Program evaluation has evolved to serve many purposes. A distinction of basic purposes is well-captured by the concepts of allocative and operational efficiency described by Donaldson and Gerard in their 2005 book on healthcare economics.
My use of their work in program evaluation boils down to two questions:
- Is this worthwhile to do?
- How can results be maximized?
You can learn a lot from program evaluation during program development and throughout implementation by considering these two questions.