Race is NOT Just a Number

The Pew Research Center released their report, “The Rise of Asian Americans,” today, June 19, 2012 – the 30th anniversary of the fatal beating of Vincent Chin at the hands of Ronald Ebens and Michael Nitz, which led to Chin's death four days later and only a small fine for Ebens and Nitz (neither of whom have spent a single day in jail, for the record).  In some ways, I couldn’t think of a more ironic juxtaposition that highlights that we still live in an age where there is xenophobic fear of an “Asian Invasion”...

Predictive Philanthropy: Driving Data Towards Collective Action

Rapidly growing community needs and opportunities outpace the progress of programs and services, heightening the urgency to find ways to bring more people, money and other resources together in concert.  As such, Tides is launching predictive philanthropy, a process for driving collaborative, data-based funding decisions focused on the development of local leadership and assets.  Through this initiative, Tides seeks to connect efforts that have typically been slow to react and done in isolation and connect people through...

The Neverending Data Story

Editor's Note: This post was originally written as a guest case study for the NTEN Blog, and we are proud to cross-post it here.

Quantitative and qualitative data are often positioned as opposing or complementary means of documenting impact.

Data reports and personal snapshots are often generated separately, then placed side-by-side with the hope that the juxtaposition of hard metrics with an emotional picture and blurb will resonate with a wide range of people. In other cases, organizations produce statistics...

Nobel Peace Prize Honors Women in Democracy and Leadership

On October 7, three women – Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee and Tawakkul Karman – were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for 2011 “for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work.” The Prize is both a recognition of the important work of the women, as well as an acknowledgment of the increasing role of and need for women in leadership and democracy.

In 2005, Liberian president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf became the first woman to win a free...

Why Social Impact Investing Is Legit

In her recent Fast Company blog Why Social Impact Investing Is A Crock, Anya Kemenetz questions the validity of impact investing based on the lack of rigorous data collection and analysis, and the high costs of supporting evaluation systems.  While she makes some legitimate arguments about the need for investors to adopt more accurate and substantive metrics, dismissing the field as a whole seems short-sighted and unjustified.

Although impact investing is not new and many of the major proponents are...

Leveraging Philanthropy for Business-Driven Solutions and Impact

Philanthropy has historically played a critical role in supporting positive social change. Moving forward there is growing potential to broaden the impact of charity through innovative grant making and investments in cross-sector initiatives and opportunities. It is crucial for the charitable sector to more fully engage in projects that layer capital to have greater and more sustainable impact, especially given that philanthropy, alone, cannot adequately address the magnitude of increasingly diverse and complex...

Democracy and Discourse Rising

February was established as Black History Month in 1976 to recognize and celebrate the central role of African Americans in U.S. history, and was chosen in honor of the birthdays of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln. Fittingly, twenty-five years later, this month has been marked by the spreading democracy movements in the Middle East and North Africa, from Egypt, to Tunisia, to Libya. Core to the significance of this parallel is the fundamental belief that true democracy evolves only when...

A Hope for Pre-Emptive Civil Discourse

On January 30th, California celebrated the inaugural Fred Korematsu Day of Civil Rights and the Constitution – the first day in U.S. history to be officially named after an Asian American – honoring the life of an exceptional individual who fought against the forced internment of over 120,000 Japanese Americans during World War II.  In 1942, at the age of 23, Korematsu was arrested near his San Leandro, CA home for refusing to go to a camp with the rest of his family, and was convicted for defying Executive Order 9066,...