Collective Impact Study Update

By Jewlya Lynn, Founder and Chief Learning Officer, Spark Policy Institute; and Sarah Stachowiak, CEO, ORS Impact Back in May, 2017 ORS Impact and Spark Policy Institute embarked on an ambitious and important study to explore how collective impact contributes to changes in systems and populations through its unique approach to addressing social issues. We are pleased to update […]

Collective Impact Study Sites

Site/Initiative Name Location Issue Area Contribution Site Equity Site Alignment Nashville Nashville, TN Education – Multi-Issue X ARISE Anchorage, AK Education for Indigenous Students X Aspen Community Foundation Cradle to Career Aspen, Basalt CO Cradle to Career – Education Coalition for New Britain’s Youth New Britain, CT Cradle to Career – Education, Early Learning Colorado […]

From Learning to Action

With the American Evaluation Association annual conference coming up Nov. 6-11 in Washington, D.C., our team has been thinking about the theme of the conference “From Learning to Action.” We constantly challenge ourselves to ensure our values are present in our work; our practices produce actionable learning; and that we share our experiences to build […]

Spark Update: In Systems Change, Individuals Matter

Individuals Matter. Many of the problems our partners are working to address cannot be solved by organizations working in isolation: our impact is greater when we work together and ensure those most impacted by the change are part of the problem-definition and solution. Spark’s approach to systems change is fundamentally grounded in an inclusive and […]

Improving the Attendance Landscape for Colorado Youth

A new report commissioned by the Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention Council’s Low-Risk High-Needs (LRHN) Committee highlights the need for increased cross-system collaboration and holistic programming to support Colorado youth with school attendance problems. Currently, youth who have four unexcused absences in a month or ten unexcused absences in a year are considered truant, and begin […]

Exciting changes at Spark: New CEO, Eval Director, and Learning Officer

Dear Spark partners, Today is a big day for all of us at Spark and for me personally. After 13 years of leading this organization, bringing together an amazing team of thought leaders and changemakers, I am excited to transition into a different role, creating room for new leadership to take Spark into the future. […]

August Spark News: Getting Unstuck – Equity, Advocacy, and Collective Impact

Are We Getting Anywhere? At Spark, we’re experts at developing actionable strategies to achieve meaningful, measurable outcomes. But in today’s complex environment, it’s sometimes challenging for our partners to see the progress they’ve made. In our August newsletter, we’re sharing resources you can apply in real-life settings to measure your progress and take positive steps […]

For the Good of the Group: Be Nice, Respond in Kind, Be Forgiving

When working to change complex systems it can be difficult for individual stakeholders to engage in authentic collaboration. This is neuroscience. We are all motivated to move away from perceived threats and toward perceived reward. Bringing multiple actors together to work toward a common goal can create conflict between doing what is best for the […]

The Collective Impact Research Study: What is all this really going to mean, anyway?

By Jewlya Lynn, CEO, Spark Policy Institute; Sarah Stachowiak, CEO, ORS Impact It’s easy for evaluators to sometimes get tied up in the technical terms around our work, leaving lay people unclear on what some of our decisions and choices mean.  Without care, we can also risk being opaque about what a particular design can […]

Tools to plan for the future

Have you ever planned extensively for a trip, thinking through all of the things that could go wrong – lost luggage, food sickness, missing a flight, etc. – thinking with confidence that you have this trip in the bag, and then suddenly something unthinkable happens that you couldn’t possibly have planned for, such as a […]

X