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I have a wee paper on programme theory if people are interested. I can send a pdf. Abstract below. Comments always welcome. Happy to submit to journal if suggested.
Title: Programme Evaluation Theory: the next step towards a synthesis of logic models and organisational theory
Author: William J Fear, Student Experience Unit, Cardiff University, McKenzie House, Newport Road, Cardiff, [log in to unmask]
Word count: 5400 (including references; not including abstract)
Date: Sept 2006
Reference: Paper presented to Evaltalk, 31 December 2006. American Evaluation Association Discussion List; [log in to unmask]
This paper argues that the formulation of policy, at whatever level, to whatever scale or scope, is any different to the myriad of processes involved in strategic planning within and between organisations, and the attendant decision making processes that abound in such an environment (e.g see, Hage, 1980; Hickson, 1987; Thompson, 1967; Weick, 1976). Those forces that impact upon organisations are precisely the same forces that impact upon policy making groups who are themselves 'organisations' (or institutions), whether actual or representative. This provides a startign point for considering a synthesis between various models or paradigms. The argument continues, that program theory and the program logic model can incorporate and synthesise theories from elsewhere that, in turn, usefully inform and develop programme theory and program logic. A ‘hierarchical’ model is presented to explore the linkages between the components and ‘simple’ processes of theory, programme theo!
ry, logic modelling, organisational functioning, policy, and the consequent impact. It is hoped that this model can be used as a framework to: a) determine which components are essential to give the policy external validity, credibility, implementability, and so on; and b) provide a common point of reference for policy makers, stakeholders, and evaluators.
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