Hi Jonny – I’m quite interested in the topic of program sustainability, and would be happy to join a group that you start up, if there is interest. I’m up on most of the literature on program sustainability in the health field, which is growing recently.
One difference between environmental sustainability, such as biological populations, I think, is that human directed programs are heavily influenced by the human factors – champions, leadership, professional “norms,” etc. So health program sustainability is not a characteristic of the program, but of the interplay of program and context. So in the U.S., anyway, where health intervention do not have stable funding sources, it’s not something that can necessarily be planned long in advance.
So I think the ecology is quite different, but it would be fascinating to examine this some more.
Mary Ann Scheirer maryann@ScheirerConsulting.com
One thought on “Mary Ann Scheirer’s comment on Jam’s original Evaltalk post about population ecology and program sustainability”
Hi Marry Ann, The reason I am so intrigued by all this is that while the ecology is different, the constructs used to explain behavior are the same. For instance, “stable funding sources” are not of much interest to bacteria or baboons, but “resource availability” is of interest to bacteria, baboons, and obesity prevention programs. The question for me is whether the equations used to explain resources for the beasties can be applied to the obesity programs.