Rick Davies

Rick Davies

Doctor of Philosophy

About

39
Publications
55,785
Reads
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1,471
Citations
Introduction
Evaluation methodologies, Representation of Theories of Change, Participatory poverty measurement Participatory scenario planning, Prediction modelling Causal inference Social network analysis Participatory futures exploration Ethnographic knowledge elicitation tools
Education
October 1989 - September 1998
Swansea University
Field of study
  • Development Studies

Publications

Publications (39)
Research
Full-text available
by Rick Davies and Jess Dart, 2005
Technical Report
Full-text available
This paper looks at the technical issues associated with the representation of Theories of Change and the implications of design choices for the evaluability of those theories. The focus is on the description of connections between events rather than the events themselves, because this is seen as a widespread design weakness. Using examples and evi...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The purpose of this synthesis paper is to produce a short practically oriented report that summarises the literature on Evaluability Assessments, and highlights the main issues for consideration in planning an Evaluability Assessment. The paper was commissioned by the Evaluation Department of the UK Department for International Development (DFID) b...
Thesis
Full-text available
The aim of this thesis is to develop a coherent theory of organisational learning which can generate practical means of assisting organisational learning. The thesis develops and applies this theory to one class of organisations known as non-government organisations (NGOs), and more specifically to those NGOs who receive funds from high income coun...
Article
Full-text available
This paper introduces a novel participatory approach to exploration of alternative futures using a structured social process that embodies the evolutionary algorithm (re-iteration of variation, selection and reproduction). Its design is significantly different from other contemporary uses of the evolutionary algorithm and from other forms of scenar...
Method
Full-text available
This is a tool I developed in 1993, while doing PhD eld work with the Christian Development Commission of Bangladesh (CCDB), in Dhaka, Bangladesh. I subsequently wrote two how-to-do-it papers describing the method (both of which have been on the web for some time): Hierarchical Card Sorting: A Tool for Qualitative Research (1996) Tree Maps: A Tool...
Data
Appendices to 1989 UNHCR report
Preprint
Full-text available
The purpose of this paper is to introduce and provisionally evaluate an innovative web application known as ParEvo. ParEvo is a web-assisted participatory scenario planning process, available free for use on a dedicated platform. The paper begins with an explanation of the conceptual and practical origins of the application design, and its relation...
Presentation
Full-text available
Background: This paper was written as part of my preparations for a podcast of the above title, following a request from the EU’s Evaluation Support Service. The overall theme of the podcast series was ‘How can evaluation practice be adapted in the face of the global pandemic?‘ In the recorded podcast which you can find here (https://soundcloud.com...
Article
Full-text available
To this end, Rick Davies draws our attention to Eval3, a free Excel app! – Excel app which combines the use of systematic search algorithms used for prediction modelling with the multiple variables associated with causality in Qualitative Comparative Analysis to strengthen our understanding of the causal mechanisms which lead to impact
Article
Full-text available
This paper looks at the technical issues associated with the representation of Theories of Change and the implications of design choices for the evaluability of those theories. The focus is on the description of connections between events rather than the events themselves, because this is seen as a widespread design weakness. Using examples and evi...
Article
Full-text available
Impact and process evaluations are increasingly used in international development; however they are generally retrospective in outlook. A more timely approach to evaluation aims to identify necessary, feasible and effective changes during a programme or intervention’s lifetime. This paper aims to identify, categorise, describe and critically apprai...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Key messages • For some interventions, tight and testable theories of change are not appropriate - for example, in fast-moving humanitarian emergencies or participatory development programmes, a more flexible approach is needed. • However, it is still possible to have a flexible project design and to draw conclusions about causal attribution. This...
Research
Full-text available
by Rick Davies, for the Communication for Social Change Consortium, 2009
Article
Full-text available
In 2012 the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) funded a review of the literature on Evaluability Assessments, which was undertaken by Rick Davies. Although the review focused on practical guidance Evaluability Assessments are not unproblematic. Evaluability Assessments involve an additional layer of cost and procedure....
Conference Paper
Full-text available
QCA is a method of analysing causal contributions, which was initially developed and applied in the field of political science. In recent years it has become better known within evaluation circles and has been the subject of a number of articles in journals such as Evaluation. QCA provides a means of analysing casual contributions in complex settin...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This review was undertaken by two monitoring and evaluation consultants, both with prior experience in the use of the Most Significant Change (MSC) technique. The review was commissioned by World Vision UK, with funding support from World Vision Canada. The consultants have been asked to “focus on what has and has not worked relating to the impleme...
Article
