Programs' Philosophy Matters

What do philosophy and theoretical frameworks have to do with program evaluation?

A program’s philosophical underpinnings guide its approaches and activities.

When it comes to evaluation, describing the philosophy and theoretical framework of your program can increase learning about the following kinds of questions:          

• Are we doing the right things?        
• Are we doing things in the right way?        
• Why are we doing things in a particular way?        
• Which aspects of our program are contributing to positive outcomes?
• Does our approach continue to be responsive to the needs of our program participants?        
• How does our program relate to other programs in our community?
Learn more about program philosophy as a foundation for evaluation.
The philosophical approaches shown in our ‘Evaluation Maps’ were each identified as being key to good outcomes for community-based prevention and support programs.

Click on the grey circles in the diagram below to learn more about key philosophies for wraparound programs.
The Co-Creating Evidence project’s Theory of Change also shows how programs’ guiding philosophies and approaches are related to their activities and outcomes for participants.
Learn more about the Theory of change.