Canadian policy decision-making has utilized case studies extensively in recent years. Johnston Research Inc. (JRI) has completed more evaluation-related case studies over the past 4 years than in the previous 15 years of our evaluation work. To understand the growing application of case studies, we interviewed clients and contacts from First Nations that had been case study sites for our government clients, to understand what aspects of case study evaluation research had helped them share their opinions and improve their programs, and what aspects had not. We then interviewed our government clients, asking how well case studies served their evaluation purposes and their programs or policy development efforts. JRI conducted and financed this study to help us improve our own approaches for conducting case studies in Aboriginal populations and to share these findings with others. This article presents our interview findings on the value of case studies for Aboriginal evaluation projects and shares some best practices for conducting case studies within, and with, First Nations. Finally, we explore the impact case studies have had on Canadian policy.
The Rupertsland Institute (RLI), established in 2010, was assigned a triple mandate in Métisresearch, education, and training. As part of its training mandate, the RLI assumed
responsibility for the delivery of the Métis Training to Employment (MTE) program. Prior to the
existence of the RLI, the MTE program was previously known as the Métis Labour Market
Development program and was delivered by the Métis Nation of Alberta (MNA). Program
operations from the MNA to RLI took place in 2010. The Rupertsland Institute signed the current federal funding agreement on behalf of Metis people and as an affiliate of the MNA.
The Rupertsland Centre for Métis Research (RCMR) was established in 2011 through a
partnership between the Métis Nation of Alberta and the University of Alberta. The purpose of
the RCMR is to serve as an academic research program specifically designed for Métis
The MTE program offers an array of employment services, training opportunities and supports
to help Métis clients overcome barriers to meaningful employment. The MTE program is
federally funded through the Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy (ASETS).