The Practice-Theory Relationship in Evaluation

By Christina A. Christie | Go to book overview
Contents
Editor’s Notes Christina A. Christie1
1. What Guides Evaluation? A Study of How Evaluation Practice Maps onto Evaluation Theory Christina A. Christie The results of an empirical study are portrayed in a comparative twodimensional framework that describes the self-reported evaluation practices of eight evaluation theorists and then is also used to assess and describe the real-world practices of a sample of evaluation practitioners.7
2. Important Questions, Intriguing Method, Incomplete Answers Lois-ellin Datta The author triangulates Christie’s findings with other research on the evaluation practice-theory relationship and offers additional methods and directions for future research on evaluation practice.37
3. Fetterman-House: A Process Use Distinction and a Theory David Fetterman The concept of process use is discussed as an important distinction between the evaluation theories of House and Fetterman, thus helping to explain Christie’s discordant results for these two theorists.47
4. Stakeholder Bias Ernest R. House The nature of stakeholder participation in evaluation is analyzed. House’s commitment to involving all stakeholders—to ensure that the interests of all are included—is contrasted with other theorists’ preference to involve a few stakeholders more intensely.53
5. The Challenge of Studying Evaluation Theory Jean A. King This chapter discusses why evaluation as a field has not systematically studied its own theory, then examines the tensions between Lewin’s often-cited claim that there is nothing so practical as a good theory and Fullan’s response that there is nothing so theoretical as good practice.57
6. Toward an Agenda for Research on Evaluation Gary T. Henry, Melvin M. Mark Building on Christie’s innovative work, the authors chart a future agenda for research on evaluation.69

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