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The present chapter includes a case study that describes and analyzes three performance audit reports over a three decade period for one U.S. state government's…
The present chapter includes a case study that describes and analyzes three performance audit reports over a three decade period for one U.S. state government's destination management organization's (DMO) actions and outcomes. This report extends prior studies (Woodside & Sakai, 2001, 2003) that support two conclusions: (1) the available independent performance audits of DMOs’ actions and outcomes indicate that frequently DMOs perform poorly and fail to meaningfully assess the impacts of their own actions and (2) the audits themselves are shallow and often fail to provide information on DMOs’ actions and outcomes relating to these organizations largest marketing expenditures. The chapter calls for embracing a strategy shift in designing program evaluations by both government departments responsible for managing destinations’ tourism marketing programs and all government auditing agencies in conducting future management performance audits. The chapter offers a “tourism performance audit template” as a tool for both strategic planning by destination management organizations and for evaluating DMOs’ planning and implementing strategies. The chapter includes an appendix – a training exercise in using the audit template and invites the reader to download a tourism performance audit report of a destination marketing organization and to apply the template after reading the report.
A meta-evaluation is an assessment of evaluation practices. Meta-evaluations include assessments of validity and usefulness of two or more studies that focus on the same…
A meta-evaluation is an assessment of evaluation practices. Meta-evaluations include assessments of validity and usefulness of two or more studies that focus on the same issues. Every performance audit is grounded explicitly or implicitly in one or more theories of program evaluation. A deep understanding of alternative theories of program evaluation is helpful to gain clarity about sound auditing practices. We present a review of several theories of program evaluation.
This study includes a meta-evaluation of seven government audits on the efficiency and effectiveness of tourism departments and programs. The seven tourism-marketing performance audits are program evaluations for: Missouri, North Carolina, Tennessee, Minnesota, Australia, and two for Hawaii. The majority of these audits are negative performance assessments. Similarly, although these audits are more useful than none at all, the central conclusion of the meta-evaluation is that most of these audit reports are inadequate assessments. These audits are too limited in the issues examined; not sufficiently grounded in relevant evaluation theory and practice; and fail to include recommendations, that if implemented, would result in substantial increases in performance.