Category: Viewpoints

Digital Civil Society Around the World

This post is part of a series of excerpts from Philanthropy and Digital Civil Society: Blueprint 2018, the ninth annual industry forecast from Lucy Bernholz. Read the entire Blueprint series and join the conversation on social media with #blueprint2018. Over the course of the year, I met with people in eight countries about the shape and meaning […]

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You Don’t Need a Data Scientist, You Need a Data Culture

This piece was originally published on Medium. The DataBasic.io project is supported by a 2016 Digital Impact Grant. Most of the larger non-profit organizations we work with are scrambling to figure out how to deploy complex technologies like machine learning and “AI” in service of the social good. These include inspiring examples that range from poverty alleviation, […]

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Digital Impact: Reflections from New York City

The Digital Civil Society Lab welcomed 80 civil society leaders to the Digital Impact World Tour convening in New York City on October 23. Given the depth and breadth of the academic and civic tech communities in New York, the panel discussions were particularly illuminating. Throughout the previous eight global conversations we have convened this year around the “possibilities […]

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Considering Bias

Human perceptions and decision-making are riddled with cognitive biases. Cognitive biases are tendencies to think in certain ways that sometimes lead to irrational judgments. For example, you might think you are more likely to die in a plane crash than die of a heart attack (that’s caused by the availability heuristic). While that can impact […]

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Digital Impact: Reflections from Brisbane

On July 29 More than 100 Australian social sector leaders spent a beautiful Saturday in Brisbane discussing the possibilities and responsibilities of digital civil society. Several themes dominated the day: the importance of the “people” part of digital data, the ways digital technologies can highlight and even amplify existing social disparities, and a clear enthusiasm […]

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The Dark Side of Data (Organizations)

Nonprofits and philanthropy organizations need to engage more with digital data in their activities. However, they must also be careful to avoid the ‘dark side’ of data and digitization, and respect the privacy and security of individuals’ data.

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Digital Impact: Reflections from Brussels

The European leg of the Digital Impact event series kicked off in Brussels on 13 June. Not surprisingly to those who follow EU policy, the emerging European digital policy landscape permeated the day’s discussions. We were fortunate to have participants and speakers from digital rights groups and corporate policy offices to share insights on the […]

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Digital Impact: Reflections from Beijing

With support from the Ai You Foundation, Digital Impact Beijing brought together 140 participants from Chinese nonprofits, foundations, corporate social responsibility programs, and universities. The opportunity to learn with and from networks of nonprofits in China – with its rapidly developing nonprofit sector and its singular digital culture – was exciting. The nonprofit and foundation […]

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Digital Literacy: A Core Capacity for 21st Century Nonprofits

Over the last twenty years nonprofit organizations have gotten steadily better at financial management, communications, and evaluation. For many organizations these are now core capacities. Such changes were driven by several factors, and in turn have informed and helped drive the impact investment movement, social media for good efforts, and collective evaluation and evidence-based decision […]

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Reflections: Transforming the Sector in Toronto

After the Data on Purpose / Do Good Data conference at Stanford, the Digital Civil Society Lab kicked off a yearlong series of convenings around the globe to learn from civil society leaders creating social impact in the digital age. Toronto was our first stop, where we partnered with Powered By Data, the Ontario Trillium […]

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