Reviewing progress at the Rumphi Social Lab

Seven weeks after the team started their experiments we are checking in on the Rumphi Social Lab to find out what they have learnt. Fifty participants from the five teams returned to share experiences, reflect on progress and report back on what they had learned while working on their micro actions to strengthen relationships between[…]

Day five of the social lab – the rubber hits the road

Today is the day for groups to dig into the detail of their planned micro-actions and get feedback and coaching. The seven ‘big ideas’ have been reduced to five. The groups driving each idea have clarified their assumptions and identified a first draft of what actions they believe they must take to realise them. There[…]

The real work – day four of the social lab in Malawi

The main objective of the fourth and final day of the Rumphi Social Lab design workshop was the formation of micro-action teams to take forward seven ‘big ideas’ to improve development in Rumphi.  The teams did indeed form (and merge down to five), and lists of ‘key assumptions that must be true if we are[…]

Deeper into the social lab – ‘What if we tried to…’

In yesterday’s blog we asked a bold question, ‘Can social labs save development?’ Day two brought us deep into social lab process. The morning began with reflections on the insights of yesterday. Participants spoke with emotion about seeing the broken relationships systematically mapped from the perspective of each constituent group. And how important it is[…]

Can social labs save development?

Foreign aid in Malawi is as much as 50% of the national budget. This startling fact poses a paradox that haunts Malawi and all aid dependent countries. On the one hand, aid is desperately needed to finance essential services like health, education, and agriculture development. On the other hand, foreign aid has significant unintended negative[…]

Does accountability improve resilience?

Is accountability to the people you serve linked to the resilience of your organization? This is what Keystone Accountability is testing over the next two years. In partnership with Civicus and Accountable Now, we have launched a new initiative called Resilient Roots exploring the links between increasing public support and trust, and resilience to external[…]

Collecting feedback in prison

Nafisika Trust works in Kenya providing counselling and training to people in prison. The Trust is reaping the benefits of a Constituent Voice feedback system and using data to improve their programs. Vickie Wambura the founder and director of the charity said: “We thought were gathering feedback but we kept having snarl ups. We were[…]

Collecting feedback from young people – 10 tips

How can youth charities collect meaningful feedback from the young people they serve? Twelve UK based youth organizations received grants to listen and respond to the young people they serve and in this blog post we share what they learnt. The organizations were all charities supporting young people in the UK and funded by the[…]

Using client feedback to test a theory of change

US nonprofit LIFT, which works to end intergenerational poverty, has been using client feedback to test its theory of change. LIFT works with low income families in Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Washington, D.C. Parents (who LIFT call members) are paired with volunteer advocates and they work together to achieve the member’s goals. These[…]