The solution for evaluating complex, collaborative long-term change

Your place-based systems change programme is addressing complex issues like deprivation, homelessness, or youth safety but how do you track and understand the change you’re making?

Our place-based and systems change evaluation model can prove the impact of your initiative on a place, a system, or the population at large.

Renaisi’s solution sits in the middle of traditional and developmental evaluation. It acknowledges the very real challenges of demonstrating value for money, while enabling you to capture, document and respond to emerging changes.

Informed by our learning from 70 different places and inspired by the Australian consultancy, Clear Horizon, our model is designed for UK needs we’ve worked in, our model defines what to measure, when, and how long each phase will take – or how and when the money is spent. It is

An arrow plotting the phases of place-based systems change journey

How we help

Combining Renaisi’s wealth of experience in developmental learning and evaluation approaches with ‘realist evaluation’ methods, such as contribution analysis to assess the causal links between a programme and the outcomes, adds rigour that will appeal to funders – without losing the critical learning about the process.

The model embeds participatory and inclusive methods. For example, by involving local people in collective visioning, analysis and learning to ensure that research is culturally sensitive, relevant and meaningful for the people who live there.

It is also proportionate because it places a greater focus on outcomes for the place, the system and the population rather than the individuals supported by specific interventions.

We use a whole range of methods, including:

  • Reviewing local data and statistics around the particular area of focus
  • Root cause mapping with local people to determine the biggest issues
  • Systems mapping with stakeholders to understand how effectively people in places and systems are working together
  • Interviewing local residents and local stakeholders about their experiences
  • Observing changes to relationships / power dynamics
  • Collective learning sessions
  • Value for money assessments
  • Measuring public perceptions
  • Identifying policy changes

Place-based and systems change evaluation in action

Our experience includes small and large-scale programmes such as Big Local’s Wick Award project in Hackney, the DCMS and Lottery-funded Place Based Social Action programme, Power to Change’s Empowering Places programme, and the Health Foundation’s ‘Economies for Healthier Lives’ programme.

Recently completed projects include:

We are working in partnership with Homerton Hospital to evaluate their City and Hackney Neighbourhoods programme using this solution. Read more about that here.

You can find out more about Renaisi’s considerable experience delivering and evaluating place- and systems-based change in our timeline of place-based work.


If you want to know more about our model or just have a chat about your place-based or systems change evaluation contact Mylene Pacot.

Beth Stout

Meet our team

Lily O’Flynn

Principal Consultant for Place-based Evaluation & Learning (on parental leave mid-November 23 – September 24)

Beth Stout

Associate Director of Place & Systemic Change