All evaluators deal with unintended events that foul their evaluation plans. Either the program does not work as planned, or the evaluation does not work as planned, or both. Usually we treat these situations as fires, i.e. we exercise our skills to meet the crisis.
How to measure impact if impact is a moving target?
Unintended consequences, Development, and Democracy
Common Introduction to all 6 Posts History and Context These blog posts are an extension of my efforts to convince evaluators to shift their focus from complex systems to specific behaviors of complex systems. We need to make this switch because there is no practical way to apply the notion of a “complex system” to … Continue reading Joint Optimization of Uncorrelated Outcomes: Part 6 of 6 Posts on Evaluation, Complex Behavior, and Themes in Complexity Science
Recently have been pushing the notion that one reason why programs have unintended consequences, and why those consequences tend to be undesirable, is because programs attempt to maximize outcomes that are highly correlated, to the detriment of multiple other benchmarks that recipients of program services need to meet in order to thrive. Details of what … Continue reading Another post on joint optimization of uncorrelated program goals as a way to minimize unintended negative consequences
This blog post is a pitch for a different way to identify desired program outcomes. Program Theories as they are Presently Constructed Go into your archives and pull out your favorite logic models. Or dip into the evaluation literature and find models you like. You will find lots of variability among them in terms of: … Continue reading Joint Optimization of Uncorrelated Outcomes as a Method for Minimizing Undesirable Consequences of Program Action
These are the slides for a workshop I did at the Canadian Evaluation Society
Looking for examples of big data in the field of evaluation
Discussion in the first session of the Azenet Tucson book club -- th Theory; using explanatory power section with the introduction to life cycle behavior (p.49). The most common evaluation activity among our members is evaluation of state or federally funded programs (DOE, SAMHSA, OJJDP, BJA). Common characteristics: programs have a few years to implement an … Continue reading Azenet Book Club – Life Cycles, Rigid evaluation requirements, and Implementation theory
How a school breakfast program became a community nutrition program