Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Business Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Articles 31 - 52 of 52

Full-Text Articles in Business

From Idea To Initiative: Real-Time Learning For A Funder Collaborative On Nonprofit Strategic Restructuring, Way-Ting Chen, Lynn Alvarez, Carrie Harlow, Shannon Johnson, Jennifer Price-Letscher Jun 2019

From Idea To Initiative: Real-Time Learning For A Funder Collaborative On Nonprofit Strategic Restructuring, Way-Ting Chen, Lynn Alvarez, Carrie Harlow, Shannon Johnson, Jennifer Price-Letscher

The Foundation Review

Evaluation and learning is often seen as a high-stakes, formalized process of comparing an effort at its conclusion against some standard or benchmark. More recently, formative and developmental approaches to evaluation have been created to accommodate the need for more adaptability and ambiguity in an effort.

The Nonprofit Sustainability Initiative, a multiyear collaboration of 17 funders in Los Angeles County, California, supports nonprofit organizations to collaborate and restructure in a variety of forms. As the initiative evolved, its evaluation and learning system had to have the ability to evolve with it. Real-time learning informed initiative design and refinement, aligned funders …


Below The Waterline: Developing A Transformational Learning Collaborative For Foundation Program Officers, Annie Martinie, Jaime Love, Michael Kelly, Kirsten Dueck, Sarah Strunk Jun 2019

Below The Waterline: Developing A Transformational Learning Collaborative For Foundation Program Officers, Annie Martinie, Jaime Love, Michael Kelly, Kirsten Dueck, Sarah Strunk

The Foundation Review

Learning from fellow grantmakers is imperative in today’s ever-changing world. In late 2016, four health legacy foundations partnered to launch the Health Legacy Collaborative Learning Circle, creating an opportunity to understand not just the participating foundations’ visible investments and programs, but also the underlying behaviors, structures, and mindsets that ultimately explain why certain results were or were not achieved.

This article describes the yearlong process of creating the collaborative, and presents a new learning framework — based on the iceberg metaphor — that can be used to create learning environments that test and expand assumptions about promising approaches to common …


Evaluating For The Bigger Picture: Breaking Through The Learning And Evaluation Barriers To Advancing Community Systems-Change Field Knowledge, Thomas Kelly, Prudence Brown, Hanh Cao Yu, Marie Colombo Jun 2019

Evaluating For The Bigger Picture: Breaking Through The Learning And Evaluation Barriers To Advancing Community Systems-Change Field Knowledge, Thomas Kelly, Prudence Brown, Hanh Cao Yu, Marie Colombo

The Foundation Review

Foundations investing in community systems change often fail to prioritize field-level and cross-initiative evaluation questions in building initiatives. As a result, many of the documented evaluations of such investments lack translatable lessons specific and influential enough to drive related decisions and actions of others in the field.

This article developed from ongoing, multiyear peer learning across several foundations that collectively compiled recommendations for community systems-change funders and evaluators to implement more powerful evaluations. They are intended to help funders and evaluators engaged in these efforts build sectorwide knowledge capable of informing improved work across initiatives and communities. This article also …


More Than Listening: Harnessing The Power Of Feedback To Drive Collaborative Learning, Clare Nolan, Kim Ammann Howard, Kelley D. Gulley, Elizabeth Gonzalez Jun 2019

More Than Listening: Harnessing The Power Of Feedback To Drive Collaborative Learning, Clare Nolan, Kim Ammann Howard, Kelley D. Gulley, Elizabeth Gonzalez

The Foundation Review

Foundations can and should do a better job of gathering feedback from and learning with both grantees and the communities they seek to serve. This type of collaborative learning has the potential to inform and strengthen foundation strategy, grantmaking practices, evaluation, and communications. Gathering meaningful input is difficult, however, given power dynamics between foundations and those they support. Even when authentic input has been gathered, it can be difficult to apply insights to ongoing work.

