What We Work For
New ways of working for social change require changes in the types of evidence we gather and how we use that evidence.
Prevailing approaches to generating, analyzing, assessing and applying evidence do not adequately inform decision-makers in social policy. They focus too narrowly on programs, without sufficient attention to the complex system and community changes needed to achieve improved and more equitable outcomes at scale. We work for a radically strengthened knowledge development enterprise that will support more effective efforts to improve outcomes and eliminate inequities based on race, ethnicity, income and geography.
How We Do It
The Friends of Evidence, comprised of researchers, practitioners, and thought leaders, convened key stakeholders and developed a set of consensus papers that point the way to a broader and more inclusive definition of evidence.
Beginning in 2011, the Friends of Evidence convened three national symposiums, each of which led to a paper that was widely disseminated. We then developed a series of case studies that profile organizations and communities modeling an expanded knowledge development enterprise, and demonstrate the benefits they are obtaining from this approach. These were accompanied by two additional papers setting out ways to provide better evidence for decision-makers. Finally, we developed a framework for advancing equity through improved approaches to evaluation and learning.