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Evaluation Practice Reconsidered

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Thomas A. Schwandt

Evaluation Practice Reconsidered encourages a new way of thinking about the activity of judging the merit, worth, or significance of some human action, such as a policy, program, or project. Yet, it is not about another model or methodology for evaluation. Taken collectively, the ideas explored here suggest a way of reasoning about and engaging in evaluation that is not bound either to the characterization of evaluation as applied social science that is not bound either to the characterization of evaluation as a professional practice of experts. Rather, the book explores evaluation as practical hermeneutics. Conceived in this way, evaluation is about acquiring an action-oriented self understanding that is continuous with our ordinary ways of thinking and actions in everyday life.