Involving stakeholders in programme theory specification: Discussion of a systematic, consensus-based approach

Felix Van Urk, Sean Grant, Chris Bonell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The use of explicit programme theory to guide evaluation is widely recommended. However, practitioners and other partnering stakeholders often initiate programmes based on implicit theories, leaving researchers to explicate them before commencing evaluation. The current study aimed to apply a systematic method to undertake this process. We integrated a Delphi process into a larger effort to engage stakeholders in the elucidation of a logic model for the Studio School model of education. This study demonstrates that evaluators and service providers can jointly specify - and come to consensus regarding - intervention programme theories after these have been designed but prior to evaluation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)541-557
Number of pages17
JournalEvidence and Policy
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 2016
Externally publishedYes



  • Delphi method
  • Logic model
  • Participatory research
  • Programme theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

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