Archive for the 'Complexity' Category

Multi-generational Dialogue

Written on July 13, 2017 at 6:56 am

This post has been co-authored by Bonnie Koenig and Alyssa Smaldino

In 2011 the most recent UN’s State of the World Report noted that “People under 25 make up 43 percent of the world’s population, and 60 percent of the population of developing countries.”

The ‘millennial’ generation is now making their impact known not only in numbers but with the creation of many new organizations founded and/or run by youth.  The ONE campaign put a focus on a sample of some of them in this post.

Yet with all of this increase in youth energy and initiative, we are still …

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The State of Impact Assessment

Written on May 16, 2017 at 8:46 am

 

Why Impact?

As I wrote in the introduction to my book “International Engagement for Impact in a Changing World”:

“We’ve become complacent about outcomes as things we can measure – how many of this or that? We need to push ourselves forward to look at impact as how are lives being changed in positive ways through our efforts?  We need to struggle individually and within our organizations and networks with the concept of impact and what it means to us.  Why do we do what we do?  It’s in the grappling with concepts that we begin to understand their

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Test It! Lessons we are Learning

Written on February 28, 2017 at 9:09 am

I continue to work on a global project that focuses on the significant change that is impacting the civil society / NGO sector and developing and testing some new initiatives to address these changes which I first introduced on my blog last year. This work of the project is being done by diverse and global working groups, working primarily virtually.  As we all move towards more virtual work to conserve our resources, deal with increasing travel restrictions and reduce our carbon footprint, these process lessons may be of interest to other similar efforts.

As our Steering Group worked to design …

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Exploring Social Innovation

Written on September 28, 2016 at 9:26 am

Over the past decade the concept of innovation and social innovation have increased dramatically in usage and popularity. Google ‘innovation’ and over 500 million results come up; social innovation and one gets over 20 million results. I am often a bit skeptical of currently popular approaches or solutions to complex and long-term challenges. In our ‘quick-fix’ society where attention spans are short, focusing on innovation can indirectly lead to masking the long-term effort that is needed to bring about significant change (see What’s the Recipe? ).

Fortunately one of the leading publications that helped publicize social innovation, the Stanford Social …

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Test It!

Written on July 26, 2016 at 6:48 am

A Project to Test Operational Changes to Civil Society Organizations

A couple of years ago, a small group started a global conversation around the dramatic operational changes that will be needed to keep civil society organizations/NGOs relevant while facing a daunting set of challenges. Some of these challenges include: (1) changing demographics; (2) virtual connectivity; (3) the increase in social entrepreneurship and how a profit concept may apply to a traditionally ‘not-for-profit’ sector; and (4) changing funding patterns and international players.  See more about these trends and our initial conversation in this SSIR post.

Through a series of conversations since …

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