Five-Year Departmental Evaluation Plan 2023-2024 to 2027-2028 (2024)

June 2023
ISC Evaluation

PDF Version (457 KB, 28 Pages)

Table of contents

  • List of Acronyms and Abbreviations
  • Deputy Head confirmation note
  • 1.0 Introduction
  • 2.0 Planning context
    • 2.1 Departmental mandate and vision
    • 2.2 ISC Evaluation - Vision
    • 2.3 ISC Evaluation innovation projects and other priorities
  • 3.0 The year in review
    • 3.1 Progress achieved in 2022–2023
  • 4.0 The five-year plan
    • 4.1 Scope of Work
    • 4.2 Program structures
    • 4.3 Evaluation planning methodology
    • 4.4 Planned spending
    • 4.5 COVID–19 emergency funds
    • 4.6 Coverage
    • 4.7 Resources
    • 4.8 Challenges
    • 4.9 Implementing the plan
  • 5.0 Five-year schedule of evaluations
  • Appendix A – Departmental Results Framework and Program Inventory 2023–2024

List of Acronyms and Abbreviations

Assistant Deputy Minister
Audit and Assurance Services Branch
Chief Finance, Results, and Delivery Officer
Child and Family Services Reform
Crown‑Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada
Departmental Results Framework
Education and Social Development Programs and Partnerships
Financial Administration Act
First Nations and Inuit Health Branch
Full-Time Equivalents
GBA Plus
Gender-based Analysis Plus
Gs & Cs
Grants and Contributions
Indigenous Services Canada
Lands and Economic Development
Management Response and Action Plan
Performance Measurement and Evaluation Committee
Regional Operations
Senior Management Committee
Strategic Policy and Partnerships
Treaties and Aboriginal Government
Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat
United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

Deputy Head confirmation note

I approve the Departmental Evaluation Plan for Indigenous Services Canada for the fiscal years 2023–24 to 2027–28, which I submit to the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat as required by the Policy on Results.

I confirm that the following evaluation coverage requirements are met and reflected in this

five-year plan:

  • Plans for evaluation of all ongoing programs of grants and contributions with five year average actual expenditures of $5 million or greater per year;
  • Meets the requirements of the Mandatory Procedures for Evaluation; and
  • Supports the requirements of the expenditure management system, including, as applicable, Memoranda to Cabinet, Treasury Board Submissions, and resource alignment reviews.

I will ensure that this plan is updated annually and will provide information about its implementation to the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat, as required.

Original signed on ___________, 2024, by:

Gina Wilson
Deputy Minister
Indigenous Services Canada

1.0 Introduction

This document presents the Five-Year Departmental Evaluation Plan ("the Plan") for Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) covering fiscal years 2023–24 to 2027–28. The development of this Plan adheres to the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat (TBS) Policy on Results (2016) under which the federal evaluation function is called upon to provide evidence that helps the Government of Canada demonstrate that its spending contributes to results that matter to Canadians. This five-year rolling Plan has been informed by an annual planning exercise that identifies the timing of the individual evaluations.

The primary purpose of the Plan is to help the Deputy Minister ensure that credible, timely and neutral information on the ongoing relevance and performance of planned spending and ongoing programs of grants and contributions is available to support evidence based decision-making.

The Plan also:

  • Provides an opportunity to align evaluations to ensure that the information needs of the Department and other evaluation users (e.g., Indigenous partners and other government departments) are being met;
  • Helps ensure that evaluations supporting program redesign and transformation are planned and completed in advance of shifting priorities and program renewal dates;
  • Outlines the evaluation innovation work in the context of service transfer and efforts to build internal and external evaluation capacity.
  • Initiates regular communication and consensus-building on evaluation needs and priorities across the Department;
  • Provides central agencies with advanced notice of when evaluations will be available to inform their work (e.g., in support of Memoranda to Cabinet, Treasury Board Submissions, etc.);
  • Allows departmental units responsible for the development of the Departmental Plan and the Departmental Results Reports, as well as other groups engaged in strategic planning and reporting activities, to identify when evaluations will be available to inform their work; and
  • Ensures transparency with partners and the general public regarding availability of evaluation results, planned evaluations and program spending. Moreover, the Plan serves as an important tool for the Department's Head of Evaluation and ISC Evaluation to manage project workflow and plan the activities of its human and financial resources.

2.0 Planning context

In 2016 the Government of Canada adopted and committed to the implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP)Footnote 1. The need to fully implement the rights enshrined within UNDRIP has been echoed by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action, the Final Report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, and the most recent Mandate Letter to the Minister of Indigenous Services Canada.

In seeking to fulfill the department's mandate, Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) is working towards fundamental change in how the rights and needs of Indigenous Peoples and communities are met by the Government of Canada, while putting the emphasis on the right of self-determination. Indigenous control over service design and delivery is essential to ensuring high-quality, culturally relevant services - services that ultimately will lead to better socio-economic outcomes for First Nations, Inuit and Métis individuals, families and communities. This shift will not happen overnight but gradual advances in individual program and service areas are necessary to move us forward on this principle. The expectation is that ISC will, amongst other operating principles, recognize and promote Indigenous ways of knowing, being and doing, as well as collaborating closely with Indigenous Peoples and partners.

2.1 Departmental mandate and vision

ISC's mandate is to work with First Nations, Inuit and Métis to:

  • improve access to high-quality services
  • improve well-being in Indigenous communities across Canada
  • support Indigenous Peoples in assuming control of the delivery of services at the pace and in the ways they choose

ISC envisions itself as being a trusted partner that respects Indigenous perspectives and supports First Nations, Inuit and Métis in controlling the delivery of high-quality services for healthy, prosperous and thriving communities.

The ISC mandate and vision, inspired by the Department of Indigenous Services Act, and the Department's Strategic Plan, set the foundation for the evaluation function's strategic and operating context and priorities. ISC Evaluation acts as a catalyst for meaningful change as the department and partners work together to reform and re-design programs for improved service delivery and gradual transfer of control of services to Indigenous partners. More broadly, the evaluation function aims to work collaboratively with Indigenous Peoples and organizations to influence and shift ISC's internal, organizational culture in favour of becoming more centered on Indigenous knowledge systems and worldviews.

2.2 ISC Evaluation - Vision

The role of ISC Evaluation is to offer robust, timely and meaningful evidence to help shape and support the re-design of the Department's policies and programs, and to inform and influence improved service delivery and the transfer of services to Indigenous partners and contributes to the broader the Government of Canada's commitments to advance reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples.

