Increasing the evidence base for what does (and doesn’t) work

Dan Corry, CEO of NPC at the Alliance for Useful Evidence: “At NPC, we’re passionate about supporting organisations to measure their impact. By measuring impact, we can see if the all the passion and good intentions of the charity sector are translating into real outcomes for the people we are trying to help. However, even when charities believe in this mission, many still struggle to get far with their measurement.

The challenge:
One problem is that measuring outcomes often requires tracking beneficiaries over time to see what happened to them after their interaction with the charity, and doing this can be complex, costly and sometimes just impractical.
Yet often the government holds this data, and the problem is that charities can’t access it in a simple way. NPC therefore recently recommended that the Ministry of Justice use the data the government and its agencies hold in relation to reoffending to help charities working in this area. The MoJ responded positively, implementing the Justice Data Lab, a service which enables charities that work with offenders/ex-offenders to track the reoffending rate of the people they have worked with some years later. Furthermore they can compare the reoffending rate of those they worked with to a matched sample of offenders/ex-offenders.
Eight months into the one year pilot of the JDL, here are some of our lessons learnt….”