NFF Partners With Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco to Explore How Results-Based Funding Could Help Solve Social Problems

April 14, 2016

NATIONAL— April 14, 2016—Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) is partnering with the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco on a collaborative effort to examine how results-based funding could revolutionize America's approach to entrenched social issues. The project addresses the opportunities, challenges and practical considerations of the move toward results-based funding, and includes the launch of an online learning hub, a book slated for publication in early 2017, and a knowledge campaign that will include convenings and workshops to support skill-building for nonprofits and funders.

The effort is guided by an advisory committee of nonprofit, foundation, government and financial-sector leaders who have direct experience using outcomes-focused funding to address critical issues such as homelessness, workforce development, education and criminal justice.

"Entrenched poverty and a widening income gap demand that we radically re-imagine how we might create a better future," said David Erickson, director of the Center for Community Development Investments of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. "Orienting around outcomes presents an opportunity for everyone who is invested in positive social change to rethink existing roles and practices and work together in new ways toward shared goals."

Through the website, the book, meetings and other national communications efforts, this project will explore issues related to funding social services based on the results they produce. These include:

  • Triumphs and pitfalls of early experiments in outcomes-based funding
  • How service providers are measuring (sometimes hard-to-quantify) results
  • Implications of changes for government funding practices, and what types of funding models and prototypes are feasible
  • How related social entrepreneurship and impact investing are influencing the shift toward results-based funding

“Strong leadership is a critical ingredient to building effective cross-sector partnerships that yield measurable results that can be scaled,” said Kerry Sullivan, president of the Bank of America Charitable Foundation. “This project will help accelerate the dialogue and opportunities to advance social change.”

The advisory committee for the project will help create content and drive conversation around the core issues. Committee members are: Nancy Andrews, President & CEO, Low Income Investment Fund; Gordon Berlin, President, MDRC; Dash Boyer-Olson, Director, Bank of America Merrill Lynch; Xav Briggs, Vice President, Ford Foundation; John Cassidy, Senior Manager, Deloitte; Kimberlee Cornett, Director, Kresge Foundation; Michele Jolin, CEO, Results for America; Jeremy Keele, Managing Director, Sorenson Impact Center; Zia Khan, Vice President, Initiatives and Strategy, The Rockefeller Foundation; Jitinder Kohli, Director, Public Sector Strategy, Deloitte; Terri Ludwig, President & CEO, Enterprise Community Partners; Andy McMahon, Managing Director, Government Affairs & Innovations, Corporation for Supportive Housing; Tyler Norris, Vice President of Total Health Partnerships, Kaiser Permanente; George Overholser, CEO, Third Sector Capital Partners; Tracy Palandjian, CEO, Social Finance; Don Schwarz, Vice President, Program, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation; Sonal Shah, Executive Director, Beeck Center for Social Impact & Innovation; Kathy Stack, Vice President of Evidence-Based Innovation, Laura and John Arnold Foundation; Kerry Sullivan, President of Bank of America Charitable Foundation; and Dave Wilkinson, Director, White House Office of Social Innovation

“Excitement around Pay for Success has thrust 'outcomes-based funding' into the spotlight, but Pay for Success is only one small part of a much broader movement that has the potential to improve our ability as a society to meet pressing needs," said Antony Bugg-Levine, CEO of Nonprofit Finance Fund. "This project is a clear-eyed look at what is possible and what it will take to shift from a focus on what we spend money on in the social sector to a focus on how we get the best results for our spending."

After publication of the book, events will be hosted at Federal Reserve Bank branches across the United States to bring together regional leaders from government, the investment community, the nonprofit community, philanthropy and academia to discuss the implications of the book’s insights and to catalyze their response. For information about this effort as it unfolds, visit

More News