Are we making a difference? Robust approaches to planning, monitoring and achieving outcomes

On March 11th, 2020, the KTE COP Toronto Chapter hosted a speaking event with Dr. Sarah Morton, Director, Outcome Focus and Honorary Fellow, University of Edinburgh.

Watch the webinar recording and download the presentation slides.

About the Presentation

Increasingly organizations and services are asked to deliver better outcomes to the people and communities they serve. Research organizations are also asked to demonstrate how their research contributes to society. However, this is often done without full consideration of what outcomes are important, nor how they can be meaningfully assessed.

This presentation will explore what is meant by outcomes, how to meaningfully plan, monitor, reflect and assess outcomes, and the challenges of gathering and combining the diverse evidence needed to assess progress towards outcomes. The presentation builds on Sarah’s long experience in assessing outcomes, and recent work to develop support systems for organisations seeking to work and report in an outcome-focused way.

About the speaker

Dr Sarah Morton is Director, Matter of Focus and Honorary Fellow, University of Edinburgh.

Sarah is internationally recognized for her work developing innovative approaches to ensure that decision-makers have access to the best evidence for taking organisations, policies and practices forward. She has done this through creating channels for getting research into the real world (at the Centre for Research on Families and Relationships), broadening understanding of the interaction between research, policy and practice ( through work with UNICEF, What Work Scotland and other research), and working alongside organisations to use evidence for improving services for the families and communities they serve (with Healthcare Improvement Scotland, Starcatchers, The Scottish Book Trust, Shelter Scotland and others). Sarah has pioneered a participatory approach to using contribution analysis to understand and achieve outcomes.

Sarah’s background is in social sciences and participation. She has a degree in Sociology, and Masters degree in Community Education and Social Policy by Research, and a PhD in Social Policy. She held a variety of networking, policy development and research roles in the voluntary sector with Children in Scotland, Learning Link Scotland and the Association of Chief Officers of Scottish Voluntary Organisations. She has ten years experience of tutoring adult learners in community settings and with the Open University. She worked in Knowledge exchange at the University of Edinburgh from 2001-2017.

You can contact Sarah Morton at