1. Next, check out "How
to Use the Guide"
2. Click on the underlined words to see more information. Use the Back
Key to return to this page.
This guide is intended for
those brave souls who are working to actually implement some form of results
or performance accountability in their community, city, school district,
county, state or nation. Implementation is no small matter. The leap from theory
to practice requires courage, time, discipline and some knowledge about HOW to
do the work. This guide is devoted to this last ingredient, how to do the
work. It is an attempt
to summarize as much of what we know about implementation as possible.
The guide is organized by question. And we have tried to find the hardest questions,
the ones you might ask, and then give
the best answer we could. Trying to answer tough questions is tough and
trying. There is still much we don't know about this work, and, in truth, there
always will be. This work is, by its nature, a
process of experimentation and discovery. For that reason we also see this
guide as a work in progress, where we will add new knowledge as we gather it.
You are part of that gathering process. As you read this you will find that
you have ideas and experience to offer. And we would
like to hear from you about this. (Use the back key
to return to this page.) You may also think of tough questions you would like answered,
and we would like to hear these as well. Or you may not be satisfied with
the answer offered here. Write to us, tell us what you think is wrong, and
we'll try again.
The answers to the questions in
this paper have two purposes: First to inform those doing the work. And
second to help those doing the work explain and, where appropriate, "sell" the approach to others.
Those others might be elected officials, decision makers, or new partners.
We try not to skimp on answers. The text
is edited to make it readable, to
present the main ideas quickly. But we have also loaded into this guide everything
we can think of that may be useful, including detailed (and sometimes
technical ) answers, pictures, formats and other tools you can use. The
guide incorporates significant material from prior publications but also includes much
material that has not been published anywhere before.
Finally, it is important to
note that the guide has a point of view. It is not a neutral summary of work in
the field of Results-Based Accountability. Rather it is designed to
help implement an approach to this work previously developed by the guide's
principle author (with the assistance of many generous friends and colleagues)
and presented in publications of The Finance Project, The Center for the Study
of Social Policy, The Foundation Consortium, the UCLA Center for Healthier
Children, Families and Communities and the Fiscal Policy Studies
Institute. (See Author and Sponsor credits, Acknowledgements,
and the publications listed in Resources and
We hope you find this guide useful. Please let us know.