Patton's Book Review and Our Response is Out
May 26 (1 day ago)
May 26 (1 day ago)
12:25 AM (14 hours ago)
While not its only virtue, it is worth commenting on the fact that
empowerment evaluation and its leaders have always set the standard for
that Great Commandment of ethical professional evaluation: proactively seek
and interactively respect and respond to critical commentary.
May 26 (1 day ago)
1:24 AM (13 hours ago)
In contexts characterized by inequality and exclusion empowerment evaluation is the front end of evaluation for an equitable society.
4:19 PM (22 hours ago)
10:13 AM (5 hours ago)
I find the issue of evaluation approach fidelity interesting here.
Are not 'Utilization-Focused Empowerment Evaluation' and 'Developmental
Empowerment Evaluation' also viable approaches (perhaps even 'hi-fi', given
I like Wikipedia for semantic fodder here. The reference for fidelity as it
applies to program evaluation dryly states that the term denotes how
closely a set of procedures were implemented as they were supposed to have
been. This corresponds with the high fidelity (hi-fi) concept under the
'Audio' section of the entry which is all about 'accurate reproduction'.
Here is what I find interesting in the entry: "The converse term 'lo-fi',
does not necessarily mean 'low fidelity', rather that the production ethic
aims for 'gritty authenticity' over perfect production."
I feel like this concept of 'gritty authenticity' may be helpful to throw
into the mix here . . . maybe not.
Thanks for the interesting debate!
6:25 AM (8 hours ago)
10:37 AM (4 hours ago)
A hearty congratulations to you and your colleagues on your new book.
Both the book and your response to critiques of it (as an example of how to be civil yet forthright in asserting one's viewpoint) will be must reads for doctoral courses on research
methods that I teach.
9:03 AM (6 hours ago)
10:26 AM (1 minute ago)
3:59 PM (0 minutes ago)
> As for me empowerment evaluation has been helpful.
> It was one of the tools that we used to ultimately create a management
> training program that was a recipient of the Council on Accreditation
> Innovative Practice Award back in 2012. The program is currently training
> its 5th cohort.
> Again there are different evaluation models and contextually if it helps
> in identifying key issues to improve program performance in my mind it has
As I said, my commentary:
does not, in any way whatsoever, devalue the efforts of those involved,
> does not discredit the institution, and does not take anything away from
> anybody....The real work is done between the breach of the canonical
> narrative and the reconstitution of the canonical narrative...we
> should recognise the importance of the narrative as a whole over time.
Quite clearly any tool that can be used to the desired purpose is a
valuable tool in that context. I did not say any different to that. I am
sure there are many people around the world who have found EE a useful
tool. That acknowledgement was inherent in my discussion as noted above.
My point went a whole lot further than that. My point was that this shows
the clear signature pattern of an institutional narrative and narrative is
a natural form. This goes against notions of 'absolute' agency but fits
with softer understandings of agency such as those of Kahneman and Bandura
This understanding of narrative goes against Lyotard in subtle
ways that are often misunderstood as Lyotards theories seem to imply
absolute agency. The further point was related to the nature of
institutions as the as yet unrecognised and unexplored iteration of
insitutions - there has been a call to recognise this iterative nature for
at least 20 years not least due to the damage assumptions of progressive
linearity and the myth of accelerating pace of change are causing.
One of the really big problems facing social and policy evaluation is that
it is increasingly out of touch with these sorts of concerns having
focussed on 'in-house' theory and methodology. One consequence is that
many of the big impact evaluations are now being done by established
disciplines and/or commercial practices. I have not problem with
commercial practices doing these big hitting evaluations because they are
honest in what they do and typically - if they are big enough organizations
- highly skilled and work to a high standard with a weak political agenda.
So, again, as I said, what I said does not in any way whatoever devalue the
efforts of those involved, does not discredit the institution, and does not
take anything away from anybody. Quite clearly any tool that can be used
to the desired purpose is a valuable tool in that context.
If one can think of the bigger picture one can begin to imagine the
consequences of engaging with the narrative pattern of institution
building, deliberately or otherwise, and the implications of this.
Furthermore, one should always respect, and indeed in most cases admire,
those individuals who have the courage adn fortitude to commit decades of
their life to pursuing goals that reach far beyond their own personal
sphere of existence.
What I said does not in any way whatoever devalue the efforts of
those involved, does not discredit the institution, and does not take
anything away from anybody