Connect With Us
YouTube
RSS

12 posts categorized "Evaluation"

Weekend Link Roundup (June 7-8, 2014)

June 08, 2014

World Cup_logoOur weekly roundup of new and noteworthy items from and about the nonprofit sector....

Climate Change

On the Bloomberg View site, Cass Sunstein, the Felix Frankfurter professor of law at Harvard University, provides three rebuttals to the so-called Sophisticated Objection of the fossil fuel lobby and its supporters, an argument which acknowledges that while climate change is a serious problem, unilateral action by any country will impose significant costs without producing significant benefits.

Data

On the Markets for Good blog, Lucy Bernholz suggests it's time we started thinking more seriously about how to "collect, organize, govern, store, share, and destroy digital data for public benefit" – and offers a couple of "deliberately half-baked" ideas to get us started.

"Good data practice is not just about the technical skills," writes Beth Kanter on her blog. "There is a human side [as well].  It is found between the dashboard and the chair. It includes organizational culture and its influence on decision-making – from consensus building on indicators, agility in responding to data with action, and sense-making. It is the human side that helps nonprofits use  their data for learning and continuous improvement." 

Education

On the Inside Philanthropy site, L.S. Hall weighs in with a surprisingly generous consideration of the education philanthropy of Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan.

Evaluation

Nancy Roob, president and CEO of the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation, argues in a post on the Stanford Social Innovation Review blog that while fears of rigorous evaluation are "justifiable," a broader perspective on the purposes of evaluation can help allay them.

Continue reading »

Moving the Needle: Learning, Doing and Looking Ahead

December 13, 2013

(Sherece West-Scantlebury is the president and CEO of the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation. This post originally appeared on the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy blog.)

Headshot_sherece_westWinthrop Rockefeller's arrival in Arkansas in 1953 was a major event. That a member of one of the wealthiest families in the world had moved to one of the poorest states in the country was a big deal. The press was understandably curious and asked about his plans. "I've got a lot to learn and a whole lot more to do," the state's future governor responded.

Decades later, the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation continues the governor's "learning" and "doing," often at the same time. On the learning side of the equation, we've done two things this year that we feel are worth sharing.

The first was a retrospective on the first five years of our Moving the Needle Strategic Plan. Developed in 2007, Moving the Needle was based on close to one hundred conversations with policy makers, grassroots community leaders, business leaders, youth, and national experts on community change. Those conversations, combined with our research on best practices in economic development, social justice and closing the achievement gap, formed the framework that has guided WRF's investments for the last five years. Moving the Needle 2008 – 2013: Looking Back Going Forward is our best effort to tell the story of the short-term impact of our investments.

The second notable thing we've done this year is partnering with NCRP to look at how our strategies and practices align with our goals, the impact created by the Moving the Needle agenda, and the quality of WRF's partnerships with grantees. To that end, NCRP developed and deployed a comprehensive appraisal tool based on its Criteria for Philanthropy at Its Best and recommendations from Real Results: Why Strategic Philanthropy Is Social Justice Philanthropy. Former and current grantees, applicants that did not receive funding, and stakeholders such as government representatives and peer institutions participated in the assessment.

Through this process, we gathered data on how our partners view both the impact of the Moving the Needle strategy and the way we go about meeting our mission. The full report, NCRP Assessment of Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, provides all the details. But in short, NCRP found that:

  • Our partners understand and support the Moving the Needle Strategic plan and grantmaking approach.
  • Many grantees and stakeholders see specific signs of progress in Moving the Needle, especially in the areas of education and immigration.
  • Our partners view WRF as a highly effective funder, partly because of open, accessible foundation staff and a strong sense of shared purpose.
  • We demonstrate a consistent commitment to rural communities and resident engagement.
  • We are viewed as an effective partner, and we use our convening power to foster non-competitive relationships among our partners around the state.

Lest we get too full of ourselves, it was also clear that:

  • If we are going to see the needle move more significantly in Arkansas, there needs to be additional investment in community change and economic development in the Delta.
  • Open and accessible staff does not always mean a more efficient process. We should strive to create more timely feedback loops on the "paper-work" parts of our relationships.
  • We should expand our willingness to provide core support and capacity development for resident engagement and community organizing.
  • Leadership development is a critical component of our strategy and worthy of additional investments.

