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Assessing Research for Philanthropic Funding : Innovative Approaches

September 1, 2023

This publication on responsible research assessment aims to explore diverse approaches taken by foundations to enhance the fairness, transparency and effectiveness of evaluating research proposals for funding. The publication delves into three distinct methodologies that challenge traditional assessment methods and offer innovative alternatives: 1. Using artificial intelligence (AI); 2. Adopting narrative curriculum vitae (CVs); and 3. Implementing randomised selection. It provides an overview of general principles of responsible research assessment, key framing documents and recommendations for implementing these principles; and offers examples of the real-world application of these methods by various foundations and organisations.While these approaches demonstrate the innovative potential within research assessment, they are by no means an exhaustive representation of all available tools and methods. Nevertheless, they serve as compelling illustrations of the ongoing efforts to revolutionise evaluation practices and foster a more inclusive and equitable research ecosystem.

Measuring Your Impact on Loneliness in Later Life

July 1, 2022

What does this guidance cover?Are you working to prevent or reduce loneliness in your community? Can you articulate the difference you are making to the lives of older people?We're all working in an increasingly competitive funding environment, and we all need to be able to demonstrate robustly that we make a difference. Funders across the public, voluntery and private sectors also face their own financial pressures and need evidence that the programmes they fund are delivering real change for the people they support.This guidance offers information and advice on choosing and using a scale to measure the impact of your services on loneliness in older age.

Recommendations for Assessing and Reporting on Contributions toward the Sustainable Development Goals

August 5, 2021

The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation (FCG) engaged Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors (RPA) to develop a method to assess and report contributions toward the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for each of FCG's operational and grantmaking programs and areas of intervention. This document focuses on the output that resulted of the "Provided reporting framework to units" phase of the project.

More than the Sum of its Parts: Insights on the Future of European Philanthropy and Social Investment Infrastructure

March 1, 2019

This study is based on an extensive literature review and more than 50 interviews with a broad specturm of foundation leaders, academic experts, EU officials, and staff of ESPII organizations. The results are like a health check up of our sector. They show that not everything is perfect in this system, a system that many of us have helped to shape over the last 25 years. We should make sure that the health indicators of the European Philanthropy and Social Investment Infrastructure are in good shape for the next 25 years. We need this infrastructure to represent our sector, to drive innovations and to increase in the impact of our work. The latter is very much connected to tackling some of the most pressing issues of our time.

Re-energising Europe: A Package Deal for the EU27

November 1, 2017

The New Pact for Europe (NPE) initiative – launched in 2013 and steered by the King Baudouin Foundation, Bertelsmann Stiftung, Open Society Initiative for Europe and the European Policy Centre, supported by Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Open Estonia Foundation, the BMW Foundation and the Network of European Foundations – aims to rebuild trust through national and transnational dialogue and develop new common ground on the way forward for the European Union. After years of multiple crises, the EU27 should re-energise the European project. This third NPE report, which is the culmination of five years of work reflecting more than 120 national and transnational debates throughout Europe, argues that the EU27 should have the political will and courage to agree on an ambitious but realistic win-win package deal to overcome deadlocks and counter the danger of a more regressive, nationalistic, closed, illiberal and authoritarian Europe, the greatest challenge we are currently facing.

The Theory of the Foundation European Initiative

January 23, 2017

The purpose of the Theory of the Foundation European Initiative was to contribute key insights into European foundations; and to look beyond the direct charitable activities or grant-making of European foundations and instead to explore and understand how foundations operate as organisations in their pursuit of mission and social impact. This we term a "whole foundation approach".Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors (RPA) established a framework to stimulate discussion around the organisational form of philanthropy called "The Theory of the Foundation."1 Inspired by Peter Drucker's "Theory of the Business,"2 RPA's approach to framing philanthropic practice is detailed in Figure 1 and contains three core domains: Charter, Social Compact, and Operating Capabilities.

The Civic Role of Arts Organisations: A Literature Review for the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation

January 1, 2016

The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation has initiated an inquiry into the civic role of arts organisations. The inquiry seeks to increase awareness of the civic role that arts organisations play nationally and in their communities. Through research and consultation they intend to develop understanding of what constitutes 'next practice' and create a movement of organisations committed to demonstrating it. This literature review provides a starting point for the research that supports the inquiry.

Supporting Social Change : A New Funding Ecology

March 1, 2015

This report, produced by the community interest company Collaborate and commissioned by the Big Lottery Fund and the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, argues that strong ideas and bottom-up social change initiatives are undermined by a lack of strategic collaboration between the individuals and institutions that fund them.Based on interviews and focus groups with leading independent funders, the report says that in order to change systems and help projects to become more effective, funders should see their role less as "guardians of self-identified change" and more as partners in an ecosystem of support for others.

The Inventive Foundation: Creating New Ventures in Europe

May 14, 2014

This report explores the neglected topic of foundations' involvement in the creation of new organisations. In recent years much attention has been paid to venture philanthropy but there has been little focus on foundations as entrepreneurs creating new organisations and institutions.Based on interviews across Europe, the exploratory study tells nine stories of entrepreneurial, or inventive, foundations and their creations. It explores why foundations take the big and bold step of inventing something new, the processes, considerations and challenges along the way.The nine cases are very different in socio-political context, in purposes, and in scale. Despite these differences there are a number of common issues which all inventive foundations need to consider including how to let go while at the same time ensuring the future of their fledgling creation. The report does not tell foundations how to be inventive but rather highlights some of the issues they may wish to consider.

Immigrant Citizens Survey

May 1, 2012

The survey was carried out in 15 cities in 7 countries in Europe and aims to better understand how migrants evaluate themselves the migration and integration policies in Europe.

Portugal's Nonprofit Sector in Comparative Context

April 1, 2012

This is a report comparing the scope, composition, and revenue of the nonprofit sector in Portugal to its counterparts in other countries. The report draws on the important new source of data on nonprofit institutions (NPIs) that has resulted from the implementation of the United Nations Handbook on Nonprofit Institutions in the System of National Accounts, including particularly the recently issued results generated by Portugal's Instituto Nacional de Estatistica - INE (National Institute for Statistics) in its Nonprofit Institutions Satellite Account.

The Centrality of Employment in Immigrant Integration in Europe

February 23, 2012

Calls for making economic, not cultural, integration through employment the basis of immigration policy by ensuring fair access to the labor market and offering immigrants opportunities and incentives in the educational, welfare, and training systems.