PPARN for 180423
1. What was discussed in the class?
Different between fundamental and
Power vs empower
Criteria vs requirement
Nominal vs real
Theory vs rule
Gradient vs deviance approach
Specify vs specification
Input vs resources
Strategic thinking diagram: When you have multiple goals, you should put them in different boxes
since each has different approaches that provide different solutions.
Today, we discussed the goal and apply approach “idea for action”. “Goal” in end-means relationship
is in singular form, because each goal has different approaches that provide different solutions.f
We discussed some terms of gradient and deviance approach; criteria; nominal and real; normative
and positive; theory and rule; empower… We have discussion on content of specify and specification
because specification just indicates result of specifying, but not indicates act/process of specifying. It
is different from term of building because building indicates both result and process of specify. For
example, building is process of building and building is result of building, too.
- It is necessary to set the goal first, then apply approach on goal to search for idea for action. In the
example about nutrition and income, the goal is improving nutrition or decrease the malnutrition. In
this sense, poverty reduction is not goal. Gradient approach only mentioned poverty reduction as
means. In the next stage, it will become intermediate goals.
- The distinguish between criteria and requirement. The criteria is more likely to be indicator for
requirement while requirement is more conceptual.
- The difference between theory and rule is that theory is in general utilized in positive discussion
while rule is about how thing should be, how people should act.
- The difference between assumption and hypothesis is that while assumption is just set out,
hypothesis is set out to be tested and questioned.
- Implementation starts in the virtual world, cut through the border line and end in the real world.
Research never ends because it is always in process.
In the review session, we did:
- correct mistakes of using words such as malnutrition or nutrition, and normative or nominal.
- re-clarify the distinction between ultimate goal and immediate goals
- Clarify between foundational and fundamental
- the word “empower” which come from original word “power” with adding prefix
- Come back the logical framework with deeper understanding of using plural noun, in case of
ultimate goals or ultimate goal.
There are many things were discussed in today’s lecture:
First of all, the two types of approaches were mentioned.
Secondly, we discussed more detail about gradient approach
Thirdly, again, we came back to the word “condition” with relevant to a new idea of one member in
the class: “criteria”.
Next is the comparison between the word “nominal” and “real” as well as “rule” and “theory”. And
again, “assumption” and “hypothesis” were also mentioned. In addition, the distinguish of “specify”
and “specification” was stressed in the class which I found really interesting.
Some words, problems were mentioned such as:
-Ultimate goal versa intermediate goal, total and part,
-Precondition seen as input or resources,
-Assumption and ziczac connection.
We have discussed over previous Review notes. There are some mistakes in English word usage, so
we have compared some word pairs such as “criteria” and “requirement”, “nominal” and “real”,
“theory” and “rule”, “evaluation” and “assessment”, “assumption” and “hypothesis”.
We have talked about the role of “key assumption” in the logical framework.
We have mentioned about classification of services in “Public and Private Actions to Counter
Perpetuation of Inequality: Lessons from Southeast Asia and Beyond” articles.
In reviewing note section, we discussed again the appropriate use and meaning of some words like
“approach”; “normative”; “assessment”, “evaluation”; “specify/ specification (emphasizing the result
of specifying not action or process of specifying)/ specificity”; “empower”; “however” vs. “whereas;
while; on the other hand”.
We mentioned the fourth column “key assumptions” and the relation with the structure of the project
(page 10). Students are required to express these horizontal & zigzag arrows in strategic thinking
formulation as an exercise at home.
The class discussed the relationship between goal, approach and ideas for actions. With the same
goal, if we use different approach, we can come to different set of ideas for actions. That’s why
approach plays important role in determining intervention plan.
The lecturer clarify the difference between total and parts and nominal and real data, nominal and
In professor Yanagihara’s paper, we discussed two tables of classification of natures of service and
four types of services.
We backed to the paper of counter perception of inequality written by the Dr. Yanagihara. To be
honest, I did not catch full understanding of this session.
Sensei mentioned 4 types of services but I was not fully understand this content.
2. What have you learned? What was good for you?
I have learned that research itself never ends. We write progress report because of deadlines
I have learned the importance of naming the vertical and horizontal axes when drawing graph.
