Introducing the Eval Central Presentation Room


So I was reading tweets by @c_camman and @EvaluationMaven It occurred to me that I have a Crowdcast room license that I barely use. So why not turn it into a presentation room.

Next step I think, a call for presentations.



Presentation Concept:
I’ll call it, the 10 and 10 presentation series

30 Minute Presentation Block

First 10 Minutes - Presentation (can have slides or can be super informal)
Second 10 Minutes - Participant Q&A
The other 10 Minutes - Introductions/Announcements/Because something will make this start late/One of the two ten minute things will probably run over.



Sounds just like the old AEA Coffee Breaks which I haven’t seen done for a while. I loved them. I think it’s a great idea.


I think it’s a great idea! I’d love to both attend and present.


I like the direction of this! I’d be interested in seeing something that’s more participatory and interactive myself–what if people nominated topics/conversation starters for conversations they’d like to be in with other evaluation folks and then hosted those for anyone who wanted to join? (I’m thinking about an Open Space/Unconference kind of design, but maybe distributed chronologically?) Give folks a shared Google doc template to harvest what the conversation surfaces and then we’re generating learning. I’m not really familiar with crowdcast as a platform though, so I don’t know what it offers in that regard!


I am a start up team member in a group called “Society of genders professional”. We have Gender Cafe from time to time. We offer 5 minutes introduction, then we host three speakers sometime for 5 minutes each, and then attendees are separated into breakout rooms to discuss a specific topic. This is done via zoom. The breakout rooms turns them into interactive sessions where everyone speak


I would also love to participate when you have more solid idea on the format


Oooh, I like where this is headed.

@EvaluationMaven you are totally right, the original format I proposed does sound a lot like a coffee break. Why did AEA stop doing those?

@RobynMcLean whatever format this takes, would love to have you participate/present

@c_camman interesting, an unconference webinar series (unwebinar?). Definitely would love to do something collaborative/participatory.

I think it needs to be more than a topic suggestion/nomination/vote though. There needs to be a person, or persons, nominated (or self-nominated) to act as lead topic discussant/instigator for each ‘unwebinar’ (yeah, I’m going to use that). I can then play host and support the technical needs of the discussion.

@Hayat.Askar that’s also a nice model, takes a little more work to organize a set of speakers then initiate the breakout rooms. And you need to get a large enough audience interested in conversation to require the breakouts. But I have a Zoom account too so it is possible.

What you get from Crowdcast compared to Zoom (which is also a favorite of mine, and I use it for most things)

  • Crowdcast comes with landing pages/interesting replay options/and better post-video playback.

  • Crowdcast boosts the medium participation level as the chat function is far more prominent/easy to use and see. In other words it lets the quiet participants and quasi lurkers participate even if they can’t fully participate on video.

  • It’s easy to bring people in and out of focus depending on who is speaking at the time. Participants can ask for a speaking role then be put on camera. It kind of has a way of giving people the floor to lead the discussion.

  • All told, for this particular situation, Crowdcast might be the best starting point. But if it doesn’t seem like it’s working well for the group, Zoom is not a bad backup at all.


Also, because we’re building out from an existing forum, we can create an evalcentral topic thread for all unwebinar discussions. Relevant playback links and follow-up conversation can naturally fall back to the thread.


FYI, this is the platform we used for the 2016 Systems in Eval UnConference:


Thanks for your generous offers @clysy and @c_camman. This would be a great way to explore topics that benefit from dialogue before becoming a blog post, podcast or paper. It would also be great for sharing interesting ideas - discussing ideas from a new book or post, or reflecting on common challenges and what we can learn from them. I agree with Carolyn that unstructured can be good (as long as someone knows how to work the technology) but it would help if someone has thought a bit about the topic and can step in to prompt or facilitate discussion if people are unsure where to start with an unframed topic.