Blogs tagged with Evaluation and selection

  • Tamara Schweitzer Raben, Social Impact Exchange at Growth Philanthropy Network
    Posted: March 14, 2013

    Last week, the Harvard Business Review blog network posted a relevant article by Paul Carttar, the former director of the Social Innovation Fund and partner with the Bridgespan Group, which raises the question: Why Don't the Best Nonprofits Grow? Paul's post primarily focuses on the disconnect in the social sector between nonprofits that have proven results and their ability to access the necessary capital to grow their impact. Paul makes the point that it is the lack of evidence about what works and what doesn't that is holding the field back from making greater strides towards bridging this gap.

  • Social Impact Exchange Staff
    Posted: February 11, 2013

    A newly released report by the Social Impact Exchange reveals important findings and implications for nonprofits and funders alike. The State of Scaling Social Impact: Results of a National Study of Nonprofits confirms that even the most effective mission-driven nonprofit organizations are facing the daunting challenge of achieving widespread impact, unable to reach their full potential. Yet nonprofit leaders state that scaling impact is one of the most important activities to address the social problems they are working to solve. Out of more than 400 nonprofits who were part of the research, 79% say they are motivated to scale in order to increase the number of people served, while 58% are motivated to facilitate system change, demonstrating a movement towards more ambitious plans with longer horizons.

  • Anne Sherman, Social Impact Exchange at Growth Philanthropy Network
    Posted: November 15, 2012

    For 12 years, I was a consultant to dozens of nonprofits, working with them on strategy and evaluation.  Over and again, during the course of the engagement, a CEO or board member would say, “We are the best kept secret in [our city].”  What they meant was that they were proud of the innovative, high-quality work they were doing, but were frustrated by the challenges in attracting the attention of stakeholders, particularly potential funders.

    With today’s launch of the S&I 100 Index, the Social Impact Exchange is taking a step to help great nonprofits to share their secret.  The S&I 100 is the first-ever broad index of U.S. nonprofits working in education, youth development, poverty, or health and have evidence of results and are ready to grow.  

  • Anne Sherman, Social Impact Exchange at Growth Philanthropy Network
    Posted: August 13, 2012

    In her recent blog post on PhilanTopic, Lisa Philp, VP for Strategic Philanthropy at the Foundation Center, talked about the invaluable service that the Foundation Registry i3 provided her in her previous role as philanthropic advisor to emerging philanthropists seeking to support meaningful education reform efforts. Lisa’s post is a great example of how ready access to high quality data eventually led to $5mm in new pooled funds, eventually leveraging $145mm in public funding. 

    At the Social Impact Exchange, we are making a similar bet on the potential of an “online marketplace” to stimulate giving to evidence-based initiatives that seek to scale their impact.  A central premise underlying our work is that successful nonprofits cannot access the type of growth capital required to help thousands or millions of people (as opposed to dozens or hundreds).  To be clear, we don’t think all nonprofits should be in the business of scaling, but we want to help those that should. 

  • Simon Jawitz, Social Impact Exchange at Growth Philanthropy Network
    Posted: August 3, 2012

    By all appearances it looks like we've taken the next big step in developing Social Impact Bonds (SIBs) in the U.S. News broke Wednesday about two deals in Massachusetts and yesterday about one in New York City. In fact, regarding the latter announcement, I heard it at about 8:30 a.m. on my car radio. I think it's pretty exciting that this innovative mechanism for financing effective social services has made it into mainstream news radio and was reported during a brief 10-minute segment on WCBS 880.

    The Social Impact Exchange (the signature initiative of the Growth Philanthropy Network on whose board of directors I sit) has been tracking SIBs since people in the nonprofit sector first began talking about them several years ago. Our Market Development Working Group is devoted to supporting their development as one of several innovative strategies for enlisting private sector involvement to solve some of our most intractable social problems.