Team photo at grant writing workshop.

Team photo at grant writing workshop.

Since my last blog post, I have jumped into the deep end of process evaluation. Shifra used a human centered design methodology to create their app. (As a reminder- Shifra uses mhealth technology to connect refugees, migrants, and asylum seekers with sexual and reproductive health services in Melbourne, Australia) Human centered design prioritizes empathizing with the end user and getting a deep understanding of their lived experience, designing solutions that arise from the insights gained through empathy exercises, and then prototyping those solutions with the target population. However, most evaluation work has focused on evaluating the solutions generated rather than the process itself. In exploring how to evaluate whether Shifra engaged in a true human centered design process, I did a lot of research and talked with experts in the field including public health professors at UNC and design experts at Monash University in Melbourne.

Enjoying a sunset at the Port Campbell National Park along the great ocean road.

Enjoying a sunset at the Port Campbell National Park along the great ocean road.

I ended up creating a checklist of requisite steps involved in a human centered design process and interviewed refugee end users, developers, and subject matter experts who all contributed to the creation of the app. My next step is to review Shifra’s records to help me understand the process and the steps they took. Then I’ll analyze the interviews to help me understand different co-designers’ experiences creating the app. Finally, I’ll synthesize the results and write up my findings. (Hello master’s paper!)

Team farewell dinner.

Team farewell dinner.

Throughout this evaluation process, I have been so impressed by Shifra staff’s openness and desire to learn from their experiences. They truly adopt several mindsets of human centered design: to learn from failure, embrace curiosity, and stay optimistic. I am so thankful for the chance to learn from this organization and I look forward to staying in touch with them in the future. 🙂

Snuggling a 2 year old baby kangaroo at an airbnb along the great ocean road.

Snuggling a 2 year old baby kangaroo at an airbnb along the great ocean road.

-Jess