chapter  13
Postscript—Evaluation and Turbulence: Beyond an Incremental View of the World
ByRay C. Rist
Pages 8

The political turmoil and economic turbulence have unsettled individuals, groups, communities, and even whole countries. Evaluation has been defined by the time of its emergence onto the global scene—a time of relative stability and predictability, and a time where incremental change was plausible and doable. The assumptions of evaluators about organizational behavior seem stuck in place. Evaluators constantly stress the need for and importance of longitudinal data. Indeed there are specific evaluation designs that emphasize the importance of longitudinal data—interrupted times series and time series being two. One of the shifts that the turbulence has brought about in the evaluation community is more emphasis on accountability, performance to standards, and performance auditing. Policy makers and program managers are right to be suspicious of evaluation information generated from the time of calm.