Ford Foundation Working with Visionaries on the Frontlines of Social Change Worldwide


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It is essential that we hold ourselves and our grantees to the highest standards of performance. Our effectiveness matters not just to us, but more importantly to the communities we are entrusted to serve.

Our Approach to Impact Assessment and Learning

At every stage of our work, we ask ourselves: Are the foundation’s strategic initiatives, approaches and grants achieving the maximum impact they can? Are there adjustments we can make to our strategies or the activities we are supporting that could yield better results?

What We're Following

Using a Social Justice Lens in Advocacy Evaluation

A thoughtful discussion of a challenging topic in evaluation, written by Barbara Klugman, former Ford Foundation program officer

The Dirty Little Secret About Measurement

Mission Measurement CEO has an epiphany about measuring social impact

The Fetishization of Metrics

Charles "Hipbone" Cameron of Social Edge starts a new discussion thread for the social entrepreneur community

The Promise and Pitfalls of Utilization-Focused and Empowerment Evaluation

Journal of MultiDisciplinary Evaluation's transcription of the 2009 Annual Claremont Evaluation Debates

Learning for Social Impact

New McKinsey & Company social impact assessment site provides best practices, resources and insights for funders and grantees

A Guide to Actionable Measurement

Guidelines developed by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to help its staff determine how best to measure grants and strategies

Drowning in Data

Stanford Social Innovation Review on how funders can improve evaluation and maximize the opportunities it yields

'Social Outcomes': Missing the Forest for the Trees?

Chairman of Venture Philanthropy Partners on nonprofit efforts to measure impact and social outcomes and his ongoing question: "To what end?"

Building a Performance Measurement System

A how-to guide from Root Cause that helps organizations maximize investments in social impact

Contemporary Thinking About Causation in Evaluation

Thomas D. Cook and Michael Scriven explore cause and effect, and the credibility of randomized studies, edited by the American Journal of Evaluation

The Knowledge-Creating Company

A seminal publication on how individuals contribute knowledge to their organizations and how organizations best impart their collective acquired wisdom to employees

'Social Outcomes': The Elephants in the Room

Mario Morino of Venture Philanthropy Partners devotes his "Chairman's Corner" to how nonprofits can effectively manage outcomes

Theory of Change: A Collaborative Tool

Charles "Hipbone" Cameron hosts online dialogue between bloggers about unique approaches to social change on Social Edge

Transparency: One Size Does Not Fit All

In response to increased demand for transparency, Foundation Center president introduces new web tool Glasspockets on the center's PhilanTopic blog


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