It is often said that one must measure something in order to improve it or manage it. And while some things are not that easy to measure, measuring is key to the life of the social entrepreneur as it allows learning, adapting, improving and succeeding. Given the complexity of the impact of social interventions, Social Entrepreneurs in particular must constantly measure their social impact to validate assumptions and make sure that we're advancing towards the long terms goals and not generating unexpected negative impact. Here, we discuss the what, how and why of measuring social impact and tools available for measuring it.

  • Financial Value of Social Impact.
  • Non-Financial Value of Social Impact.
  • Can all Social Impact be Measured?
  • Importance of Measuring Social Impact.
    • Improving Efficiency of Operations.
      • Discovering weaknesses.
      • Identifying strengths and opportunities to take advantage of.
      • Early detection of problems.
    • Adapting and Pivoting Products and Services.
      • Monitoring market and consumers response.
      • Identifying opportunities and trends.
      • Adapting our offer to consumers response and market opportunities.
    • Monitor advance towards goals.
      • Keep track of progress towards short term goals.
      • Keep track of progress towards long term impact goals.
      • Adapt accordingly.
    • Facilitate Input and Advice.
      • Provide tools to mentors, advisors and analysts to understand our operations and deliver fact-based advice on improving them.
    • Governance.
      • Transparency.
      • Monitor relationship, impact and response from stakeholders, beneficiaries and partners.
      • Accountability to Shareholders and Stakeholders.
  • The Multiplying Factor of Social Impact.
    • Over time: Short, Mid and Long Term.
    • Across sectors.
    • Over multiple stakeholders: beneficiaries and others.
  • Social Impact Indicators: What and how to measure.
    • Choosing, Finding and Defining Indicators.
    • Calculating and Presenting Social Impact Indicators.
  • Governance of Measurement.
    • Participatory Measurement.
    • Validation of Measurement.
  • Frameworks and Tools.
    • Nesta Standards of Evidence.
    • Handbook for Product Social Impact Assessment.
    • CASS Business School Success Social Investment Guide.
    • NPC's The Little Blue Book and Charity Analysis Framework.
    • IssueLab Results.
    • Outcomes Star.
This course is part of our multi-module "Social Entrepreneurship and Impact from Business" program for full and rounded capacity building on Social Startups and Social Innovation. Click here for more details.
About the Instructor: Carlos Miranda Levy

Carlos Miranda Levy speaking at TEDxTokyo.A social entrepreneur and innovation technology expert with 20 years of work in human development, education, culture, disaster response and the environment, Carlos has led multiple social impact technology initiatives across the globe, while maintaining a successful career at the service of international organizations, government agencies and corporate and non-profit organizations.

His multiple credentials include a Stanford University Digital Vision Fellowship, a National University of Singapore Social Entrepreneurship Residency, a Google Developing World Scholarship Award, a Bill & Melinda Gates TEDGlobal Scholarship, a Reuters Foundation grant, among many others. Carlos has been featured on CNN as one of 20 Latin American Leaders on the Internet, on Forbes as a Latino Leader in Silicon Valley and as an Emerging Leader by New Media Consortium at MIT.

A balanced mix of tech skills, business savvy and understanding of social processes, give him a unique advantage for visualizing stakeholders and ecosystems, their processes and opportunities, drafting strategies, leading teams, organizing events and creating technology solutions. This is clearly appreciated in his work with vulnerable youth, disaster survivors, teachers, policy makers, software developers and communities, which has taken him from the Caribbean mountains to Silicon Valley, the Amazon basin and snowcapped Andes; to Haïti, Singapore and Japan, and more recently to Africa and Europe.

His hands-on, proactive spirit has benefited from the lessons learned through field experience at scenarios as diverse as remote rural villages, the headquarters of international organizations, Presidential offices and government agencies, high security prisons and some of the most prestigious universities in the world. He summarizes his approach and methodology to problem solving and ecosystem intervention with a simple phrase:

“never help: engage, enable, empower and connect”.
Photo by Mitchel Boot
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