Realistic Evaluation shows how programme 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 developm
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The sequence of steps here is probably too familiar to require much
recapitulation ; we anticipate that most readers will have been drilled in the basic
ideas of random allocation of subjects to experimental and control groups , the
exposure of ...
Experimental evaluation is simply not attuned to grasping this challenge . We
have already seen the basic instincts at work . The volition of the subject has to
be treated in the same way as any other threat to the integrity of the basic design .
Rendering this into prose , we are now in a position to summarize the basic logic
of realist explanation in the following statement and in Figure 3 . 6 . and in Fige
basic lodering th Logic of realist explanation The basic task of social inquiry is to