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Innovation in Evaluation: an Introduction

At IDEO, we've been starting to think about the social impact of our work, and our journey into the realm of social impact...


At IDEO, we've been starting to think about the social impact of our work, and our journey into the realm of social impact has brought us deeper and deeper into many conversations about metrics. As designers, we are eager to apply our expertise in tackling some of the world's biggest problems, including inadequate education, insufficient access to clean drinking water, and lack of basic health care for the poor. Each initiative we take on has been a rich learning experience about the lives and contexts of the people we are designing for, as well as an ongoing challenge of knowing whether or not we really are achieving the impact we were setting out to make. One avenue we are exploring is the relationship between innovation and evaluation. We're pleased to be partnering with GOOD to bring great minds together and push best practices forward.This week in our first collaborative event, we will host a group of thought leaders at the IDEO San Francisco office to kick start this conversation and help focus the theme of this blog: Innovation in Evaluation. Participants come from a wide variety of backgrounds, including foundations, design firms, management consultancies, and evaluation specialists. Stay tuned for the conversations started in our session this week to continue here on this blog.Since my time as a research director studying community-based preventive health programs at Stanford Medical School in the late 1970s through my more recent role as chief investment officer at Omidyar Network, questions of better ways to measure the impact of innovative solutions and business models have been very much on my mind. During the past 30 years, the field has been slowly accelerating and involving more and more individuals and organizations. Today, the notion that we should evaluate our impact is generally accepted as a given. How such evaluation is conducted and whether or not it's informative is still debatable. This conversation is an opportunity to bring together some of the top thinkers and organizations on evaluation, and share what we've learned and how we've grown with a much broader group of participants.We hope this forum will become a central gathering place for participants worldwide to explore innovative approaches to evaluation. Each week, we will take on a new theme related to measuring impact and will feature both guest authors and IDEO bloggers. We invite everyone working and thinking about this topic to contribute thoughts and experiences to the conversation.Guest blogger Doug Solomon is the Chief Technology Officer at IDEO.
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Center for American Progress Action Fund

Tonight's Democratic debate is a must-watch for followers of the 2020 election. And it's a nice distraction from the impeachment inquiry currently enveloping all of the political oxygen in America right now.

For most people, the main draw will be newly anointed frontrunner Pete Buttigieg, who has surprisingly surged to first place in Iowa and suddenly competing in New Hampshire. Will the other Democrats attack him? How will Elizabeth Warren react now that she's no longer sitting alone atop the primary field? After all, part of Buttigieg's rise has been his criticisms of Warren and her refusal to get into budgetary specifics over how she'd pay for her healthcare plan.

The good news is that Joe Biden apparently counts time travel amongst his other resume-building experience.

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Official White House Photo by Sonya N. Hebert

This election cycle, six women threw their hat in the ring for president, but is their gender holding them back? Would Americans feel comfortable with a woman leading the free world? Based on the last election, the answer is a swift no. And a new study backs this up. The study found that only 49% of American men would feel very comfortable with a woman serving as the head of the government. By comparison, 59% of women said they would feel comfortable with a woman in charge.

The Reykjavik Index for Leadership, which measures attitude towards women leaders, evaluated the attitudes of those living in the G7 countries as well as Brazil, China, India, and Russia. 22,000 adults in those 11 countries were surveyed on their attitudes about female leadership in 22 different sectors, including government, fashion, technology, media, banking and finance, education, and childcare.

Only two countries, Canada and the U.K., had a majority of respondents say they would be more comfortable with a female head of state. Germany (which currently has a female Chancellor), Japan, and Russia were the countries least comfortable with a female head of state.

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Culture
via Gage Skidmore / Flickr

If you are totally ready to move on from Donald Trump, you're not alone. According to a report last April from the Wason Center National Survey of 2020 Voters, "President Trump will be the least popular president to run for reelection in the history of polling."

Yes, you read that right, "history of polling."

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Politics
via Around the NFL / Twitter

After three years on the sidelines, Colin Kapernick will be working out for multiple NFL teams on Saturday, November 16 at the Atlanta Falcons facility.

The former 49er quarterback who inflamed the culture wars by peacefully protesting against social injustice during the national anthem made the announcement on Twitter Tuesday.

Kaepernick is scheduled for a 15-minute on-field workout and an interview that will be recorded and sent to all 32 teams. The Miami Dolphins, Dallas Cowboys, and Detroit Lions are expected to have representatives in attendance.

RELATED: Joe Namath Says Colin Kaepernick And Eric Reid Should Be Playing In The NFL

"We like our quarterback situation right now," Miami head coach, Brian Flores said. "We're going to do our due diligence."

NFL Insider Steve Wyche believes that the workout is the NFL's response to multiple teams inquiring about the 32-year-old quarterback. A league-wide workout would help to mitigate any potential political backlash that any one team may face for making an overture to the controversial figure.

Kapernick is an unrestricted free agent (UFA) so any team could have reached out to him. But it's believed that the interested teams are considering him for next season.

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Earlier this year, Kaepernick and Carolina Panthers safety Eric Reid reached a financial settlement with the league in a joint collusion complaint. The players alleged that the league conspired to keep them out after they began kneeling during the national anthem in 2016.

Before the 2019 season, Kaepernick posted a video of himself working out on twitter to show he was in great physical condition and ready to play.

Kaepnick took the 49ers to the Super Bowl in 2012 and the NFC Championship game in 2013.

He has the 23rd-highest career passer rating in NFL history, the second-best interception rate, and the ninth-most rushing yards per game of any quarterback ever. In 2016, his career to a sharp dive and he won only of 11 games as a starter.

Culture