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Performance measurement is a very timely topic in the public and nonprofit sectors of the United States and in many countries around the world. Executive and legislative initiatives have required public managers to identify performance measures, set performance targets, and report on their progress toward meeting performance goals. Funders have similarly asked nonprofits to show results for the support provided them. Program managers and budget officers have eagerly sought help in designing performance measurement strategies and systems. Program evaluators can enhance current performance measurement efforts by bringing stakeholders together to clarify program goals and determine how best to report results.This volume critically reviews current design and use of performance measurement in public and nonprofit programs. The authors describe the context surrounding design and implementation of performance measurement systems, discuss best practices in performance measurement, and provide examples of the use of performance measurement in all levels of government and the nonprofit sector. This is the 75th issue of the quarterly journal New Directions for Evaluation.
KATHRYN E. NEWCOMER is professor and chair in the Department of Public Administration at The George Washington University, Washington, D.C.