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Foundations and Evaluation. Contexts and Practices for Effective Philanthropy

  • ID: 2213224
  • Book
  • April 2012
  • Region: Global
  • 384 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
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A State–of–the–Art Guide to Effective Evaluation in the Foundation World

"Gathered together in this unique book on evaluation and effective foundation practice are the experience–based perspectives and measured insights of both seasoned practitioners and key philanthropic thought leaders. Foundations and Evaluation is a substantial think piece for grantmakers of any size."
Dorothy S. Ridings, president and CEO, Council on Foundations

"Foundations and Evaluation explores the intersection between organizational effectiveness and evaluation and demonstrates the need for commitment to evaluation throughout the foundation. . . . A good read for both newcomers to evaluation and those with more experience, written by some of the most highly respected leaders in the field."
Kathleen P. Enright, executive director, Grantmakers for Effective Organizations

"In this book, evaluation luminaries provide valuable advice on how to put evaluation to work for foundations. The twin emphases of the book are developing foundations′ capacities to do evaluation and making sound use of the resulting evidence to advance philanthropic work. Foundation officers and boards and grantees, too can learn a lot."
Carol H. Weiss, Beatrice B. Whiting Professor, Harvard Graduate School of Education

"This volume offers a much–needed look at an overlooked topic. As a former evaluator–on–call for a small community foundation, I created my own guidelines and made my own mistakes since no book like this existed. Those of us who teach evaluation will find that the book offers clear and useful examples of one important domain for evaluation. In fact, this book can be valuable for all evaluators, not just those in foundations."
Sharon F. Rallis, professor, University of Connecticut, and president, American Evaluation Association, 2004–05

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Tables, Figures, and Exhibits xi

Foreword xiii
Richard T. Schlosberg III

Preface xvii

The Editors xxi

The Contributors xxiii

Introduction: Putting Evaluation to Work for Foundations xxxv
Jana Kay Slater, Norman A. Constantine, and Marc T. Braverman


Perspective by Hodding Carter III xlvii
President and CEO, The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Perspective by Michael M. Howe liii
President, The East Bay Community Foundation

Perspective by Risa Lavizzo–Mourey lvii
President and CEO, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation


1 Using Evaluation to Advance a Foundation s Mission 3
Laura C. Leviton and Marian E. Bass

2 A Historical Perspective on Evaluation in Foundations 27
Peter Dobkin Hall

3 Foundations and Evaluation as Uneasy Partners in Learning 51
Mark R. Kramer and William E. Bickel

4 Building Strong Foundation–Grantee Relationships 76
Michael Quinn Patton, John Bare, and Deborah G. Bonnet

5 Evaluation as a Democratizing Practice 96
Jennifer C. Greene, Ricardo A. Millett, and Rodney K. Hopson

6 Integrating Evaluation into Foundation Activity Cycles 119
Laura C. Leviton and William E. Bickel


7 Making Judgments About What to Evaluate and How Intensely 145
Melvin M. Mark and William L. Beery

8 Adapting Evaluation to Accommodate Foundations Structural and Cultural Characteristics 166
Ross F. Conner, Victor Kuo, Marli S. Melton, and Ricardo A. Millett

9 Field–Based Evaluation as a Path to Foundation Effectiveness 185
Patricia Patrizi and Edward Pauly

10 Strategies for Smaller Foundations 201
Marli S. Melton, Jana Kay Slater, and Wendy L. Constantine

11 Strategies for Comprehensive Initiatives 223
Debra J. Rog and James R. Knickman

12 Appraising Evidence on Program Effectiveness 236
Norman A. Constantine and Marc T. Braverman

13 Evaluative Thinking for Grantees 259
E. Jane Davidson, Michael M. Howe, and Michael Scriven

14 Communicating Results to Different Audiences 281
Lester W. Baxter and Marc T. Braverman

Index 305

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Marc T. Braverman
Norman A. Constantine
Jana Kay Slater
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