Since the Conservative government of the late 70s introduced its stringent spending policy, a 'value for money' ideology has dictated most new approaches to policy management. As a result, monitoring and evaluation have become an integral part in the policy process. Focusing on the experience of British Urban Policy, this book examines the theoretical and practical issues in the monitoring or evaluation of public policy. It argues that as a result of the 'value for money' ideology influencing urban policy in Britain, various conflicts have arisen in both policy and implementation, and compromises have had to be made. By exploring the experiences of monitoring and evaluating urban policy, the book examines key issues such as changing approaches, the interface between monitoring and evaluation, and the utilization of monitoring information and evaluation studies. It concludes that a long-term evaluation strategy is required in order to improve the utility value of evaluation studies vis-a-vis policy formulation at the national level and implementation at the local level.
'It draws on evidence from the City Challenge programme to make valuable wider suggestions about the nature of monitoring and evaluation. It has important messages both for policy makers in central government and for local partnerships involved in regeneration on the ground. Given the government's renewed aim to regenerate cities that was spelled out in the Urban White Paper, this is a book that will prove both timely and important.' Professor Brian Robson, Manchester University, UK
Contents: Introduction. Part I: Monitoring and Evaluation: A Review of Three Decades: Evaluation of urban policy; The development of output and performance monitoring. Part II: Monitoring and Evaluation in Practice: Monitoring and evaluation - government approach; Monitoring and evaluation - local practice; Local experience - Bradford City challenge; Local experience - Hulme City challenge; Perceptions and reality - a comparison of views between partnerships and the government; Conclusions; Bibliography; Index.