Category Archives: System Perspectives

Why Do Hospitals Coordinate Activities As They Do? Or: What I Learned From My Hip Surgery

Thanks to having my artificial hip overhauled, I became motivated to apply my interest in coordination to hospital settings. Continue reading

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Systems as Program Theory and as Methodology: A Hands on Approach over the Evaluation Life Cycle: Workshop at the American Evaluation Association Summer Institute

1) What do systems “look like” in terms of form and structure?  2) How do systems behave? 3) How can systems be used to develop program theory, as a methodology, and as a framework for data interpretation? 4) How should a systems approach be used along different parts of an evaluation life cycle – from initial design to reporting? Continue reading

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System design: Requirements, complexity, and cost

Systems that meet relatively small numbers of requirements will usually give people most of what they need. (If not most of what they want.) But people, many of whom should know better, insist on having it all, and thus doom themselves to building systems that fail. Continue reading

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How to Evaluate a Conference

This document provides a map of how I approach the task of evaluating conferences. It is organized around the three main stakeholders to a conference. Continue reading

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What complexity theory do evaluators need to know?

My last blog post dealt with why evaluators should focus on complex behavior as opposed to complex systems. Bob Williams made a comment about how the post made a lot of sense, but that it conveyed the impression that evaluators … Continue reading

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Things to think about when observing programs from a systems perspective

A friend of mine (Donna Podems) is heading  up a project that involves providing a structure for a group of on-the-ground observers so they can apply a systems perspective to understanding what programs are doing and what they are accomplishing.  … Continue reading

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Case Study Example for Workshop 18: Systems as Program Theory and as Methodology

Case Study Example for Workshop 18: Systems as Program Theory and as Methodology: A Hands on Approach over the Evaluation Life Cycle This case was developed for a workshop at the American Evaluation Association’s 2015 Summer Evaluation Institute. Construction of … Continue reading

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