Congratulations to ACPNS researcher Kylie Kingston, who was one of four who received a commendation upon entry to the SAGE Higher Degree Research Publication Prize. A record number of 80 entries were received this year, creating a competitive pool of applicants.
Kylie’s prize was for her paper with fellow authors ACPNS Chief Investigator Dr Craig Furneaux, Dr Laura de Zwaan, and Prof Lyn Alderman, titled ‘Avoiding the accountability ‘sham-ritual’: An agonistic approach to beneficiaries’ participation in evaluation within nonprofit organisations.’ In particular, the research presented within this paper case studies two nonprofit organisations in order to gain the perspectives of beneficiaries, staff, and board members on the participation of beneficiaries in evaluating the organisation. Findings reveal the importance of considering patterns of beneficiary engagement within the nonprofit organisation, what beneficiaries want the outcome of the evaluation to be, and the operation of pluralism at multiple levels. All of these are important so as to avoid an accountability ‘sham-ritual’, where beneficiary engagement is symbolic rather than substantive.