How do you know if you are having an impact? This selection of pieces will help you discern what to measure, and how to learn as you give.

  • Making A Difference: Evaluating Your Philanthropy - This publication offers some simple, pragmatic approaches to evaluation. The most effective evaluation efforts are tailored to the size, scale, and complexity of the initiative under review, and conform to the donor’s philanthropic goals, strategy, and learning style. The approach that you decide to take to evaluation may be formal or informal, costly, or cost- free, analytical or intuitive. In the end, it is all about learning from the giving experience, gaining a better understanding of the difference you are making, and improving the effectiveness of your future philanthropic investments. Quick read (takes less than 20 minutes, and can read on the go)
  • Poverty Action Lab J-PAL Evaluations DataBase - This is an online interactive tool from a network of 145 affiliated professors from 49 universities. Search a database of hundreds of randomized evaluations conducted by affiliates in 80 countries.  Interactive Tool
  • Do-It-Yourself Charity Evaluation Questions - You'll find information here from GiveWell, an organization that vets charities for impact. These pages describe how GiveWell identifies and vets recommended charities, as well as commonly asked questions about the research process. They also discuss GiveWell's commitment to transparency in its work and the internal evaluations of GiveWell that have been conducted. Medium read (takes between 20 minutes to one hour)