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ERIC Number: EJ791553
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 15
ISSN: ISSN-1097-6736
Culturally Competent Evaluation in Indian Country
LaFrance, Joan
New Directions for Evaluation, n102 p39-50 Sum 2004
Given the rich tapestry of tribal cultures in the United States, it is presumptuous to assume that any evaluator, whether an Alaskan Native or a member of an American Indian tribe (or a non-Indian), can understand the culture of every group. Rather than trying to master multiple cultural specificities, the goal of a competent evaluator, especially in Indian Country, should be to actively seek cultural grounding through the ongoing processes of appreciating the role of tribal sovereignty, seeking knowledge of the particular community, building relationships, and reflecting on methodological practices. This article is an opportunity for discourse and reflection on these many levels. It discusses the importance of understanding the implications of sovereignty when working in Indian Country, the significance of an emerging indigenous framework for evaluation, Indian self-determination in setting the research and evaluation agenda, and finally particular methodological approaches the author finds useful in her evaluation practice. For this discussion, the author uses the term "Indian Country" to describe the collection of tribal nations and Alaskan native communities that occupy a shared homeland and live in culturally bounded communities. The term "indigenous" refers to the first native residents of lands that have been taken over by outsider populations--specifically, Indian tribes and Alaskan Natives in North and South America, and the Pacific.
Jossey Bass. Available from John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030-5774. Tel: 800-825-7550; Tel: 201-748-6645; Fax: 201-748-6021; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A