Open Access Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington
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Towards a New Theory of VET Policy Evaluation and Engagement: A Multiple Stakeholder Approach

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posted on 2023-03-14, 23:30 authored by Parkes, Lois Elaine

Much current policy analysis assumes that in order to build theory on vocational education and training (VET) policy evaluation, it is useful to explore evaluation from the perspectives of its stakeholders. However in practice this does not always happen. This thesis addresses the limitations that arise in policy analysis on VET when stakeholders’ perspectives are ignored or assumed. Industry Training in New Zealand is used as an example of a VET policy that has experienced increasing participation by stakeholders, but limited evaluation that largely ignores stakeholders’ views. Taking an inclusive, qualitative approach, this research seeks to unearth how different stakeholders in the state and tourism sectors evaluate the impact of Industry Training and how value is created for each from Industry Training engagement. Fifty semi-structured interviews were completed with a cross-section of stakeholders representing policy makers, various industry interest groups, as well as employers/managers and trainees from four state and tourism sector organisations. Secondary data, where available, were also analysed, in order to improve the level of data triangulation. An analytical framework was developed from the VET, human capital, human resource development, critical human resource development and policy evaluation literatures. This framework consists of two broad paradigms of evaluation: (1) The Strategic HRD/VET policy logic of skills investment equals increased socio-economic prosperity. This views the outcomes of VET policy as largely value-free, quantifiable facts that are mutually beneficial to all stakeholders, and which exist separately from these stakeholders; and, (2) The Critical HRD/Stakeholder logic that views the outcomes of VET policy as value-laden, not necessarily mutually beneficial to all stakeholders, nor existing separately from its stakeholders. Responses from interviewees were compared against these paradigms and among different stakeholder groups to answer the main research question: How do stakeholders evaluate the impact of a VET policy? The main research outcome is the development of a new framework and theory of VET policy evaluation, based on a comparative understanding of value creation from multiple stakeholders’ perspectives.


Copyright Date


Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline

Human Resource Management

Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Doctoral Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

Victoria Management School


Bryson, Jane; Norman, Richard