I’m Paul Duignan, I’ve been working in evaluation for twenty years and more recently I’ve combined evaluation with work in the emerging area of what I call ‘outcomes management’. This is the increasing emphasis that people in strategic planning, performance management and outcomes-focused contracting are putting on specifying, measuring and attributing outcomes. Because of our experience and training, there’s a great opportunity for evaluators to get involved right across this whole rapidly expanding area of work. At a practical level, my current mission is to reinvent the way we do logic modeling. Up until now, I think that we’ve been terribly low-tech in our approach to logic modeling. It’s time to both acknowledge the initial modeling work of our evaluation logic modeling pioneers, but to now lift our game. We need to build on their insight about the importance of logic models by taking advantage of the visualization opportunities that computers offer.
Rad Resource: 9 Videos on Working with Logic Models. I’ve just put up a series of 9 short videos on working with logic models, ranging from how to draw them with a group to how to map indicators onto them. Each video also has a resource list with links out to one-page tip sheets, articles and workbooks that are relevant to the particular video. http://www.outcomescentral.org.
Rad Resource: DoView outcomes and evaluation software. This software, which I’ve been involved in developing, is what some people are calling the world’s first ‘outcomes processor’. It’s been built so that it can be used with any orientation to logic modeling rather than hardwiring in a particular approach. It can also take logic modeling further by letting you build entire ‘visual evaluation plans’ around your logic models. Download a trial version from http://www.doview.com. ‘Borrow’ logic models that have already been developed in DoView and adapt them for your own program (http://www.outcomesmodels.org). See a web page example (produced by DoView) of a visual evaluation plan at: http://bit.ly/DoViewExample2
Rad Resource: At a more theoretical level – I’ve been developing the new area of ‘outcomes theory’ which attempts to identify the key concepts which underpin all thinking about outcomes (whether in evaluation, performance management, outcomes-focused contracting etc.). This work is available at http://bit.ly/outcomestheory. If you have a moment, I would love for you to engage with this body of work by putting comments at the bottom of any page about whether or not you agree with what I’m saying. I blog on a continuing basis on my work at http://outcomesblog.org and can be found on Twitter.com/PaulDuignan. Paul (at) parkerduignan.com.
Want to hear more from Paul? He is offering a demonstration as part of AEA’s Coffee Break Demonstration Series on Thursday, Jan. 7, 2010. Click here to learn more and sign up: http://www.eval.org/demos.asp