The authors use the tools of philosophy and the insights from evaluation practice to cut through current confusion about values and the interplay of facts and values. Four views of facts and values in evaluation are analyzed: those rooted in a fact-value dichotomy and those of radical constructivists, postmodernists, and deliberative democrats. The arguments are tough, the prose concise, and the insights compelling.
The Received View
The “received view” has been the dominant view of the role of values in evaluation since it emerged as a distinct field in the 1960s. The received view endorses a version of the fact-value dichotomy, although we hasten to add that this does not imply that its proponents are positivists. Indeed, some are ...