We help our partners plug in to societies, which display remarkable — but often invisible — creativity in tackling problems on their own terms.
We believe that, in order for global resources to trickle down, grassroots knowledge must trickle up.
Our partners are philanthropies, development agencies and private companies grappling with volatile social, economic and political realities.
To advance their understanding of local dynamics, they seek personalized, innovative field research.
We bridge the gap by granting fellowships to locally-hired analysts who receive extensive on-the-job mentoring.
They learn to tap into the right social networks, hone their analytical skills, and translate their access into practical insight.
We seek out partners who share our vision that solutions are to be found in societies themselves, stemming from local agency rather than outside agendas.
We ground our analysis in the perspectives of people whose lived experiences provide the ultimate guide.
We collaborate to define the problem at hand and develop an intimate grasp of our partners’ aims.
We refine our analysis and adapt our research through regular dialogue with partners.
We tailor a field-based research process to fill the knowledge gap, and align such aims with local perspectives, constraints and opportunities.
We operationalize our insight through policy recommendations, communication strategies, and networking to plug into grassroots initiatives.
We deliver high quality insight to demanding partners and a discerning public, who recognize and reward the value of thorough, people-centric research and analysis.
We create jobs for those who need them, and invest massively in human capital. We work with partners who share our belief that this resource-intensive investment is not just a means, but an end.
We build partnerships around best practices—including transparent governance, sharing, and demonstrable local buy-in—that are key to a healthy relationship between our sector and its environment.
Finally, we know our limits. We aspire not to change the world in one fell swoop, but to enact small, tangible, human-driven change.