In today class, I learned that:
1) In the case of Approach (A)
you set the goal first and then apply approach on goal to search for ideas for action. The goal which
was mentioned in the research paper is to improve nutrition or decrease malnutrition.
Poverty reduction is not goal, the gradient approach only mentioned poverty reduction as means. In
the next stage, it becomes intermediate goals.
2) There is a distinction between words (criteria and requirement, nominal and real GDP; theory
The word “criteria” can be used more like indicator for requirement while requirement is more
conceptual. Nominal GDP is related to unit of currency while real GDP refers to total products in terms
of purchasing power.
Regarding the words theory and rule, theory in general can be utilized in positive discussion while
rule refers to how things should be and how people should act that is related to normative discussion.
Implementation starts in virtual world, cuts through the border line and ends in the real world.
In logical framework, the word specify is a verb, the noun “specification” refers to result of specifying
and it does not indicate the act/ process of specifying. Therefore, the word specification is
The professor also takes publication as another example. Publication is the result of publishing but
does not indicate the act/process of publishing.
The arrow from activities to key assumption in page 3 links with the vertical logic and we do not pay
attention to the assumption, but connect it with page 10. Instead of single vertical logic, we have a
zigzag connection, in which each step in vertical logic is explained by key assumption.
Reality check is in the future. It means that, it is necessary to check the reality or situation in the
future, not present.
The relation between total and fact was mentioned. When we have multiple goals, we should put
them in different boxes since each goal has different approach that provide different solution. That is
the reason why the word “goal” in end- mean relationship is in singular form.
The graph shows that to achieve the national goal, we should achieve the goal for lower level first.
We should break down the “ total” into small “parts”. “ Total” and “ part” are never in the end-means
Definition of “ principle” in positive statement: a fundamental truth that works as the foundation for a
system of behavior or thought
Definition of “ principle” in normative statement: a fundamental truth that people should follow to get
the right direction.
I learned that the last box of key assumptions column which is preconditions. The direction of the
arrow means that under preconditions, resources and inputs will be used in activities to be turned
into outputs. Therefore, outputs will become immediate objective through implementation
assumptions and immediate objective will become development objective through development and
I learned that theory is used in positive discussion in general and that rule describes what should
happen which shows normative statement.
Today, after reviewing notes and check my mid-term report, I realized some problem related to policy.
Something I need to clarify: criteria and requirement; nominal and real; theory and rule, evaluation
and assessment; fundamental and foundational; assumption and hypothesis; specify and
specification; power and empower.
The biggest achievement I obtained today is to figure out my mistake in using word normative and
Also, I found the opposite opinion on rule and theory that is totally different from my opinion.
Today, I have learned many sophisticated things:
Firstly, there are two types of approaches are applied. The first one is applied for goal and the second
one is applied for action. You set the goal first then depending on the approach, the search for ideas
will be found in different directions.
In gradient approach, specifically in the case of the previous lecture, they proposed income (poverty
reduction) to reduce malnutrition but we have to notice that this not the goal. We do not need to
increase the income to reduce malnutrition, because in poor families, they can still improve nutrition
without increasing income.
The word “condition” has two meanings: one is situation, the other is requirement. But someone
wrote the word “criteria” to describe condition but to sensei it is somewhat more like indicators of
requirement. I agree with this way of thinking!
“Nominal” is an important word. The opposite word is “real”. For example in Macroeconomics,
“nominal” is evaluated by the unit of currency while “real” is evaluated by the unit of production.
That is the difference.
There are two different uses of principle. What’s wrong with “rule”, what is wrong with “theory”?
“Theory” tell you how things should be done. Before application you do not think of policy, what you
think is theory. Theory provides you with hypothesis to apply to the subject. For example, you learn
macroeconomics before learn “End = Means relationship”. Whereas, “rule” tells you what you should
do or what you should not do. This confusion can easily take place.
Assumption is set and you do not make question about it while hypothesis has to be tested.
We should try to make sense the word “principle” in Cambridge dictionary. Especially in positive
sentence or normative sentence. It can be positive sentence for describing what things are and it can
be normative sentence when it expresses what things should be.