After nearly twenty years in philanthropy, I've learned there is a thin line between navel gazing and strategic assessment. Navel gazing (we've all done it) takes data, gives it a thoughtful review, and files it away. That is not our plan. WRF has already begun to build better internal systems and recalibrate its grantmaking strategy in response to feedback from our partners.

Internally, we've committed to tighter response timelines and using technology to better facilitate the transactional aspects of our relationships with grantees. On the strategy side, we incorporated the findings of the assessment into the development of Moving the Needle 2.0, the strategic plan that will guide our work for the next five years.

WRF is a small foundation with a huge mission. Our ability to positively impact the opportunities of low-income Arkansans is directly related to our ability to cultivate and sustain partnerships. It's not enough for us just to "do well"; we also have to be "do well by others" if we are going to have strong partnerships that enable us to achieve our action agenda.

A regular, methodical, third-party inquiry -- how are we doing? does it make sense? what do you think? -- is a critical part of the learning we must continually engage in to make sure that all our "doing" is actually making a difference.

How do you think we're doing? Feel free to share your comments and feedback below.

-- Sherece West-Scantlebury

Weekend Link Roundup (November 16-17, 2013)

November 17, 2013

Headshot_JFK_portrait_looking_upWe're getting ready to launch a new PND site, so this week's roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the sector is a little shorter than usual....

Climate Change

What's the link between global warming and killer tropical storms like Typhoon Haiyan -- quite possibly the strongest storm ever recorded upon landfall? It's not clear, writes Bryan Walsh in TIME magazine, but we shouldn't discount the possibility that such a link exists -- or that stronger, if not necessarily more frequent, tropical cyclones will be a feature of the twenty-first century because of "the warming we've already baked into the system...."

Disaster Response

On the GiveWell blog, Holden Karnofsky shares GiveWell's advice vis-a-vis disaster relief giving:

  1. Give cash, not clothes (or other goods).
  2. Support an organization that will help or get out of the way.
  3. Give proactively, not reactively.
  4. Allow your funds to be used where most needed – even if that means they’re not used during this disaster.
  5. Give to organizations that are transparent and accountable.
  6. Think about less-publicized suffering.

Evaluation

Good post by Tom Kelly, vice president of knowledge, evaluation and learning at the Hawaii Community Foundation, about foundations moving "to embrace and promote 'learning' as an alternative to evaluation." The problem with that, writes Kelly, is that "evaluation must be about learning and accountability. We must be accountable not only to the results we intend and promise to communities but...also learn in an accountable way." 

Continue reading »

Weekend Link Roundup (Sept. 7-8, 2013)

September 08, 2013

Back-to-school-signOur weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Communications/Marketing

On the Communications Network blog, Kate Emanuel, senior vice president of nonprofit and government relations at the Ad Council, offers some straightforward advice for organizations looking to create and/or leverage an online community:

  1. Think hard about whether you need an online community.
  2. Choose the right platform.
  3. Once you build it, be sure to promote it.
  4. Make your community work for you.

Disaster Relief

On LinkedIn, Charles Best, founder and CEO of DonorsChoose.org, shares a list of things every community needs after a disaster.

Education

Writing in the New York Times, Rob Reich, a professor of political science at Stanford University, argues that the "policies that govern private giving to public schools [are] perverse" and deepen the "inequalities they are...responsible for diminishing." How can we improve the situation? First, writes Reich, wealthy school foundations should honor the equality-promoting standards released by the National Commission on Civic Investment in Public Education. Second, donors and school foundations should support progressive tax reform. And third, Congress should differentiate or eliminate charitable status for local education foundations. What do you think?

Continue reading »

Most Popular PhilanTopic Posts (August 2013)

September 02, 2013

It's the start of a new month, which means it's time to look back at the most popular posts on PhilanTopic over the last thirty days:

What did you read/watch/listen to in August that PhilanTopic readers should know about? Share your favorites in the comments section....

Weekend Link Roundup (August 17-18, 2013)

August 18, 2013

SandcastleOur weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Civil Rights

On the Library of Congress blog, Erin Allen chats with Rep. John Lewis (D-GA), one of the leaders of the historic March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, about the fiftieth anniversary of the march.

Corporate Social Responsibility

Peter Buffett's op-ed about the "charitable-industrial complex" in the New York Times a few weeks back continues to generate comment -- supportive (here, here, here, and here) and critical (here, here, here, and here). Writing on the Huff Post business blog, Margaret Coady, executive director of CECP (formerly the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy), characterizes Buffett's musings as "a mix of insightful and simplistic observations," while applauding his warning not to confuse prosperity with "the blind accumulation of material goods." The good news, adds Coady,

is that CEOs of large multinational companies are working on a version of Buffett's challenge. In other words: the very individuals heading up "the industrial complex" assumed by many to be 'the bad guys' are, in their way, laser focused on creating greater prosperity for all.

