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Stay focused with a Foundation Dashboard


Use the knowledge at your fingertips to stay on track

hand_electricityThe philanthropic sector is more enthusiastic than ever about measurement and evaluation.  In this era of analytics and infographics, some foundations are using dashboards to consolidate the information they need to stay focused on what matters most. The dashboard, configured to reflect their particular mission and goals, becomes a springboard for strategic discussions and organizational learning.

This collection of indicators – a dashboard or a scorecard – is updated and referred to on a consistent, recurring basis.  The visual presentation of simple graphs and brief narrative in one or two pages focuses on the essential elements of measuring results.  In this article, we are referring to grantmaking results.

Independent of foundation size or payout amount, measurement is part of an effective decision-making process. With the right information, both grantmakers and grantees stand to learn, adapt and accelerate progress towards their goals; they can assess their impact. But gathering and analyzing data can be expensive and time consuming.

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Finding Strengths in Funder Collaboratives


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How does collaboration with other funders affect a foundation’s grantmaking strategy?

Champions of funder collaboratives point to visible results – to the large-scale impact that comes from pooling resources and to the institutional learning that comes from sharing information and engaging many and diverse perspectives. But there is more. This collective work also creates the conditions for participating foundations to take bigger risks and for their trustees to move beyond their comfort zones.

As charitable giving seems increasingly dwarfed by intractable and complex problems, collaboration with other foundations may be an essential component of an effective grantmaking strategy. For all but the largest foundations, though, the downsides of funder collaboratives are real. They may be time consuming, costly, ego-draining and they mean a loss of autonomy.

The rewards, however, should be considered.   

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Sociological Initiative Foundation Research Grants Emphasize Labor Rights and Workplace Fairness

Labor rights and workplace fairness figured prominently in the the recent grant awards of the Sociological Initiatives Foundation.

The research and organizing projects supported by the foundation will investigate wage theft, working conditions for temporary and domestic workers, hiring discrimination, and the challenge of making fair labor practices a part of the growing sustainable food movement.

Most of the projects supported community-academic partnerships and were designed to support regulatory or legislative advocacy campaigns.

To view the grants list, click here.

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