ISC Evaluation is transforming its practice to deliver on the following three primary objectives:

  1. Ensure that evaluations are grounded in an understanding of the colonial history of the department and co-develop, adapt, and implement evaluation methods and approaches with Indigenous Peoples and partners that are more centered on Indigenous worldviews and knowledge systems;
  2. Explore and implement ways to support Indigenous evaluation capacity and advance Indigenous-led evaluation functions in the context of gradual transfer of services to Indigenous partners and peoples;
  3. Deliver and manage core work on program evaluations and activities further to the TBS Policy on Results (2016) and the Financial Administration Act (FAA);

2.3 ISC Evaluation innovation projects and other priorities

Co-development and Co-creation with Indigenous Partners

ISC Evaluation is increasingly emphasizing models of co-development and co-creation with Indigenous partners in all evaluation projects. In the short- to medium-term, this includes ways to integrate Indigenous evaluation expertise, knowledge, world views and/or Indigenous capacity development at key points in evaluations (planning, methodology, data collections, and development of findings and recommendations). In the long-term, the ultimate goal is to support the establishment of Indigenous evaluation functions outside of government.

In general, the evaluation innovation projects have the following objectives:

  • To support Indigenous evaluators and experts, research institutes, think tanks, and/or organizations to advance the implementation of ISC program evaluations with a focus on service transfer.
  • To support Indigenous organizations to strengthen their capacity to implement program evaluations, enhance and coordinate Indigenous policy and evaluation networks, and organize the Indigenous policy and evaluation field (e.g., conferences, a center of excellence, etc.)
  • To partner with Indigenous evaluators, researchers, think tanks, and/or organizations to advance evaluations tools, guides, policies, strategies and other evaluative practices that integrate Indigenous knowledge and worldviews.

In this context, ISC Evaluation continues to support two multi-year evaluation innovation projects with Indigenous partners.

Project A: Centering Indigenous Worldviews within Evaluation Frameworks

Commonly used methodologies for program evaluations are often rooted in Westernized, positivist perspectives that do not incorporate the diversity and vibrancy of Indigenous nations, peoples, cultures, worldviews and knowledge systems. These types of evaluation frameworks have not taken into account Indigenous worldviews when evaluating federal programming, policy and investment. Evaluation frameworks today need to focus on the importance of capacity strengthening, developing relationships based on respect, trust, humility and reciprocity, and the historical, socio-economic conditions and distinction of nations. As Indigenous nations are moving towards self-determination, evaluation is a critical collaborative tool to strengthen relationships, expand language, philosophy and methods and advance Indigenous-led evaluation criteria. The Department is supporting exploratory research for an evaluation project called Centering Indigenous Worldviews within Evaluation Frameworks, which is a partnership between ISC Evaluation and the Indigenomics Institute. This project has been expanded to provide a framework for an evaluation approach that emphasizes overall community-determined well-being and the primacy of relationships, co-designed processes, and multiple mandates. The project is rooted in a dynamic theory of living that considers the complexity of historical, current and evolving relationships and mandates with Indigenous Nations. The framework developed in this project will be prototyped to the Evaluation of the Economic Development and Capacity Readiness program.

Project B: Strengthening Indigenous Evaluation Frameworks and Practice

ISC Evaluation has partnered with Johnston Research Inc. on an exploratory project entitled Strengthening Indigenous Evaluation Frameworks and Practice which aims to build dynamic evaluation tools that are relevant and appropriate for ISC, Indigenous partners and communities. Rooted in the notion that Indigenous Peoples have embedded evaluation into their worldviews and knowledge systems, this project advances a conceptual framework called Awakening the Journey Vision & Model that attempts to overcome the colonial underpinnings of the typical Western logic models. The Awakening the Journey framework has three pillars (Spirit, Relationships and Process) that support a community-centred understanding of priorities, needs, change and visions for the future over a holistic view of time (past, present, transition/evaluation-phase, and future). In order to learn from experience and improve ISC Evaluation's use of this approach, the evaluation of the Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples program is currently prototyping the Awakening the Journey framework, with its terms of reference, methodology, data analysis and findings being framed by this approach. Ensuring the evaluation remains grounded in Indigenous languages, cultures, and values, a pilot translation project will see high-level evaluation products translated into a range of Indigenous languagesFootnote 2. The final report for this evaluation is anticipated by 2024.

Clustering Evaluations

ISC Evaluation sees clustering evaluations as an effective method to determine how programs are working together and what the overall impact of multiple programs is within communities. The cluster approach means the implicated programs are evaluated as a system rather than at the detailed and programmatic level which has been past practice. Evaluating programs in a cluster provides a more holistic view of the interrelationships between and among programs and the broader impacts of the clustered programs on communities. Additionally, breaking down silos in evaluation work has been an ongoing and important theme with Indigenous partners. New and emerging Indigenous-led evaluation frameworks emphasize holistic evaluation approaches as an important way to uncover systemic barriers and to have greater impacts on improving overall community well-being.

The clustering approach also aligns more closely with the structure of the recently updated 2023–24 Departmental (ISC) Results Framework (DRF) that supports a single 'Core Responsibility' focusing "Indigenous Well-being and Self-determination". The new structure shifts the organization of the department's programs from service delivery types into those that support outcomes for Indigenous Peoples and communities—aligning with the department's mandate and vision to support and empower Indigenous Peoples to independently deliver services and address socio-economic conditions in their communities.

The implementation of the new Departmental Results Framework (DRF) will demonstrate interdependencies across Service Areas that influence socio-economic outcomes (e.g., the social determinants of health). It will provide better alignment for programs that share common objectives, outputs, and recipients (e.g., home and long-term care, infrastructure programs, etc.), improved performance measurement, and a coordinated approach to departmental engagement by Service Area. It will also simplify engagement with the goal of facilitating greater co-development and direction from partners. Service Areas are emphasized as the priority to ensure that service transfer can be achieved through the many forms it may take both at the community and regional, and at times, national level. For the 2023–2024 year, priorities are linked to six Service Areas: Health, Children and Families, Education, Infrastructure and Environments, Economic Development, and Governance.

In general, the conduct of cluster evaluations requires unique yet mixed sets of skills, including expertise in systems and complexity theory, evaluation theory, Indigenous cultural competencies, and to some extent, expertise in the program itself and in other administrative/ organizational system-level domains (e.g., HR, Financial, data, etc.). The challenge is that, in many cases, the department's programs were not designed or implemented in a systemic way. Due to this complexity, additional effort is required in the planning and co-development phase. While cluster approaches offer some economies such as common frameworks, a generic theory of change, and the development of common interview guides and data collection tools, this approach does require more time to do as well as substantial financial and human resources.

ISC Evaluation is confident that clustering evaluations is an important approach going forward as it is better aligned with Indigenous partners' feedback on evaluation approaches as well as the closer alignment with the new departmental DRF. It is recognized that integrating this new approach will take a couple of years as methodologies are refined and as the planning process evolves year over year, but clustering will be increasingly integrated into the ISC Evaluation practice.

Finally, while cluster evaluations focus on a system, not on individual programs, they still provide a "light touch" evaluation on each program in the cluster and provide high level details on individual program relevance and performance. It is important to also note that this approach does not preclude the conduct of individual program evaluations at the sub- and sub-sub levels as may be determined by the priorities and needs of the department and partners. It is expected that many sub-programs will continue to be individually evaluated.

