What We’re Thinking

Saying Goodbye Gracefully: Five Capacity Building Lessons from a Time-Limited Investment

From 2009-2016, the Packard Foundation engaged in an intensive effort to improve summer learning in California. Over seven years, we helped to support 12 high-quality demonstration programs with multiple sites, assemble a network of technical assistance providers for summer programs, and advocate for increased support for summer learning at the state and local levels Highlights…

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Reflections on Development of the Digital Impact Toolkit

From July 2013 to December 2014, I was a Visiting Scholar at the Packard Foundation, focused on how nonprofits and foundations deal with the implications of digital data. During my time at the Foundation, I led a cohort of colleagues through several learning lunches (with hundreds of sticky notes), conducted a data inventory, and interviewed…

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Supporting Cybersecurity for Nonprofits

Early in my career I taught a series of classes for UNIX system administrators, including a course in computer security. I guided people through password management, taught them about viruses and worms and showed them how to set-up a firewall. This was back in the days of the “world-wide-web” when the underground world of hackers…

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Are You Uncomfortable? You’re Welcome.

Early in my career I was working in Kampala, Uganda on a development project. One day I walked past a little girl, about age 3 or 4, sitting cross-legged on the street in tattered clothes under the hot sun, with her hand out for money, eyes closed, not moving an inch. A similar-looking slightly older…

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What Does It Take to Support Leadership and Effectiveness in Movements?

The Haas, Jr. Fund recently convened two groups of grantees working on immigrant and LGBT rights in California. In the course of the conversations, leaders reflected on a range of tough challenges their organizations are facing in today’s charged political environment. Considering that these social change groups are pressing hard to rapidly develop new advocacy…

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