What does it look like for a foundation to get feedback from its grantee and community stakeholders? Much of the feedback discussions taking place in …


Learning About Neighborhood Change Through Funder-Grantee Collaboration, Debra Dahab, Brooke Finn, Lois Greco, Nancy Kopf Jun 2019

Learning About Neighborhood Change Through Funder-Grantee Collaboration, Debra Dahab, Brooke Finn, Lois Greco, Nancy Kopf

The Foundation Review

NeighborWorks America and the Wells Fargo Regional Foundation support change in communities through a rigorous and structured collaborative learning framework that places the resident voice and experience at the center of learning. Both funders regularly engage in collaborative learning processes with their grantees and partners to support local revitalization practices and inform program and grantmaking strategies.

This article examines the key ingredients and processes needed to develop and sustain collaborative learning among grantee organizations, community residents, and other stakeholders and funding partners, as well as the critical role played by technical assistance providers.

The authors reflect on their experience with …


Book Review: Giving Done Right: Effective Philanthropy And Making Every Dollar Count, Paul G. Putman Jun 2019

Book Review: Giving Done Right: Effective Philanthropy And Making Every Dollar Count, Paul G. Putman

The Foundation Review

No abstract provided.


Editorial, Teresa R. Behrens Jun 2019

Editorial, Teresa R. Behrens

The Foundation Review

No abstract provided.


Front Matter May 2019

Front Matter

The Foundation Review

No abstract provided.


Back Matter May 2019

Back Matter

The Foundation Review

No abstract provided.


Front Matter Mar 2019

Front Matter

The Foundation Review

No abstract provided.


Editorial, Teresa R. Behrens Mar 2019

Editorial, Teresa R. Behrens

The Foundation Review

No abstract provided.


Strategic Learning In Practice: A Case Study Of The Kauffman Foundation, Matthew Carr, Brett Hembree, Nathan Madden Mar 2019

Strategic Learning In Practice: A Case Study Of The Kauffman Foundation, Matthew Carr, Brett Hembree, Nathan Madden

The Foundation Review

Increasingly, foundations and nonprofits are seeking to engage their staff in learning and reflection activities that assess successes and challenges, and then generate insights that can improve programs and funding strategies. Yet, despite the intuitive benefits, there are common challenges that often stand in the way of promoting strategic learning for continuous improvement.

For the past year, the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation has been focused on creating more systematic and intentional strategic learning across our organization. As part of this work we cultivated a select cohort of staff to be “learning champions,” created simple tools and processes that can more …


Full Issue #11.1 Mar 2019

Full Issue #11.1

The Foundation Review

No abstract provided.


Building A Culture Of Learning: Teaching A Complex Organization How To Fish, Tiffany Clarke, Hallie Preskill, Abigail Stevenson, Pamela Schwartz Mar 2019

Building A Culture Of Learning: Teaching A Complex Organization How To Fish, Tiffany Clarke, Hallie Preskill, Abigail Stevenson, Pamela Schwartz

The Foundation Review

Many social sector organizations are looking to balance their strategic plans with an ability to respond more quickly to change as it unfolds in their communities. For many years — but gaining particular urgency in 2015 — Kaiser Permanente Community Health saw a need to better understand the progress and impact of its portfolio and use its data to adapt strategy in response to its changing context.

To increase its capacity for strategic learning, Community Health worked with FSG to develop and implement a system called Measurement and Evaluation for Learning and Outcomes. While this process was tailored to Community …


Reflective Practice For Learning From Experience: Navigating The Back Roads At Work, Jan Jaffe Mar 2019

Reflective Practice For Learning From Experience: Navigating The Back Roads At Work, Jan Jaffe

The Foundation Review

What are the roadblocks that limit reflective practice in the field of philanthropy? Between the desire to move the needle on social change and the pressure to be productive, philanthropy as a field is understandably driven to focus on doing and resistant to taking time to reflect on practice. This article is designed to help foundations encourage leadership and staff to put their expertise into play as a learning strategy.