One of the remarkable point in the class today is the distinguish between “Specify” and
“specification”. “Specify” is for act, process while “speciation” is used for result. In the public policy,
we usually see and search for acts as well as process so the word “specify” is preferred rather than
“Empower” is derived from “power”. Power could be just about you, but it could involve others, or
maybe involve relations such as economics, purchasing power. For instance, in the case we have a
sentence: “women are empowered to have purchasing power”.
In policy discussion sometimes you touch emotional aspects, after all well-being is subjected. You had
better be open to inner aspect of human being.
“However” in the page 6 should be replaced by “whereas” or “while”. For example we have two
sentence: “I like dogs” and “you like cats”. We cannot connect them with “however” because it
means you are supposed to like whatever I like. So it has to be” I like dogs whereas you like cats”.
That’s the idea of not using “however” in such kind of sentence.
Next, real actions are taken in the future so reality check is checking the reality of that future time.
Suppose you need all these tables in the class and you can do reality check at of this moment, is it
good enough because maybe in 1 day later someone may come in and take away some tables. Thus,
you had better check in later time.
There was an interesting question raised in the lecture today: “Could intermediate goals be part of
ultimate goal?” which also means: “One objective against multiple objectives”. There should be one
goal because if not, the approaches are very different, you never try to achieve multiple goals in one
single approach. For example, we would like to achieve the goal in every province, does it make
sense? The answer is NO because it is just breaking down the total into the parts. And because each
province has its own characteristic so setting the same goal with the same directions would make no
sense. The graph below is not appropriate.
For the same goal, you can add different acts. This argument reminds me of the case in Japan. As I
learned, in Japan, they run local governments which appears to be very successful. This is an
outstanding case of setting goal separately based on the characteristic of areas.
The last one I think useful for me is the distinguish between “Input” and “resources”. Activity is
somebody doing something (includes 4W and 1H). 4W – 1 H could be captured as input or resources?.
One person has make his own judgement. Depending on that all the preconditions could be defined
as input or resources. Preconditions availability of inputs and resources.
I have learnt that:
-The goal of a strategy or policy is extremely important but sometimes it is hard to realize the actual
goal of that strategy or policy. For instance, the goal of previous policy example is to improve
nutrition level but not poverty reduction. It can be considered as an intermediate goal of that policy.
-In a box, only one goal should be put in. Different goal will have different approach, so it leads to
-About word usages, “criteria” is different from “requirement”. “Criteria” can be considered as the
indicator of “requirement”. “Rule” is used to talk about something that someone should follow or not
follow, so it can be seemed as a normative discussion, whereas “theory” refers to positive discussion.
-Every stage in the vertical logic can be explained by the key assumptions.
After today’s class I know that:
- Variable is what surpassed your current capacity.
- Both “evaluation” and “assessment” can be call 評評評評評評評評in Japanese, but “assessment” alone also
have another way to express: 評評評 (Stand up and see the situation. See how good or bad things are. ).
- Specify -> Specification (only show the result of specifying, does not show the act/process of
- When we talk about “empower”, we are also talking about power. So what kind of power the rural
women/psychotherapist gets? In the case of those rural women, they get money (purchasing power)
and for the psychotherapist, it is his own will power.
- When you use the word “however”, that means people are supposed to do the same as the previous
Example: I like dogs, however, you like cats (you are supposed to be same as me)
=> can be replaced with: whereas, while, on the other hand
Distinguish the usage of these pair of words: criteria and requirement, nominal and real, theory and
rule, evaluation and assessment, and assumption and hypothesis;
Goals at the state and local levels have a relation of total and part
The first thing you do is setting the goal and then apply the approach to search for ideas for action.
If you have a national goal, then the goals for specific province need other approaches to derive
different solutions. To that end, in order to achieve the national goal, we should achieve the goal of
the provinces, that is the breakdown of the total into parts. The Total and Part are not end-mean
relationship and it is about adding up and breaking down.
On the definition of the requirement and criteria, according to professor’s opinion, the requirement is
more conceptual than criteria and the criteria is more like indicators for the requirement.