Current examples:

The Cluster of Health Infrastructure Service for First Nations and Inuit
ISC Evaluation initiated a new method to evaluate six of ISC's health programs by clustering the programs into a single evaluation in order to take a holistic view of how the multiple programs work in concert to improve health infrastructure for First Nations and Inuit communities. The Cluster Evaluation of Health Infrastructure Support for First Nations and Inuit includes: Health Planning and Quality Management; Health Services Integration Fund; Quality Improvement and Accreditation Program; Health Facilities; e-Health Infostructure; and Health Human Resources. British Columbia Tripartite Relations have been used to inform best practices and lessons learned in the cluster evaluation. The evaluation took a broad strategic approach, and sought to assess whether the mix of "health system infrastructure programs" meets the current needs of Indigenous communities, supports the Canadian Patient Safety Framework, and aligns with the Department's mandate of transformation in the short term and the transfer of programs to Indigenous Peoples in the long term. The final report for this evaluation is anticipated by 2024.

Grouping of Infrastructure Evaluations
While not being identified as a formal clustering approach, ISC Evaluation applied an integrated approach in the conduct of three concurrent infrastructure-related evaluations, i.e., Evaluation of the On-Reserve Housing Program, Evaluation of the Education Facilities Program, and Evaluation of the Other Community Infrastructure and Activities Program. The design of the methodologies and development of the evaluation instruments took into consideration the similarities and linkages among the three programs. The data collection activities of the three evaluations were coordinated and integrated to the extent possible to reduce engagement fatigue among First Nations communities. As a result of the integrated approach, ISC Evaluation was able to identify crosscutting themes across the evaluations and provide a more holistic and systemic view of the needs, challenges and solutions in relation to the three infrastructure programs.

Crosscutting themes of enquiry in strategic/priority areas

The Government of Canada's commitment to advance reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples underpins all of ISC Evaluation's work and activities as reflected in the ISC Evaluation's vison and key objectives. However, there are a number of other lenses which are added to evaluation frameworks that are also important to inform and influence current and future service delivery and the gradual transfer of services to Indigenous partners. These other cross-cutting themes include: Service Transfer; Gender-Based Analysis (GBA) Plus; Indigenous Children and Families; Impacts of COVID–19; and Climate Change.

Service Transfer: One of the primary goals of ISC is to support Indigenous Peoples in assuming control of the delivery of services. ISC Evaluation has an important role to play in terms of informing program change and re-design that supports the transfer of control. As such, ISC evaluations are including standard lines of enquiry in all program evaluations that assess progress towards service transfer; barriers and opportunities to service transfer; and perspectives on service transfer readiness.

GBA Plus: GBA Plus provides a rigorous method for developing, implementing, monitoring and evaluating initiatives to provide equal outcomes, with an emphasis on inclusiveness and reaching those marginalized due to a combination of social norms and attitudes; institutional power structures; policies and practices that together can limit access to opportunities.

GBA Plus is an intersectional analysis – a framework for understanding how aspects of a person's identity combine to create different modes of discrimination and privilege. In doing GBA Plus, many factors should be considered. The needs and experiences of different groups of people are influenced by intersecting parts of their identity, the context they are in and their lived experiences. All federal government organizations are directed to apply GBA Plus as part of all decision-making processes.

ISC Evaluators are actively applying the GBA Plus approach in their work, weaving its processes into evaluations to understand how diverse groups of people may be affected differently by ISC policies and programs. To the extent possible, ISC evaluators are applying an intersectional, distinctions-based lens to the whole evaluation cycle, starting at the design phase, through data collection and analyses, and in the generation of findings and recommendations. For example, in the case of the Indigenous Entrepreneurship and Business Development program evaluation, a distinctions-based lens was applied to the designing of the evaluation Technical Advisory Committee to ensure that representation on the committee reflects the diverse knowledge and experience of partners involved in the program. Indigenous perspectives in research and evaluation typically involve an acknowledgment of intersectionality and differential impacts, and further communications between the Government of Canada and Indigenous partners and communities could illuminate new ways to work these perspectives into departmental GBA Plus processes.

Indigenous Children and Families: Most programming at ISC touch the well-being of Indigenous children and families either directly or indirectly. In the effort to emphasize and adopt more child- and family-centered evaluation approaches, lines of enquiry on the impacts of the programming on Indigenous children and families are systematically added to all ISC program evaluations.

Impacts of COVID–19: The consequences of the worldwide COVID–19 pandemic had significant impacts on the delivery of ISC programming as travel restrictions were put in place and many Indigenous communities declared a state of emergency, allowing only limited access for essential functions and remaining closed to outside visitors for several months. In addition, regional and community partners faced enormous workload challenges due to the pandemic and the multiple effects across Canada. These challenges persisted well into 2022. ISC Evaluation is looking at preliminary impacts in each evaluation as a discrete line of enquiry, to investigate lessons learned on programming activities.

Climate Change: It is well understood that Canada's changing climate exacerbates existing challenges and health stressors for Indigenous Peoples in Canada, including wildfires, permafrost thaw, changing wildlife patterns, diminishing access to traditional food sources, and flooding. ISC Evaluation seeks to better understand how Inuit, First Nations and Métis people are experiencing climate change by collecting preliminary and/or cursory information on climate change impacts in Indigenous communities as a cross-cutting theme in all of its evaluations.

Independent Third-Party Evaluation for ISC Reform and Child and Family Services Suite of Evaluations

Evaluation work related to child and family welfare has expanded substantially and has become increasingly elaborate in response to the Indigenous child and family services reform agenda, including the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) order of January 26, 2016, that found Canada had engaged in discriminatory conduct in relation to the First Nations Child and Family Services program. As a result, Canada was ordered to cease its discriminatory practices and reform the Program, and also to cease applying a narrow definition of Jordan's Principle and to take measures to immediately implement its full meaning and scope.

In December of 2021, Canada agreed with the other parties to the CHRT matter to an Agreement in Principle on long-term reform and later obtained a corresponding order, 2022CHRT8, on the consent of Canada and the Parties. Included in the 2022CHRT8 order was a requirement related to the reform of ISC that Canada work with the Parties to establish an Expert Advisory Committee (EAC) within 60 days of the order to develop and oversee the implementation of an evidence-informed work plan to prevent the recurrence of discrimination.

Following this order, Canada, the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society and the Assembly of First Nations worked together to identify experts from across the country to form the EAC. It is comprised of academics and specialists, with lived experience and expertise in First Nations child and family services; Indigenous health, mental health and addiction; Government of Canada expertise; Indigenous law; Indigenous culture and heritage; Indigenous history in Canada; participatory and culturally sensitive evaluation; and Indigenous research and ways of knowing. The Committee is advising on the design and implementation of an independent third-party evaluation to identify and provide recommendations to redress internal departmental processes, procedures and practices that contribute to the discrimination identified by the CHRT. These measures will be complemented by mandatory staff training and revisions in performance metrics for staff that affirm non-discrimination.

