PROJECTOutcome Indicators Project

A joint project of the Urban Institute and The Center for What Works

The Outcome Indicators Project provides a framework for tracking nonprofit performance. It suggests candidate outcomes and outcome indicators to assist nonprofit organizations that seek to develop new outcome monitoring processes or improve their existing systems.

This website contains three primary elements:

  1. Building a Common Outcome Framework to Measure Nonprofit Performance
    This paper describes the rationale for the project and the project components. It also suggests sources for the outcomes and outcome indicators included in the project to date.
  2. Outcomes and Performance Indicators for 14 Specific Program Areas
    These reports apply the Outcome Framework to 14 program areas. For each program, there is a sample mission statement, an outcome sequence chart, a table of candidate program-specific outcomes, and data collection strategies with suggested data sources for each outcome indicator. For convenience, the outcome sequence chart and table of candidate program-specific outcomes are available for download. The sequence chart is an MS Word document and the table is an MS Excel spreadsheet. The program reports are available as PDFs. Program areas include:
  3. Nonprofit Taxonomy of Outcomes
    This report provides basic, generic outcomes and performance indicators that can be used for any program.

Additional Resources

This web site made possible by The Urban Institute and The Center for What Works. Project funders include the Cisco Systems Foundation, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

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Research Areas Nonprofits and philanthropy