Realist Evaluation in Practice

Author: Mansoor A F Kazi
Publisher: SAGE
ISBN: 9780761969969
Format: PDF, Kindle
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This title outlines the new, emerging realist paradigm in evaluation research & applies it to practice in human services. The author contributes to the development of this paradigm in practice & provides examples of realist evaluations.

Realistic Evaluation

Author: Ray Pawson
Publisher: SAGE
ISBN: 144623388X
Format: PDF, ePub
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Realistic Evaluation shows how program evaluation needs to be, and can be bettered. It presents a profound yet highly readable critique of current evaluation practice, and goes on to introduce a `manifesto' and `handbook' for a fresh approach. The main body of this book is devoted to the articulation of a new evaluation paradigm, which promises greater validity and utility from the findings of evaluation studies. The authors call this new approach `realistic evaluation'. The name reflects the paradigm's foundation in scientific realist philosophy, its commitment to the idea that programmes deal with real problems rather than mere social constructions, and its primary intention, which is to inform realistic developments in policy making that benefit programme participants and the public. Ray Pawson and Nicholas Tilley argue with passion that scientific evaluation requires a careful blend of theory and method, quality and quantity, ambition and realism. The book offers a complete blueprint for evaluation activities, running from design to data collection and analysis to the cumulation of findings across programmes and onto the realization of research into policy. The argument is developed using practical examples throughout and is grounded in the major fields of programme evaluation. This book will be essential reading for all those involved in the evaluation process especially those researchers, students and practitioners in the core disciplines of sociology, social policy, criminology, health and education. `This book is a must for those engaged in the field, providing a fully illustrated text on evaluation with numerous examples from the criminal justice system. Unusually, it offers something for the academic, practitioner and student alike. I found Pawson and Tilley's latest work on evaluation an enjoyable and informative read. For myself their "realistic evaluation" clarified and formalised a jumbled set of ideas I had already been developing. Although not everyone will agree with the methodology proposed by the authors, this book is a valuable read as it will cause most of us at least to review our methodological stance' - International Journal of Police Science and Management `This is an engaging book with a strong sense of voice and communicative task. The voice is sometimes strident, but always clear. Its communicative qualities are evident equally in its structure: lots of signposting for the reader within and across chapters' - Language Teaching Research `This provocative, elegant and highly insightful book focuses on the effective incorporation of actual practice into the formulation of evaluation methodology. What a pleasure to read sentences like: "The research act involves "learning" a stakeholder's theories, formalizing them, and "teaching" them back to that informant who is then in a position to comment upon, clarify and further refine the key ideas". Pawson and Tilley have given us a wise, witty and persuasive account of how real practitioner experience might be encouraged to intrude on (and modify) researchers' concepts about program processes and outcomes. This holds important promise for achieving something that is devoutly to be wished: closer interaction among at least some researchers and some policy makers' - Eleanor Chelimsky, Past-President of the American Evaluation Association `This is a sustained methodological argument by two wordly-wise social scientists. Unashamedly intellectual, theoretically ambitious yet with a clear but bounded conception of evaluation. It is articulate, occasionally eloquent and always iconoclastic, whilst eschewing "paradigm wars". The Pawson and Tilley "realist" call to arms threatens to take no prisoners among experimentalists, constructivists or pluralists. It is the kind of book that clarifies your thoughts, even when you disagree with everything they say' - Elliot Stern, The Tavistock Institute

