Program evaluation use and its mechanisms: The case of Cohesion Policy in Polish regional administration
This article discusses evaluation use in the area of EU operational programs implemented by Polish regional administration, which is an uncharted territory. The analysis is based on the assumption that evaluation is a long-term process producing a stream of knowledge that supports management decisions throughout a program’s lifetime. Three cases of regional programs, their managing authorities and 44 evaluation studies completed by them between 2007 and 2012 were analyzed. The degree of evaluation use was found unsatisfactory and limited to minor modifications of the implementation process. The main barrier to the evaluation use was poor quality of evaluation studies, obvious and insignificant conclusions, reports missing answers to key questions. That resulted from other problems: incompetence of evaluators and inappropriate research methodologies.
evaluation use; program evaluation; regional operational program; Poland; Cohesion Policy