Knowledge, framing, and ethics in programme design and evaluation

Jacob, Suraj (2018) Knowledge, framing, and ethics in programme design and evaluation. In: Ethics in Public Health Practice in India. Springer, Singapore, pp. 45-61. ISBN 978-981-13-2450-5

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This chapter will explore ethical issues surrounding the design and evaluation of public health programmes. For programme design, the chapter will argue that programme choice often occurs with solutions already in mind and that these solutions reflect “off-the-shelf” thinking (for instance, ubiquitous “training workshops”), implying little real “choice” in programme design. Further, at a broader level, programme choice is influenced by implicit ideological and epistemological positions that may be ethically dubious especially if they are not problematised and made transparent. On programme evaluation, the chapter focuses on ethical aspects of three key elements: participatory evaluation, the use of evaluation results and the place of impact evaluation. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the role of ethics in relation to epistemology. While it may be relatively uncontroversial to note the problematic ethics of research that comes up short when benchmarked against its own research / methodological paradigm, it is worth asking to what extent the choice of research / methodological / epistemological paradigm is itself an ethical one.

Item Type: Book Section
Authors: Jacob, Suraj
Document Language:
Uncontrolled Keywords: public health rights and ethics, Coalitions on right to health care, Ethics in program design
Subjects: Social sciences > Sociology & anthropology
Divisions: Azim Premji University > School of Development
Full Text Status: Public
Publisher URL:

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