“Enabling giving, based on sound evidence“
Giving Evidence works to get charitable giving based on sound evidence. It was founded by Caroline Fiennes, an acclaimed author and former award-winning charity CEO with over 10 years experience advising donors and charities. We work on improving the evidence ‘system’ across charities and philanthropy, and advising donors and foundations on an individual basis.
“Caroline Fiennes is a great source of advice about charitable giving. She’s helped Eurostar become effective very rapidly” – Eurostar CEO Richard Brown
- raised the issue of non-publication of research by charities, e.g., whether they do research by only publish the bits which flatter them. This ‘publication bias’ is rife in medical research, for example.
- mapped the ‘evidence system’ (ie., how evidence is produced, shared and used by charities and donors) in education in less developed countries and in mental health in the UK.
- identified various ways to improve findability of research and data produced by charities in UK criminal justice.
- produced two systematic reviews of the entire literature on topics to inform practitioners and donors in those areas: one in outdoor education commissioned by a funder, and one in Sail Training, commissioned by a membership body of practitioners
- studied the many lessons from the way that evidence is produced and organised in medicine.
- produced a paper with the University of Chicago outlining the questions about ‘how to give’ for which there is currently inadequate evidence (e..g, whether to give restricted vs unrestricted, make large vs small grants, be engaged vs hands-off)
- produced evidence about one effective way of managing grants, in the form of a case study of good practice with the InterAmerican Foundation.
- pointed out that the current system of charities producing research on which donors evaluate them is fatally flawed.
Caroline writes regularly for the Financial Times, has contributed to Freakonomics, BBC TV, Forbes, Money Week, The Economist, BBC Radio 4, BBC Radio 5Live, Alliance Magazine, The Guardian, Stanford Social Innovation Review, the Daily Mail, Huffington Post and the charity sector press. (See here) She speaks at many conferences and events, e.g., Skoll World Forum, the Community Foundations of Canada, the Social Impact Analysts Association, Association of Charitable Foundations and Arab Foundations Forum. (Events listed here.)
Giving Evidence changes the debate about evidence of charities’ effectiveness. We produced the first data that charities’ admin costs don’t indicate their effectiveness, and analysis showing the evaluation of the first social impact bond won’t show whether it’s worked. This outlines our campaigning work:
More information about Giving Evidence’s services for donors and recent client engagements is here. This 90 second video outlines how we help donors:
Caroline Fiennes founded and directs Giving Evidence. She is one of the few people whose work has appeared in both OK! Magazine and The Lancet. She is on boards of the US Center for Effective Philanthropy, of the world’s largest charity rating agency Charity Navigator, The Cochrane Collaboration (specifically Evidence Aid ), She is the Corporation of London’s City Philanthropy Coach, and writes a monthly column in Third Sector magazine. Caroline was named a Philanthropy Advisor of the Year by Spears Wealth Management. More information about Caroline Fiennes is at www.carolinefiennes.com/about and she is on http://www.twitter.com/carolinefiennes
Our Advisory Committee informs and supports all our work and approach.
Dr. Leonora Buckland has worked for a variety of organisations and projects in social entrepreneurship, social investment and philanthropy and has a hybrid background in the private, public and social sectors. She has been a consultant for the Skoll Foundation and Executive Director of the Venture Partnership Foundation. She co-designed the London Business School social entrepreneurship course with Professor Michael Hay and has written articles for the Stanford Social Innovation Review on microfinance and European venture philanthropy. Most recently she was author of a report on European banks and social and impact investment. She started her career as a strategy consultant at Monitor Company and followed this by working for the civil service at the Social Exclusion Unit before becoming involved in the social sector. She has a 1st class degree from Oxford University, a Masters in International Economics from SAIS, Johns Hopkins University and a PhD from Oxford University.
Diego Escobar is Honorary Research Associate at the UCL Institute of Education’s EPPI-Centre, where he is involved in conducting systematic reviews. Previous work in the University of Guadalajara, the Ministry of Culture of Jalisco and as an independent evaluator for national and sub-national government agencies in Mexico has been both research and practice orientated, focusing on institutional development for accountability and effectiveness in the areas of social development and the arts. He has a master’s degree in Philosophy and Public Policy from the London School of Economics.
Contact. To book Caroline to speak, or for advice about your giving, contact admin [at] giving-evidence [dot] com