Digital Impact fosters an online community of social sector practitioners, policymakers, allied organizations and initiatives built around the safe, ethical, and effective use of digital resources for social good. From key influencers to on-the-ground program staff, we’re building a community to exchange ideas and foster new connections and collaborations.
Victoria Vrana, Senior Program Officer, Charitable Sector Support, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Brian Walsh, Head of Impact, Liquidnet
Mari Kuraishi, Co-founder and President, GlobalGiving
African Minds – Open Data Intermediaries and Economic Ownership Rights
Ariadne – European Funders for Social Change and Human Rights – Research and decision-making framework for philanthropic organizations sharing grants data for human rights and social change projects
Benetech – Gamified Digital Security Training
CIVICUS – Data for Action: Bringing Responsible and Secure Data Practices to Community Surveys
Data Orchard – Data Evolution +
Max Planck institute for Intelligent Systems – Avoiding Discrimination in Automated Decision Making and Machine Learning
Pro Bono Net – Legal Empowerment Data Literacy and Governance Initiative
Become A Contributor
If you are interested in contributing a written piece to Digital Impact about digital data use and management for better decision making in the social sector, please complete the application form. We will respond to selected contributors within one week. Thank you for your interest in joining the Digital Impact community!
As the Director of Measurement and Learning, Lauren Shaughnessy works closely with Habitat’s program teams—Homeownership Development, Homebuyer Readiness, Neighborhood Revitalization, Volunteer Services—to develop strong systems to measure Habitat’s outcomes and progress in serving our key beneficiaries over time. She is also responsible for developing approaches for learning and improvement across the full organization as the size and diversity of Habitat’s portfolio work grows. Before joining Habitat GSF in May 2015, Shaughnessy worked as a consultant at The Bridgespan Group, advising organizations in the education, youth development, public health and community development fields. In this role, she had the opportunity to support multiple organizations with their performance measurement strategy and use of data to understand the impact of their programs. In addition to her mission-driven work, Shaughnessy has been a marketing professional in the corporate sector. She holds a BBA and MBA from the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business.→
Jake is a machine learning and technology enthusiast who loves nothing more than seeing good values in data. He founded DataKind™ in the hopes of creating a world in which every social organization has access to data capacity to better serve humanity. He was most recently the data scientist in the New York Times R&D lab and remains an active member of the data science community. He holds a B.S. in Computer Science from Columbia University and his M.S. and Ph.D. in Statistics from UCLA.→
Before joining Watsi as Head of Content, Michelle managed development and communications at the non-profit incubator kitchen La Cocina, where she got her first taste of working on crowdfunding campaigns, and developed a serious love for huitlacoche. She's obsessed with breaking down complex ideas through a combination of storytelling and humor (well, she tries), and she's an unapologetic fan of puns, the oxford comma, and chocolate chip cookies.→
Caroline Poirrier is Senior Program Officer at Results for Development where she focuses on governance, transparency, accountability, and participation. She manages the Secretariat of the Governance Data Alliance, a community of governance data producers, users, and funders committed to the effective production and use of high-quality data to advance democratic governance reforms in countries. She also manages capacity building and research programs.
Caroline holds a M.A. in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School at Tufts University and a B.A. in International Relations from the University of Pennsylvania.→
Bruno Barroso is the co-founder and director of Prosas, a brazilian-based community for Funders, Social Entrepreneurs and Citizens. Bruno also founded Nexo, a consultancy agency that has worked with some of Brazil's top social investors and NGOs and helped to raise over USD 50 million since 2011. Previously Bruno worked as Fundraising manager at Inhotim, one of Brazil's most visited museums and a global reference for contemporary arts.→
Audrée Lapierre is Creative Director of FFunction, a Montreal-based information design studio with a portfolio of clients including UNESCO Institute for Statistics, UN Women, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, National Geographic, Edelman and HP. Audree's work has been featured in magazines in France, The Netherlands, Mexico, China, and Spain, and she frequently speaks at international user experience and design conferences about data visualization and UI.→
Micah L. Sifry is Co-Founder of Personal Democracy Forum. He is also Co-Founder and the Executive Director of Civic Hall, a one-of-a-kind community center for the world’s civic innovators located in the heart of New York City.
