I have a quandary.  Perhaps you have a solution.

I am the evaluator on a program where the funding agency wants clear, measurable, and specific outcomes.  (OK, you say) The funding agency program people were asked to answer the question, “What do you expect to happen as a result of the program?”

These folks responded with a programmatic equivalent of “world peace.”  I virtually rolled my eyes.  IMHO there was no way that this program would end in world peace.  Not even no hunger (a necessary precursor to world peace).  After suggesting that perhaps that goal was unattainable given the resources and activities intended,  they came out of the fantasy world in which they were living and said, realistically, “We don’t know, exactly.”  I probed further.  The sites (several) were all different; the implementation processes (also several) were all different; the resources were all different (depending on site); and the list goes on.  Oh, and the program was to be rolled out soon in another site without an evaluation of the previous sites.  BUT THEY WANTED CLEAR, MEASURABLE, AND SPECIFIC OUTCOMES.

What would you do in this situation?  (I know what I proposed–there was lukewarm response.  I have an idea what would work–although the approach was not mainstream evaluation and these were mainstream folks.)  So I turn to you, Readers.  What would you do?  Let me know.  PLEASE.


Oh, and Happy Groundhog’s Day.  I understand there will be six more weeks of winter (there was serious frost this morning in Corvallis OR).




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