Beyond the Check

Publication date: 
January, 2015
Stanford Social Innovation Review

Many have argued that funders often work within a framework of isolated impact, reviewing proposals for funding in a vacuum and evaluating success based on the impact of individual organizations as opposed to that of systems.  In 2013, Microsoft partnered with Silicon Valley Community Foundation (SVCF) to try a new model. What would happen if, instead of reviewing proposals and organizations in a vacuum, we reviewed them through the lens of collective impact? What would happen if, instead of leading a top-down approach to create communities of learning, we engaged organizations in the creation process? Would participating organizations continue working with their communities of learning long after financial incentives and support ended?

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