Don't mistake me. These CEOs are obsessive about bottom-line growth -- which depends on consumerism. But they are awakening to benefits of replacing "quarterly capitalism" (which has led many companies to disregard their negative social and environmental externalities) with "long-term capitalism" (which takes greater responsibility for the effect the company has on the world). Increasingly, these CEOs are committing to sustainable, investor-friendly alternatives to a zero-sum version of capitalism. That doesn't fully meet Peter Buffet's goal, but I'd argue that it is meaningful progress....

Data

It's a widely accepted truism that the era of open data is upon us. But not all data is created equal, and its use, like so many things, is subject to abuse. Writing on the Markets for Good blog, Andy Isaacson, an engineer at Palantir Technologies, argues that with "[open] data comes great responsibility, both to make the information usable, and also to protect the privacy and civil liberties of the people involved." The goal, he adds, "is, or should be, about the democratization of data, allowing anybody on the web to extract, synthesize, and build from raw materials -- and effect change."

Beth Kanter has a useful post on the top ten chart secrets of data nerds.

And while we're on the subject, do you know the seven deadly sins of data analysis? The Whole Whale does, and they include: Pride ("thinking you know better than the data"), Sloth ("being lazy and only analyzing one metric"), and Gluttony ('converting too many data into too many dashboards").

Continue reading »

How RWJF Tackles the 'Social Media, So What?' Question

April 26, 2013

(Debra Joy Perez [@djoyperez] currently is serving as interim vice president of research and evaluation at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the largest healthcare philanthropy in the country. The following Q&A was conducted by our colleagues in the Foundation Center's San Francisco office and originally appeared on Transparency Talk, the Glasspockets blog.)

Headshot_debra-PerezLast year, after Steve Downs, chief technology and information office at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, shared a post on Transparency Talk detailing the foundation's social media strategy, we conducted a series of interviews (here, here, and here) with RWJF staff members that explored how social media and, more broadly, the transparency and participation they offer was adding a new, critical dimension to their work.

The latest Q&A in the series, featuring Debra Joy Perez, the foundation's interim vice president of research and evaluation, explores how RWJF's use of social media, which has become essential to its communication efforts, can be measured to reflect the impact of that work in the context of achieving the foundation's larger social change goals.

TT: Give us a quick overview of your work at the foundation in light of these new technologies. Why are social media metrics important to RWJF?

DJP: RWJF has a forty-year history of developing evidence-based programming. We're known for our research and evaluation work nationally and internationally. But as efforts to advance our goals in health and health care have become more reliant on technology, we've struggled with measuring success and accountability.

Since 2009, RWJF has been incorporating Web 2.0 technology into our everyday work, and with the September launch of our redesigned Web site, we now have more social sharing facilitation tools on the site. We're also doing more on on Twitter and Facebook to invite conversation about how to advance health and health care and are producing content to serve the needs of various online communities.

All that activity allows us to clearly see the present and future value of social media, which we believe can help us create social change and build movements around the causes we care deeply about. And, guided by the principles of openness, participation, and decentralization, we have learned a number of important lessons from that work. They include:

  • Personal outreach matters;
  • Responsiveness to requests for engagement is important;
  • Criticism can lead to healthy dialogue;
  • Engagement needs to be easy and simple; and
  • Real engagement requires work and dedicated resources.

These takeaways underscore the importance of ongoing conversation about the policies and processes needed to achieve our goals. For instance, with each social media campaign, we have to be explicit about our expectations. Metrics are an essential part of that effort. Measurement allows us to see how we're doing against those expectations and to improve our use of social media to achieve our broader goals.

