Organizing for Impact
Speaking Up! Foundations and Advocacy in Europe

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Speaking Up! Foundations and Advocacy in Europe

European countries have very diverse traditions in philanthropy, and many foundations not only fund advocacy but directly influence policy agendas through their operational programmes. This guide explores how foundations do so through interactions with local and national governments as well as the European institutions.

Highlights

  • Regulatory constraints to advocacy in a sample of European countries
  • Brussels essentials
  • Cartoons of six different pathways of policy change
  • Seven concrete case studies
Advocacy Funding

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Advocacy Funding

Grantmakers tend to be cautious about funding advocacy, yet it can play a crucial role in advancing a foundation's mission. In this guide, contributors explain that advocacy creates many opportunities to improve public policy through work that is well within the limits of the law. The guide offers resources and strategies for planning your work, reaching your audience, assessing impact, and more.

Highlights

  • Working with grantees who lobby
  • Building a case, cultivating a constituency
  • Preparing for opposition
Communicating for Impact

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Communicating for Impact

A good communications strategy can amplify a grantee's program and message in critical ways. Contributors to this guide – grantmakers, grantees, and communications professionals – share strategies that can help you add a communications dimension to your grantmaking.

Highlights

  • Using a communications lens
  • Four grantees, four funders, four goals
  • Making the most of consultants
Funding for Inclusion: Women and Girls in the Equation

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Funding for Inclusion: Women and Girls in the Equation

Foundations in Europe can play a much larger role in improving the position of women and girls. This guide reflects on how gender considerations are being addressed in European foundation programmes, processes, and procedures, and it provides a wealth of practical examples and recommendations to inspire other foundations to do so.

Highlights

  • Learning from the experience of other foundations - in summary
  • Understanding the common questions and arguments around gender and inclusion
  • Practical strategies for integrating a commitment to reaching and empowering women and girls into your foundation
Grantmaking with a Gender Lens

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Grantmaking with a Gender Lens

In this guide, grantmakers and grantees describe the experience of using a "gender lens" in their work. They explain what gender analysis is and isn't – and how it can help shape more effective programs and organizations. The guide also takes a closer look at how gender analysis has led to new thinking in fields as diverse as public health, international development, juvenile justice, and youth services.

Highlights

  • Bringing a gender analysis to your grantmaking
  • Understanding how it can help grantees to be more effective
  • Applying it in your own organization
Grantmaking with a Racial Equity Lens

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Grantmaking with a Racial Equity Lens

A commitment to racial equity can sharpen your work at every stage. Blending experience and candid advice, this guide explores ways to use a racial equity lens to analyze problems, understand a field or community, and shape a new program. Contributors also share lessons about working with grantees and collaborating with colleagues to address racial and ethnic disparities.

Highlights

  • Reflections on race and role
  • Tools for activating a racial equity lens
  • Questions to ask inside your foundation
Mapping Change: Using a Theory of Change

Mapping Change: Using a Theory of Change

"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.

Highlights

  • What a theory of change looks like
  • Theory of change vs. logic model
  • Mini-case study: theory of change and strategic planning
Getting Inside the Story: Ethnographic Approaches to Evaluation

Getting Inside the Story: Ethnographic Approaches to Evaluation

Ethnography is a powerful way to step inside the culture of an organization or community, hear ongoing feedback from multiple points of view, and understand a program's real impact. In this guide, learn about ethnography's benefits and pitfalls, and see how grantmakers use the method to document, evaluate and improve approaches to youth engagement, HIV education, and neighborhood policing.

Highlights

  • Understanding ethnography's pros and cons
  • Telling a more authentic institutional or community story
  • Stimulating reflection on the front lines

Related Content

Learning Together: Collaborative Inquiry Among Grantmakers and Grantees

Learning Together: Collaborative Inquiry Among Grantmakers and Grantees

Many grantmakers champion the idea of using evaluation to improve grantee effectiveness or advance a field of practice. This guide explores an increasingly popular method called "collaborative inquiry." Grantmakers define the practice, consider potential benefits, and grapple with common challenges.

Highlights

  • Using collaborative inquiry to strengthen a field of work
  • Addressing power imbalances and divergent learning interests
  • Creating learning partnerships among various players
Making Measures Work for You: Outcomes and Evaluation

Making Measures Work for You: Outcomes and Evaluation

There is an ongoing debate about whether or not an outcome-based approach to evaluation works and if program impacts can be translated into hard data to serve as a basis for evaluation. This guide looks at the tensions that drive the debate about outcomes measurement, as well as common questions about its potential risks and rewards.

Highlights

  • What are outcomes?
  • Measuring intangibles
  • Seven tensions in the debate over measuring outcome
Participatory Action Research

Participatory Action Research

"In so many evaluations," said a program officer, "no one thinks to ask the users." Participatory action research engages all parties in all aspects of an evaluation, from defining the problem to gathering and analyzing data to preparing recommendations. In this guide, learn about a unique evaluation method and how grantmakers used it to evaluate programs in agriculture, early childhood development, and immigration.

Highlights

  • Ensuring a rigorous approach and objective results
  • Developing trusting partnerships as part of an evaluation
  • Developing trusting partnerships as part of an evaluation