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Taking the Pulse of the European Foundation Sector : Moving from Proving Impact to Improving Impact

January 1, 2022

This report contains key insights, survey data and case studies from the first year of the European and Spanish Communities of Practice on Impact Measurement and Management (IMM), coordinated by the Esade Center for Social Impact with the support of BBK. These groups of foundation professionals from 15 countries have come together to increase the level of transparency, knowledge-sharing and exchange within the European foundation sector on this topic. Building on the transcribed discussions and surveys of approximately 40 European foundations, the authors have developed several learnings they hope will help the whole European foundation sector, as well as any other organizations that want to measure and manage their impact. In this perspective, the report also includes tables outlining what the different 'levels' of practice might be, so that the reader can understand what the impact management learning journey looks like at different stages (beginner, on the journey, and advanced).In addition to the present report, the following page provides links to the recording of the launch of the report as well as presentation slides: 

Participatory Budgeting Case Study: Spirit of Ruchill & Possilpark and Digital Tools for Participatory Budgeting

June 30, 2017

This case study presents the experiences of Spirit of Ruchill and Possilpark (SoRP) andtheir use of digital tools for the 'Spirit Marketplace' participatory budgeting initiative in the Possilpark and Ruchill area of Glasgow, which took place in early 2017. The initiative provided the opportunity for people to vote for community projects that could receive a proportion of a £15,000 funding pot made available by the Scottish Government Community Choices Fund.

Participatory Budgeting Case Study: The City of Edinburgh Council and the Leith Neighbourhood Partnership

May 31, 2017

This case study presents the experiences of The City of Edinburgh Council and the Leith Neighbourhood Partnership's use of digital tools as part of the £eith Decides participatory budgeting initiative during Autumn 2016. The initiative encouraged people to vote for community projects to receive funding from the £44,184 Community Grants Fund made available by the Leith Neighbourhood Partnership. The Council was supported by a team from The Democratic Society to select, embed and test a digitaltool. This was provided through the 'Digital Tools for Participatory Budgeting in Scotland' programme, made possible through grant funding from Scottish Government to The Democratic Society.

Participatory Budgeting Case Study: Fife Council

May 31, 2017

This case study presents the experiences of Fife Council's use of digital tools for the'Oor Bit Fife – Places and Spaces' participatory budgeting initiative in the Cowdenbeath area, which took place in late 2016. The initiative provided the opportunity for people to suggest ideas that could receive a proportion of a £250,000 funding pot made available by the Cowdenbeath Area Committee.

Participatory Budgeting Case Study: Angus Council

April 30, 2017

This case study presents the experiences of Angus Council when they used a digital tool for a participatory budgeting (PB) initiative, which took place in June – October 2016. The initiative provided the opportunity for people to suggest ideas that could receive aproportion of a £20,000 funding pot. Angus Council was supported by The Democratic Society to select, embed and test one digital tool which was provided as part of the 'Digital Tools for Participatory Budgeting in Scotland' programme. Funding for the digital tools and support was made possible by provision of grant funding from Scottish Government to The Democratic Society.

Building a More Equal Scotland: Designing Scotland's Poverty and Inequality Commission

April 25, 2017

In 2015 Oxfam Scotland called for the creation of an Inequality Commission, building on Scotland's politicians from across all parties stating their support to tackle economic inequality. The Scottish government has committed to establishing a Poverty and Inequality Commission in 2017-18, but its design will be critical.This report, produced in collaboration with the Fraser of Allander Institute, explores the scale of inequality in Scotland and the drivers behind it. The report examines some, but not all, of the intersecting and overlapping dimensions of economic inequality and poverty - as well as potential policy responses and the powers of the Scottish Parliament.The report then explores lessons from the work of previous commissions and makes a series of recommendations for the Scottish government as it establishes the new Poverty and Inequality Commission.

Our Museum Special Initiative: An Evaluation

June 1, 2016

Our Museum: Communities and Museums as Active Partners was a Paul Hamlyn Foundation Special Initiative 2012 – 2016. The overall aim was to influence the museum and gallery sector to:* Place community needs, values and active collaboration at the core of museum and gallery work* Involve communities and individuals in decision-making processes* Ensure that museums and galleries play an effective role in developing community skills and the skills of staff in working with communitiesThis was to be done through facilitation of organisational change in specific museums and galleries already committed to active partnership with communities.Our Museum offered a collaborative learning process through which institutions and communities shared experiences and learned from each other as critical friends. Our Museum took place at a difficult and challenging time for both museums and their community partners. Financial austerity led to major cutbacks in public sector expenditure; a search for new business models; growing competition for funding; and organisational uncertainty and staff volatility. At the same time, the debate at the heart of Our Museum widened and intensified: what should the purpose of longestablished cultural institutions be in the 21st century; how do they maintain relevance and resonance in the contemporary world; how can they best serve their communities; can they, and should they, promote cultural democracy?

What Makes For Decent Work? A study with low-paid workers in Scotland

March 8, 2016

The experience of work and its security and rewards have changed significantly in recent decades. Increasingly, large numbers of people experience work which is insecure and which is paid at levels which do not allow families to live above the poverty line. In Scotland, around half of the working age adults experiencing poverty live in working households.This research adapts and applies the concept of ‘decent work' in Scotland for the first time, using participatory research methods. Devised by Oxfam Scotland and the University of the West of Scotland (as part of the UWS-Oxfam Partnership), and in collaboration with the University of Warwick, the research consulted 1,500 people between October 2015 and February 2016 about what decent work means to them. This summary report shows that there was remarkable consistency in people's priorities and that they are not extravagant; they represent what many would see as quite limited expectations, and should be common practice in twenty-first century Scotland. But the research also shows that these expectations are much too often not being met. Decent work is something too many people hope to experience, or experience only partially, rather than a reality in their daily lives.

