University of Southern California (USC) has a report out that addresses the value of organizing, especially as a way to build movements further and in substantial, transformative ways. They also talk about how funders have begun looking to movements as ways to broaden their capacity to support social change.
Their report, “Transactions – Transformations – Translations: Metrics That Matter for Building, Scaling, and Funding Social Movements, from USC Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (PERE), provides an evaluative framework and key milestones to gauge movement building. Aiming to bridge the gap between the field of community organizing that relies on the one-on-one epiphanies of leaders and the growing philanthropic emphasis on evidence-based giving, the report stresses three main insights:
“The first is that any good set of movement metrics should capture quantity and quality, numbers and nuance, transactions and transformations. They are related – an energized leader with a clear power analysis (a transformative measure) may turn out more members for a coalition rally (a transactional measure) – and the report offers a matrix that weaves together both types of metrics across ten different movement-building strategies.”