Donors Judging Criteria | 2023
About the Award
This award celebrates individuals and organisations that have deployed capital to support project(s) or initiative(s) to achieve systems change. Within this award, there are four sub-categories that inform the final award leveraging the Catalyst 2030 Funder Diagnostic Survey. These categories were informed by the Embracing Complexity Report. This award is the first of its kind to focus on the funding of systems change entrepreneurs.
Embrace a Systems Mindset Demonstrated public promotion of lessons learned in supporting systems change. Demonstrated humility of sharing what has not worked and promoting learning for others. Funding of research and other public documents to support better practices in funding systems change. Funding of monitoring, evaluation, and learning of systems change projects to support learning across the ecosystem.
- To what extent does the organisation you are nominating cover grantees’/investees’ monitoring, evaluation, learning (MEL) costs?
- To what extent has the organisation you are nominating implemented a MEL plan to help you adapt your strategy over time?
- How does the organisation you are nominating respond to failure to achieve expected outputs or outcomes?
To what extent does the organisation you are nominating use practices that help you navigate the complexity of systems change (e.g. intentionally conducting and learning from experiments)?
- To what extent does the organisation you are nominating seek out information on the systems underlying the issues you care about?
Support evolving paths to systems change & Prepare for long-term engagement Lifting up funders relinquishing control through multi-year unrestricted funding.
- To what extent does the organization you are nominating provide funding to support reasonable salaries for team members of funded organizations rather than focusing on “reducing overhead”?
- On average, what portion of your annual financial contribution is granted/invested without project or programme restrictions? (Include general support grants/investments to entire organisations, or to specific initiatives within large institutions.) NOTE – only completed by nominated organisation.
- What percentage of your portfolio is represented by each term length? NOTE – only completed by nominated organisation.
- For how long do you typically expect to partner with grantees/investees, even over multiple grants/investments? NOTE – only completed by nominated organisation.
Work in true partnership lifting up funders who acknowledge and work against power dynamics, are relational over transactional, listen to what systems change leaders need and provide targeted financial and non-financial support in an effort to co-create the desired impact approach and appropriate funding structure. Take time to build trust with their grantees including through regular honest and respectful discussions, and/or simplify and right-size the application and reporting effort.
- When selecting among grantee/investee candidates, to what extent does the organisation you are nominating prioritise those who are most impacted by but don’t currently have much power within the system?
- To what extent does the organisation you are nominating address the uneven power dynamic between you and grantees/investees?
- Before making a decision to support an initiative, to what extent does the organisation you are nominating work with grantees/investees to refine their application/proposal?
- To what extent does the organisation you are nominating support grantees/investees in building their capacities (e.g. leadership coaching, strategic planning)?
- To what extent does the organisation you are nominating enable coordination among grantees/investees or with other stakeholders (e.g. business, government, media)?
- To what extent does the organisation you are nominating support grantees/investees that weave together partnerships, coalitions, networks, or movements within a system?
Nominations for Catalyst 2030 Awards | 2023 have closed.