Innovative Assessment Methodologies

How can we improve understanding of ourselves and others?

Decision-making in the framework of chance processes requires a large variety of innovative observation and assessment methods. The aim is to remove doubt and to obtain new options for action.

  • Focus groups: We design moderated discussions in small groups. For example, such a setting can be used to assess public programmes for Rural Development by a group of citizens.
  • Systemic Constellations: a tool to visualize social dynamics. For example, this tool allows to identify those decision makers who have a positive – or negative – attitude towards a specific project.
  • Circular discussion: Questioning around the corner: “What do you think, what do the employees think about this decision by the boss?” We induce unfamiliar perspectives and tap unexpected sources of information.
  • Repertory Grid: This innovative survey method originates from social research. It captures and compares individual feelings: What does a group of actors think about a current development process, compared to the previous year? 

Selected References:

  • Accompaniment of Local Agenda 21 Processes in the Mühlviertel and in the Südsteirisches Rebenland (2009-2010), client: Regional Management Upper Austria, Rural Development Styria, proVISION, Austrian Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management.
  • Local Focus Groups within the ongoing research for the pilot project for rural development “Regionen Aktiv” (2006-2008), client: German Ministry for Nutrition, Agriculture and Consumer Protection

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