Qualitative cost-benefit evaluation of complex, emergent programs
This paper discusses a methodology used for a qualitative cost-benefit evaluation of a complex, emergent program. Complex, emergent programs, where implementation varies considerably over time and across sites to respond to local needs and opportunities, present challenges to conventional methods for cost-benefit evaluation. Such programs are characterized by: ill-defined boundaries of what constitutes the intervention, and hence the resources used; non-standardized procedures; differing short-term outcomes across projects, even within the same long-term goals; and outcomes that are the result of multiple factors and co-production, making counter-factual approaches to attribution inadequate and the use of standardized outcome measures problematic. The paper discusses the advantages and limitations of this method and its implications for cost-benefit evaluation of complex programs.
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- van den Bergh, Jeroen C. J. M., 2004. "Optimal climate policy is a utopia: from quantitative to qualitative cost-benefit analysis," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(4), pages 385-393, April.
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