Heritage Grants programme evaluation and outcomes review


HLF commissioned an independent review of the self-evaluation process and outcomes achieved for 200 completed Heritage Grants projects funded under HLF’s 3rd Strategic Plan (SP3), which ran between 2008 and 2013.

This review includes a comparative appraisal of the quality, scope and methodology of the self-evaluated reports against six evaluation criteria and the type, range and quality of activities and outcomes achieved by completed projects, including a mapping of the impact of their work onto HLF’s current framework of 14 outcomes for heritage, people and communities.

Overall just over a third, 37%, of reports were graded as good or excellent with just under two thirds, 64%, falling within the adequate or poor categories. 

Key findings

The main indicators of quality derive from how seriously the grantee had invested in the evaluation report in terms of:

  • Expertise: external consultants/organisations tended to write better quality reports.
  • Funding for evaluation: where higher amounts of expenditure had been originally allocated for evaluation, the reports tended to be of better quality.
  • Report length: longer reports which contained more explanation and more data, tended to be of better quality than the shorter reports.
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