Gail Barrington, Ph.D.



Area of Interest

 Program evaluation, independent consulting, training, writing and mentoring

Faculty Information

Gail Vallance Barrington holds degrees from McGill University (B.A.), Carleton University (M.A.) and the University of Alberta (Ph.D. in Educational Administration). She is a Credentialed Evaluator and a certified teacher. Since starting her consulting firm in 1985, she has conducted over 130 program evaluation studies in education, health, and research. Based on her own consulting experience, she wrote her popular book, Consulting Start-up and Management: A Guide for Evaluators and Applied Researchers (SAGE, 2012). She has served on the boards of both the Canadian Evaluation Society (CES) and the American Evaluation Association (AEA). Awards include the CES Contribution to Evaluation in Canada Award (2008) and the AEA Alva and Gunnar Myrdal Award for Evaluation Practice (2016). She is a Fellow of the Certified Management Consultants of Canada (2014) and the Canadian Evaluation Society (2018). Gail has taught program evaluation and research methods to Masters’ students for many years and is an advocate for the professionalization of evaluators everywhere. She is currently co-authoring an introductory text on program evaluation for SAGE Publications.

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Featured Projects and Reports

Gail’s recent book, Consulting Start-up and Management: A Guide for Evaluators and Applied Researchers, (SAGE, 2012) has been very well received and continues to sell out at evaluation events. This is a must-read for all consultants who are considering going out on their own or for those who want to fine-tune their current business practice. The book is well-written, well-researched, and easy to read. It covers how to start a consulting practice, set fees, find work, and manage time and money. Ownership structures, business systems, contracts, insurance, and hiring sub-contractors and staff are all clearly addressed. The book provides advice and encouragement for independent practitioners and offers them a roadmap to success. As Dawn Hanson Smart commented recently in her review of the book: “Consulting Start-up and Management, while basic in the information it imparts, is a treasure, covering the many aspects of consulting that should be explored by anyone who is contemplating the leap....this is a thoughtful book that discusses the topics that readers entering consulting need to think about, pointing them in the right directions to investigate essential subjects in greater depth.” American Journal of Evaluation 2013 34(1) 132-134