Use of Results Based AccountabilityTM  Methodology to implement Collective Impact Initiatives

Results Based Accountability TM is a disciplined way of thinking about and managing outcomes for children, families, young people and communities and is one of the most accessible methodologies for all workers within an organisation. It was authored by Mark Friedman in Trying Hard is not Good Enough and has influenced outcomes approaches internationally for the past 10 years. Mark’s implementation guide is freely available to community organisations at www.raguide.org.

“ Results-Based Accountability starts with a crucial distinction: between results for whole populations like all children, all elders, all citizens in a geographic area – and results for the customers or clients of a particular program, agency or service system. The most important reason for this distinction is the difference in “who is accountable.” Performance accountability can be assigned to the managers who run the various programs, agencies or service systems. Population accountability cannot be assigned to any one individual, organization or level of government. The whole community, public and private sectors, must share responsibility for population results.

Results-Based Accountability is made up of two parts: Population Accountability and Performance Accountability. Results-Based Accountability is the overarching idea which includes results-based decision making and results-based budgeting. Accountability is by someone to someone for something important.

Population accountability is accountability BY THE COMMUNITY (city, county or state) TO THE COMMUNITY (city, county or state) FOR THE WELL-BEING (RESULTS) OF A POPULATION (children, adults, families, all citizens…). Performance accountability is accountability BY THE MANAGERS (of the program, agency or service system) TO THE CUSTOMERS (and other stakeholders) FOR THE PERFORMANCE OF THE PROGRAM (agency or service system).

Results-Based Accountability is a different way of thinking. It organizes the work of programs, agencies, communities, cities, counties and states around the end conditions we seek for those who live in our community and those receiving service. It uses those end conditions as the grounding for all of the work, including decision making and budgeting.”

If you are interested in Collective Impact then you will need to implement your approach at the Population Accountability Level with your defined community and this is a much larger implementation task . You will need to have engaged your community and ensure they have a vision for their future, you need to be able to implement a results framework with the community as partners and there is financial and policy / political commitment for this collective effort. Outcomes Victoria can assist you to implement your Collective Impact Initiatives using RBA as your methodology and framework.