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External Databases and Resources
External Databases and Resources
Sinzer is a software platform for measuring impact, which helps you make better decisions, improve your impact and be accountable to stakeholders.
Sinzer enables you to map your impact, collect data in an efficient way and analyse the results. It offers unprecedented features for businesses and projects to start measure and manage impact.
Sinzer provides knowledge and solutions around the topic of impact measurement.
SImetrica specialises in cutting-edge research on social impact analysis and policy evaluation. SImetrica’s resources include publications on a wide range of disciplines related to social impact analysis, including:
- The philosophy of policy evaluation (normative ethics);
- The application of social impact frameworks including cost-benefit analysis, cost-effectiveness analysis, cost-utility analysis and social return on investment;
- Statistical and econometric analysis for causal inference;
- Valuation of non-market goods and outcomes;
- Behavioural science.
It’s not easy to measure the impact of development research in bringing about positive change. It’s even harder to show how communications efforts, and expenditure, helps to achieve both research objectives, and development outcomes. This section of Research to Action’s (R2A) website aims to offer key resources and insights to help support better monitoring and evaluation of research uptake activities.
Crisis commissions external researchers to independently evaluate our projects and the services they offer, as well as to produce good practice guides on a range of topics.
Since 1989, ORS Impact have been delivering deep value into their clients’ organisations, working together to pursue ‘the change they seek,’ and to improve their communities’ health, wellbeing, and prospects to flourish. They share these resources, with a view to building capacity in organizations doing good work around the world. Resources are on topics inclusing Theory of Change, Evaluation Practice, Outcomes and Advocacy and Policy.
The Global Social Entrepreneurship Network (GSEN) is a platform, supported by the Cabinet Office, working with social entrepreneurs around the world. It utilises the learning, models and expertise from the UK and from all other country members who join. It will be a peer learning service for support agencies, with the potential to open out to social entrepreneurs themselves as a virtual social incubator at a future point.
Big Society Capital provides guidance, best practice advice and an outcomes matrix for social impact measurement for investors and social sector organisations.
The Research Initiative on Social Entrepreneurship (RISE) is a research project whose mission is to study and disseminate knowledge about the markets, metrics and management of for-profit and nonprofit social enterprise and social venturing. RISE was a program at Columbia Business School from 2001 to 2010. RISE is currently run as a personal project of Cathy Clark, Adjunct Assistant Professor of CASE at Duke.
BetterEvaluation is an international collaboration to improve evaluation practice and theory by sharing information about options (methods or tools) and approaches.
Here you can find all the publications that HACT has published on work around measuring social impact.
Impact in Motion mobilisiert Investmentkapital zur Lösung gesellschaftlicher Herausforderungen. Wir sind Impact Investing Denkfabrik und Beratungsunternehmen unter einem Dach.
MaRS Centre For Impact Investing’s Knowledge Hub shares tools and resources on impact investing. It includes presentations, webinars and resources for getting started, a sector map to connect with other people, organisations and initiatives, a guide to social finance, tools and methods for social impact measurement, and a space to access and share resources and find funding sources.
Intentionality CIC’s resources centre is a space where you can learn more about Intentionality and it’s work, as well as discovering excellent examples of social impact measurement and reporting from charities and social enterprises. It includes impact reports, guides and case studies.
The good evaluation of a project or a policy needs on the one hand thorough application of methodology up to the highest professional standards and is on the other hand a creative thought exercise: what do we really want to know and how to find out.
This resource provides information on the methodologies behind how the European Commission (EC) evaluates their projects or policies. It includes:
- Evaluation guides: for the geographical and thematic evaluations, for evaluation managers or evaluators and for project and programme evaluations, including checklists
- Methodological bases: subject, timing, utilisation, roles, method
- Tools: to structure an evaluation, to collect and analyse data, to assist the formulation of judgements
- Impact diagrams/indicators: a set of intervention logics, outlining key chains of results and a menu of example indicators for some key EC intervention sectors
- Overall assessment: the development of these documents has been accompanied by a group of international evaluation experts.
Founded in 2006, the Center for High Impact Philanthropy has emerged as a unique and trusted authority for donors seeking to maximise the social impact of their funds.
- What Are We Talking About When We Talk About Impact?
- Beyond Compliance: Measuring to Learn, Improve, and Create Positive Change
- Five Myths and a Question About Impact
- Global Children’s Health: A Toolkit for Donors
The resource also contains many philanthropic investment guides and reports.
The Impact and Effectiveness Hub from The Guardian contains articles relating to insight, advice and best practice from the community and is part of the Voluntary Sector Network.
IMPACT Magazine is a free, student-run publication at the University of Pennsylvania focused on social impact. Released in print and online, each edition of IMPACT Magazine has a different social impact theme, such as Education, with the purpose of informing, engaging, and inspiring readers about the ongoing issues and action affecting youths, particularly in Philadelphia.
