Embracing Emergence – Part 2

Winter_2013_Cover_mag_page-170x223

Posted by Eileen Ellsworth

This is the second and final post on “Embracing Emergence: How Collective Impact Addresses Complexity” by John Kania and Mark R. Kramer from the January 21, 2013 issue of the Stanford Social Innovation Review.

Generally speaking, community based nonprofits fight an uphill battle. From their perspective, there are never enough resources or opportunity. They must relentlessly prove the value of their isolated impact to potential donors in order to win funding in the first place. And more often than not, they act alone.

Enter “collective impact,” stage right.  According to Kania and Kramer, cross sector collaborations are discovering something rather unexpected. From the perspective of the collaborative, there are enough resources, opportunities, and solutions to achieve real, lasting change.  And here is why:
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Embracing Emergence – Part 1

Winter_2013_Cover_mag_page-170x223

Posted by Eileen Ellsworth.

This is the first of two blog posts on a recent article in Stanford Social Innovation Review entitled “Embracing Emergence: How Collective Impact Addresses Complexity” by John Kania and Mark Kramer of FSG.

Since their important article in the spring 2011 issue of Stamford Social Innovation Review on collective impact, John Kania and Mark Kramer of FSG have further clarified the elements of successful cross-sector coalitions addressing complex social issues.  In this most recent article on the topic, Kania and Kramer focus on one such element in particular:  Emergence.

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Collective Impact, part 1

Winter 2011 SSIR cover

Winter 2011 SSIR cover

Posted by Eileen Ellsworth

This is the first of two posts on Collective Impact,” an article by John Kania and Mark R. Kramer from the Winter 2011 issue of Stanford Social Innovation Review.

At first glance, an article entitled “Collective Impact” sounds like it would contain some appealing and interesting ideas for cross sector collaboration on social issues. And it does. But a very provocative message for the philanthropic sector actually lives here, something that upends traditional and current notions of how we fundamentally engage in philanthropy. And this is it:  Philanthropy as currently practiced is inadequate to effect positive change on a complex social issue. Philanthropists of every stripe – individuals, foundations and companies – need to wake up to this and change our thinking about what we do and how we do it.

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