Who We Are

Feedback Labs aims to change the norms in development, aid, and philanthropic policy to be more responsive to the people that those policies aim to help. A group of like-minded organizations, we are committed to the belief that regular people — whether we call them beneficiaries, constituents, or citizens — should be driving the policies and programs that affect them.
We catalyze the widespread adoption of closed feedback loops in philanthropy, international aid, and governance with respect to the voice of citizens and the people we seek to serve by asking three questions:
1) What do people want to make their lives better? 2) Are we helping them get it? 3) If not, what should we do differently?

What We Do

Frame the issues by establishing the high-level conceptual agenda through research and methodology to enable organizations to take easy first steps toward new practices and behaviors.

Convene a core network of funding, policy, research, technology and implementation groups who are committed to the concept and already developing analyses and tools.
Mainstream effective feedback practices by engaging a growing community in-person and through online forums to support widespread experimentation of closing feedback loops.

Why We Do It

We are at a critical point in history where prioritizing constituent feedback has the potential to unleash massive, timely, and necessary changes in the way development is pursued. While many aid and philanthropy organizations aspire to listen to those they seek to help, most are not designed to field and respond with agility to feedback from their constituents. This field— which we term “closing the feedback loop”— is still uncharted and unbounded.

While its potential is enormous, the concept lacks consistent vocabulary, principles, accepted best practices, and reliable measurements. Aid agencies, direct-service providers, and philanthropic institutions spend hundreds of billions of dollars each year to improve the well-being of people. Constituent feedback offers a critical piece of evidence to the complex challenges those dollars are meant to address. We aim to help provide the structure and design principles that will maximize the effects of feedback loops in aid and philanthropy.

Our History

  • Informal collaboration among founding members
  • Received seed funding from William & Flora Hewlett Foundation via GlobalGiving
  • Launched Feedback Labs with 9 Founding Members
  • Published How Feedback Loops Can Improve Aid (and Maybe Governance)
  • Hosted the inaugural Feedback Summit
  • Launched Feedback Labs Quiz and Toolkit
  • Supported 3 organizations through The Collaboration Fund
  • Hosted Smart Summit
  • Published Is Feedback Smart?
  • Launched Sprint Relay Methodology by convening the Practical Adaptation Network
  • 2nd annual Feedback Summit: From Talk to Action
  • Hosted the inaugural London Summit
Feedback Labs is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization (EIN: 82-2145977)