Evaluation and (and as) Production of Knowledge

2013 EENP Forum

Day 3: Sept 24, 2013 • 9:00am • Great Hall

By Kai Lee; Introduction by Andy Rowe


Some kinds of knowledge inform decisions; evaluation should be useful knowledge in that sense. How should knowledge be produced so as to be useful in decision making? This talk discusses the experience of a conservation donor in philanthropy in implementing “use-inspired” research, and what that experience suggests about the tensions that need to be managed in producing knowledge that is both valid and useful.

Kai Lee is widely respected for his work on sustainable development and adaptive management; his Compass and Gyroscope is a touchstone for many who work on environmental matters and public policy. Kai is currently a program officer at the Packard Foundation and leads an effort to develop and apply use-inspired science at the Packard Foundation and to public policy more broadly. He uses evaluation as a valued input to program development and improvement. Previously Kai was faculty at the University of Washington, Williams College and amongst his many undertakings represented Washington state on the Northwest Power Planning Council.


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