Continue reading »

How Collaborative Learning Can Make Organizations Smarter, Stronger, and Better Positioned to Scale: A Q&A with Andrew Wolk and Wendy Yallowitz

December 04, 2012

Collab_learning_thumbnail_319_319Andrew Wolk is founder of Root Cause,
a nonprofit research and consulting firm that partners with nonprofits, philanthropy, government, and business to advance solutions to today's toughest social issues, and Wendy Yallowitz is a program officer with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Vulnerable Populations Portfolio, which supports social innovations with the potential to grow to scale. For almost two years, Root Cause helped guide RWJF grantee More Than Wheels, a Boston-based nonprofit that helps people get the best deal on a reliable and fuel-efficient car, through a facilitated merger exploration with Ways to Work, a Milwaukee-based community development financial institution that provides short-term low-interest loans to working poor families with challenging credit histories -- a merger that ultimately failed to materialize. From the process, however, Root Cause and RWJF developed a "collaborative learning" framework that allowed both organizations to learn from each other and emerge with stronger, smarter strategies than they would have on their own. The lessons learned are available in "Collaborative Learning: A Case Study on More Than Wheels and Ways to Work," which is available as a as a downloadable PDF from the RWJF site bookstore.

In the following Q&A, Andrew and Wendy shed light on how collaborative learning turned a failed merger exploration into a success. A version of this post originally appeared on the Foundation Center's Transparency Talk blog.

Transparency Talk: What is collaborative learning, and what are its origins?

Andrew Wolk: It's an intentional effort between two organizations to exchange, analyze, and apply knowledge that will lead to better outcomes. More specifically, collaborative learning is a structured, facilitated learning process that allows for in-depth knowledge exchange without the organizational and cultural challenges of mergers. Based on a four-step framework, the process can serve as an alternative to merger discussions -- or a "plan B" in the middle of merger talks that aren't working out.

Wendy Yallowitz: It's a good time for this type of framework. When you consider how nonprofits continue to grow in number and are continually asked to do more with less, it's more common for foundations to encourage similar organizations to figure out whether there's a way to optimize resources. Hence, we're seeing more merger explorations like the one we pursued with More Than Wheels and Ways to Work.

AW: As for origins, this potential merger brought about the framework. We know from past experience merger talks can present huge barriers, and we were running into some of those things. At a certain point, we decided to take an approach whereby we lifted the pressure of mergers or formal collaborations and partnerships as expectations so that the two organizations could work together to solve problems and grapple with strategic questions.

Continue reading »

Most Popular PhilanTopic Posts (October 2012)

November 01, 2012

Here in Manhattan, things post-Sandy are slooowly getting back to normal. For tens of thousands of people in Queens, Staten Island, and New Jersey, "normal" will never be the same. Our thoughts and prayers are with all who lost loved ones. For everyone else, these were the most popular posts on PhilanTopic in October:

What have you read/watched/listened to lately that you liked?

Weekend Link Roundup (August 18-19, 2012)

August 19, 2012

Our weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Corn_on_cobCommunications/Marketing

On the Communications Network blog, Courtney Williamson talks to Allyson Burns, vice president for communications at the Case Foundation, about the foundation's Be Fearless Campaign. The initiative, which aims to "[encourage] all organizations trying to improve people’s lives 'to take risks' in how they approach their work," was inspired by a request from Case Foundation CEO and co-founder Jean Case for "a new messaging strategy that reflected how the foundation’s work has evolved since its inception." With the help of branding firm BBMG, Burns says, the foundation identified two themes, experimentation and partnership, that became the linchpin of the new strategy. "It doesn't mean we're always fearless," says Burns, "but I'm trying to do better every day."

On her Non-Profit Marketing Blog, Katya Andresen introduces a mini-guide created by her organization, Network for Good, that walks readers through the basics of e-mail engagement.

Evaluation

On the GiveWell Blog, Holden Karnofsky explains how GiveWell differentiates between strong and weak evidence when it evaluates charities. "By 'evidence,'" writes Karnofsky, "we generally mean observations that are more easily reconciled with the charity's claims about the world and its impact than with our skeptical default/'prior' assumption." General properties that make for strong evidence, Karnofsky adds, include relevant reported effects, attribution, representativeness, and consonance with other observations.

Continue reading »

Weekend Link Roundup (July 21-22, 2012)

July 22, 2012

Mandela_headshotOur weekly roundup of new and noteworthy posts from and about the nonprofit sector....

Collaboration

Minnesota Council on Foundations Web communications associate Chris Oien shares a list of free tools that make it easy to collaborate with others, including Dropbox for file sharing and Google+ Hangouts for online meetings.

Communications/Marketing

On the heels of the virtual Millennial Impact conference, Network for Good's Katya Andresen shares a few more key findings from the 2012 report on giving by younger donors on her Non-Profit Marketing blog. Among other things, Andresen reminds us that:

  • Millennials prefer to hear from/about causes via social media, e-newsletters and alerts, and Web sites;
  • They give online -- and in person; and
  • They like to hear about volunteer opportunities from their peers.

