Over the past decade there has been a great deal of funding and resources devoted to community-based design work—from architecture and urban planning to graphic and product design—yet there have been far fewer resources devoted to assessing the impacts these projects and initiatives have had on the communities and individuals they claim to affect.
On March 12 three experts in impact measurement came together to explore and discuss what designers can learn from how other fields think about impact measurement. With rich backgrounds in various disciplines, the panelists provided a wide range of expertise and knowledge from public health, impact investing and poverty reduction, to city government, design, and social science.
Each panelist gave a brief presentation, sharing insights from their field of work on the process of impact assessment, followed by a group discussion.
We will soon publish a link to a video of this panel discussion and we are planning other activities around this timely topic. If you would like to learn more, join our mailing list for updates. Click here to join!
Sasha Dichter, Chief Innovation Officer at Acumen
Chelsea Mauldin, Executive Director of Public Policy Lab
Rachel Dannefer, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
In his role as Acumen’s Chief Innovation Officer, Sasha oversees Acumen’s work in metrics and impact; Acumen’s Global and Regional Fellows Programs and +Acumen; and he is responsible for developing new financial products for Acumen. Sasha is also a noted speaker and blogger on generosity, philanthropy and social change, the author of the Manifesto for Nonprofit CEOs, and the creator of Generosity Day. His talks have been featured on TED.com and at the DO Lectures and he has been recognized as an Innovation Agent by Fast Company, a top 10 Business Bloggers by Say 100 Media, and his writing has been featured by Harvard Business Review and Stanford Social Innovation Review. Sasha is proud to serve on the Executive Committee of the Aspen Network for Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE). Sasha’s previous work experience includes positions at GE Money, IBM, Bank Rakyat Indonesia, and Booz Allen Hamilton.
Chelsea Mauldin is a social scientist and strategic designer with a focus on public-sector innovation. She directs the Public Policy Lab, a New York City nonprofit dedicated to improving the design and delivery of public services. The Public Policy Lab partners with government agencies to develop more satisfying and effective services through user-centered research, design prototyping, testing, and evaluation. Find out more on
Rachel Dannefer conducts evaluation and research related to food and nutrition at the New York City Health Department’s Bureau of Chronic Disease Prevention and Tobacco Control. This Agency and Bureau are noted as being among the premier sources of both innovative and evidence-based public health policy and programs to improve the environment in which New Yorkers live. Rachel has conducted a range of research projects designed to understand the food environment, and has led several evaluations to assess the effectiveness of programs to improve access to healthy foods and provide nutrition education to low-income New Yorkers. Rachel’s previous work experience includes serving at Greenmarket as the founding director of a program to support immigrants in starting their own farms in the New York area, and working at Heifer International. She received her Master of Public Health and Master of International Affairs from Columbia University.