Evaluation profiles in third sector organizations: differentiated implications on organizational learning
Keywords:third sector organizations, evaluation, accountability, organizational learning
This article explores patterns of representations and practices of evaluation in third sector organizations (TSO), within the framework of accountability relationships. The research strategy is based on 45 semi-structured interviews with different agents of the evaluation and the third sector fields, and an online questionnaire to 575 representatives of TSO operating in Portugal. The analysis estimates the influence and relevance of a diversity of variables associated with both internal and institutional environments upon the configuration of evaluation practices and representations, and assesses the barriers and factors that enhance the role of evaluation in strengthening the organization’s mission. The composition of four distinct evaluation profiles, based on exploratory statistical procedures, and their different implications for organizational learning, provides important clues for the (re)definition of public policies for the sector.
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