You can read or download the report here.

Evaluation

On the GuideStar blog, Mark Miller-McLemore, dean of the Disciples Divinity House at Vanderbilt, argues that "assessment can be meaningful, even if it might not be easily quantifiable." To that end, he shares three guidelines for nonprofit leaders to follow:

  • the best action is guided by principles;
  • the best action does the greatest good for the greatest number; and
  • good organizations are good people doing good things well.

Governance

In light of the report issued by former FBI director Louis Freeh on the Penn State University child sex-abuse scandal -- a report which found that the university's board "failed in its duty to make reasonable inquiry into these serious matters and to demand action by the President" -- James Irvine Foundation president and CEO James E. Canales offers some advice to nonprofit board members in an op-ed piece on the Chronicle of Philanthropy site.

Responding to Canales's op-ed, Allison Fine says that the saddest part of the Penn State situation is that we've been here before, 

and, sadly, we'll be here again, and I wonder what part of the governance process or relationship or even existence is so difficult that so few organizations do it well. Senior executives feeling that they have to "manage" their boards, stop them from interfering and micro-managing, share as little as possible with them are the norms not the exception. And board members more interested in the appearance of service than actually being trained as nonprofit board members (not the same as sitting in a meeting at work!) and learning about the work of the organization and insisting on accountability are the exception not the rule. Are the models for good governance, as Jim writes in myriad pamphlets, books, training courses, etc. so difficult and unrealistic that most organization will simply never be there...?

And on his Nonprofit Communications blog, James D'Ambrosio says that Penn State should follow the advice of a New York Times contributor who recently suggested that the university donate "the next four years of football-related profits...to a fund benefiting the victims of child sexual abuse."

Human/Civil Rights

On Nelson Mandela Day, Idealist.org's Allison Jones shares a video created by Prezence Digital Production that pays tribute to the former president of South Africa. "While the video is meant to be a fun way to explore the life and impact of Nelson Mandela," writes Jones, "it also made me wonder: what role does social media play in moving social movements forward?" We're wondering the same thing. Share your thoughts in the comments section below, or at the Idealist blog here.

Philanthropy

How can foundations really understand what's going on around them? How can they map the ever-evolving topography of funding in their areas of interest? asks Mendi Blue on the Center for Effective Phlanthropy blog. One possible solution, scanning the philanthropic landscape, was highlighted in a recent Grantcraft report. As the report points out, and Blue notes, however, multi-dimensional scanning "is easier said than done."

Back from a well-deserved vacation, NCRP executive director Aaron Dorfman applauds the Annie E. Casey Foundation, which recently announced plans to "cease running its own service programs and instead give out $20 million more per year in grants to high-performing nonprofits." Indeed, the "winner in this scenario," says Dorfman, "will be the families and communities that the foundation and its grantees seek to serve."

Philanthropy 2173's Lucy Bernholz adds "sensemaking" to her list of 2012 philanthropy buzzwords. Originally suggested by our colleague Lisa Philp, who oversees the Foundation Center's GrantCraft initiative, sensemaking "is what buzzword number three (data scientists) do with buzzword number one (data)," says Bernholz.

And in another post on her blog, Lucy does a deep dive on the idea of data as an essential element (think, Periodic Table of Elements) in philanthropic work. "Why does this metaphor work when thinking about data in philanthropy?" asks Bernolz. "Because these raw elements are only the beginning of the story. For data to be useful in philanthropy they have to be known, accessible, and compoundable....If everyone tracks their data separately, calls things by different names, and holds onto them behind closed doors, well, that's like having hydrogen in one room, oxygen in another and being desperate for a drink...."

That's it for now. What did we miss? Drop us a line at rnm@foundationcenter.org.

-- The Editors

Evaluating the Impact of Social Media: Are We Wasting Our Time?

June 27, 2012

(Claire Gibbons, Ph.D., M.P.H., is a senior program officer in the Research & Evaluation Unit at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. She spends most of her time managing R&E projects for the foundation's Quality/Equality team. A version of this post appears on the Foundation Center's Transparency Talk blog.)

Claire_gibbonsLast month Steve Downs and I discussed some of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's (RWJF) experiences using social media and our first steps toward evaluating the impact of RWJF's social media use in a webinar for Council on Foundation members (you can view the slides here). In response to our evaluation discussion, a webinar participant asked whether it makes any sense to evaluate something as spontaneous and fun as social media. This was also a question raised by Allison Fine in her blog.