This article defines reflective practice and traces roots and research that can inform its use. It also reports on interviews with philanthropy practitioners about how they use various reflective practice …


Shifting Mindsets: How Meaningful Accountability Systems Can Strengthen Foundation Learning And Improve Impact, Marc J. Holley, Marcie Parkhurst Mar 2019

Shifting Mindsets: How Meaningful Accountability Systems Can Strengthen Foundation Learning And Improve Impact, Marc J. Holley, Marcie Parkhurst

The Foundation Review

This article explores what it looks like when a foundation attempts to integrate accountability and learning practices, and presents a framework for the unique and complementary contributions that accountability and learning can make to the work of foundations.

The article also looks at the tensions that can arise when a foundation’s internal evaluation staff attempt to design, implement, and make use of accountability systems. Specifically, it identifies three problematic perspectives that can hold foundations back from full engagement in internally driven accountability initiatives, and offers practical guidance on how to shift these mindsets to more productive practices.

It concludes by …


Evaluators As Conduits And Supports For Foundation Learning, Clare Nolan, Meg Long, Debra Joy Perez Mar 2019

Evaluators As Conduits And Supports For Foundation Learning, Clare Nolan, Meg Long, Debra Joy Perez

The Foundation Review

Evaluators play a critical role in supporting philanthropic learning, programming, and strategy, but evaluation and learning in philanthropy is often limited in ways that impede deeper resonance and impact.

Most philanthropic evaluation is focused on the needs of individual foundations, knowledge sharing with the broader field is limited, and foundations struggle to integrate evaluation and learning as a management tool. This article makes the case that evaluators and funders can do more to build the collective capacity of evaluators working in philanthropy in order to enhance their contributions to community change.

This article also examines the ways that evaluation in …


Building Principle-Based Strategic Learning: Insights From Practice, Kelci M. Price, Chera Reid, Suzanne Kennedy Leahy Mar 2019

Building Principle-Based Strategic Learning: Insights From Practice, Kelci M. Price, Chera Reid, Suzanne Kennedy Leahy

The Foundation Review

Strategic learning is a powerful tool for foundations to achieve greater impact, yet foundations have struggled to create practices and behaviors that effectively support them in learning about strategy. Given that many foundations are engaged in strategic philanthropy, where they have specific conditions in the world they are trying to change, it is critical that they have the capacity to effectively learn about and improve their strategies.

This article offers three principles for strategic learning, informed by the field of strategic learning and insights from practice across three foundations. Each principle is explored in terms of what it means and …


Executive Summaries Mar 2019

Executive Summaries

The Foundation Review

No abstract provided.


Knowledge Translation To Enhance Evaluation Use: A Case Example, Alison Rogers, Catherine Malla Mar 2019

Knowledge Translation To Enhance Evaluation Use: A Case Example, Alison Rogers, Catherine Malla

The Foundation Review

Knowledge in the form of information suitable for decision making or advocacy by foundations is not always readily available — a situation unacceptable for those who need such information for accountability, learning, and influencing policy and practice. This article addresses how essential information about monitoring, evaluation, and lessons learned can be made available to foundations.

The Fred Hollows Foundation identified a gap in this area through an evaluation capacity-building readiness assessment, and introduced the concept of participatory, real-time monitoring, evaluation, and learning bulletins grounded in the principles of knowledge translation. This article describes how those bulletins were developed and used …


Challenges And Opportunities In Philanthropic Organizational Learning: Reflections From Fellow Grantmakers, Jennifer Chubinski, Kelley Adcock, Susan Sprigg Mar 2019

Challenges And Opportunities In Philanthropic Organizational Learning: Reflections From Fellow Grantmakers, Jennifer Chubinski, Kelley Adcock, Susan Sprigg

The Foundation Review

As the field of philanthropy has matured, increasing attention has been paid to evaluating the impact of philanthropic investments. In recent years, the scope of evaluation has expanded to include an intentional focus on organizational learning with the goal of learning from ongoing work, informing decision-making, and ultimately improving impact.

With this momentum to carry out organizational learning strategies and share successes, the sector has not yet stopped to reflect on challenges and lessons learned in the process of building the capacity for organizational learning — the messy yet meaningful middle between a desire for learning and the implementation of …


Back Matter Mar 2019

Back Matter

The Foundation Review

No abstract provided.