Problems arise in attempting to evaluate Employee Assistance Programmes (EAP) in the widest sense. Terms such as “evaluation”, and “benefits” are regarded as potentially complex, as is the adequate definition of what constitutes “employee assistance”. Studies concerned both with alcohol programmes and with stress management are reviewed; specific problems are highlighted. Methodology and the appropriateness of the traditional scientific method are much discussed. “Meta‐evaluation” is proposed to run concurrently with the unravelling of methodological questions in order to address the interfacing of programmes with other sections of the organisation, and the extent to which environmental and organisational factors rather than individuals are targeted for change.
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