The place for all the people interested in the world of doing good. And in doing it better.More about Kinder
At Kinder, we take an ‘open source’ approach to knowledge-sharing — as the challenges of our time are far too urgent to hide solutions — solutions which are more effective when combined. Our research team empowers charities to transform this knowledge into concrete actions that will create positive change in communities across the world. Collaboration is at the heart of what we do, which is why we’ve created an ecosystem of volunteers, donors, charities, and brands; all united to solve world problems faster.
Transparency in charity information has an enormous impact on public confidence. Lack of financial information, programme details, and general data are key causes of decaying trust.
To combat this, Kinder's research sector emphasises the power of information by promoting charities’ data perception, collection, and disclosure. Our research seeks to help both charities and donors effectively tackle the global challenges of our time, from climate change, to global forced migration, to protecting human rights.
to aid and equip charities with the right knowledge and expertise to transform their work into excellent performance, for real and lasting positive impacts.
to create an ‘educated giving culture’, by nurturing donors with fact-based information about charities' work to empower intelligent supporting decisions and actions. Supports that rise and maintain prominent and promising initiatives for lasting positive changes.
Our research and partnerships aim to shake up modern philanthropy: making it more effective, sustainable, knowledge-based, and trustworthy.
The outcome is effective and sustainable philanthropy at local and global scales embedded in facts, information, confidence and trust in the charity sector.
Our data-driven approach favours the long term, which is where we will achieve true impact: through sustainable action.
Research about charities, information evaluation or vetting, data analysis, training, consultancy, and academic outreach, and collaborations are our main activities in the research sector. Our in-house evaluation system, Kinder Evaluation Framework, is at the heart of our efforts. It enables us to carefully examine charities to evaluate their accountability and transparency. Analysing the data, we share our findings with both charities we evaluate and those who seek a deeper understanding of their work.
Our evaluations have the following steps:
Collect and examine basic and in-depth online information about charities (Kinder Evaluation Framework)
Use our findings to consult charities to improve their performance (Charity Zone)
Use our findings to drive donors towards fact-based giving decisions (United Actions, and Charity Reports)
Kinder Evaluation Framework
To evaluate or ‘vet’, a term that you’ll often run into in charity lingo, essentially means to sift through something. In our case, vetting means gathering information on charities to evaluate their accountability and transparency — which is exactly what our vetting framework is designed to do.
We have developed a bespoke vetting framework with the help of academics from Impact Centre Erasmus. Strong research backgrounds and thorough training from Kinder’s evaluation experts give our research team the strong foundations to evaluate using our framework. Our analysis of charities is based on publicly available information on these charities’ websites. We’ve analysed over 2500 charities so far, thanks to our research department and a dedicated team of more than 60 vetting volunteers over the past years.
Stages of evaluation
Our current evaluation framework consists of two stages, Basic and In-depth Analyses. Each stage has ‘yes’ or ‘no’ vetting questions such as “Does the organisation publish their financial statements?” We only use the information on organisations’ websites to answer these questions because we believe everyone, researcher or not, should have access to the answers.
Stage 1: Basic Analysis
This stage focuses on five criteria indicating basic accessibility and transparency. These requirements are:
Being easily reachable
Providing information about the organisation’s board members and key staff
Publishing financial statements
Making the charities’ strategic plans public
Dealing with controversy appropriately (if applicable)
Stage 2: In-depth Analysis
We believe every charity should have the capacity to plan well for the future, monitor and evaluate their own programs closely, perceive and collect crucial data, engage with research, reflect on past mistakes, strive to act ethically and with integrity, and communicate openly about its work with the public.
Charities with strong organisational skills and information transparency are more accountable — and are likely to get things done effectively. In this stage, we have four criteria, each containing several sub-categories and 41 vetting questions in total. These criteria are:
Stage 1 and 2 are our currently active evaluation stages. Do you work for a charity and want to be evaluated? Send us an email and we’ll add you to our list. Are you not a part of a charity but still want to be involved? Check our vacancies and see if anything piques your interest.
Want to know more? Click to download the rationale of our In-depth Evaluation Framework.
Information we look for in the Basic Analysis may seem obvious or easy to provide, yet a sizable number of charities fail to meet all its requirements. Examining the outcome of our In-depth Analysis, we see that many charities lack critical knowledge necessary to develop strong organisational skills. A good understanding of their program-related data, the importance of developing their logical thinking models, and monitoring skills are among those insufficient or absent in the work of a number of charities.
This is why we consult charities, via our Charity Zone, as another vital element of our work. Based on our evaluation results, we give charities customised advice; so they can take the missing data and information into consideration, and make further progress. Our evaluation reports, tailored advice, and suggested tools and resources are the driving force for charities; gearing them towards self-reflection and learning. This empowers them to perform better and increase positive impact.
Based on the outcome of our evaluations, we create United Actions, curated collections of top-ranking charities tackling the same problem with different approaches. Kinder United Actions are built on three pillars: raising public awareness about the most pressing problems of our times, championing holistic solutions to tackle each problem, and empowering donors with the knowledge to enable educated giving decisions. We also present exclusive evaluation reports of each charity — providing an extensive view of their work to help donors give informed support.
Development of Kinder Evaluation Framework
The current framework we use is in its third iteration, but definitely not its last. We continuously reflect on our own plans, programmes, and actions and adjust accordingly. We advocate for continuous self-evaluation and progress; how hypocritical would it be if we didn’t perform it ourselves? Analysing our internal evaluation data extracted from evaluating over 2500 charities —and ongoing discussions about our data and evaluation framework with academics from universities in the Netherlands and USA —keeps our current evaluation framework under scrutiny for further improvement.
We are currently developing stage 3; where we will focus on the effectiveness of charities’ interventions and impact. Here we ask crucial questions such as: do the programs these charities employ even work? What about their cost-effectiveness compared to other interventions that tackle the same problem? Naturally, this is a very tricky thing, and overstating our ability to deal with this knotty problem would be a big mistake. Thankfully, many nonprofits care about intervention effectiveness as well, such as GiveWell and 3IE impact, so we are not alone in our effort to gather information on effective interventions.
If you are a concerned world citizen and want to unite with us in our quest for a better world, we welcome you here to initiate and elevate your actions. If you are a charity with a progressive mindset, join us here. Let's come together and improve trust, while creating a kinder world.
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