Evaluation as a Tool for Research Learning and Making Things Better

Author: Satu Kalliola
Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
ISBN: 1443859222
Format: PDF
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This book is one of the first of its kind to bring together a variety of perspectives on evaluation from a multidisciplinary international perspective. The book, with its content derived from leading experts in their chosen fields of practice, illustrates the potential of evaluation to demonstrate the impact and efficiency of social interventions. Examples are given of comparative effectiveness research, realist evaluation, and systematic reviews, as well as of holistic and authentic evaluation, the use of advisory groups, and qualitative needs assessment. The volume also presents some special evaluation tools used by national governments and which are used to influence a variety of professional practices. The key features of the book are: • An international panel of experts sharing the expertise in evaluation. • Multiple perspectives on evaluation theory, methodology and practices articulated through a range of interdisciplinary perspectives. • A primary focus on client-, patient-, and, more generally, human-centredness. • Practical examples of contrasting evaluation methods in use. • Helpful tips and advice offered throughout. The book is compiled from the work of the plenary speakers, plenary panel and selected workshop presentations at the 8th International Conference on Evaluation for Practice, Eval2012, held in Finland in 2012. The contributors come from Australia, Brazil, Finland, Ireland, Italy, Norway, the Republic of Korea, the UK, and the USA. In line with the traditions of the conference series, some contributions here are joint endeavours from academics and practitioners. Evaluation as a Tool for Research, Learning and Making Things Better is recommended for both academics and practitioners, and will be useful for individual researchers, researcher communities and students, who are interested in and conduct evaluation research in various contexts, including as part of service development programs, and for public and private organizations which pursue good service quality with an impact.

The Science of Evaluation

Author: Ray Pawson
Publisher: SAGE
ISBN: 1446275507
Format: PDF, Docs
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Evaluation researchers are tasked with providing the evidence to guide programme building and to assess its outcomes. As such, they labour under the highest expectations - bringing independence and objectivity to policy making. They face huge challenges, given the complexity of modern interventions and the politicised backdrop to all of their investigations. They have responded with a huge portfolio of research techniques and, through their professional associations, have set up schemes to establish standards for evaluative inquiry and to accredit evaluation practitioners. A big question remains. Has this monumental effort produced a progressive, cumulative and authoritative body of knowledge that we might think of as evaluation science? This is the question addressed by Ray Pawson in this sequel to Realistic Evaluation and Evidence-based Policy. In answer, he provides a detailed blueprint for an evaluation science based on realist principles.

The SAGE Handbook of Social Work Research

Author: Ian Shaw
Publisher: SAGE Publications
ISBN: 1412934982
Format: PDF, Docs
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"This is an ambitious book. It aims at nothing less than a comprehensive account of the state of the art of social work research internationally and an intellectually original statement that will help to define and shape social work research. Those with a serious interest in social work research will agree that this is a major undertaking and one that should put social work research 'on the map'." - Ian Sinclair, University of York, UK "This terrific Handbook provides an essential map for navigating the complex currents of social work research today. It resists polemical and simplistic binaries to chart a course that emphasizes diversity, pluralism and sensitivity to political contexts in many featured exemplars. As key chapters note, inherent tensions at the heart of social work itself are mirrored in current debates about the purposes and methods of social work research. Rather than patch over differences, the volume invites us to understand historical roots of unresolvable tensions, and live with them. The international scope of the volume is unique--scholars from more than a dozen different countries were involved --and its broad scope counters the tendency toward parochialism of much North American literature. The Handbook should be essential reading for students and academics." - Catherine Riessman, Boston University, USA The SAGE Handbook of Social Work Research provides a comprehensive, internationally-focused account of leading social work research, offering an original and defining statement on contemporary theory and practice within the field. The groundbreaking Handbook engages critically with the nature and role of social work research and evaluation in contemporary societies around the globe, and asks four key questions: - What is the role and purpose of social work research? - What contexts shape the practice and purpose of social work research? - How can we maximise the quality of the practice of social work research? - How can the aims of social work in its varied domains be met through social work research? Ranging over local, national and international issues, and exploring questions of theory and practice, this is a diverse and constructively organized overview of the field. It will quickly be recognized as a benchmark in the expanding field of social work research, setting the agenda for future work in the arena.

