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Public Policy and Program Evaluation Hardcover – January 1, 1997

ISBN-13: 978-1560002994 ISBN-10: 1560002999

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Transaction Publishers (January 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1560002999
  • ISBN-13: 978-1560002994
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,699,183 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“The strength of this book is its thorough integration of policy context into the various phases of program evaluation…  This is a solid introduction to program evaluation and the interaction of this activity with the policy environment generally.” 

—R. Heineman, Choice

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Swedish

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 21, 1999
Format: Hardcover
The book has been written to be used as a qualified introductory volume in evaluation at academic institutions as well as within public administration. Besides being a good text book for those wanting to learn about making evaluation, the book serves well as a source book for the other important audience - those who fund or use evaluation research. Being an introductory volume, it does not go into details of evaluation methodology nor offer any new approaches, but aims at an overview of the existing literature and experience. The evaluation literature is very vast, and there are many approaches and arguments. Vedung's book is a most sensible and realiable compass when entering that jungle. Vedung makes two important limitations in his book. First of all, evaluation in this context is limited to gevernment interventions only, that is, to politically or administratively planned social change, like public policies, public programs and public services. The other limitation is that he is only interested in retrospective assessment of public interventions. Both of these limitations exclude a wide array of evaluation activities, especially in the US, as Vedung points out, but they certainly make the book a coherent and more accessible. The limitations mean, however, that we will for instance not learn much about evaluation which is carried out for assessing developments in work life, or evaluation which aims at clarifying and developing the aims and working methods of social movements. Vedung defines evaluation as 'careful, retrospecive assessment of merit, worth, and value of hte admisnistration, output and outcome of government interventions, which is intended to play a role in future practical action situations' (p. 13).Read more ›
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 26, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Evert Vedung's book `Public Policy and Program Evaluation' is a very notable addition to the ever growing list of books dealing with evaluation and implementation.
I strongly recommend this book to anyone involved with program evaluation in the capacity of student, government official (program implementer) or government program evaluator.
Vedung's writing style is clear and simple. He explains and defends his arguments in a very precise and systematic fashion and that makes the book very comprehensible and easy to read.
Evaluation is a diverse discipline, thus one needs to systematize and clarify the themes he talks about right from the start. Evert Vedung does just that.
In the first four chapters of the book he introduces the reader to the diverse cosmos of evaluation. Initially he semantically defines evaluation and explains that he confines evaluation to the after-the-fact assessments. That is, he covers on-going or terminated activities but not before-the-fact analysis of potential not-yet adopted interventions (p.8).
He also talks of different evaluation models and he schematically classifies them into effectiveness, economic and professional models (p.36). Later, he analyzes each model in more detail. Among others, he puts emphasis on the typology of effects that a government intervention could have and presents some of these effects as Intended - Unintended and Anticipated - Unanticipated (pp. 49-59).
In chapter five he formulates his approach to public policy evaluation by listing eight problems - that he sees vital - in the form of questions.
1. Purpose problem: For what overall is the evaluation launched? 2. Organization (evaluator) problem: Who should exercise the evaluation and how? 3.
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By Flavia Mori Sarti on January 17, 2011
Format: Paperback
One phrase by Evert Vedung on the definition on evaluation should be enough to clarify my review title: "Evaluation is retrospective assessment of public interventions. Prospective appraisals (...), are not included in my definition."(p.7).
Even considering the narrowest interpretation of the term "public policy cycles" as solely formulation-implementation-evaluation phases, it doesn't seem to me that most writers in the area cope with the idea of an evaluation phase so reductionist.
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By aacunalcsw on April 17, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you are interested in policy evaluation - this is the kama sutra. The author first presented this information as a series of lectures and it shows - that is, it reads well - very conversational. Very practical, very clear and very comprehensive. Very satisfying.
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