The GRI Sustainability Reporting Guidelines offer Reporting Principles, Standard Disclosures and an Implementation Manual for the preparation of sustainability reports by organisations, regardless of their size, sector or location. The Guidelines also offer an international reference for all those interested in the disclosure of governance approach and of the environmental, social and economic performance and impacts of organisations. The Guidelines are useful in the preparation of any type of document which requires such disclosure.
The Global Value Exchange is an open source database of Values, Outcomes, Indicators and Stakeholders. It provides a free platform for information to be shared enabling greater consistency and transparency in measuring social & environmental values. The site empowers users by giving them a voice to share their experiences and allow them to become the ‘creators of knowledge’.
Learning About Our Impact and An Introduction to Impact Measurement from The Big Lottery Fund (BIG) are both available from BIG’s Thinking About Our Impact page. Learning About Our Impact is a report on BIG’s impact in the last year. An introduction to Impact Measurement is a handy guide for those new to impact measurement.
J-PAL Europe was established in May, 2007 to expand J-PAL advocacy work in Europe and include European researchers in the J-PAL network. The office also manages J-PAL activities in the Middle East and parts of northern and francophone Africa. Based at the Paris School of Economics, J-PAL Europe works to improve the effectiveness of social programs world-wide by supporting researchers working on randomized trials and disseminating their results in order to provide policymakers with reliable information that can make their policies more effective.
J-PAL Europe is a regional office of J-PAL, a focal point for development and poverty research based on randomized trials.
More than 6400 publications have now been selected by TSRC for inclusion in the Third Sector Knowledge Portal - an easy-to-use online library of research, evidence, and analysis.
It has been developed by TSRC in partnership with the British Library and the Big Lottery Fund, and brings together over 6000 works such as: impact reports from third sector organisations; academic research projects; government studies; and more, in one collection of downloads, links and summaries.
The Agence Nouvelle des Solidarités Actives is a French non-profit organisation that puts into place local, experimental and innovative actions to fight against poverty and exclusion.
The Centre for Social Impact Bonds in the UK Cabinet Office provides information on Social Impact Bonds (SIBs), includes a knowledge box, information on funding, case studies and blogs.
The Learning for Social Impact site, part of McKinsey’s Social Sector Office, was developed to help funders, their grantees, and other essential partners achieve social change by offering best practices, guidelines, tools, insights, and practical help in developing assessment plans that drive social impact.
Information is included on what social impact assessment is, their perspective on learning driven assessment, designing a learning driven assessment and voices from the field.
The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) is an independent grant-making charity dedicated to breaking the link between family income and educational achievement, ensuring that children from all backgrounds can fulfill their potential and make the most of their talents.
The EEF exists to fund, develop and evaluate cost-effective and replicable projects which address educational disadvantage.
Their focus is on supporting projects that show promising evidence of having a measurable impact on attainment or a directly related outcome. We are interested in testing projects’ effectiveness through robust independent evaluations, wherever possible as randomized controlled trials. If they are shown to have an impact, they should be able to be replicated and scaled up to improve outcomes for other disadvantaged pupils.
Venture Philanthropy and Impact Investing from the European Venture Philanthropy Association (EVPA) is a compilation of resources on venture philanthropy, grant philanthropy, social investment and impact investing.
The Big Society Capital resources provide information and tools for understanding social investment. Information is included in the following categories: Why is social investment beneficial?, How do organisations use social investment?, Types of social investment, The social investment market and How to become a social investor.
Guides to Giving Well is a resource centre from Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors that provides guidance, case studies and tools for thoughtful, effective philanthropy.
The Variable and question bank from the UK Data Service provides access and support for an extensive range of key economic and social data, spanning many disciplines and themes. It is an integrated service offering enhanced support for the secondary use of data across the research, learning and teaching communities.
Bond’s Effectiveness Programme, Effectiveness & Transparency, provides practical help for NGOs to prove and improve their effectiveness through tools, insights and support. Five ways the Effectiveness Programme can help:
Health Check: Determine your organisation’s strengths and weaknesses
Impact Builder: Get indicators and tools to measure the effectiveness of your projects
Evidence Principles: Assess and enhance the quality of your evidence
Transparency: Improve trust and transparency through openness
Value for Money: Understand what it means for your organisation
The resources centre from the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) provides information on impact investing. The site includes news, research, events, impact investing profiles, GIIN publications, investor spotlight, useful links and career centre.
The following table illustrates the full tests that thresholds that we used to assess the social impact performance of social investment finance
intermediaries (SIFIs) and upon which SIFIs will assess the performance of the frontline organisations that receive BSC’s money.
The Theory of Change library is an on-going project of the Theory of Change Community, with the long-term goal of being a comprehensive resource for all things TOC – background, how-to, books and articles, case studies and examples, videos, and presentations.
The SRS suggests a structure for the impact-orientated reporting of social activities. The standard aims at improving transparency, accountability, and comparability in the sector while at the same time reducing complexity and resource requirements for social organisations. While the focus of the standard is on impact reporting, a report according to SRS also covers the fundamental elements of reporting usually found in financial statements, from organisational structure to financial information.