On the reality check, we will try to check the reality in the future instead of checking at the present
time, it is related to the infeasibility of something or otherwise its longevity
First of all, I understand more about the “gradient” and “deviance” approaches in strategic thinking
diagram. Approach here is the arrow (3) connecting goal (1) and idea for action (2). We set the goal
first and then approaches are applied to achieve the goal. In the example of previous lectures, we
have gradient and deviance approaches to achieve the goal of improving children’s nutritional level.
Depending on which approach we choose (gradient or deviance in this example) the action (idea for
action – means) will be different.
Ideal for action
Another point we should remember from the review notes is that goal or development objective in
the strategic thinking formulation is always singular noun. Each diagram has one big goal though this
can be a “total” goal of many smaller ones. These multiple goals should be put in different boxes and
each goal has different approaches which generate different means. The relationship between the
“total” and smaller “parts” is breaking down (the total into many parts) or adding up (many parts into
For example, in order to achieve a national goal, we achieve (combination of) many provincial goals.
From professor Yanagihara’s paper, I have learnt the term “degrees of discretion” which means the
degree of freedom in your decision (to decide what should be done in a particular situation). In the
previous section of the paper, the author mentioned modes of service transactions and service
supply-uptake links. In the next section, based on degrees of discretion (discretionary and nondiscretionary) and transaction-intensity (transaction-intensive and non-transaction-intensive), we can
classify services into four types (policy, program, practice, rule/procedure) as shown in table 1 and 2
in the paper.
We have learnt more from table in page 10 of “Project design – formulation of the logical framework”
on the explanation for arrows connecting column 1 (structure of the project) and column 4 (key
assumptions). As there are external factors affecting implementation of the project/ policy (out of its
control), there need to be assumptions about external conditions (which need to be met) for the
project/ policy to be successful (or to achieve intened output, immediate objective and ultimate goal).
From the horizontal line of the bottom row in the table, we have an adrrow starting from precondition
and going through Resources to Inputs and then another arrow to Activities. Coming back to strategic
thinking diagram in the previous lectures, we have a vertical arrow connecting ideas for actions (in
virtual world) to activities (in real world) which involves two stages of implementation – increasing
specificity of expression and reality check. So here, the preconditions should relate to the specifying
action of 4W1H questions. The point here is whether all preconditions should be covered/ captured in
inputs and resources depending on how you define inputs and resources. The preconditions are
supposed to meet the end of the zigzag row to achieve the next level of objectives in the vertical
Logical order, you set the goal first then apply approaches in goal then finding ideas for action.
In review note, student choose the goal “property reduction”, it is not. The goal is: Improving nutrition
or reducing malnutrition, “property reduction” is intermediate goal.
About the “theory” and “rule”, theory is utilized in positive discussion and rule is how thing should be,
how people should act.
Student asked how the intermedia goal contribute to ultimate goal, it is showed in the figure above.
For example, Vietnam have development goal for the whole country, increasing GDP to $3000 so big
city, development province (Hanoi city, Ho Chi Minh city, Da Nang city,…) will set their goal is $5000.
Other provinces will set their goal is about $2000, or $2500. So they contribute to national goal by
archiving province goals. This process is “adding up” or “breaking down”.
Reality check happens in the future, to check the situation of reality in the future, not at present time.
I realize I maybe did this mistake in my mid term report.
In Vietnam we only have one word for the concept of “evaluation” and “assessment”, Japan have 2
We also clarify more about 2 familiar words, assumption is just set out, condition for the problem,
which is fixed.
Hypothesis is set out to be tested, to be questioned.
The implementation starts in virtual world, cut through the border line into the real world, it started
Ideas for actions to Action.
Prof. Toru explained about “zic zac” arrows in strategic thinking and the research paper.
[I have noticed that the opposite of “empower” is “disempower” and not “dispower”, while the
opposite of “encourage” is “discourage” and not “disencourage”. TY]
4. Whatever else…
I would like to have my mid-term proposal being discuss in the class without my name.
Sorry for inconvenience but I feel uncomfortable if my name is put on the midterm report review.
Although other people may know which one is written by me, I hope that you would not put my name
there. Thank you, sensei!
Sensei, you can list my name in mid-term review note. It’s OK to me.