Location, Location, Location: Putting Evaluation in “Place”

Policy Horizons Canada

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Policy Horizons Canada

Year: 2011

As a community, Prince George is different than Brampton, which is different than St. John’s.  Place-based approaches are bottom-up interventions that acknowledge the impact local realities can have on program effectiveness.  These are interventions that use multi-sectoral collaboration to tackle complex issues, and they take place in disparate communities across the country.

Determining which interventions work best, under which circumstances, and why, is fundamental to forming effective policy at the local and national level. Policy Horizons Canada responded to this need by launching a project on the evaluation of place-based approaches from a national government perspective. Having explored the characteristics of place-based approaches, and the evaluation challenges associated with these characteristics, the project sought to dig deeper, and commissioned several papers from experts in the evaluation field. The goals of the project included exploring the evidence base that has been established around place-based approaches; exploring stakeholder experiences with evaluation processes; and identifying innovative evaluation methods and tools. While not intended to be all-encompassing, these papers focused primarily on place-based initiatives with federal government involvement on a number of policy domains, representing the key pillars of sustainability.

This report presents key findings from each of the papers.

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