From mid-level policy analysis to macro-level political economy: Comment on “developing a framework for a program theory-based approach to evaluating policy processes and outcomes: Health in all policies in South Australia”

Ronald Labonte

    Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate

    4 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    This latest contribution by the evaluation research team at Flinders University/Southgate Institute on their multi-year study of South Australia’s Health in All Policies (HiAP) initiative is simultaneously frustrating, exemplary, and partial. It is frustrating because it does not yet reveal the extent to which the initiative achieved its stated outcomes; that awaits further papers. It is exemplary in describing an evaluation research design in which the research team has excelled over the years, and in adding to it an element of theory testing and re-testing. It is partial, in that the political and economic context considered important in examining both process and outcome of the HiAP initiative stops at the Australian state’s borders as if the macro-level national and global political economy (and its power relations) have little or no bearing on the sustainability of the policy learning that the initiative may have engendered. To ask that of an otherwise elegant study design that effectively engages policy actors in its implementation may be demanding too much; but it may now be time that more critical political economy theories join with those that elaborate well the more routine praxis of public policy-making.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)656-658
    Number of pages3
    JournalInternational Journal of Health Policy and Management
    Volume7
    Issue number7
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Jul 2018

    Keywords

    • Evaluation research
    • Health in all policies
    • Political economy
    • Program theory

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