Title

The Case for Participatory Evaluation

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

Winter 1992

Volume

14

Issue

4

Publication Title

Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis

First Page

397

Last Page

418

Abstract

Participatory evaluation is presented as an extension of the stakeholder-based model with a focus on enhancing evaluation utilization through primary users’ increased depth and range of participation in the applied research process. The approach is briefly described and then justified from theoretical and empirical bases. The literature on organizational learning provides theoretical support for participatory evaluation stemming primarily from the view that knowledge is socially constructed and cognitive systems and memories are developed and shared by organization members. Twenty-six recent empirical studies were found to support an organizational learning justification of the model. Studies were classified into one of six emergent categories: conceptions of use; effects of participation on the use of research; effects of participation on the use of disseminated knowledge; effects of research training; school-university partnerships; and internal evaluation. Requirements of organizations and evaluators and an agenda for research are discussed.