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Opinion and Comment

Opinion and Comment

John Gargani’s blog about program design and evaluation.

In his lecture at the the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA), NPC’s chief executive Dan Corry explains how charitable organisations must spearhead innovation and effectiveness to increase their ability to drive change in society.

Alison Gold from Living Cities explains seven things that they have learned about building cross-sector partnerships in the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco’s magazine, Community Investments Vol 26, Issue 1.

In this blog, Doug Taylor, CEO of United Way Australia, writes about Collective Impact and how he sees it as a useful guide in tackling a complex social problem for a population group in a local community.

If we are to talk about measuring social returns, a good starting place is the outcomes that lead to them. This is the point where can measure both the organization itself (sustainability of the business and the model) as well as the cumulative effects of specific outcomes on the lives of the people we wish to help. Causality is implied in a theory of change: “If we achieve A, B, C outcomes, then we expect X, Y, Z to happen.” 100% definitiveness eludes any organization. However, defining a theory of change (even if by another name) and supporting outcomes is necessary before any discussion of returns (including impact, especially.) Sarah Stachowiak, CEO of ORS Impact, walks through the basics.

Tris Lumley from NPC discusses the challenges of impact measurement and how the technical aspects of impact and measurement (which outcomes should we focus on? how can we measure them? what tools and systems should we use to measure them?) can be overcome by good leadership.

This post is part of a short series on Social Impact Measurement, and the second part of a two-part piece by Felix Beaulieu for On Purpose. This post focuses on potential future models for impact measurement, and the limits, opportunities and risks that come with each of these.

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This post is the first in a short series on Social Impact Measurement for On Purpose. In the first of a two-part piece, Felix Beaulieu describes the converging trends which have driven the need to define and measure social impact, and why this is necessary.

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This blog by Tamsyn Roberts from Cabinet Office UK for the Civil Service Quarterly provides clear explanation of Social Impact Bonds (SIBs) and how they work. It includes case studies and a handy diagram.

Elizabeth Woodson from Stanford University talks about the opportunities for students to foster social impact.

This report by Paul Brest and Kelly Born for The Conference Board Initiative on Corporate Philanthropy, was originally published in the Stanford Social Innovation Review. In corporate philanthropy, the focus is shifting from counting inputs to measuring social impact. Yet there is considerable confusion about the meaning of social impact. And the concept is even more complex in the emerging practice of impact investing. This report, which inaugurates The Conference Board Giving Thoughts series, sheds light on the concepts of enterprise, investment, nonmonetary impact, and the key requirement of “additionality.” By carefully examining the parameters and assumptions underlying the “impact” in impact investments, this edition of the series lays the foundation for a more focused discussion of assessing philanthropic and impact investing outcomes.

Tris Lumley Head of Development at NPC and trustee of SIAA talks about embedding impact measurement in practice.

In this blog from the SROI Network, Jeremy Nicholls discusses the relationship between the logic model or log frame approach, for example as also used in approaches like Results Based Accountability, and Social Return On Investment (SROI).

Jeremy Nicholls from the SROI Network argues that just because impact measurement is hard to do, this doesn’t mean we should give up.

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This blog by Alnoor Ebrahim, an associate professor in the Social Enterprise Initiative at the Harvard Business School, discusses when it makes sense to measure impacts and when it might be best to stick with outputs.

Hilary Best, Analyst at Purpose Capital, blogs about investor challenges with impact measurement, touching on the published Guidebook for Impact Investors: Impact Measurement and report Social Impact Measurement Use Among Canadian Impact Investors.

This collection of think pieces was produced by the ImpACT Coalition in the UK. The ImpACT Coalition is a movement of over 400 voluntary sector organisations that seek to improve accountability and transparency in the charity sector, and increase public understanding of how charities work

Eleri Morgan Thomas, Director Service Impact, for Mission Australia, talks about the challenges of measuring impact within a large charity in a blog for the Social Impact Analysts Association (SIAA).

Geoff Mulgan, director of the Young Foundation, discusses the lack of consensus on what social value is and how to assess it despite the evident enthusiasm from funders, nonprofit executives and policymakers. he argues that when people approach social value as subjective, malleable, and variable, they create better metrics to capture it.

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