Michael Quinn Patton

Special Issue

A Transcultural Global Systems Perspective: In Search of Blue Marble Evaluators

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Pages:
374-390

Ten dimensions of a core culture of evaluative inquiry are identified as themes that emerge from and cut across the diverse articles in this volume. Cross-cultural evaluation emerges as involving mixed methods; integrated epistemologies; politically and institutionally supporting indigenous peoples and cultures; framing cross-cultural intersections, interactions, and integration through an understanding and appreciation of complex ecologies; personal, relational, and institutional reflexivity; and transparent praxis at every level and throughout every aspect of evaluation. Enhancing the capacity of evaluators outside the industrialized world has been important, appropriate, and effective despite major challenges and resource limitations. However, evaluation capacity-building has focused at the nation-state level. Such a focus is important and necessary but inadequate to deal with global issues. The major problems the world faces today and into the future are global in nature. Building on the impressive developments in international and cross-cultural evaluation documented in this special issue of CJPE, the next step and the way forward is to treat the global system as the evaluand and to develop evaluators capable of undertaking transcultural global systems change evaluations. The implications of this new focus are discussed.

Special Issue

Remarks from the editor of the special issue / Un mot du rédacteur du numéro spécial

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Pages:
1-17

The Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness: History and Significance

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Pages:
19-36

The Paris Declaration, endorsed in 2005, commits international development aid donors and recipients to act in accordance with five principles: ownership, alignment, harmonization, results, and mutual accountability. This landmark international agreement was the culmination of several decades of attempts to improve the quality of aid and its impact on development. As context for the evaluation of the Paris Declaration, this article traces the history of international agreements that led up to the Paris Declaration and the significance of the agreement itself. The number of countries and international organizations endorsing the Declaration was unprecedented, reflecting a greater diversity of voices included in international deliberations on aid effectiveness. It provided a practical, action-oriented roadmap with specific targets to be met. The evaluation derives its significance and relevance from the importance of the Paris Declaration and from the innovative, rigorous evaluation approach taken as an exemplar of joint evaluations.

Meta-Evaluation: Evaluating the Evaluation of the Paris Declaration

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Pages:
147-171

It has become a standard in major high-stakes evaluations to commission an independent review to determine whether the evaluation meets generally accepted standards of quality. This is called a meta-evaluation. Given the historic importance of the Evaluation of the Paris Declaration, the Management Group commissioned a meta-evaluation of the evaluation. The metaevaluation concluded that the findings, conclusions, and recommendations presented in the Paris Declaration Evaluation adhered closely and rigorously to the evaluation evidence collected and synthesized. The meta-evaluation included an assessment of the evaluation's strengths, weaknesses, and lessons. This article describes how the meta-evaluation was designed and implemented, the data collected, and the conclusions reached.

Lessons Learned and the Contributions of the Paris Declaration Evaluation to Evaluation Theory and Practice

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Pages:
173-200

The final event of the Paris Declaration Evaluation was a lessons- learned workshop. This article first highlights the lessons about joint evaluations identified by participants in that workshop with the resulting report being a model of how to bring closure to a major evaluation. The article then presents 10 contributions of the Paris Declaration Evaluation to evaluation theory and practice. The article closes by recognizing that the Paris Declaration Evaluation received the 2012 American Evaluation Association (AEA) Outstanding Evaluation Award, which noted, "The success of the Evaluation required an unusually skilled, knowledgeable and committed evaluation team; a visionary, well-organized, and well-connected Secretariat to manage the logistics, international stakeholder meetings, and financial accounts; and a highly competent and respected Management Group to provide oversight and ensure the Evaluation's independence and integrity. This was an extraordinary partnership where all involved understood their roles and carried out their responsibilities fully and effectively."

Special Issue

Incomplete successes

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Pages:
151-163

Succès mitigés

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Pages:
164-178

Special Issue

Organizational Development and Evaluation

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Pages:
93-114

This article explores some of the opportunities open to evaluators as organizational development practitioners and the particular competencies and comparative advantages evaluators can bring to such initiatives. Examples include: (1) making systems connections between program culture and organizational culture (and therefore between program effectiveness and organizational effectiveness); (2) organizational mission fulfillment assessment (in contrast to and in relation to program goal attainment (3) results -oriented, reality-testing leadership development as an organizational development effort to enhance the appropriate, effective, and ongoing use of outcomes evaluation at senior organizational levels; (4) reflective practice and action research built on evaluation logic and processes for organizational development; (5) knowledge management for learning organizations through identification and use of high quality empirically supported and triangulated) lessons learned: (6) evaluation facilitation as a way of enhancing organizational communications; (7) process uses of evaluation for organizational learning and capacity building; and (8) developmental evaluation as a form of organizational development in teams.