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Understanding the environment: A systems approach
Understanding the environment: A systems approach

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1.4.4 Evaluating

Evaluation is about using monitoring and other information collected to make judgements about whether your goal and associated plan was achieved or not. In other words, you will need to compare your original prediction of what you were going to do and what your final result would be with what actually happened. This should automatically feed into the next iteration of the learning process; providing evaluations which will feed into changes and improvements to the overall process i.e. the new plan might include a different, more realistic, goal, and/or different approaches for acting, observing and the next round of evaluation. While the evaluating phase often happens to be the final stage of the learning process, it is of most value as a springboard to subsequent iterations through the learning process. It is at this stage that a decision is made on whether the successful implementation of the first iteration through the learning process will require a more convergent and analytical approach, or whether inconclusive progress will still necessitate a predominantly divergent and intuitive approach.

From this point onwards, I would expect you to try and implement the action learning process as you engage with this course. Although many of the activities within this course will not explicitly ask you to use the action learning process outlined above as a guiding framework, I would recommend that you practise using this rather formal expression of the process even when I do not remind you to use it. There are rarely simple and repeatable solutions to understanding complexity – this course proposes that using and communicating your own action learning approach is the only realistic course of action.