Handbook of Social Policy Evaluation


Handbook of Social Policy Evaluation

9781785363238 Edward Elgar Publishing
Edited by Bent Greve, Professor in Social Science, Department of Social Sciences and Business, University of Roskilde, Denmark
Publication Date: 2017 ISBN: 978 1 78536 323 8 Extent: 576 pp
This Handbook uses methodologies and cases to discover how and when to evaluate social policy, and looks at the possible impacts of evaluation on social policy decisions. The contributors present a detailed analysis on how to conduct social policy evaluation, how to be aware of pitfalls and dilemmas and how to use evidence effectively.

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This Handbook uses methodologies and cases to discover how and when to evaluate social policy, and looks at the possible impacts of evaluation on social policy decisions. The contributors present a detailed analysis on how to conduct social policy evaluation, how to be aware of pitfalls and dilemmas and how to use evidence effectively.

Organized into three thematic sections, this new resource includes contributions from a variety of researchers from a range of disciplines and countries. The first section explores evaluation and examples of methods used; the second focuses on the intersection between evaluation and policy-making; and the third delves into current social policy in order to discover the use of evaluation within central welfare state policies. One conclusion found is that welfare states are increasingly using evidence, but that it varies from and within different welfare areas.

Researchers and students with an interest in evaluation and social policy analysis, as well as policy-makers and administrators in need of evidence and analysis on the subject, will find much value in this clear and precise overview of the use and misuse of evidence.
Critical Acclaim
‘This is an interesting “how to” guide to social policy evaluation, presenting a range of discussions of methodologies, applications to social policy and detailed case studies.’
– Jason Lowther, Taylor & Francis Online

‘This book is a useful addition to the library of works relating to evaluation. It embraces a range of approaches that can be employed in undertaking evaluations, delivers a breadth of methodologies, depending on context and constituencies, and provides a wide selection of applications that will be helpful to new entrants in the field of evaluation and also to experienced practitioners.’
– Ceri J. Phillips, Swansea University, UK

‘This is an important collection that carefully and critically explores the challenges researchers face in conducting social policy evaluation and gives clear guidance on the full range of different approaches along with practical examples of their use. It should be essential reading for anyone trying to evaluate social policy.’
Ian Greener, University of Strathclyde, UK
Contributors: K. Bakhai, M. Barnard, A.E. Boardman, R. Boruch, K.N. Breidahl, C. Brown, M. Calnan, E. Cassells, M. Costa, P. Dahler-Larsen, C. Deeming, T. Douglass, J. Edbrooke-Childs, W. Eichhorst, D. Etherington, S. Evans-Lacko, J.-E. Furubo, H. Gaus, M. Gerressu, H. Gleeson, D. Gondek, B. Greve, A. Hagelund, A. Halvorsen, M.B. Hansen, T. Haux, M.A. Hussain, J.M. Hyatt, C. Irish, J. Jacob, H.C. Kavli, M. Knapp, R. Konle-Seidl, M. Lakhanpaul, K. Liket, N. McHugh, C.E. Mueller, L. Richardson, R. Rodrigues, M.J. Roy, S. Sinclair, K. Smith, T. Sundberg, H. Turner, W. Van Lancker, A.R. Vining, J. Warren, I. Whelan, J. Wistow, M. Wolpert, R. Yang


1. Introduction: Evaluation as an instrument in social policy
Bent Greve

2. Randomized Controlled Trials
Robert Boruch, Rui Yang, Jordan M. Hyatt and Herbert Turner III

3. Quasi-Experimental Comparison Group Designs for Social Policy Evaluation
Christoph E. Mueller and Hansjoerg Gaus

4. Social Return on Investment (SROI), Including Elements on Cost–Benefit Analysis
Massimo Costa

5. There are many (well, more than one) paths to Nirvana: The economic evaluation of social policies
Anthony E. Boardman and Aidan R. Vining

6. Systematic reviews in Social Policy Evaluation
Trude Sundberg

7. Participatory evaluation
Liz Richardson

8. Evidence-based policymaking (EBPM)
Kat Smith and Tina Haux

9. Use and misuse of evaluation in social policy
Christopher Deeming

10. Challenges for Policy Makers: Accountability and Cost-effectiveness
Kellie Liket

11. Policy, practice and difference within welfare regimes: Evidence from the UK
Jon Warren and Jonathan Wistow

12. Performance Management and Evaluation
Morten Balle Hansen

13. Critical Perspectives on using evidence in social policy
Peter Dahler-Larsen

14. Social Impact Bonds – Evidence-based policy or ideology?
Michael J. Roy, Neil McHugh and Stephen Sinclair

15. Heath Care – Evaluating the Overall System
Sara Evans-Lacko and Martin Knapp

16. The Evaluation of New Medicines
Michael Calnan and Tom Douglass

17. Evaluating long-term care policies: challenges and advancements
Ricardo Rodrigues

18. Labour Market
Werner Eichhorst and Regina Konle-Seidl

19. Ideology or evidence base? The role of work capability assessments for people with disabilities in UK welfare to work programmes
David Etherington

20. Integration
Anniken Hagelund and Hanne Cecilie Kavli

21. Evaluating interventions for children, young people, and families: Theory, evidence, policy, and lessons learnt
Julian Edbrooke-Childs, Dawid Gondek, Isabelle Whelan, Jenna Jacob, Matt Barnard, Helen Gleeson, Makeda Gerressu, Monica Lakhanpaul, Caroletha Irish, Emma Cassells, Khyati Bakhai and Miranda Wolpert

22. The Matthew Effect Redux. Going beyond the mean in evaluating family policies
Wim Van Lancker

23. Eight attention points when evaluating large-scale public sector reforms
Morten Balle Hansen, Karen Nielsen Breidahl, Jan-Eric Furubo , Anne Halvorsen

24. Poverty interventions
M. Azhar Hussain

25. How understanding research as consumer object can shed new light on evidence informed policy and practice in education
Chris Brown

26. Conclusion
Bent Greve

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