A spy in the house of love

Keystone’s Chief Executive David Bonbright delivered the talk below at IMPCON 2016 in Atlanta. Despite the striking resemblance, this is not an engraving of Jeremy Nicholls. It is William Blake’s depiction of Isaac Newton. Staying with this theme of artistic perspectives on measurement, I have borrowed from the writer Anais Nin for the title of my talk, a spy in the house of love. I say “a spy” because I am not formally trained in[…]

From the field – 7 cases and a cautionary tale

Since 2013 World Vision has been running seven DFID-funded “beneficiary feedback mechanism” experiments in health programmes in India and Africa with local partners. Earlier this month World Vision convened a highly informative day-long learning event in London where about 50 practitioners from across the globe discussed the experiments, aided by high quality documentation in video, written and slide presentation forms. This is exactly the kind of feedback practice literature that we need as Constituent Voice[…]

Who should measure the impact of non-profits? Responses to Caroline Fiennes and Ken Berger

This article was originally published on Alliance Magazine’s website on March 22, 2016. The non-profit impact revolution has taken a wrong turn. The job of examining their impact should be done by independent specialists rather than non-profits themselves: this is what Caroline Fiennes and Ken Berger argue in the March 2016 issue of Alliance magazine. As self-styled ‘veterans and cheerleaders’ of that revolution, their article constitutes both a change of direction and a major mea culpa.[…]

David Bonbright interviewed by Denver Fredrick on the Business of Giving

Hear our chief executive, David Bonbright, in conversation with Business of Giving host Denver Frederick in a new podcast from the radio interview that aired on Sunday evening, 24 January. Denver was very well prepared and we think the result is a breezy, informative “state of the field”. Please let us know what you think! Update, January 28: Denver Fredrick has shared the interview transcript with us, also available on his blog: The following is[…]

This Time It’s Personal

As organizations start to get serious about feedback, things inevitably come to the moment where feedback gets personal. To be really useful, feedback must touch on an individual’s performance. This is tough stuff. People resist feedback in many different ways. A growing part of Keystone Accountability’s Constituent Voice work with organizations is to help staff recognize auto-immune-type resistance, and overcome it. For a great book on this I strongly recommend Sheila Heen and Douglas Stone’s[…]

Beyond Accountability: Feedback as transformation

The post Beyond Accountability: Feedback as transformation appeared first on Alliance magazine. Beyond Accountability: Feedback as Transformation is the title of Alliance magazine’s June 2015 special feature, and this was the topic of the Alliance breakfast club, kindly hosted by the Shell Foundation. The panellists were David Bonbright, co-founder and CEO of Keystone Accountability and one of the guest editors for the special feature, and Nina Schuler, Social Development Adviser from the Finance Performance and Impact Department at the Department for International Development (DFID). The emerging[…]

Feedback as democracy in social change practice

This lead article was first published in Alliance magazine, as part of the June special feature – Beyond Accountability: Feedback as Transformation – co-edited by Keystone’s David Bonbright. A huge shift is happening in the social sector. Dennis Whittle traces it all the way back to the birth of democracy in Greece circa 594 BCE. The people are sovereign! In titling our special theme ‘Beyond accountability: feedback as transformation’ we are signalling that the long[…]

Ringing out 2013 and a modest overture for 2014

As 2013 comes to a close, I write to thank you for your interest in our work to advance Constituent Voice as a tool to solve important societal problems. Topics like performance management, real time data, continuous improvement and downward accountability may make most people’s eyes glaze over — but not yours! Thank you! 2013 was a break through year for Keystone. We are blessed with a geographically and thematically diverse group of clients and[…]

David Bonbright discuss the legacy of Albert O. Hirschman who died last year in his first Feedback Labs article

In his article “Voice As Both Means And End”, David discusses the value of valuing relationships. David refers to Albert O. Hirschman, who died at the age of 97 last December, arguing that his seminal 1970 treatise, Exit, Voice, and Loyalty: Responses to Decline in Firms, Organizations, and States, is feeling younger and more relevant every day. One of Hirschman’s observations about voice was that it was not always comfortable or polite but any organization wants[…]

David Bonbright is interviewed for the Uncommon Giving radio show on his work experience and the development of Keystone

David Bonbright is interviewed for the Uncommon Giving radio show called Improving the effectiveness of social purpose organisations. The show hosted by Chicke Fitzgerald explores David’s working background and Keystone’s work. Listen to the interview here.