Social Impact Measurement
A new consensus has emerged in the philanthropic community. Investors want to know how much impact their investment is creating in the world and funders want to know if their grants are achieving their desired results. Therefore, as the field of social entrepreneurship has gained more legitimacy, it has experienced a shift from traditionally-transactional funding models to performance-based, results-oriented, blended value (social impact + environmental impact + financial returns) investment models - which stress transparency and accountability. This diverse and growing field of nonprofit management, "new" philanthropy, and social investment have shifted their priorities from grant implementation to building administrative and operational capacity within mission-driven organizations; and thereby managing the impact creation of social investment using various analytical tools, approaches and strategies. However, the highly fragmented and young social capital market has also produced minimal consensus on how to assess social value creation and return on investment. The purpose of evaluation, the methodologies used, and the degree of vigor thus vary widely with the current tools and approaches to social impact investment.This technical note will explore the origins and purpose of social impact measurement, describe the varying roles of its stakeholders, and identify trends affecting the evolution of methodologies. With this we hope to provide a foundation of knowledge related to social value creation and evaluation.