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New coalition to provide leadership on impact measurement over next decade

New coalition to provide leadership on impact measurement over next decade
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New coalition to provide leadership on impact measurement over next decade1

Finance | Vibeka Mair | 7 Dec 2011

Twelve organisations including New Philanthropy Capital, NCVO and Acevo, have come together to create the ‘inspiring impact’ group, which plans to provide collective leadership in the charity sector on impact measurement over the next decade.

A spokeswoman for the group said it has the goal to make the next ten years the ‘decade of high impact,’ and has formulated a 12-month plan to set off five goals which will define the group.

The five goals are: leadership and culture; shared measurement; data; tools and systems; funders, commissioners and investors and impact measurement support.

Over the next 12 months, Acevo and NCVO will lead on leadership and culture through campaigning on the benefits of impact measurement, and clarifying what good impact measurement looks like.

New Philanthropy Capital (NPC) will work on shared measurement; Substance, a co-operative, will look at making tools more accessible, while Charity Evaluation Services will make available more guidance on impact measurement.

As part of its launch, the group have released a new report Inspiring Impact, which looks at the current state of impact measurement and the group’s goals.

Inspiring Impact, which was written by NPC and funded by Nesta, warns it is harmful if organisations see impact measurement simply as a way to secure funding, as it could fail to become an embedded core activity. The report also says not enough funders, commissioners or investors are focused on impact measurement.

Tris Lumley, head of development at NPC and author of the report said: “I’m excited that NPC is playing a part in bringing the leaders of impact measurement together to work towards common goals under the banner of Inspiring Impact. This isn’t a new programme to add to the often confusing landscape of approaches to measuring results — it’s an attempt to work collectively, with a shared vision and a commitment to supporting each other’s efforts. Only by working in partnership can we achieve what we all want—charities and social enterprises, funders, commissioners and investors realising their full potential by focusing on impact.”

Inspiring Impact is officially launching at Nesta's offices tonight.

The 12 organisations in the group are –

They will collectively be fundraising to fund the group’s activities over the next decade.

Pandora
Chief Executive
Down's Syndrome Scotland
7 Dec 2011

It is good to read that this initiative, will have a focus on developing tools and systems which I am assuming will help charities to undertake impact assessment more effectively and efficiently. Nevertheless, given that NPC is wanting "funders, commissioners and investors" to utilise an impact assesment approach, which no doubt will have impact on grant making decisions by trusts that give in Scotland as well as England and Wales, it's disappointing to see that no Scottish organisations - such as Evaluation Support Scotland or SCVO are included in the "Inspiring Impact Group". Presumably this will mean that charities in Scotland will have to re-invent the wheel in order to address funder expectations, without the benefit of the helpful perspective of the report authors.

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