In addition, and over the short and medium term (next five years), ISC Evaluation will complete a suite of large and complex evaluation projects, some of which are in progress: a literature review and synthesis report informing the third-party evaluation for ISC Reform; an evaluation framework for the independent third-party evaluation for ISC Reform; a synthesis report of the substantive reports and studies conducted on the First Nations Child and Family Services Program since 2015; and, evaluations of the other Child and Family Services-related programs and initiatives.

Ongoing engagement and Indigenous evaluation capacity

Engagement approaches can be expected to vary by evaluation project as some programs have well-established engagement protocols with national Indigenous organizations, regional Indigenous organizations, Indigenous technical/manager working groups, and communities while others do not. ISC Evaluation works with individual programs to determine best approaches for engagement while at the same time is exploring opportunities with Indigenous experts in the evaluation community and/or the private, academic and not-for-profit sectors. ISC Evaluation is also exploring the adoption of distinctions-based evaluation approaches and discussions with national Indigenous organizations are ongoing.

In general, ISC Evaluation has a number of engagement practices that enable and advance Indigenous evaluation involvement:

  • Establishing working groups or advisory committees that include internal and external subject matter experts and community members. The main purpose of these working groups is to ensure evaluations are undertaken in a culturally responsive and appropriate manner, and they produce meaningful results that are oriented on Indigenous worldviews and perspectives;
  • Travelling to Indigenous communities for engagement and data collection rooted in ceremony, respect, and reciprocity, as defined by each participating community;
  • Hiring Indigenous-led evaluation consulting firms;
  • Working with partners to achieve high Indigenous/community representation in data collection activities (focus groups, surveys, informant interviews) while taking into consideration Indigenous principles of data sovereignty;
  • Seeking guidance from Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers throughout the evaluation journey, where possible; and
  • Bringing Indigenous partners to co-present to Senior Management at critical stages of the evaluation.

As an example, an Education Facilities Evaluation Advisory Committee has been established, of which half of the participants are First Nations members and First Nations organizations external to the Department. The Committee meeting is a platform for advice from the perspectives of First Nations stakeholders at major evaluation milestones. The process continues to promote exposure of external stakeholders to the evaluation function and develop relationships amongst ISC Evaluation and various communities and organizations – even beyond the committee itself. While ongoing, the Committee is expected to greatly contribute to the success of recruiting participants for the evaluation, the cultural appropriateness of the findings, and the relevance of the products to diverse stakeholders. Equally, lessons learned from the complex process of member selection can be used to inform future advisory committees.

Corporate advice and management practice

ISC Evaluation provides ongoing advice to support the development of Treasury Board Submissions and Memoranda to Cabinet to ensure evaluation evidence is represented and used appropriately, that plans for future evaluations are properly referenced, and to provide high level commentary and advice on the Department's Performance Information Profiles. The Directorate also provides annual input into the Departmental Plan, the Departmental Results Report, as well as to the corporate risk and business planning processes. ISC Evaluation participates in the regular Neutral Assessment exercise and the annual TBS Capacity Survey Report, and also ensures the quality of published documents.

ISC Evaluation's Management Response and Action Plan (MRAP) process and tracking tools continue to evolve. The interactive database ISC Evaluation developed to store and structure detailed data for each MRAP continues to provide aggregate information on the status of MRAPs from a departmental, sector, or program level and for different aspects of the MRAP (such as recommendations, action items, and timelines). ISC Evaluation works closely with Programs to develop sound and robust MRAPs which are updated on a quarterly basis and tabled at the ISC Performance Measurement and Evaluation Committee twice annually. This database helps ISC Evaluation monitor progress made in addressing evaluation report recommendations and to ensure commitments are met and program improvements are made. However, the potential of the database goes beyond the tracking, monitoring and reporting of MRAPs. For example, from an analytical perspective, it can be mined by using "text" identification and coding methods to uncover hidden insights regarding common or systemic program performance issues and barriers from a cross-sectoral or horizontal perspective. The MRAP tracker and process has become a foundational tool for the practice management function which also supports the TBS Capacity Survey and recently, ISC Evaluation (Practice Management MRAP team) launched an interdepartmental outreach on best practices for monitoring the implementation and completion of MRAPs. Further, the Department's Results Delivery Unit (Risk and Management Practices) has found this tool excellent for its own tracking and reporting needs (tracking MAF, Risk mitigation action plans, Management Practices activities, etc.) within the Unit. With the other government evaluation functions indicating that it was a best practice across the federal evaluation community, this has led to the creation of an interdepartmental Evaluation MRAP working group that meets on an ad-hoc basis.

In terms of publishing evaluation reports, the Practice Management team of the Evaluation Directorate has improved the approval and posting process significantly in recent years and has dedicated resources to ensure timely and high-quality publications. For example, a style guide has been developed for ISC Evaluation to inform evaluators early in the writing process of the requirements for documents intended for publication on the departmental website. An evaluation report template was developed to create efficiencies prior to even the document approval stage.

Finally, the approval processes are quite efficient as the Evaluation function benefits from the role that the Senior Management Committee (SMC) plays as the Department's Performance Measurement and Evaluation Committee (PMEC). The SMC meets frequently and can approve evaluation reports as they are completed as opposed to waiting for periodic and dedicated PMEC meetings. ISC Evaluation participates at the SMC at least once a month.

3.0 The year in review

3.1 Progress achieved in 2022–2023

Two (2) evaluations were completed:

  1. Evaluation of the Healthy Living Program
  2. Evaluation of the Impact Assessment and Regulatory Processes (Horizontal Initiative).

Two (2) evaluation reports were published (ISC Evaluation Reports, and Summary Reports) and are available on the departmental website.

  1. Evaluation of First Nations Individual Affairs (August 2022)
  2. ISC 5-Year Evaluation Plan 2022–2023 to 2026–2027 (January 2023)

Twelve (12) program and sub-program evaluations completed data collection and in report/finalization phase:

  1. E-Health Infostructure (Health Cluster)
  2. Health Planning, Quality Management, Health Services Integration Fund and Quality Improvements and Accreditation (Health Cluster)
  3. Health Human Resources (Health Cluster)
  4. Health Facilities (Health Cluster)
  5. On-Reserve Housing (Infrastructure grouping)
  6. Education Facilities (Infrastructure grouping)
  7. Other Community Infrastructure (Infrastructure grouping)
  8. Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Management
  9. Indigenous Entrepreneurship and Business Development
  10. Miawpukek First Nation Grant Agreement (First Nations-led)
  11. Canadian Drugs & Substances Strategy (Horizontal – PHAC-led)
  12. Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Program (Horizontal – ESDC-led)

Twelve (12) evaluation projects launched and/or in data collection phase:

