The Philea Virtual Library

The Philea Virtual Library includes over 1,000 free-to-download publications from a range of organisations and publishers on the topics of philanthropy, the management of foundations and the areas they are involved in and support. As a Philea member you can send us your publications for inclusion in the library which will also be added to the global IssueLab network where they will be made available to an extended audience, including users of Worldcat, the global catalogue used by tens of thousands of libraries. For questions or assistance, please contact the Philea Virtual Library.
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Evaluation and Learning at Foundations: A Field Guide

April 18, 2022

This brief grew out of conversations with evaluation and learning leaders working in foundations across the United States about both the value of evaluation and learning in philanthropy, and the challenges of implementing this function well across diverse institutional contexts. Our intent is to provide practical guidance that new and existing leaders can use to navigate their roles in support of more effective and equitable philanthropy. It is based on indepth case studies of the Irvine, Kauffman, and Kresge Foundations along with our own experience partnering with foundations on evaluation, strategy, and learning efforts.

Evaluation and Learning

Engaging Boards and Trustees in Strategic Learning: A Toolkit

January 17, 2019

Effecting social change in a rapidly changing political environment and an increasingly interconnected world requires foundations to adopt a learning orientation. Without continuous learning, grantmakers—and thus boards and trustees—are unaware about what is working where, with whom, and why, as well as what changes or refinements are needed in order to achieve the grantmakers' desired results.This toolkit provides a fresh set of resources for grantmaker CEOs, evaluation staff, and senior leaders to use to engage their boards and trustees in conversations about the importance of strategic learning in their decision-making and deliberation processes.

Governance, Boards and Strategy

Reimagining Measurement: A Better Future for Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning

December 1, 2017

Despite marked advances in the tools and methods for monitoring, evaluation, and learning in the social sector and a burgeoning number of bright spots in practice that are emerging in the field, there is nevertheless broad dissatisfaction across the sector about how data is -- or is not -- used.Reimagining measurement has engaged the field in thinking about where monitoring, evaluation, and learning is likely to head over the next decade. Over the course of extensive research and more than 125 conversations with leading foundation executives and program staff, evaluation experts, nonprofit leaders, data wonks, and other stakeholders, it became clear that there is a real divergence between the future people expect for monitoring, evaluation, and learning, and the future people hope for.

Evaluation and Learning

Hearts and Minds: The Arts and Civic Engagement

March 28, 2017

This study of existing research gathers compelling evidence that people who participate in the arts are more likely to be active in their communities and to be making a difference in the lives of others. Further, it shows how arts nonprofits may have natural advantages in helping people achieve new levels of understanding, empathy, and adaptation — critical capacities for civic engagement as well as acceptance and connection across class, race, heritage, or immigration status.

Arts and Culture; Human Rights, Citizenship, Democracy; Minorities, Social Inclusion, Multiculturalism

Creating a Culture of Inquiry: Changing Methods -- and Minds -- on the Use of Evaluation in Nonprofit Organizations

July 1, 2001

Outlines the design, implementation, and outcomes of the Working on Workforce Development Project, Irvine's two-year effort to help six nonprofit organizations incorporate evaluation as a tool to measure their own performance. Includes recommendations.

Evaluation and Learning

Beyond Collaboration: Strategic Restructuring for Nonprofit Organizations

November 1, 1998

Looks at the mergers and partnerships that allow organizations to share resources and expertise within the nonprofit sector. Includes strategies for encouraging nonprofits to undertake activities such as mergers, consolidations, and joint ventures.

Collaborative Philanthropy and Partnerships

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