Inspiring Impact is a programme run by a collaboration of UK voluntary sector organisations and aims to change the way the UK voluntary sector thinks about impact. They have developed a range of resources including the Code of Good Impact Practice, Funders’ principles and drivers of good impact practice, Blueprint for shared measurement and more.
The Big Society Capital social impact resources include their approach to establishing best practice among social investment finance intermediaries (SIFIs) as well as providing a standardised taxonomy and set of definitions for outcomes based investing. These best practice guides are aimed at the SIFI model and will therefore not necessarily apply to all investors. They do not include environmental outcomes.
The TRASI online community space exists to foster conversations about social impact assessment via forum or blog sections. The Community portal also includes relevant reports, posts, events, tweets and videos. It is a service of the Foundation Center.
CES has a wide range of tools and resources available on their website to support charities with evaluation, performance improvement, monitoring outcomes, and implementing quality standards.
This resource from the Ministry of Justice in the UK provides four rapid evidence assessments reports on intermediate outcomes and reoffending.
The reports are: Intermediate outcomes of arts projects, Intermediate outcomes of family and intimate relationship interventions, Intermediate outcomes of mentoring interventions and Intermediate outcomes of peer relationship interventions.
The National Association for Voluntary and Community Action (NAVCA) provides useful policy discussion and thought pieces on social value in the UK, including ‘Putting the Social Value Act into action’, by Chris White MP, social value surveys, blogs and videos. Contributors include the Third Sector Research Centre, Big Lottery Fund and others.
Monitoring and evaluation are essential to judge effectiveness in policy engagement. However, in the complex work of policy influence, monitoring and evaluation can be highly challenging. Research and Policy in Development (RAPID) is working at the sharp edge of Overseas Development Institute’s (ODI) own monitoring and evaluation systems to help overcome these challenges. On their website you can find case studies and examples of their evaluations, practical tools and theoretical frameworks and approaches for monitoring, evaluation and learning.
This is a useful guide to Social Return on Investment (SROI) from Social E-valuator. SROI is an approach to understanding and managing the value of the social, economic and environmental outcomes created by an activity or an organisation.
This resource centre contains an introduction, guides, principles, myths and challenges and links to other organisations of interest.
Participatory Methods provides resources to generate ideas and action for inclusive development and social change. It explains what participatory methods are, where and how they are used, and their problems and potentials. It focuses on participatory approaches to programme design, monitoring and evaluation; to learning, research and communication in organisations, networks and communities; and to citizen engagement in political processes.
The Dartington Social Research Unit is a charity that seeks to improve designing and delivering services for children and their families by promoting the increased use of evidence of what works. Their work spans education, health, social care and criminal justice systems. Their work involves data on children’s needs, information about what works, cost-benefit analysis and how money is spent at the local level. Projects include Investing in Children, A Better Start, Design and Refine and Into One Place.
The Alliance for Useful Evidence is a partnership of The Big Lottery Fund, the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and Nesta. They are an open-access network of more than 1,600 individuals from across government, universities, charities, business and local authorities in the UK and internationally. The website includes blog and publications about research and useful evidence.
Proving and Improving is a quality and impact toolkit for charities, voluntary organisations and social enterprise for exploring practical ways to measure their impacts and demonstrate the quality of what they do and how they operate.
Tools include AA1000AS, The Big Picture, Co-operativesUK, CESPIs, DTA Fit for Purpose, Eco-mapping, EFQM Model, EMAS, GRI Guidelines, Investors in People, ISO 9001:2008, Local Multiplier 3, PQASSO, Prove It!, Quality First, SIMPLE, Social Accounting, S.E Balanced Scorecard, SROI, Star Social Firm, Third Sector Performance Dashboard, Volunteering Impact Assessment Toolkit.
Proving and Improving is supported by Charities Evaluation Services’ National Performance Programme, which is funded by Capacitybuilders’ and is led by Charities Evaluation Services (CES) in partnership with acevo, the New Economics Foundation (nef), New Philanthropy Capital (NPC) and Voice4Change England.
People want to be happy. But do we know what makes us happy, or how society is best organised to promote happiness?
The Wellbeing Programme was founded in 2003 when Richard Layard gave his public lectures on “Happiness: Has social science a clue?” His book on Happiness then followed. The programme has expanded and now includes three main strands:
- Happiness and Public Policy
- Mental health
- Skills and unemployment
The Wellbeing Programme is also responsible for bringing together the members of the Mental Health Policy Group, which in June 2012 published its report How Mental Illness Loses out in the NHS, the subject of which Richard Layard discussed in his lecture “Mental Health: The New Frontier for the Welfare State”.
In 1996, the Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence (CSPV), at the Institute of Behavioral Science, University of Colorado Boulder, designed and launched a national youth prevention initiative to identify and replicate violence, delinquency and drug prevention programs that have been demonstrated as effective. The Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development project identifies prevention and intervention programs that meet a strict scientific standard of program effectiveness.