Giving Thoughts

Apr
21
2015

Q&A with James Lum: GuideStar’s Impact Calls Deliver Results-Based Information to Stakeholders

By Alex Parkinson, Researcher, The Conference Board, and James Lum, CFO, GuideStar

Last month, I listened in to GuideStar’s first quarterly “Impact Call” for 2015. The idea intrigues me. Impact calls make sense—after all, companies discuss results with their primary stakeholders through quarterly earnings calls. Why wouldn’t nonprofits use the format to discuss their primary performance measures with key stakeholders?

James Lum, GuideStar’s CFO, helped me understand more about the calls and what the organization has learned from hosting them.

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Apr
15
2015

More Evidence for Corporate Philanthropy to Support Nonprofits’ Data Efforts

By Alex Parkinson, Researcher, The Conference Board

We’ve been hearing for a while that nonprofits want to be able to better collect and analyze data to improve their performance assessments. Now, there’s data to prove it. The Center for Effective Philanthropy (CEP) has released a new report, entitled Assessing to Achieve High Performance: What Nonprofits are Doing and How Foundations Can Help, which aims to understand more about which nonprofits are assessing performance, how they are approaching this work, and what they are looking for from their funders to support it. Perhaps unsurprisingly, a lot of it comes back to data.

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Apr
09
2015

Q&A with Bradley Googins: Creating a New Generation of Social Entrepreneurs in Africa

By Alex Parkinson, Researcher, The Conference Board, and Bradley Googins, Senior Fellow, E4impact Africa

E4impact, an initiative of Alta Scuola Impresa e Societá (ALTIS – Graduate School of Business and Society) at Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore in Italy, aims to develop high-impact entrepreneurs in Africa. The heart of the program is the MBA in Impact Entrepreneurship, a year-long executive degree program designed to grow and scale participants’ businesses. Its long-term goal is to develop a new generation of entrepreneurs capable of combining economic success with positive social impact.

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Apr
07
2015

Fact of the Week: Outcomes Are the Observable Results of Programs That Lead to Social Impact

By Alex Parkinson, Researcher, The Conference Board

There is an important distinction between, and progression from, outcomes to impact. Meeting a particular outcome may represent a step toward impact, but it is not impact itself. In general, outcomes represent specific and measurable changes to program participants that happen as a direct result of program activities. Impact represents longer-term changes, often influencing communities or systems. Download Framing Social Impact Measurement to find out more.

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Apr
02
2015

Business and Education Leaders Make the Case for Rigorous Academic Standards

By Cindy Cisneros, Vice President of Education Programs, Committee for Economic Development of The Conference Board

Education has quickly become a primary focus of the corporate philanthropy community. In Giving in Numbers: 2013 Edition, education (K-12 and higher education combined) for the first time became the most funded area, with companies on average dedicating 29 percent of their charitable giving budgets to the issue. This finding continues in the current 2014 edition, and anecdotal evidence suggests companies will continue to direct efforts on improving the quality of the country’s education system through their corporate philanthropy programs for years to come. Now, a new video series from the Committee for Economic Development of The Conference Board (CED) showcases business and education leaders discussing why college– and career–ready standards benefit students and employers.

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Mar
31
2015

Fact of the Week: Defining Your Social Impact Is an Important Part of the Evaluation Process

By Alex Parkinson, Researcher, The Conference Board

Since impact definitions drive decisions and ultimately move dollars, a clear definition is necessary to develop an effective and measurable philanthropic strategy. Social impact definitions often aim to change behaviors or situations for those on the receiving end of an intervention. Download Framing Social Impact Measurement to find out more.

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Mar
26
2015

Giving Thoughts Series: Data Quality to Further Philanthropy’s Mission

By Alex Parkinson, Researcher, The Conference Board

The latest edition of the Giving Thoughts Series, entitled “Data Quality to Further Philanthropy’s Mission,” is now available to download for free. Authored by Scott Cody, vice president and director of human services, and Daniel Shapiro, director of data analytics and management, Mathematica Policy Research, this piece considers what it takes to ensure the right data is being collected and assessed properly in order to improve social impact measurement practices.

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Mar
24
2015

Suiting Words to Action: How Nielsen Is Using Advertising to Tailor a Nonprofit’s Message

By Crystal Barnes, Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility, Nielsen

With competing messages constantly fighting for consumers’ attention, it can be tough for companies to break through the clutter. For the U.N. World Food Programme (WFP), the largest humanitarian agency addressing hunger around the world, the challenge was communicating its mission and driving people to action instead of growing sales.

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Mar
19
2015

Contribute to an Analysis That Can Improve Your Giving

By Alex Parkinson, Researcher, The Conference Board

The 2015 Giving in Numbers survey is entering its final phase, and CECP and The Conference Board are eager for companies with revenue in excess of $2 billion to take part. The survey will close on Tuesday, March 31 – don’t miss out on your chance to be a part of this important benchmark, which can help your company become a more effective funder. Click here to find out how to begin your survey submission.

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Mar
17
2015

Moving to Mobile: How Nielsen and WFP Are Revolutionizing Hunger Relief

By Crystal Barnes, Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility, Nielsen

For humanitarian and nonprofit organizations around the world, knowing which families and communities lack access to enough nutritious food throughout the year is no easy task—particularly in remote or dangerous areas, such as those currently under threat from Ebola in West Africa. But understanding the nature of food insecurity—the state of lacking reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food—is essential to the everyday work of global organizations like the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), the largest humanitarian agency focused on hunger relief in the developing world.

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Giving Thoughts Series

The Giving Thoughts Series is a monthly online publication in which corporate philanthropy experts delve into the most pressing issues affecting our members.

Download the latest issues here:
Flagship Programs: Focusing Corporate Social Investment for Impact

Data Quality to Further Philanthropy's Mission

The Civic 50: Best Practices in Corporate Community Engagement

The State of Global Pro Bono

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