Museum Camp 2014: Social Impact Assessment
Ever wondered how to measure your organization’s ability to build community, inspire learning, or create change? Join us for Museum Camp, a chance to learn, play, and measure the immeasurable together.
The 2014 Museum Camp theme is social impact assessment. Our goal is to develop creative ways to evaluate the work we are all doing to build and transform our communities. We will do this by bringing together teams of diverse people from across many disciplines in shared learning and doing around research and social impact. Our focus is on social impact in communities, and we will encourage teams to look at complex outcomes–like safety, cohesion, compassion, and identity–that are not commonly covered in our standard evaluative practices.
Because we at the MAH are not experts in this topic, we are working with lots of smart researchers and evaluators–from the arts, social services, and social justice organizations–to make this camp happen. We are thrilled to be co-presenting Museum Camp with Fractured Atlas, an organization that inspires us for their thoughtful approach to making art measurable and meaningful.
When: Wednesday July 30 – Saturday August 2, 2014. Camp will start on Wednesday afternoon and conclude on Saturday midday.
Where: Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History (MAH), Santa Cruz, CA
What: A three-day event at which participants work in teams to develop creative techniques for measuring the social impact of non-profit organizations and activities. Like any good summer camp, even the most “serious” activities will be fun.
Who: 100 creative people from diverse arts, social justice, and community development organizations who want to experiment and push their practice through an active, collaborative professional development experience. This camp is open to people with all levels of experience with impact assessment and evaluation. Registration is based on a competitive application process. Attendees will be selected based on diversity of background, work, experience, and interests.
Why: To ignite unexpected collaborations, increase research literacy, encourage outcome-oriented thinking, strengthen organizational effectiveness, and support experimental thinking and prototyping. We welcome you whether you have a very specific research project in mind or a more speculative interest in impact assessment.
How it will work: Museum Camp will offer hefty doses of both learning and doing, all focused on social impact assessment. Camp will start with workshops with community evaluation and research professionals who will help all participants understand current methodologies and techniques for conducting impact measurement. Then, participants will break into teams (assigned by the event organizers to ensure team diversity) and select social outcomes of interest that they would like to measure. Each team will have about 48 hours to determine an outcome of interest, identify an indicator of that outcome, develop a creative evaluation tool to measure it, perform the measurement, and analyze the results. Each team will include a Santa Cruz local who can help make connections with organizations or businesses relevant to the team’s work as useful. There will also be floating counselors who are expert in evaluation and will serve as advisors to the teams. Camp will conclude with all participants sharing their work and discussing lessons learned from the experience.
Cost: We are trying to make camp as affordable as possible for participants. The registration fee this year will be $150, which includes breakfast on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday and dinner on Wednesday and Thursday. Participants are welcome to sleep over at the museum if desired – we can fit about 50 campers on various floors and will coordinate a shower option at a local gym a couple blocks from the museum.