The ability of disadvantaged students to navigate a path to and through college has never been more critical in an era with a broad wage gap based on post-secondary educational attainment. While Pay for Success (PFS) has been deployed effectively in a variety of social policy domains, the movement has largely bypassed the field of higher education. This comes despite the fact that the achievement of longer-term metrics such as a persistence, graduation, and labor market outcomes, rather than student enrollment or other interim measures, are now driving the conversation
In the recent discussion concerning evidence-based practices, many practitioners believe that the current approach to collecting evidence, validating findings, and replicating evidence-based programs (EBPs) has distorted the funding system for social services. Others argue that relaxing the focus on evidence-based practices will welcome a world where once again anecdotes and heuristics guide funding decisions. At Third Sector, we believe there is another way forward: continuous impact measurement using administrative data. If government made low-cost impact management an element of their program oversight, it could better hold providers accountable for quantifiable
The social services sector is transitioning from a focus on ‘outputs’ measuring activity levels towards ‘outcomes’ measuring life impacts. Third Sector advises public agencies seeking to use the tools at their disposal, such as procurement, policy, and data, to better align with long-term success for their communities. While we want success to be defined in terms of outcomes and encourage this evolution of the field, we still see value in assessing outputs for several reasons.
Throughout 2017, Third Sector and its partners have delivered improved outcomes for vulnerable Americans while accelerating the nation’s transition to a performance-driven social sector. With over $1 trillion in public funding dedicated to social issues each year, our work provides catalytic implementation support that enables communities to effectively address problems such as lack of meaningful jobs, recidivism, and overuse of foster care. See below for highlights on how Third Sector moved over $260M in total public funding to outcomes in 2017 and is leading the effort to implement solutions so
The Pay For Success (PFS) field is evolving from initial Social Impact Bond-style projects launched by governments and supported by third-party (i.e., non-government) funding to agency and multi-agency engagements that shift the practice of how existing public funding streams are deployed for specific social programs. Across these projects, traditional cost reimbursement service contracts are being amended or replaced with outcomes-oriented contracts.
King County partners with Ballmer Group to expand access to outpatient mental health and addiction treatment
As many as 22,000 low-income people in King County will be eligible for same-day outpatient treatment for mental health and addiction services under an innovative new program announced today by King County, Ballmer Group and Third Sector Capital Partners, a San Francisco-based nonprofit advisory firm that collaborates with communities on how to contract for social services.
The “Pay for Success” model will allocate $1.4 million a year in incentive payments to mental health and substance use treatment agencies that provide outpatient treatment on demand for people in need.