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This report examines grantmaking in 2014 and 2015 for Latin America by large U.S.foundations, with a closer look at philanthropy for Central America.
American Institutes for Research;
American Institutes for Research (AIR) conducted this study as part of the Student-Centered Learning Research Collaborative's initial cycle of research. The team at AIR worked alongside fellow scholars, educators, and policymakers to investigate the impact of specific student-centered practices and then translate their findings for cross-sector audiences.
The research questions investigated in this study are:
What practices do teachers employ to provide feedback to students on their performance that assist with the development of student agency?
What contextual factors do teachers view as facilitators of or challenges to implementing these practices?
How well do student survey questions measure student agency?
Were the measurement properties of the agency scales consistent over time and across student subgroups?
Are there significant subgroup differences in measures of student agency?
How does student agency change during the school year?
Do changes in student agency during the school year differ between subgroups of students?
How do teachers use data to inform their practices?
This report represents their work over the past two years as they designed, tested, and revised teacher practices as part of a networked improvement community and examined how student agency impacted academic outcomes.
There is a complex ecosystem of organizations working to enable, strengthen, and evolve the work of philanthropy, nonprofits, and civil society around the world. From communities of practice that build skills and encourage collaboration to data and research that inform solutions and foster transparency, these organizations provide a much-needed backbone for work on our most critical global challenges. New research from Foundation Center aims to map the composition of and support for this ecosystem of infrastructure organizations so that we can better align and improve efforts to build a better future.
American Institutes for Research;
Personalized learning is often equated with individual learning using technology. Yet for many students, learning on their own may not effectively meet their needs. The aim of this study was to explore racial differences in experiences and benefits associated with collaboration. We collected data from a variety of sources for students, teachers, and classrooms within four racially diverse high schools that emphasized both personalization and collaboration. Our sample included 892 students, 138 teachers, and 30 classrooms. Our qualitative analyses identified emergent themes from focus groups and interviews, and our quantitative analyses examined associations among opportunities for collaboration, classroom experiences, and outcomes, testing whether these associations differed forBlack students versus White students. We found that, for all students, reports of high-quality collaboration were strongly associated with positive classroom experiences and mind-set/ dispositional outcomes such as motivation, engagement, and self-efficacy. Moreover, high-quality collaboration was strongly associated with students' perceptions of personalization—and personalization, in turn, was strongly associated with outcomes. At the same time, focus group discussions revealed that Black students perceived less relevance in collaborative activities, more frequent experiences of exclusion and marginalization, and lower support from teachers during collaborative group work than did non-Black peers. Findings from this study suggest that collaborative experiences could be among the factors that contribute to positive changes in the academic trajectories of Black students, particularly when these opportunities reflect high-quality features. Thus, schools and educators aiming to address equity through personalization should consider increasing opportunities for high-quality collaboration.
William T. Grant Foundation;
While there are numerous barriers to career advancement for scholars of color, the Foundation believes that many of these can be mitigated through strong mentoring relationships that address issues of difference. But the power of effective mentoring will only be realized when the institutions in which these relationships exist begin to change. The guide, which was developed in collaboration with the Forum for Youth Investment is derived from interviews with grantees and consultants who participated in the Foundation's mentoring program for junior researchers of color.
Ontario Nonprofit Network;
When grantmakers ask the organizations they fund about their evaluation plans, they are typically motivated by a desire to achieve the greatest impact possible through their investment. They often hope to help the organizations they fund to do the same. However, these conversations sometimes veer off track, especially when nonprofits feel pressure to produce evaluation results that align with funders' preconceived ideas. Evaluation can turn into a tool for accountability and risk management rather than a tool for learning. One way to prevent this dynamic from developing is to make sure that grantmakers and grant recipients talk with one another about why they are interested in evaluating a particular project before they get into discussions of what should be measured and how data collection tools should be used.
This guide explores strategies that grantmakers can use to lay the groundwork for meaningful evaluation by focusing on learning rather than measurement early in the grant application process. We begin by defining what a learning culture or learning organization means and why it is important. Then, we discuss some of the key elements of learning organizations. Lastly, we outline some principles for grantmakers to help guide the development of a learning relationship with future grant recipients.
John Templeton Foundation;
If you've hiked among giant sequoias, stood in front of the Taj Mahal, or observed a particularly virtuosic musical performance, you may have experienced the mysterious and complex emotion known as "awe."
Awe experiences are self-transcendent. They shift our attention away from ourselves, make us feel like we are part of something greater than ourselves, and make us more generous toward others. But what is awe?
What types of experiences are most likely to elicit feelings of awe? Are some people more prone to experiencing awe? And what are the effects of awe?
While philosophers and religious scholars have explored awe for centuries, it was largely ignored by psychologists until the early 2000s. Since then, there has been growing interest in exploring awe empirically. This has led to a number of fascinating discoveries about the nature of awe, while also raising many questions still to be explored.
Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO);
This paper is part of an ongoing collaboration between the World Bank and the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization to raise awareness about the importance of water management in fragile systems and to propose strategic responses. It is important to better understand these dynamics to ensure that water does not add to fragility, but rather promotes stability, and contributes to resilience in the region. This paper calls for redoubling efforts towards sustainable and efficient management of water resources, reliable and affordable delivery of water services to all and protection from water-related catastrophes.
Alcohol use is a leading risk factor for death and disability, but its overall association with health remains complex given the possible protective effects of moderate alcohol consumption on some conditions. With our comprehensive approach to health accounting within the Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study 2016, we generated improved estimates of alcohol use and alcohol-attributable deaths and disability-adjusted life-years (DALYs) for 195 locations from 1990 to 2016, for both sexes and for 5-year age groups between the ages of 15 years and 95 years and older.
Columbia University Center for Public Research and Leadership;
This paper synthesizes the existing research on improvement networks in education and on how such networks can facilitate meaningful improvements in teaching and learning and ultimately in student outcomes. The paper's findings are drawn primarily from a critical literature review of empirical studies on education improvement networks, as well as from interviews with experts in the fields of professional networks and learning. By focusing on the networks most aligned to the NSI model, the paper is designed to provide a knowledge base for a formative evaluationof the NSI strategy, which BMGF has engaged the Columbia University Center for Public Research and Leadership (CPRL) to conduct over the next two years.
Heartland Alliance National Initiatives on Poverty & Economic Opportunity;
Implementing the Individual Placement and Support (IPS) model boosts employment outcomes for transition-age youth facing barriers to employment. LifeWorks, a non-profit organization serving transition-age youth and their families in Austin, TX, realized that workforce models popular within the youth development field may not address the significant and complex challenges faced by their participants. LifeWorks staff began to look toward behavioral health approaches to employment and discovered the Individual Placement & Support model. This case study discusses how IPS offered LifeWorks a new approach to workforce support for youth that might better address the types of challenges their participants faced.
The State of Global Grantmaking Giving by U.S. Foundations is the latest report in a decades-long collaboration between Foundation Center and The Council on Foundations and aims to help funders and civil society organizations better navigate the giving landscape as they work to effect change around the world. The analysis reveals that global giving by U.S. foundations increased by 29% from 2011 to 2015, reaching an all-time high of $9.3 billion in 2015. In addition to a detailed analysis of trends by issue area, geographic region, population group, and donor strategy, this analysis also relates these trends to key events and developments, including the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals, the spread of Ebola in West Africa, and the increasing legal restrictions faced by civil society in countries around the world.