OSF Disability Human Rights Evaluation

Donor: Open Society Foundation (OSF) • Timeframe: Oct. 2019–Feb. 2020

Evaluation of Open Society Foundation’s (OSF) Human Rights Initiative and Higher Education Support Program

IDP led two concurrent project evaluations focused on the efforts of OSF to advance the global field of disability rights. The evaluations sought to understand the major outcomes and impacts of OSF’s Disability Rights Scholarship and Professional Development Programs (DRSP) as well as its Disability Rights and Law Schools Project, initiatives that are focused on supporting the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) through improved legal infrastructure and representation. We employed a mixed-method approach to these studies, utilizing document review, survey data, and key informant interviews. Our findings informed OSF’s strategic planning related to ongoing and future efforts in the disability rights movement as well as, more broadly, contributed to OSF’s understanding of the effectiveness of these program models.

Project Highlights

Advancing Disability Rights Through Higher Education: Evaluation of the Disability Rights and Law Schools Project

  • Conducting a desk review and key informant interviews for five African universities, four Latin American universities, and three organizations for persons with disabilities to:
    • Synthesize the main outcomes, successes, and lessons learned of the Disability Rights and Law Schools Project and its contribution to the development of the field of disability rights on the continent—both academically and regarding its influence on the disability rights movement and advancing the rights of persons with disabilities
    • Analyze and provide a reflection, based on the outcomes of the project, on the value and influence of partnerships between universities, civil society, and local communities on advancing the project’s main goals
    • Provide recommendations, based on the findings of the review, to OSF on program design, tools, and incentives for future similar initiatives 

Pathways to Activism: Evaluation of DRSP

  • Conducting a document review, surveys of DRSP alumni and host organizations, and key informant interviews with alumni to:
    • Understand, in the context of DRSP, the various pathways to activism for young people before, during, and after participating in the program and the related implications for how the Human Rights Institute (HRI) can support youth creatively through its work
    • Harness lessons learned to understand the advantages of this funding mechanism, its value-add, and other needs that emerged during implementation, including any regional specificities