  1. Mental Wellness
  2. Healthy Child Development
  3. Environment Public Health
  4. Evaluation of Non-Insured Health Benefits (Supplementary Health Benefits)
  5. Jordan's Principle
  6. Inuit Child First Initiative
  7. Synthesis Report of Key Studies and Reviews of the FNCFS Program
  8. Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples
  9. Contaminated Sites On-Reserve
  10. Emergency Management Assistance Program
  11. National Strategy to Combat Human Trafficking 2019–2024 (Horizontal – PSC-led)
  12. Aboriginal Peoples Employment Program

4.0 The five-year plan

4.1 Scope of Work

One of the consequences of the creation of ISC was a broader scope of work and increased workload because of the additional programs for which the Department is now responsible. In 2017, the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch (FNIHB) was transferred from Health Canada to ISC. With this transfer, fourteen programs were moved to ISC. Further, with the ISC and CIRNAC enabling legislation in July 2019, five programs were transferred from CIRNAC to ISC. In total, 19 programs were added and the resulting impact to the ISC Evaluation workload was significant, approximately doubling the number of programs to be evaluated with no additional evaluation resources to carry out the evaluation work.

Additional challenges include the inherited backlog of several evaluations from the previous shared evaluation function between ISC and CIRNAC and the many recent budget announcements and investments that have expanded the scope of existing programs or introduced new funding streams. The COVID–19 pandemic has exacerbated the situation. These variables have resulted in ongoing and persistent challenges in completing the planned evaluations and have increased the number of evaluations in the backlog that are beyond the five-year review cycle. With the mandated emphasis on co-development and service transfer noted above, and the expanding scope of evaluations, the backlog can be expected to persist for a few years. This situation limits the flexibility ISC Evaluation to take on new evaluations that may be of interest to Senior Management given the challenges to meet the expectations of co-development and innovation while also meeting the due dates of the mandatory evaluations it must conduct to be aligned with FAA requirements.

4.2 Program structures

Most departmental programs, representing a majority of spending, are delivered through partnerships with Indigenous communities and in very few cases federal-provincial or federal-territorial agreements. However, other funding structures have been established that are expected to become increasingly common as the Department moves to transfer services to Indigenous entities. For example, the British Columbia Tripartite Health Governance program involves a joint agreement between the Province of British Columbia, the First Nations Health Authority and ISC on health governance. Under this agreement, the parties agree to a tripartite evaluation, led by the First Nations Health Authority, with the final report being shared between the parties. In the future, more non-standard funding arrangements can be expected, with ISC Evaluation examining the 'readiness' of Indigenous governments or institutions to assume program delivery.

The update of the Departmental Results Framework (DRF) and Program Inventory for 2023–24 has reduced the number of Programs and creates an opportunity to recast some evaluations. There are opportunities to take a systems (clustering) approach to evaluations to examine impacts by the service areas described in the DRF. While changes to the DRF have increased the number of authorities from 30 to 37, the number of Programs has decreased from 33 to 18.

As a result of this new program structure, the number of evaluations exceeds the number of programs in the Program Inventory. This is because there can be a number of distinct sub-programs that are included under larger Program areas. There are some sub-programs that have their own funding authority which alone supports the rationale for a separate evaluation that can identify improvements that might otherwise be lost in a larger evaluation. There are a number of evaluations at the sub-program and sub-sub program levels that are well underway. The transition to the new program structure will take a couple of years and it is expected that in many cases sub-program evaluations will continue to be necessary due to risks, materiality, priorities and practicalities.

It continues to be the case that a one-to-one relationship between the authorities listed in the Main Estimates and the Program Inventory of ongoing programs of grants and contributions deemed a 'Program' by the Department exists in very few instances. A number of programs draw on multiple grants and contributions; and conversely, there are grants and contributions that contribute to multiple programs. This Plan has been developed using the Treasury Board's Interim Guide on Results, which was updated most recently in August 2018, where there is the recognition that a 'program' of grants and contributions can cut across two or more programs in the Program Inventory and the relationship is not always one-to-one. This structure has presented the Department with some challenges in ensuring evaluation coverage for all authorities because of the segregation of a single authority over multiple programs with different evaluation timelines.

4.3 Evaluation planning methodology

The planning methodology is a multi-step process that begins with a review of the previous year's planning approach to update the steps where necessary and to review all relevant guidance and planning documents, such as the current Departmental Plan and Treasury Board commitments.

For 2023–2024, ISC refreshed its Departmental Results Framework (DRF) and its Program Inventory. Evaluation planning was conducted in alignment with the 2023–2024 framework, while balancing the evaluation projects that are ongoing or well into the planning process.

The 2023–2024 Core Responsibility for ISC is: Indigenous Well-Being and Self-Determination.

Six service areas have been described:

  1. Health
  2. Children and Families
  3. Education
  4. Infrastructure and Environments
  5. Economic Development
  6. Governance

Appendix A presents the entire Program Inventory for ISC by service area.

The Plan is also expected to align with the Department's Risk-Based Audit Plan, which is prepared by the Audit and Assurance Services Branch (AASB). The AASB is part of the Audit and Evaluation Sector of CIRNAC and it serves both CIRNAC and ISC. As has been past practice, consideration is given to timing audits and evaluations in a way that does not overburden programs.

Each evaluation included in the Plan has been further assessed as to the type of evaluation required based on the review of Financial Administration Act or Treasury Board requirements and stakeholder consultations, as well as noting whether it is a horizontal or non horizontal evaluation. It should be noted that in January 2018, the Treasury Board Secretariat released a new Guide to Departments on the Management and Reporting of Horizontal Initiatives. Under the guidance, ISC is not the lead department for any official Horizontal Initiatives, although it does participate in several horizontal initiatives led by other departments.

According to Section 42.1 of the Financial Administration Act, government departments and agencies must review, at least once every five years, the relevance and effectiveness of each ongoing grants and contributions program. Credit for evaluation coverage is granted upon deputy head approval of an evaluation report. Evaluation planning is conducted with that requirement in mind, reviewing the last fiscal year in which a program was evaluated, and scheduling completion and approval of the program evaluation five years later. Note that programs that are not funded through voted grants and contributions are not subject to the Financial Administration Act requirements.

However, as per the Policy on Results (Section 2.5), programs with five-year average actual expenditures of less than $5 million per year can be exempted from Section 42.1 and do not need to be evaluated every five years. Guidance from Treasury Board Secretariat states the five-year average is to be calculated on three years of actuals (Public Accounts) and two years of planned spending (Main Estimates). These calculations were conducted as part of the planning process and, based on these parameters, and with the refreshed DRF and Program Inventory, there is one program that falls below the $5 million threshold:

Table 1: ISC Program(s) that fall below the evaluation threshold:
Program inventoryAssessment
Statutory, Legislative and Policy Support to First Nations GovernanceBelow $5 million

ISC Evaluation conducted individual consultations in May 2023 with ISC senior management on the draft five-year schedule of evaluations to obtain their input on priorities for their respective sectors and on the timing of evaluations. Their input was synthesized and considered as part of the finalization process for the five-year schedule. The following senior management offices were consulted:

  • Senior ADM Regional Operations
  • Associate ADM Regional Operations
  • Senior ADM First Nations and Inuit Health Branch
  • ADM First Nations and Inuit Health Branch Regional Operations
  • Chief Finances, Results and Delivery Officer
  • ADM Child and Family Services Reform
  • ADM Lands and Economic Development
  • ADM Education and Social Development Program and Partnership
  • ADM Strategic Policy and Partnerships Sector
  • ADM Communications
  • ISC Chief Audit Executive

4.4 Planned spending

Based on the Main Estimates, total planned spending for 2023–24 is outlined in the table below according to the Department's Service Areas.

