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Title: …firmly looking the other way. Dissipative economy, evaluation and the end of the development paradigm
Authors: Schiefer, Ulrich
Issue Date: Oct-2002
Abstract: Based on case studies in former Portuguese colonies it is argued that development co-operation is a dissipative economy aiming primarily at the reproduction of the involved agencies which are dissipative structures, that is, depend on the organisation of a constant flux of energy. The auto-poetic constitution of the interplaying organisations imposes strong filters on the perception of the realities at the receiving end of the development co-operation on all its agents. It is argued that evaluation is — at least in part — a ritualistic exercise intended to keep the aid money flowing in the interest of the agencies. Therefore evaluation efforts are put into an organisational straightjacket that keeps the blind spots firmly hidden. The development perspective as set by the organisations seriously limits evaluators by mechanisms of recruitment, training, field research conditions, reporting requirements and compensation. They learn how to ignore evidence in order not to jeopardize development theory.
Peer reviewed: no
Appears in Collections:CEI-CRI - Comunicações a conferências internacionais

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