Allison expresses concern that a logic model "misses the essence of what makes social media so unique, the serendipity and fun that are essential parts of 'being' social." This is an interesting and valid question -- by creating a stodgy old logic model do we defeat the purpose of social media?

Before I share some thoughts on this question, let me describe briefly what we've been doing at RWJF. The staff at the foundation is using social media, and many are enthusiastic about its potential to increase our impact, but until recently no one had sat down to elicit exactly what we expect social media to accomplish. In fact, we engaged in a fairly lengthy period of discussion and experimentation before we began to plan for evaluation. One of RWJF's initial steps was to form a working group to consider how the foundation could best take advantage of Web 2.0 tools, and what it would mean for the foundation if it did use these tools. This working group released a report internally to all foundation staff in December 2009, and we began a period in which all staff was strongly encouraged to experiment with social media. (Just signing up for Twitter and listening to the conversation by following others was encouraged, for example.) A second Web 2.0 group was formed after some time passed that was charged with getting some sense of whether RWJF was moving forward with its use of social media and sharing lessons across program areas. It was at this point that we began to focus our attention on evaluation.

We decided that the first step in evaluating our use of social media should be to develop a logic model. With the help of consultant Victoria Dougherty, we did this based on interviews with staff that were knowledgeable and involved in our social media efforts and on a review of documents about our social media philosophy.

Then we created a logic model to help evaluate the impact of our social media use.

RWJF-logic-model

Click for a PDF version »

The logic model has two pathways: the first describes how RWJF can approach its work over the next five years and the second describes some of the outcomes of the work. For the foundation to realize the potential of social media and eventually reach its long-term goals for being a more effective agent of change and a connector and facilitator that spurs broad participation in our work, it must first position itself as a Web 2.0 organization and work to become more open and nimble. Social media use may also lead to creating new connections outside the walls of the foundation and in turn lead to a greater ability to gather information from a broad network that can result in more effective programming. (See my earlier blog post for a more in-depth discussion of our logic model.)

So, back to our earlier question: Does creating a logic model to drive an evaluation of the impact of social media use defeat the whole purpose of social media?

I don't think so. But I'm pretty sure you guessed I was going to say that, given that I'm a research and evaluation officer! So let me share my thinking.

  1. Yes, social media in many cases is driven by spontaneity. Videos that go viral on YouTube are completely driven by spontaneous interest. But not all social media use is purely spontaneous. We believe that social media can be used strategically to further our programmatic goals. That means we can plan ahead to use a social media tool or tools. For example, staff at the foundation used a virtual forum to create an open platform for discussion and idea-gathering about teen dating violence prevention. Through the platform, we received thoughtful input from people working in the field, teens who had experienced dating violence and parents who lost a child due to dating violence, and many others. Read more here.


  2. A logic model does not squash innovation -- it describes it. Logic models are made to be broken and expanded and changed over time. The presence of a logic model is not meant to limit anyone's activities to something that happens to be featured in a little box in a diagram. The model doesn't dictate our programming -- it's simply a way to describe what we are doing and what we think the result will be.


  3. RWJF's use of social media in the workplace is predicated on the idea that it will help us achieve our goals. We could be wrong. We won't know if social media is getting us anywhere good, or anywhere good faster, unless we measure some outcomes that we think are related to our programming activities. And one very useful tool for eliciting expected programmatic and policy outcomes is a logic model.

This isn't to say that we think all possible pathways between the use of social media and good outcomes are contained in our logic model. Absolutely not! This is just the best picture we could come up with at this point in time. New tools will become available, and we'll use them. Staff will continue to innovate in ways that we haven't imagined yet, and we welcome that innovation.

We still have a long ways to go in our journey to use social media in a way that helps us reach our strategic objectives -- and in measuring and evaluating our use of social media. We certainly don't have many answers, but I think we're on the right track. What do you think?

-- Claire Gibbons

Contributors

Quote of the Week

  • "[Richard] Wagner's music is better than it sounds...."

    Mark Twain

Subscribe to Philantopic

Contributors

Guest Contributors

  • Laura Cronin
  • Derrick Feldmann
  • Thaler Pekar
  • Kathryn Pyle
  • Nick Scott
  • Allison Shirk

Tweets from @PNDBLOG

Follow us »

Tags

Other Blogs