Advocacy Impact Evaluation

This paper from Michael Quinn Patton presents a retrospective case study in which the  the potential influence of judicial advocacy efforts targeted at the Supreme Court is assessed.

The intervention’s impact was evaluated using evidence gathered through fieldwork (interviews, document analysis, detailed review of the Court arguments and decision, news analysis, and the documentation of the campaign itself), aiming at eliminating alternative or rival explanations until the most valid explanation remained (i.e. using forensic option or “modus operandi” approach). Patton believes that advocacy evaluation should be utilisation-focused. That means focusing the evaluation on intended use by intended users, and evaluating the evaluation by that standard.


  • Introduction
  • First, Do No Harm
  • GEM Case Study Option
  • The Case Study as Evaluation Evidence
  • A Model for Effective Judicial Influence
  • Integrated Systems Theory of Change
  • Concluding Comments
  • References
  • Figure 6. Judicial influence theory of change


Patton, M. Q. (2008). Advocacy impact evaluation. Journal of MultiDisciplinary Evaluation, 5(9), 1-10.

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Anonymous's picture

The resource link appears to be outdated/ no longer functional. It would be great to have an updated link to this resource, and any other resources you can provide on the Do No Harm Audit approach. Thank you!

Nick Herft's picture
Nick Herft

Hi Claire,

I've updated the link. Hope you find this useful.


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