The Community Science Workshop Network Story – Becoming a Networked Organization

Publication: February 2014

Project: Community Science Workshop

Authors: Becky Carroll, Michelle Phillips, Mark St. John, Dawn Robles

Type: Report and Case Studies

Note: This report is published in two PDFs: one contains a report on the CSW Network and includes appendices with a statistical portrait of the CSW Network, and a summary of the metrics pilots. The second file contains the case studies of the individual CSW sites.

Download Final Evaluation Report with Appendices (pdf, 77 pages)

Download 6 Case Studies (pdf, 114 pages)


The Community Science Workshops (CSWs) with funding from the S.D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation created a network among the CSW sites in California. The goals of the CSW Network project have been to improve programs, build capacity throughout the Network, and establish new sites. Inverness Research has been the external evaluator for the Network project, continuing a relationship evaluating the Community Science Workshops that began in 1995.

The evaluation effort of Inverness Research has focused on documenting and portraying the growth and development of both the Network and individual sites, through participation in meetings and retreats, interviews with Network staff, site directors and board members, and visits to sites that included observations of programs, interviews with youth and families, and interviews with workshop staff. We have also worked closely with Network staff on developing and piloting tools for ongoing data collection–student surveys, program overview and learning environment surveys, and a family interview protocol.

The key evaluation questions that have guided our work over the past several years include the following:

  • How has the CSW Network developed and evolved?
  • How would we characterize the health of the CSW Network, and its development as a networked organization?
  • In what ways and to what extent has the Network helped create or increase capacity at the various workshop sites?
  • In what ways and to what extent has that increased capacity bolstered programming at the sites?
  • What is the impact of the bolstered programming on participating youth and families?

This report summarizes the work and contribution of the CSWs, the evolution of the CSW Network over time, and the functions of and benefits of the CSW Network as a networked organization.

Intended Audience

Afterschool program leaders, administrators and funders, Science and Math Educators and administrators, Reform Leaders, and general public.


Any and all errors are claimed by the authors of this document, Inverness Research, Inc.

Distribution Policy

Inverness Research Inc. grants permission to print and distribute copies.