Understanding and Using Contribution Analysis


maynechaytorContribution analysis is especially relevant in settings where there are multiple interventions contributing to a social problem. This applies to most publicly funded programs. The workshop will discuss the theory of contribution analysis and briefly review the literature, especially the findings from Evaluation 18(3) 2012, devoted to contribution analysis. The workshop will build on participants’ knowledge and experience with theories of change to ensure they have the theory necessary to proceed with contribution analysis. We will review the steps necessary to develop and implement contribution analysis. Participants will be encouraged to apply contribution analysis. The benefits and challenges in applying contribution analysis will be discussed. The workshop will result in advancing the theory of contribution analysis to practice.


Dr. Kaireen Chaytor, Dalhousie University and Dr. John Mayne, independent advisor

Dr. Kaireen Chaytor has been teaching program evaluation at Dalhousie University and in workplace settings for several years. She has worked with many non-profits providing oversight for their evaluation efforts. She has taught and promoted the use of contribution analysis, and has worked with John Mayne applying this approach in a complex setting. Kaireen serves on the credentialing board for the Canadian Evaluation Society and is a Fellow of the Canadian Evaluation Society.

Dr. John Mayne is an independent advisor on public sector performance. He has been working with a number of government, NGOs and international organizations in various jurisdictions, on results management, evaluation and accountability issues. He has authored numerous articles and reports, including several on theories of change and contribution analysis (which he originated), and co-edited seven books. In 2006, he was made a Canadian Evaluation Society Fellow.






Participants must understand and have used program theory and theory of change.


Sunday May 24 from 9:00  am to 12 :00 pm

Link to CES competencies for evaluators

  • Understands the knowledge base of evaluation (theories, models, types, methods and tools)
  • Specifies program theory
  • Determines the purpose for the evaluation
  • Determines program evaluability
  • Develops evaluation designs