel of esteemed judges. The presentation will then be followed by a 10-minute Q&A session with the judges.
  • If desired, teams may submit additional material of no more than 5 pages to accompany their presentation.

What are the benefits for the case site organization?

  • The participating organization receives up to five tailored strategies that they can implement all, or components of, to strengthen their evaluation capacity.
  • Case site leadership and staff are welcome to attend the online ECB trainings delivered as part of this challenge.
  • Leading experts in the field of ECB will assess the organization's current evaluation capacity– organizations will better understand their current strengths and opportunity areas for improvement.  

What does the winning team…win?

  • Each member of the winning team will receive $1,000 CAD. Our hope is that team members will use their award to support their registration and travel expenses to attend the American Evaluation Association's (AEA) Annual Conference in Portland, OR (Oct 21-26, 2024) or the Canadian Evaluation Society's (CES) Annual Conference (location TBD, summer 2024). One or more representatives of the winning team may be asked to present their work at the AEA conference.

The Max Bell School of Public Policy’s Evaluation Capacity Case Challenge (EC3) is made possible by a generous donation from Dr. Sydney Duder with additional support from the Evaluation Capacity Network at the University of Alberta.

For questions contact: mbspp.casechallenge [at]


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