Additionally, he consults on how political organizations, campaigns, non-profits and media entities can adapt to and thrive in a networked world. He is a senior technology adviser to the Sunlight Foundation, which he helped found in 2006, and also serves on the board of Consumer Reports and the Public Laboratory for Open Technology and Science.
He is the author and editor of eight books, most recently, A Lever and a Place to Stand: How Civic Tech Can Move the World (PDM Press, 2015), The Big Disconnect: Why the Internet Hasn’t Transformed Politics (Yet) (OR Books, 2014) and Wikileaks and the Age of the Transparency (OR Books, 2011). In 2012 he taught “The Politics of the Internet” as a visiting lecturer at Harvard’s Kennedy School.→
The web is one of our most valuable public resources — it’s Mark Surman’s job to protect it. Mark is Executive Director of the Mozilla Foundation, a global community that does everything from making Firefox to taking stands on issues like privacy and net neutrality. Mark’s main job is to build the movement side of Mozilla, rallying the citizens of the web, building alliances with likeminded organizations and leaders, and growing the open internet movement. Mark’s goal is nothing short of making the health and accessibility of the internet a mainstream issue around the world. Mark has been doing work like this for 20 years: standing up for open source and putting technology into the hands of everyday people. Mark was the founding Director of telecentre.org, a $26M initiative connecting community technology centers in more than 30 countries. He ran the Commons Group for 10 years, a boutique consulting firm that provided advice and insight on networks, technology and social enterprise to nonprofits and governments around the world. Mark was awarded the prestigious Shuttleworth Foundation fellowship, where he explored how to apply open source approaches to philanthropy in the year before he joined Mozilla.→
Genevieve is an impact assessment manager at the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE), where she supports ANDE members to develop and adopt best practices in assessing the economic, social, and environmental performance of small and growing businesses. Before ANDE, Genevieve worked in a variety of business, nonprofit, and academic settings, including several years in the Tanzanian specialty coffee industry.→
Michael Lenczner is the founder of Ajah (www.ajah.ca), a company that offers online fundraising solutions for the Canadian nonprofit sector. He also leads Powered by Data (www.poweredbydata.org), an internationally recognized nonprofit initiative which is hosted on the Tides Canada Shared Platform. Powered by Data works with non-profits, funders, and governments to help them better use, share, and learn from data. Michael has worked in not-for-profit community ICT since the late 90s in areas ranging from international development to community wireless networking and open data.→
Christopher Whitlatch is the Manager of Marketing and Communications at The Pittsburgh Foundation. He joined the Foundation in 2009 just before the first PittsburghGives day of giving. Over seven years, PittsburghGives has raised more than $40 million through a variety of online giving events. Christopher has a passion for online giving and studies the different models, sustainability, and technology developments in digital fundraising. Christopher works with nonprofits in the Pittsburgh area as well as around the country to increase their knowledge and use of digital media and technology to improve storytelling, data visualization, and communications.→
Tara Murphy Forde
Vice President for Impact and Strategic Initiatives
Tara joined Global Partnerships (GP) in January 2009. As Vice President of Impact and Strategic Initiatives she leads GP’s efforts to define, measure, and strengthen the impact of its investments. In this capacity she oversees the qualitative and quantitative methods, tools, and processes used to identify high impact opportunities and cultivate learnings from the existing portfolio. Prior to her role on the Impact and Research team, Tara spent five years on GP’s Social Investment Team where she was responsible for the monitoring and evaluation of Fund performance. Her approach to impact investing is informed by academic, professional, and entrepreneurial experience addressing the issues of poverty, gender, and conflict. As a Fulbright Scholar, Tara researched the gender-differentiated effects of the armed conflict in Colombia and was part of a start-up tackling the socio-economic reintegration of displaced families. In addition to her time in Colombia, Tara has lived and studied in Cuba and Northern Ireland. Tara holds a B.A. in political science from Vassar College and a certificate in executive leadership from the Albers School of Business at Seattle University.→
Sam Kaspick supports Civic Hall’s business development efforts and is also their leading Star Wars nerd. He comes to New York from San Francisco, where he and a scrappy team of four raised millions for President Obama’s reelection campaign. They also founded a nonprofit called Tech4America (T4A.org), which brings together tech leaders and public officials to brainstorm solutions to civic problems.→
Amanda is currently the Director of Evaluate for Change, which trains organizations, foundations, donors, and governmental social programs to use data and evaluation in their practice – building the capacity of the social sector from within. She has worked in the nonprofit field in both a direct practice and research capacity. She has evaluated large citywide pilot programs working at Columbia University and the City University of New York (CUNY). Before transitioning into a more quantitative role, she worked at the Center for the Study of Social Policy developing a youth well-being framework while conducting Participatory Action Research (PAR) with marginalized communities throughout New York City. Amanda holds a Master’s Degree in Public Policy and Social Work from Columbia University.→
Lauren Reed has over seven years of experience in international development, research and policy analysis in the U.S. and China. Currently she is a senior analyst in Qualcomm’s Government Affairs group, where she directs the global monitoring and evaluation (M&E) portfolio for Qualcomm® Wireless Reach™. The Wireless Reach initiative strives to strengthen economic and social development by bringing advanced wireless technologies to underserved communities around the world. As the M&E lead, she develops and implements M&E strategy and systems that provide defensible data demonstrating the tangible benefits of advanced wireless technologies in addressing global challenges.