Even It Up: Scotland's Role in Tackling Poverty by Reducing Inequality at Home and Abroad - Oxfam's Policy Priorities for the Scottish Parliament

October 8, 2015

In this report, Oxfam Scotland urges the Scottish Parliament to use its powers to reduce inequality and poverty, both at home in Scotland and abroad. Around one in five people in Scotland live in poverty, and recently there has been a large increase in the number of people needing emergency food support. Oxfam argues that this is not a problem of scarcity, but of unequal wealth distribution. The Scottish election in May 2016 presents an opportunity for Scottish political parties to make a firm commitment to tackling inequality in order to reduce poverty. Oxfam is asking all parties to take action in a number of areas, including decent work, hunger, climate change, participative government and international aid.

Getting Better by Design: Evaluation of a programme to support the voluntary sector in Scotland

May 1, 2015

Better by Design was developed in 2013 by the Big Lottery Fund Scotland in response to the complex and changing landscape for voluntary sector organisations delivering services on the ground with people or communities. It aimed to support a process of change, and prioritised organisations focusing on social care, employability, health and housing where intervening earlier or preventing needs emerging could make a real difference. The programme encouraged sustainability in the widest sense to enable organisations to meet the needs of their beneficiaries better now and in the future.The chance to learn in this way and the challenge to habitual ways of thinking and doing, have made a significant change to mindsets in a number of organisations and at times, brought a new quality of engagement in partnership settings. This report shows that design-led approaches do have a great deal to contribute in creating the new organisational cultures of collaboration and mutual learning necessary for public service reform.

Turning the Tide Ending Overfishing in North-western Europe (German Overview)

March 26, 2015

Die Meere Nordwesteuropas—die Nordsee, die Irische See und die Keltische See sowie die Gewässer westlich von Schottland und Irland—bergen einen enormen Reichtum und eine große Vielfalt an Ökosystemen, Tierund Pflanzenwelten, die die Kulturen entlang der Küsten entscheidend geprägt haben. Seit Jahrtausenden begünstigen die natürlichen Ressourcen der Meere die Entwicklung von Küstengemeinden. In den vergangenen Jahrzehnten nahm die Ausweitung der Fischerei jedoch dramatische Ausmaße an. Viel zu lange ignorierte die Politik die Aufrufe von Wissenschaftlern und Umweltschützern, den Fangdruck zu reduzieren. Stattdessen stellte sie kurzfristige wirtschaftliche und politische Interessen vor die Entwicklung einer langfristig tragbaren und nachhaltigen Form der Fischerei. Infolgedessen brachen viele Fischbestände in der Region regelrecht zusammen, was die vom Fischfang lebenden Gemeinden in ihrer Existenz bedrohte. Als Reaktion auf diese Fehlentwicklung verabschiedete die Europäische Union (EU) eine Reform der Gemeinsamen Fischereipolitik (GFP) und vollzog damit einen ersten wichtigen Schritt zur Wiederherstellung der Gesundheit der Fischbestände und Meeresökosysteme. Der Bericht wirft einen detaillierten Blick auf die Gewässer Nordwesteuropas und die Rolle, die der Fischfang bei den Aufschwüngen und Abstürzen der Wirtschaftskraft der Küstengemeinden spielte. Eine genaue Kenntnis dieser Regionen—und der zentralen Bedeutung der hier vorkommenden Fischbestände— verdeutlicht, wie wichtig eine effektive Umsetzung der reformierten GFP ist, um der Überfischung in ganz Europa Einhalt zu gebieten – und zwar dort wo es möglich ist mit dem Zieldatum 2015, jedoch spätestens bis 2020. Jetzt ist es an der Zeit, die formulierten politischen Ziele in die Praxis umzusetzen.

Turning the Tide Ending Overfishing in North-western Europe (English Overview)

March 26, 2015

The seas of north-western Europe—the North, Irish, and Celtic seas, and the waters west of Scotland and Ireland—boast a rich and diverse mix of environments and wildlife that have shaped the cultures along their shores. For millennia, the natural bounty of these waters has spurred development of coastal communities and enabled the expansion of fisheries in pursuit of food and profit. In recent decades, however, the scale of that expansion has increased dramatically. Calls by scientists and environmentalists to reduce fishing pressure have been ignored too often by politicians who put short-term economic and political gains ahead of long-term sustainability. As a consequence, many fish stocks collapsed throughout the region, leaving fishing communities devastated. In response, the European Union (EU) recently agreed to a reform of its fisheries management, the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), that should prove a successful first step in restoring and maintaining the health of fisheries and fish stocks, and of the communities and marine ecosystems that depend on them. This report takes an in-depth look at the seas in north-western Europe, their characteristics, their histories and the roles that their fisheries have played in the booms and busts of communities at the water's edge. An understanding of these distinct regions—and the critical part played by their fish stocks —emphasizes the importance of effective implementation of the reformed CFP, which requires an end to overfishing throughout Europe where possible by 2015 and at the latest by 2020. Now is the time to start making sure the policy goals move from rhetoric to reality.