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Evaluation and strategic learning have become increasingly prevalent in philanthropy as foundations seek to tackle complex social challenges and face questions about the impact of their investments. However, foundation evaluation functions tend to be staffed by only a handful of people who are expected to advise staff and board members on a broad range of technical issues across diverse program portfolios. Evaluation advisory groups offer one mechanism for expanding knowledge and internal capacity. This session will explore the potential benefits of such groups and offer practical advice for foundations on how to design and implement them. Attendees will hear from representatives of the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation about their experiences with advisory committees, and engage in small group discussion about some of the challenges and opportunities inherent in this approach.

Speaker Info:

  • Clare Nolan, Session Facilitator
  • Matthew Carr, First Author or Discussion Group Leader
  • Gabriel Rhoads, Second Author or Discussion Group Leader