Previously she authored international policy papers as a research analyst at the UC Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation and as a consultant for the Center for American Progress. She holds a master’s degree in International Affairs, with a focus on quantitative analysis, from the University of California San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy.→
Agata is CEO of Healthy Culture Action Tank, an independent non-profit research organization focused on health. Previously she worked in the technology sector as a communication strategist specialized in international market development. Since 2004 she’s been running international relations for various nonprofit organizations in Poland. Agata graduated from Institute of Applied Linguistics on the University of Warsaw and Spanish and European Law Centre run by Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha and University of Warsaw. In 2013 she published a book on online communication “Hello Reputation: We trust people. We remember stories. We buy experiences”.→
Executive Director of Connecticut Data Collaborative
Named Executive Director of the CT Data Collaborative in February 2014, Michelle is responsible for executing the vision and strategy of the Collaborative which seeks to advance open data statewide and to facilitate data-driven decision making.
Michelle holds a bachelor's degree in Mathematics from Boston College and a master's degree in public policy from the University of Chicago. In her career, she has had the opportunity to work in all sectors of the economy – private, nonprofit, and government. She has worked in a research capacity for most of her career examining a wide range of policy areas and programs including: healthcare, economic development, state tax credits, and energy efficiency programs. Her policy interests are broad but her passion is in using data to help drive policy decision-making. She resides in Glastonbury, Connecticut with her husband and three children.→
National Manager of Philanthropy and Non-Profit Services at Perpetual Limited
Caitriona Fay joined Perpetual’s Philanthropy team in January 2103 and is the current National Manager – Philanthropy and Non-Profit Services, a senior role leading Perpetual’s commitment to Philanthropy and the non-profit sector. With nearly fifteen years of philanthropic and grantmaking experience in Australia and Europe, Caitriona has an extensive understanding of national and international funding approaches and mechanisms. Prior to joining Perpetual Caitriona worked with the Heritage Lotter Fund in the UK and more recently led The Ian Potter Foundation’s granting team. She is currently a director of The Channel, a giving circle for and supporting LGBTQI young people. As an inaugural team member of the Leading Learning in Education and Philanthropy (LLEAP) research project, Caitriona possess a high level of understanding relating to the trends and challenges in the philanthropic sector within Australia. Her sector knowledge and standing was affirmed in 2012 when she was named the Australian Institute of Grant Management’s inaugural Grantmaker of The Year.→
Steve MacLaughlin is a Director of Analytics at Blackbaud, a leading provider of technology and services to the nonprofit sector. Steve has spent 20+ years driving innovation with a broad range of companies, government institutions, and nonprofit organizations. Steve serves on the Nonprofit Technology Network (NTEN) Board of Directors and supports its focus on both the growth and professionalism of the nonprofit technology field as well as building knowledge and information sharing capacity throughout the sector. He is a frequent blogger, published author of the book Data Driven Nonprofits, and co-editor of the book Internet Management for Nonprofits: Strategies, Tools & Trade Secrets. Steve earned both his undergraduate degree and a Master of Science degree in Interactive Media from Indiana University.→