Table 1: ISC total planned departmental spending (2023–2024) by Service Area
Service Area2023–2024 planned spending
Children and Families$25,447,735,022
Infrastructure and Environments$4,149,690,259
Economic Development$262,255,452
Internal services$228,930,692
Source: 2023–24 Main Estimates. Figures include the following expenditures: salary; operations and maintenance; capital; statutory and grants and contributions funding; and the costs of employee benefit plans.

4.5 COVID–19 emergency funds

The Government of Canada began identifying funds in March 2020 specifically for COVID–19 support to Indigenous and northern communities and organizations. Spending to date is $5.9 Billion. The bulk of these funds were delivered by ISC. Part of the March 2020 COVID–19 Economic Response Plan was the creation of an Indigenous Community Support Fund (ICSF) to help communities and organizations prevent, prepare and respond to COVID–19. The evaluation of the Indigenous Community Support Fund will be scoped into the evaluation of the Emergency Management Assistance Program in 2024–2025 and study the impact of the funding and gather lessons learned to inform future practices. In addition, ISC Evaluation has included, as a discrete line of enquiry, questions in all evaluations to investigate the early impacts of COVID–19 on programming activities and will continue to canvass for this issue in future evaluations.

4.6 Coverage

The planning process has identified 53 discrete evaluation program or sub-program projects for the department over the next 5 years. ISC Evaluation is clustering evaluations to take a systems approach to impact, which has resulted in 46 evaluation projects:

  • 33 program and sub-program level evaluations are planned to meet mandatory evaluation requirements, including fulfilling evaluation commitments specified in TB Submissions and addressing requirements of the FAA.
  • 7 horizontal evaluations are on the schedule that will address initiatives across multiple departments and organizations. ISC is a partner department in these horizontal evaluation projects.
  • 4 cluster evaluations capturing 11 programs or sub-programs
  • 2 discretionary evaluations are scheduled that have been identified as departmental priorities to support internal decision-making.

These evaluation projects will cover 99.4% of planned departmental spending from 2023–24 to 2027–28. Departmental planned spending includes salary, operations and maintenance, capital, statutory payments and the costs of employee benefit plans, as well as grants and contributions funding. The remaining <1% represents the Statutory, Legislative and Policy Support to First Nations Governance sub-program that is not being evaluated, as well as most Internal Services ($228,930,692).

Table 2: Planned Coverage of Planned Spending:
Fiscal yearDepartmental spendingPercentage coverageNumber of discrete evaluations
Source: 2023–2024 Main Estimates

ISC covers 100% of its voted grants and contributions amounts.

Table 3: Planned coverage of grants and contributions:
Fiscal yearVoted grants and contributions (Gs&Cs) amountPercentage coverage voted Gs&CsNumber of
Discrete evaluations
Source: 2023–2024 Main Estimates

4.7 Resources

The Evaluation Directorate has the following planned expenditures for 2023–2024 to deliver on the commitments made in the Plan.

Table 4: Evaluation Directorate – planned expenditures
Expenditure type2023–2024 (Budget)
Operations and maintenance$2,976,756
Grants and Contributions$0
Full-time equivalents (FTEs)44.86
Source: Strategic Policy and Partnerships Sector, Business Management Unit

4.8 Challenges

As noted, ISC Evaluation has an important role to play as a catalyst for meaningful change and to work collaboratively with Indigenous Peoples and organizations. This opportunity does not come without challenges and has created a very fluid operating environment for the Department in general and the evaluation function in particular. While ISC Evaluation takes all possible steps to mitigate these challenges, the mitigation strategies themselves add time to the process.

Evaluations are becoming increasingly complex and are taking longer to conduct. With the increased focus on co-development and collaboration, time is required to build the necessary relationships with Indigenous partners and departmental program officials. To be effective, partners must be included in the process from scoping, developing Terms of Reference, establishing appropriate methodologies and conducting field work. Consultations with Indigenous partners may result in new approaches that might be incorporated as the evaluation methodology develops and evolves. While the Department has 33 programs in its inventory, there are currently 53 evaluations on the Plan due to new authorities, sub-programs and horizontal evaluations, a figure which has been increasing since the creation of the Department in 2019.

The scope of each evaluation has been expanding and will likely continue to do so. In addition to the standard Financial Administration Act (FAA) and Policy on Results questions regarding relevance, effectiveness and efficiency, evaluations must now also include questions canvassing for program impacts on families and children, the application of GBA Plus, whether services provided are culturally appropriate and of high quality, the early impacts of the COVID–19 pandemic on service delivery and the affects of climate change. In addition, there are four mandatory questions focused on service transfer and readiness of partners to assume control. These additional areas of investigation add to the time taken to develop and refine questions, gather data, analyse results and synthesize findings.

There are internal challenges for the evaluation function. Timelines for evaluations are lengthening due to more transparent and rigorous procurement practices that have added months to the process of putting contracts into place. There continues to be challenges related to the lack of data, the inconsistency of existing data, and gaps in performance information. Negotiations with ISC Program officials involved in program evaluation can take time to develop to the necessary level of co-operation and understanding. Internal and external capacity issues, particularly skilled evaluators, further exacerbate timelines necessary for pursuing collaborative approaches.

The increasing complexity of evaluations, and current internal challenges, has resulted in the Department developing a backlog of evaluations that are overdue with respect to the five-year evaluation cycle articulated in the FAA. In parallel with this, the evaluation function developed a "backlog" strategy in 2022 to map out a path towards completing a number of evaluations that are overdue. The strategy is to adopt a risk-based and balanced approach. For example, depending on priorities and risks, some evaluations will be put on an accelerated schedule, or a 'clustering' approach that groups evaluations together to provide a more system-wide analysis. Other evaluations may be more suited to integrated, co-developed and partnership-based approaches. It is recognized that co-developed evaluations will take longer in order to allow time to build trust and relationships and to integrate Indigenous worldviews and perspectives, ensuring engagement at all stages of the evaluation project. With the Department of Indigenous Services Act compelling the Department to focus on co-operation, partnership and readiness for service transfer, it is likely that the backlog will persist for the next several years.

