Principles of Good Impact Reporting consultation launched

11th October 2011

A universal set of principles for impact reporting in charities and social enterprises has been released for consultation. The initiative, led by New Philanthropy Capital, CFDG and ACEVO, is now in a consultation phase, seeking feedback from key groups involved in developing impact reporting including chief executives, finance directors, fundraisers and grant-makers. 

‘The Principles of Good Impact Reporting’ is the product of collaboration between seven organisations in the sector. The principles will enable charities and social enterprises to shape the way they are perceived. By better defining ‘how’ and ‘what’ charities should communicate in terms of impact, the focus can shift from arbitrary measures of effectiveness such as administration costs, on to the difference being made.

Jane Tully, head of policy and public affairs at CFDG, said: “With donors and funders placing greater demands on charities for accountability and demonstration of results, this set of principles provides charities with a framework to look at communicating impact in an appropriate and effective way.”

Tris Lumley, head of development at NPC, said: “I believe passionately in the power of the stories that charities tell about their work to engage supporters, staff and stakeholders. That’s why I’m delighted that we launch the Principles today to consultation, as they can help charities to put impact at the heart of those stories.”

Seb Elsworth, director of strategy at ACEVO, said: “There are a multitude of different methodologies organisations can use to demonstrate their impact, but the principles are here to show that impact reporting doesn’t have to be complicated, expensive, or about changing everything you do. But that instead it’s about using existing opportunities to communicate better and more effectively.

“By making it easier for donors and stakeholders to focus on what really matters, the difference we make as organisations, this should prevent organisations from being judged unfairly and letting assessment be based on inputs which mean much less, things like administration costs and or CEO Pay.”

Notes to editors:

1. ‘The Principles of Good Impact Reporting’ have been produced in collaboration by seven organisations: New Philanthropy Capital, ACEVO (Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations) incorporating the ImpACT Coalition, CFDG (Charity Finance Directors Group), the Institute of Fundraising, The SROI Network, NCVO (National Council for Voluntary Organisations). Tris Lumley, New Philanthropy Capital, will be launching the principles on the 11th October 2011 at the Impact Measurement and Analysis conference.

2. The work was initiated by NPC, CFDG and Acevo and has been issued for consultation with the support of the Cabinet Office.

3. CFDG is the charity that promotes best practice in charity finance management, supporting finance managers with conferences, training and a wealth of web-based information. CFDG is also active in the policy arena, working on issues that affect charity finances. CFDG’s circa 1700 members are responsible for the finances of charities with a wide variety of income levels. Between them our members manage some £21.75 billion in charity income per year, around half of the sector’s income. For more information please contact Katherine Smithson at or on 020 7250 8347.

4. ACEVO (Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations is the professional body representing charity and not-for-profit sector chief executives in the UK, with over 2000 members. The broad not-for-profit sector now employs the full-time equivalent of 1.5m staff, with a collective annual turnover of £46bn. ACEVO is committed to improving third sector leadership skills worldwide.

5. New Philanthropy Capital (NPC) is a charity think tank and consultancy dedicated to helping funders and charities to achieve a greater impact. We provide independent research, tools and advice for charities and funders in the UK and internationally. We have an ambitious vision: to create a world in which charities and their funders are as effective as possible in changing people’s lives and in tackling social problems. For charities, this means measuring the results of their work and using evidence to learn and improve, as well as to attract support. For funders, it means using evidence of charities’ results to make funding decisions and to measure their own impact. For further information, see

For more information please contact Gemma Davidson on 020 7620 4850.

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