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Grantmaking Strategy & Tools
Whether you are part of a family foundation that runs its own programmes, a big corporate grantmaker, a small venture philanthropist, an NGO that re-grants resources from a back-donor, or a mix of any of the above, exits are inevitable. Funders move on, and relationships with grantees, partners, or investees change along the way. Exit decisions and strategies are complicated; while a diversity of experiences has not (yet) produced blueprints for smart exits, we’ve pulled our favourite practices.
Many grantmakers champion the idea of using evaluation to improve grantee effectiveness or advance a field of practice. It's a worthy endeavor, but how can you make it happen in the real world? This guide explores an increasingly popular method called "collaborative inquiry." Grantmakers define the practice, consider potential benefits and grapple with common challenges. A mini-case study shows how collaborative inquiry was used to support growth in a new field.
An outcomes-based approach to evaluation works, proponents say, because it uses straightforward metrics to assess actual impact. How else to know if the work you're supporting is leading to the desired changes? Other grantmakers counter that outcomes measurement should be approached with care. Hasty assumptions or over-confidence in the idea that program impacts can be translated into hard data can skew not only the evaluation but the work itself. This guide looks at tensions that drive the debate about outcomes measurement, as well as common questions about its potential risks and rewards.
"What are we doing, and why do we think it's going to make a difference? Are we being effective?" Grantmakers ask evaluation questions like these of their grantees and themselves. This brief guide explains why grantmakers use theories of change to guide their questioning, unearth assumptions that underlie their work, establish common language, and develop strong action plans. Contributors to the guide also describe how a theory of change sets the stage for evaluation by clarifying goals, strategies, and milestones.
The CECP has released Giving Around the Globe: 2014 Edition, the leading source for guidance on the global expansion of corporate community engagement.