Impact of COVID–19 Pandemic

The consequences of the worldwide COVID–19 pandemic continue to resonate for evaluation planning purposes. In early 2020–2021, evaluation activities were curtailed as travel restrictions were put in place and many Indigenous communities declared a state of emergency, allowing only limited access for essential functions and remaining closed to outside visitors for several months. In addition, regional and community partners faced enormous workload challenges due to the pandemic and the multiple effects it is having across Canada. These challenges persisted into 2021–2022 and further into 2022–2023. For example, the Directorate's ability to advance the evaluation of the Communicable Disease Control and Management program has faced significant challenges. However, with restrictions lifted, many evaluations are back on normal schedules. However, there have been substantial human resource effects post-pandemic, including external and internal staff turnover and burnout.

Human resources

The dedicated ISC Evaluation Directorate was established in July 2019 with an allocation of 16 full-time equivalents (FTEs) with, at the time, only half of these positions permanently staffed. Evaluation planning exercises have consistently noted the risks to delivering on the Plan because the FTE complement has not been sufficient given the complexity and volume of the work involved. Beyond the 53 planned evaluations, there are also significant requirements and pressures from a practice management perspective (such as tracking and monitoring of Management Response Action Plans, input into TBS Submissions and Memoranda to Cabinet, TBS planning, reporting, and publishing requirements, etc.). Furthermore, ISC Evaluation has a unique and strategic role relative to other evaluation functions across government given its objectives to support and assess 'Service Delivery Transfer' to Indigenous partners and to also advance Indigenous evaluation capacities and evaluation functions outside of government. More generally, the demand for evaluation skills across government presents an additional challenge related to recruitment and retention, most particularly lower and mid-level evaluators. Over the past year, the Directorate has focused on building its capacity and has increased its FTE allocation to 41 for 2023–2024, which can be expected to alleviate some workload pressures.

Continuous improvement of evaluation function. The Directorate is taking steps to support the continuous improvement of the function and to address some of the capacity and workload challenges it faces in order meet its three-part mandate. The focus is on how to establish a function that can act as an effective change catalyst and be a key player in driving the Department's agenda, particularly with respect to building the relationships necessary for co-development work, improving service delivery and supporting eventual service transfer. These steps are also expected to ensure departmental evaluators have opportunities to develop the knowledge and cultural competencies required for their role and also in alignment with the Policy on Results.

Performance information

The availability and quality of performance information remains the major challenge for evaluation activities. The Government of Canada introduced the Policy on Results in 2016 to instill a culture of performance measurement and evaluation, taking a results-focused approach that relies on gathering performance information. All government programs are required to develop Performance Information Profiles (PIPs) to serve as a guide to gather performance information. However, collecting data at the front-line delivery level remains a challenge for program managers given the resources required for setting up databases that can be used to gather data and then create reports. Much of the performance information resides with First Nations communities, with little information available at the regional level to inform evaluations. Accessing data can often depend on the level of community engagement that has occurred.

The Evaluation Team faced challenges collecting internal data, which was not always aggregated or standardized. This is in line with what has been flagged as an issue in ISC's Management Accountability Framework

4.9 Implementing the plan

Evaluations conducted by ISC Evaluation are used to inform decision-making and reporting (such as the Departmental Plan, the Departmental Results Report), to assess progress made by programs in achieving expected results and to incorporate lessons learned in order to improve program design and delivery. As noted, ISC Evaluation posts approved evaluation reports on its website in a timely manner, after sharing reports with Treasury Board. Given the lengthy timeframes experienced conducting evaluations, preliminary findings are often used to inform decision-making prior to official publication in the spirit of continuous improvement and timely course correction.

ISC Evaluation will work collaboratively with internal and external partners to tailor evaluation projects to meet the needs of decision-makers, with a growing emphasis on innovating and implementing with Indigenous partners novel methodologies and approaches. This work will set the foundation for meaningful and substantive improvements to service delivery and service transfer while at the same time advance culturally appropriate evaluation capacities and functions. This work remains within the flexibilities of the Treasury Board Secretariat Policy on Results.

ISC Evaluation is moving towards developing and implementing protocols for engagement with Indigenous representative organizations so that First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples can contribute their knowledge and experience throughout the evaluation process. The Department is also working to build internal culturally-responsive evaluation capacity, as well as to support external capacity in collaboration with Indigenous partners with a focus on service delivery.

The Directorate is committed to delivering the evaluation projects that have been identified for 2023–24. As noted, it is addressing its capacity challenges through an organizational assessment, the ongoing recruitment, development, and retention of talented staff, with an emphasis on Indigenous recruitment, and has developed a strategy to address the backlog of evaluation projects using a risk-based and strategic approach.

5.0 Five-year schedule of evaluations

Schedule of evaluations planned for:

