Our Knowledge, Resources & Publications

We are always learning through our work, and we seek to accelerate change more broadly by sharing our frameworks, approaches, and lessons learned.

Feature BRIEF

When the Best Offense is a Good Defense


2019

We talked to advocates and funders to better understand how they think about advocacy on the defense. We wanted to understand whether it was a distinct category of work and the degree to which there were useful frameworks and tools for evaluating it.

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Briefs / Reports
2021

In 2019, foundation evaluation staff and external evaluators came together. As part of the meeting, the facilitators asked all participants to write down what they most wished the other would do differently. The number one request of foundation evaluation staff? Ask harder questions. The number one request by external evaluators? Let us ask harder questions. If we both want the same things, why aren’t we doing better? Clearly, good intentions are not good enough. This brief lifts up six areas that rose to the top as key interventions to change the way the systems of evaluation and philanthropy operate, including implications for increasing the utility of evaluation findings, as well as some specific ways that external evaluation consultants and internal foundation evaluation staff can act together and in their own spheres of influence. This brief is one of five products created as part of the Funder Evaluator Action Network (FEAN) in response to areas of shared interest: Strategy & Practice, Evaluators of Color, Knowledge Sharing, Global Challenges, and Collaboration & Partnership.

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Tools
2021

On September 15th, 2021, ORS Impact hosted a webinar to discuss some of the opportunities and challenges that animate narrative change measurement. With Neha Singh Gohil, Communications Officer at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, we explored different facets of narratives by identifying relevant and meaningful outcomes, responding to dynamic contexts and learning as you go, and what this might mean for funders and others engaged in this type of work.

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Briefs / Reports
2021

Better understanding and measuring progress is an important part of strengthening narrative change strategies. This brief offers insights into some of the questions facing practitioners, funders, and others interested in measuring this kind of work: How do you lay the foundations for successful measurement? What short- and longer-term signals can you look for to indicate that things are moving in the right direction? And how can you understand the impact of narrative change efforts when they’re happening in complex, dynamic environments?

Watch our webinar on measuring narrative change

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Briefs / Reports
2021

Following a field-focused think tank session, this short brief was written for anyone who has ever wondered how learning and evaluation of fields could be more helpful and more nuanced. The brief lays out a few core definitions and concepts, identifies five practices that can help funders and evaluators strengthen their conceptualization and understanding about fields and field-focused measurement, and outlines three opportunities to further develop and advance field measurement.

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