How do you capture the value of what you do in terms other than jobs created or saved - especially if
that's not what you set out to do? How do you convince funders that they should invest in you if you can't provide evidence of the impact of your work? Most importantly, how do you stay confident in your belief that what you do really is making a positive difference?
We think we have found a sytem that could work for people in the cultural sector and are currently piloting work with Pen and Tonic and Tin Arts, two of the region's participatory arts organisations. We are using Social Return on Investment - a way of measuring and ascribing value to the process of change.
SROI expresses social value in monetary terms making it possible to say something about how large the impact has been, relative to investments. It provides a credible qualitative and narrative value, enabling you to talk to stakeholders who have different preferences.
The concept of social return helps one to understand that any grant or loan can be thought of as an investment rather than a subsidy. The focus shifts to the creation of value and away from the risk mentality and opportunity cost of using money here rather than there.
Read our SROI blog here
If you would like to find out more about our work, contact us email@example.com
You can download a summary of the method here
For more information about SROI visit the SROI network website here