  • 2023-2024
  • 2024-2025
  • 2025-2026
  • 2026-2027
  • 2027-2028
Schedule of evaluations planned for 2023-2024
Evaluation titleSectorLast evaluated2023–2024 Total planned program spendingLaunch dateExpected DM approval
Evaluation of the Mental Wellness ProgramFNIHB2016–2017$696,446,460Dec-21Mar-24
Evaluation of the Healthy Child Development ProgramFNIHB2014–2015$307,255,601Jan 21Dec-23
Evaluation of the Environmental Public Health ProgramFNIHB2016–2017$73,235,854Oct-21Dec-23
Cluster Evaluation of Health Infrastructure Support for First Nations 1. Evaluation of Health Planning, Quality Management and Systems Integration
2. Health Services Integration Fund
3. Quality Improvement and Accreditation Program
4. Evaluation of Health FacilitiesFNIHB2016–2017$294,110,653Aug-20Jul-23
5. Evaluation of e-Health InfostructureFNIHB2016–2017$28,227,892Aug-20Jul-23
6. Evaluation of Health Human ResourcesFNIHB2019–2020$10,799,275Aug-20Jul-23
Evaluation of the Supplementary Health Benefits Program (Non-Insured health Benefits - NIHB)FNIHB2017–2018$1,745,696,341May-22Mar-24
Evaluation of Jordan's PrincipleFNIHB2018–2019$882,270,495Apr-23Mar-24
Evaluation of the Inuit Child First InitiativeFNIHB2018–2019TBDApr-23Mar-24
Synthesis Report of Key Studies and Reviews of the FNCFS ProgramCFSRN/A0Apr-22Mar-24
Evaluation of Urban Programming for Indigenous PeoplesESDPP2016–2017$184,232,463May-22Mar-24
Evaluation of the Housing On-Reserve ProgramRO2016–2017$610,957,576Sep-21Sep-23
Evaluation of the Education Facilities ProgramRO2015–2016$246,923,887Sep-21Sep-23
Evaluation of the Other Community Infrastructure and Activities ProgramRO2015–2016$962,392,592Sep-21Sep-23
Evaluation of Lands Management Sub-ProgramsLED2015–2016$268,920,636Aug-21Jul-23
Evaluation of the Contaminated Sites On-Reserve (South of the 60th Parallel) ProgramLED2015–2016$33,793,404Jul-22Dec-23
Evaluation of Indigenous Entrepreneurship and Business DevelopmentLED2015–2016$96,553,658Apr-21Oct-23
Evaluation of the Miawpukek First Nation Grant AgreementRO2010–2011$12,458,612Feb-22Jun-23
Evaluation of the Indigenous Early Learning and Child Care Program (Horizontal – ESDC led)FNIHBNever evaluated-Dec-19Sep-23
Canadian Drugs & Substances Strategy (Including opioids and drug overdose crisis in Canada) (Horizontal – PHAC led)FNIHB2022–2023-Jan-22Jun-23
Evaluation of the National Strategy to Combat Human Trafficking 2019–2024
(Horizontal – PSC led)
Evaluation of the Aboriginal Peoples Employment ProgramInternal Services
Never Evaluated-Apr-22Mar-24
Schedule of evaluations planned for 2024-2025
Evaluation titleSectorLast evaluated2023–2024 Total planned program spendingLaunch dateExpected DM approval
Cluster Evaluation of the Home and Long-Term Care Program1. Assisted LivingESDPP2019–2020$131,762,664TBDMar-25
2. Home and Community CareFNIHB2019–2020$152,151,010TBDMar-25
Evaluation of the British Columbia Tripartite Health Governance AgreementFNIHB2017–2018$375,474,321Apr-23Mar-25
Evaluation of the Family Violence Prevention Program (includes Pathways to Safe Indigenous Communities Initiative)ESDPP2017–2018$159,675,718May 23Mar 25
Independent Third-Party Evaluation for ISC ReformCFSRN/A-Jun-21Mar-25
Evaluation of First Nations Child and Family Services ReformCFSR2014–2015$23,189,086,570Apr-23Mar-25
Evaluation of the Implementation of the Act Respecting First Nations, Inuit and Métis children, youth and familiesCFSRN/A-TBDMar-25
Advancing a Global Resolution for Compensation for First Nations Children and Families – Child and Family Services and Jordan's PrincipleCFSRN/A-TBDMar-25
Evaluation of the Income Assistance ProgramESDPP2018–2019$1,212,728,936Jul-23Dec-24
Evaluation of the Emergency Management Assistance ProgramRO2016–2017$207,890,238Jan-23Mar-24
Evaluation of the Economic Development Capacity and Readiness ProgramLED2015–2016$128,171,303Aug-21Aug-24
Evaluation of the Strategic Partnerships Initiative (SPI)LED2014–15$24,698,542TBDMar-25
Evaluation of the Indigenous Governance and Capacity ProgramRO2016–2017$128,171,303Mar-24Mar-25
Evaluation of the Grant to Support the New Fiscal Relationship for First NationsSPPNever evaluated$1,666,524,042Nov-23Mar-25
Evaluation of the Youth Employment and Skills Strategy (Horizontal-ESDCled)ESDPP2019–2020$67,678,000Jan-21Feb-25
Horizontal Evaluation of the Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan – Phase IV (ECCCled)LED2018–19TBDTBDMar-25
Evaluation of the Survey of Indigenous Peoples (Internal)SPP2019–2020$6,878,746TBDMar-25
Schedule of evaluations planned for 2025-2026
Evaluation titleSectorLast evaluated2023–2024 Total planned program spendingLaunch dateExpected DM approval
Evaluation of the Communicable Disease Control and Management ProgramFNIHB2014–2015$118,351,955Sep-23Sep-25
Cluster Evaluation of Primary Health Care1. Clinical and Client Care ProgramFNIHB2018–2019$354,497,589Nov-23Nov-25
2. Community Oral Health Services ProgramFNIHBNever evaluated$14,064,009Nov-23Nov-25
Evaluation of the Community Well-being and Jurisdiction Initiatives ProgramCFSRN/A$370,734,261Sep-23Mar-26
Evaluation of the Elementary and Secondary Education ProgramESDPP2020–2021$2,508,343,499TBDMar-26
Evaluation of the Post-Secondary Education ProgramESDPP2020–2021$364,294,575TBDMar-26
Evaluation of the Water and Wastewater ProgramRO/
Schedule of evaluations planned for 2026-2027
Evaluation titleSectorLast evaluated2023–2024 Total planned program spendingLaunch dateExpected DM approval
Evaluation of Individual AffairsRO2021–2022$47,166,757TBDMar-27
Adapting to Impacts of Climate Change
(Horizontal ECCC roll up)
Evaluation of the Impact Assessment and Regulatory Processes Horizontal InitiativeFNIHB


Schedule of evaluations planned for 2027-2028
Evaluation titleSectorLast evaluated2023–2024 Total planned program spendingLaunch dateExpected DM approval
Evaluation of the Healthy Living ProgramFNIHB2022–2023$84,781,504TBDMar-28
Evaluation of Transformational Approach to Indigenous DataSPPNever evaluated$22,451,154TBDMar-28

Appendix A – Departmental Results Framework and Program Inventory 2023–2024

Core Responsibility: Indigenous Well-Being and Self-Determination
Service AreaProgramSubprogram / Initiative
HealthPublic Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
  • Mental Wellness
  • Healthy Living
  • Healthy Child Development
  • Communicable Disease Control and Management
  • Environmental Public Health
Home and Long-Term Care
  • Assisted Living
  • Home and Community Care
Primary Health Care
  • Clinical and Client Care
  • e-Health Infostructure
  • Community Oral Health Services
Health Systems Support
  • Health Planning, Quality Management and Systems Integration
  • Health Human Resources
  • British Columbia Tripartite Health Governance
Supplementary Health Benefits (Non-Insured Health Benefits)
Jordan's Principle and the Inuit Child First Initiative
Children and FamiliesSafety and Prevention Services
  • Family Violence Prevention Program
Child and Family Services
  • First Nations Child and Family Services
  • An Act Respecting First Nations, Inuit and Métis children, youth and families
Income Assistance
Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples
EducationElementary and Secondary Education
  • Regional Education Agreements
Post-Secondary Education
Infrastructure and EnvironmentsCommunity Infrastructure
  • Housing
  • Education Facilities
  • Health Facilities
  • Other Community Infrastructure and Activities
  • Water and Wastewater
Communities and the Environment
  • Land, Natural Resources and Environmental Management
Emergency Management Assistance
Economic DevelopmentCommunity Economic Development
  • Economic Development Capacity and Readiness
  • Indian Oil and Gas
Indigenous Entrepreneurship and Business Development
GovernanceIndigenous Governance and Capacity Supports
  • Indigenous Governance and Capacity
  • Individual Affairs
  • New Fiscal Relationship: Capacity Building and Engagement
  • Statutory, Legislative and Policy Support to First Nations Governance
  • Transformational Approach to Indigenous Data

Thank you for your feedback

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Five-Year Departmental Evaluation Plan 2023-2024 to 2027-2028 (2024)


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