"There is a real hunger for this book among social innovators, funders, policymakers, and educators. The book is sure to become dog-eared as it is read, used, and reread to help evaluators conduct their work in a manner consistent with the complexity of the challenges they are addressing." - Brenda Zimmerman, Director, Health Industry Management Program, Schulich School of Business, York University, Canada
"Patton pulls back the curtain to reveal that there is no great Oz of evaluation. This book reminds us that when we are working in complex systems we are better off acknowledging how little we know from the outset—and then acting on continual feedback—rather than pretending we already have all the knowledge needed to succeed. Patton challenges evaluators to relentlessly adapt, react, change, and innovate to work toward the best outcomes." - John B. Bare, Vice President, The Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
"In true Michael Quinn Patton style, this book successfully extends both the theory and practice of evaluation in significant and timely ways. Solutions to the world’s most pressing social problems are neither predictable nor known; developmental evaluation is just what the field needs to evaluate the complex realities of today’s organizations and communities. This book is a 'must read' for anyone committed to understanding how, where, when, and for whom social innovations are achieving their goals." - Hallie Preskill, Executive Director, Strategic Learning and Evaluation Center, FSG Social Impact Advisors, Seattle, Washington
"Proust wrote that 'the real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes.' In this book, Patton brings new eyes to evaluation landscapes. He illustrates the distinct contribution that developmental evaluation can make in addressing the dynamic complexity that often challenges evaluation efforts. Evaluators will see themselves among the stories Patton shares. The concepts and ideas are accessible and the case examples provide a diverse array of teachable vignettes, making the book ideal for classroom use. This is a most enjoyable read that offers lots of new learning, even for an evaluation veteran!" - Ann M. Doucette, Director, The Evaluators’ Institute, The George Washington University, USA
About the Author
Michael Quinn Patton is an independent organizational development and program evaluation consultant. A former President of the American Evaluation Association (AEA), he teaches regularly in AEA’s professional development workshops, The Evaluators’ Institute, and The World Bank’s International Program in Development Evaluation Training. Dr. Patton is a recipient of the Myrdal Award for Outstanding Contributions to Useful and Practical Evaluation Practice from the Evaluation Research Society and the Lazarsfeld Award for Lifelong Contributions to Evaluation Theory from the AEA.