The Center for Social Innovation has examined the elements to consider when gauging impact, identified six key dimensions, and crafted a visual representation to explain them: The Impact Compass.
Practitioners can leverage the Impact Compass to answer questions like:
- What job should I take to maximize my impact potential — that is, my potential to generate positive social impact?
- Which deal will maximize the impact return of my investment dollars?
- Which nonprofit will make the most of my donation?
Drawing on both the extensive literature of impact measurement and the expertise of academics and practitioners in social innovation, CSI’s Impact Compass helps conceptualize impact and provides the tools to assess the relative social impact potential of various organizations, programs, or start-up ventures.
Interactive Impact Compass
The lowest possible score is 1 and represents a society-positive intervention with limited potential. Most scores will fall between 40 and 64, representing potential in two or three dimensions. Scores higher than 200 signal truly transformational impact. The highest potential score — full marks in all dimensions — is 729. The results of this tool depend directly on your input and will vary based on the number of assumptions you make. The tool is flexible; it can support anything from a quick, gut-level assessment to a fully researched evaluation. Results depend on your inputs and are not recorded.