Measuring and/or Estimating Social Value Creation

Because of the recession, many grantmakers are seeking to maximize the influence of their charitable dollars on the populations they serve, but before they begin evaluating NGOs, many are evaluating how they evaluate.  There are numerous ways to calculate the impact of an NGO and knowing the best way for a given organization can be key to making the best possible decisions.

The Gates Foundation published an article that may be of use to anyone looking for information the about various methods for measuring the social value created by an NGOs.  The paper focuses on 8 different ways to calculate the impact of a given organization’s actions, and gives an explanation of issues that deserve consideration in the evaluation process.  Although it does not give the exact mathematics of how to calculate created social value with each methodology, it discusses the major differences between them and the situations in which each one would likely work best.  If you are looking to expand the way in which you evaluate the effectiveness of your NGO or those you work with, this article is a great starting point.