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2019 Annual Learning Report

At the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, we believe that collecting and analyzing data and reflecting on the results can lead to important learnings and improve our work moving forward. Over the past year, associates, grantees, and other partners developed hundreds of new insights and lessons through grant reports, external evaluations, community engagements, and other strategic documents. This brief summarizes the five key themes from the lessons developed in 2019:

  1. Projects that aim to create new programming or expand existing programming can increase their impact by investing in significant planning activities.
  2. Addressing systemic barriers faced by underrepresented populations in entrepreneurial and educational ecosystems requires a complex, multi-tiered approach.
  3. Incorporating the end-user into the design of a new program is likely to increase its chances of meeting the needs of its intended stakeholders.
  4. Strong communication pathways between Foundation staff and grantees are an important tool to promote program success.
  5. The long-term sustainability of programs requires the development of carefully crafted and targeted financial plans that consider internal organizational capacity and external need.