Evaluation Research Methods

Author: Elliot Stern
Publisher: SAGE Publications Limited
ISBN:
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Evaluation is a set of research methods and associated methodologies with a distinctive purpose. They provide a means to judge actions and activities in terms of values, criteria and standards. At the same time evaluation is also a practice that seeks to enhance effectiveness in the public sphere and policy making. In order to improve as well as judge, there is a need to explain what happens and would have to be done differently for different outcomes to be achieved. It is in this explanatory mode that evaluation overlaps most directly with mainstream social science. This collection offers a complete guide to evaluations research methods. It is organized in four volumes. Volume 1 focuses on foundation issues and includes sections on the rationale for evaluation, central methodological debates, the role of theory and applying values, criteria and standards. Volume 2 examines explaining through evaluation and covers sections on experimentation and causal inference, outcomes and inputs, socio-economic indicators, economics and cost benefit approaches and realist methods. Volume 3 addresses qualitative methods and includes sections on case studies, responsive, developmental and accompanying evaluation, participation and empowerment, constructivism and postmodernism and multi-criteria and classificatory methods. Volume 4 concentrates on evaluation to improve policy with sections on performance management, systematic reviews, institutionalization and utilization and policy learning and design. The collection offers a unique and unparalleled guide to this rapidly expanding research method. It demonstrates how method and theory are applied in policy and strategy and will be an invaluable addition to any social science library. Elliot Stern is the editor of Evaluation: the International Journal of Theory, Research and Practice, and works both as an independent consultant. He was previously Principal Advisor for evaluation studies at the Tavistock Institute, London.

Impact Evaluation in Practice Second Edition

Author: Paul J. Gertler
Publisher: World Bank Publications
ISBN: 1464807809
Format: PDF, Kindle
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The second edition of the Impact Evaluation in Practice handbook is a comprehensive and accessible introduction to impact evaluation for policy makers and development practitioners. First published in 2011, it has been used widely across the development and academic communities. The book incorporates real-world examples to present practical guidelines for designing and implementing impact evaluations. Readers will gain an understanding of impact evaluations and the best ways to use them to design evidence-based policies and programs. The updated version covers the newest techniques for evaluating programs and includes state-of-the-art implementation advice, as well as an expanded set of examples and case studies that draw on recent development challenges. It also includes new material on research ethics and partnerships to conduct impact evaluation. The handbook is divided into four sections: Part One discusses what to evaluate and why; Part Two presents the main impact evaluation methods; Part Three addresses how to manage impact evaluations; Part Four reviews impact evaluation sampling and data collection. Case studies illustrate different applications of impact evaluations. The book links to complementary instructional material available online, including an applied case as well as questions and answers. The updated second edition will be a valuable resource for the international development community, universities, and policy makers looking to build better evidence around what works in development.

Small Scale Evaluation

Author: Colin Robson
Publisher: SAGE
ISBN: 1526417901
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Evaluation research can assess the value and effectiveness of interventions and innovations involving people. While this has often been on a grand scale, this book focuses on small-scale projects carried out by an individual or small group, typically lasting for weeks or at most a few months, at a local rather than national level. Using limited jargon and featuring integrated, real-world examples, this second edition offers a clear, accessible background to evaluation and prepares you to undertake your own small-scale evaluation research project. Key features include discussion of: Different approaches to evaluation and how to choose between them The advantages and disadvantages of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) Realist evaluation and its increasing importance The centrality of ethical and political issues The influence and opportunity of the Internet Tightly focused on the realities of carrying out small-scale evaluation, Small-Scale Evaluation is a highly practical guide covering the needs of both social scientists and others without this background. Colin Robson is an Emeritus Professor in the School of Human & Health Sciences at the University of Huddersfield.

Doing Realist Research

Author: Nick Emmel
Publisher: SAGE Publications Limited
ISBN: 9781473977884
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Bringing together leading theorists, researchers and policy makers with expertise in using realist methods, this book is a definitive guide to putting realist methodologies into practice. Not just an overview of the field, this book looks to extend current debates and apply realist methods to new and practical challenges in social research. Featuring practical, worked examples of how to turn theory into evidence, it empowers readers not just to understand realist methods, but to use them. It will help readers: - Negotiate the complexity of relational systems - Understand the importance and relevance of cumulative theory - Address concerns over data sources and quality - Be flexible and creative in realist approaches - Produce useful evidence for policy. Sophisticated and globally minded, this book is the perfect addition to the ongoing development and application of realist methods across evaluation, synthesis, and social research.