GEO 2013 Working Better Together: Building Nonprofit Collaborative Capacity


Collective action is an effective way for nonprofits to increase their impact, but key capacities are needed to enable these types of partnerships to thrive. This publication offers insights on the core capacities nonprofits need to collaborate and how funders can help.

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network-code-full-cover July 2013
Cracking the Network Code outlines four principles that comprise the network mindset, illustrates the principles with a range of examples of networks that have achieved real results, and offers practical questions and recommendations to help grantmakers achieve the benefits and avoid common pitfalls of working through networks.
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pathways-cover February 2013
Pathways to Grow Impact offers a framework for understanding different approaches to scaling impact, stories from nonprofit leaders and practical recommendations for grantmakers. The publication notes that grantmaker support for networks is useful no matter what strategy organizations are using to grow their impact.
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November 2011
Co-published with Monitor Institute, Catalyzing Networks for Social Change explores what it takes for grantmakers to cultivate a network mindset, and offers recommendations for how funders can effectively build the capacity of networks and share what they’re learning with the broader field.
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Funders are finding ways to use the power of convening to benefit their grantees and their communitiesin countless ways. But it takes a particular set of skills, values and resources to be successful at bringing together different parties for a common goal. GEO's new digital publication contains a series of ideas to help grantmakers become better at bringing stakeholders together.
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October 2012
GEO’s publication explores how learning communities can be powerful tools in creating and shaping peer connections that help expand knowledge, deepen skills and enhance practice.
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March 2012
New GEO national field survey examines some of the key shifts in grantmaking practice since 2008 and what they mean for supporting nonprofit resilience.
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From GEO's Scaling What Worksinitiative's Briefing Paper Series on Growing Social Impact

Expanding the Impact of Grantees: How Do We Build the Capacity of Nonprofits to Evaluate, Learn and Improve?
High-performing organizations seek and use data and feedback to continually assess and improve their work. This paper explores how grantmakers can effectively support grantee efforts to strengthen evaluation and learning capacity. + more

How Can Grantmakers Focus on Nonprofit Talent to Grow Impact?
Strong leadership is widely recognized as essential to the success of any nonprofit organization, and never more so than when innovation and change are necessary. This paper explores the importance of supporting nonprofit talent development, the unique talent needs of nonprofits seeking to grow their impact and how grantmakers can help. + more

Related Articles

Featured in the Chronicle of Philanthropy's Guide to Managing Nonprofits, GEO's Lori Bartczak joins Jane Wei-Skillern to argue that "Collaboration Can Bring Big Payoffs When It’s Done Right." + more

In her second piece for the Huffington Post Impact Blog, GEO CEO Kathleen Enright focuses on the importance of capacity-building support for building nonprofit resilience. + more

For The Foundation Review Vol. 5 Issue 1 on Collaboration, co-edited by GEO, Kathleen Enright shares some experiences and insights from members of the GEO community that are facilitating collaborations and supporting grantees to make more progress on complex challenges. Jane Wei-Skillern also contributed an article that discusses the four principles for successful collaboration, including promoting others instead of yourself and managing through trust rather than control, explored in GEO's publication, Cracking the Network Code.

Related Events

2014 National Conference: (March 10 - 12, 2014 in Los Angeles, Calif.) This conference featured a track devoted to capacity building and nonprofit financial sustainability. + more

Supporting Movements:A grantmaker gathering on collaborative approaches for social change (Nov. 18 - 19, 2013) GEO, as part of its Scaling What Works initiative, hosted more than 200 grantmakers and  nonprofit leaderts to explore what is possible when we deepen relationships with one another and work across silos and organizations in support of a shared vision for social change. + more

Growing Social Impact in a Networked World: A Grantmakers' Gathering on Networks (Oct. 2011)GEO and the Monitor Institute hosted an interactive convening focused on how funders can increase their impact by supporting networks and embracing more open and collaborative approaches to grantmaking. Attendees explored concrete examples and tools that grantmakers can use to tap the power of networks and increase peer-to-peer learning among grantmakers who are experimenting with networks. + more

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