External Evaluation of the Water.org New Ventures Fund

Project ID: 



C&A Foundation
Eric Abitbol, PhD
Florence Allard-Buffoni
Featured services: 
Monitoring and Evaluation
April, 2018 to November, 2018

Water.org launched the New Ventures Fund NVF in 2011 as a philanthropic pool of capital to search for and launch the next round of big ideas to address the global water and sanitation crisis directly affecting people and communities. Commissioned by the C&A Foundation, Universalia conducted an evaluation that had four main objectives: i) examine the overall effectiveness, sustainability and impact of the NVF supported innovations; ii) assess factors that have contributed to or impeded achievement of results of innovations; iii) assess the extent to which the NVF model and the innovations were ‘fit for purpose’ and scalable; and iv) distil actionable and strategic recommendations and lessons from the findings to feed into future Water.org operations. The overall methodological approach for this evaluation was that of Contribution Analysis, given the study’s focus on generating understanding of the NVF’s contribution to Water.org’s ability to design and implement innovative solutions to the global WSS crisis. A theory-based approach was adopted for this mandate, one that included the reconstruction and testing of an NVF Theory of Change (ToC). Data for this evaluation were collected through a range of methods. The evaluation team undertook semi-structured interviews with 85 respondents representing Water.org leadership, HQ staff, country staff, NVF donors, in-country partners and other experts. An online survey was filled by 23 members (response rate: 92%) of Water.org leadership, senior management and staff. The evaluation team undertook field missions to India, Peru, and the Philippines; virtual field missions were undertaken with respect to Bangladesh, Indonesia and Kenya. The team reviewed more than 100 documents and projects and undertook a Rubric Analysis. Finally, the evaluation team undertook a landscape analysis comparing the NVF with 4 other innovation funds, namely: Acumen, Kiva, Competitive Industries and Innovation Fund (CIIP), and the Global Innovation Fund (GIF).

Release Date: 
April, 2018

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