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Change lives. Change organizations. Change the world.
“Everywhere you turn in the world of philanthropy and nonprofits these days, people are talking about accountability,” stated the lead sentence of a recent New York Times article that reported on the need to measure nonprofit effectiveness. 1 Indeed, the buzzwords of “transparency” and “accountability” contribute to making performance measurement one of the hottest topics in philanthropy.
Proponents of measurement believe that philanthropists need to apply the same discerning eye to charities that they would to a stock investment, and that one way to do so is for the charities to measure the success of their programs. 2
Against this backdrop, we began a recent research study not just with the belief that performance measurement could make a meaningful contribution to the effectiveness of nonprofit organizations, but