Full-text available
The Challenge Program on Water and Food pursues food security and poverty alleviation through the efforts of some 50 researchfor-development projects. These involve almost 200 organizations working in nine river basins around the world. An approach was developed to enhance the developmental impact of the program through better impact assessment, to...
Technical Report
Full-text available
A repeat survey of households who were first surveyed in 1997 and 1998, using the same survey method. The BNS is a simple and innovative method of measuring poverty, producing results that are easy to analyse and easy to communicate. Poverty is defined democratically, with a focus on people’s entitlements
Article
Full-text available
Because of the global scale and diversity of their work, international aid agencies face major problems when attempting to represent their plans and evaluate their achievements. In this second of two articles looking at types of change processes, the focus is on complex processes of change that include mutual influence, parallel processes and feedb...
Article
Full-text available
International aid agencies face major problems when attempting to evaluate their achievements. Activities, intended beneficiaries, partner institutions and social contexts are diverse because of their global scale. How can agencies’‘theories of change’ be adequately represented in summary forms that respect the complexity and diversity? This articl...
Article
Full-text available
The Most Significant Change (MSC) technique is a dialogical, story-based technique. Its primary purpose is to facilitate program improvement by focusing the direction of work towards explicitly valued directions and away from less valued directions. MSC can also make a contribution to summative evaluation through both its process and its outputs. T...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper I argue the case for the use of a network perspective in representing and evaluating aid interventions. How we represent the intentions of aid activities has implications for how their progress and impact can be assessed. Because our representations are by necessary selective simplifications of reality they will emphasise some aspects...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This study has been undertaken as input into an impending midterm review of the MRDP. The focus of the study was on the views of MRDP officials, as well as organisational procedures and practice, and how they relate to the capacity of the programme to effectively alleviate poverty. Opinions of households within MRDP villages have been solicited, bu...
Article
Full-text available
A participatory monitoring system was devised in the course of developing an evolutionary perspective on learning within organisations and in co-operation with the Christian Commission for Development in Bangladesh (CCDB). In this approach, indicators are abandoned: instead the method focuses on the identification of significant change as perceived...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This paper reports on the use of a new method for the measurement of poverty, based on an adaptation of a survey based approach used in Britain in the 1980's. The method has a number of advantages. It is open to a broad definition of poverty and sensitive to changing definitions of poverty over time. The process is participative but produces quanti...
Presentation
Full-text available
Everyone seems to be agreed on the importance of lesson learning. But how can we tell when lessons have been learned ? This is not an academic question if NGOs are going to devote more staff time and money in order to improve their lesson learning capacity, and if they are going to seek donor support to do so. The focus of this brief paper is on de...
Article
Full-text available
In this brief paper-an abridged version of the paper presented at the 1996 DSA Conference-I have outlined a sceptical view of the idea of institutional development, particularly as it has applied to the development of NGOs-both intermediary and service delivery NGOs. An alternative and beneficiary-biased definition of institutional development is p...
Technical Report
Full-text available
In 1991 the UK Inter- NGO Committee for Somalia (INCS) sent three needs assessment missions to Somalia, following the overthrow of the Syad Barre regime. One went to the south, another to the north-west and another to the north east. Their task was to identify the scale and nature of needs for humanitarian assistance. This was the third of those mi...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Based on social research carried out just before the beginning of the civil war in the north Introduction says "The overall purpose of the research is a practical one: to help direct effective income-generation assistance to the very poor. The focus of the study is on those income-generation activities which can be found in the cities and towns,...
Research
Full-text available
A description of how to pay this Somali board game, along with some cultural context
Technical Report
Full-text available
Background This study was first published in Mogadishu by UNICEF in 1987. A total of approximately 375 copies were produced, and the majority of these copies were lost in late 1990 and early 1991, when the government of President Syad Barre was overthrown. The purpose of this 2002 “reprinting” is to make sure this perspective on the history of Mog...
Article
Full-text available
Incl. abstract, graphs, tables, bibl. International aid agencies face major problems when attempting to evaluate their achievements. Activities, intended beneficiaries, partner institutions and social contexts are diverse because of their global scale. How can agencies' 'theories of change' be adequately represented in summary forms that respect th...

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Projects

Projects (11)
Project
Development of card sorting methods suitable to the elicitation and testing of informal and tacit knowledge, for the purposes of planning, monitoring and evaluation of development interventions
Archived project