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 above discussion is thus not intended to be a comprehensive critique of the
studies in question , or of the massive range of the further evaluation work of
Porporino , Robinson and Bennett . We examined two programs which are ...
149 ) , and his insistence that we perceive knowledge of such uniformities not as
the “ empirical generalizations ' , not as the end - product of investigation , but as
its ' raw material to be explained within the middle - range theory framework .
Instead of dissipating efforts across a wide range of potential targets for crime ,
these results suggested a way of targeting resources on those who are most
vulnerable at the time when they are most at risk . Note that such an idea , whilst