Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Overhead: let's make it plain

One of the interesting sessions at the recent Grantmakers in the Arts conference, of direct relevance to folks working in all non-profits, was led by Elizabeth Keating of the Kennedy School at Harvard. She argues persuasively that the ways funders and grantees interact regarding overhead expenses is irrational for all concerned, and that more transparency would enable mutual improvement.

[All which follows is my version of Keating's ideas, any transmission errors are mine.]

If you're a program manager or artistic director who's ever had to debate with your own finance staffer about which grant can pay for which costs, she means you. Or perhaps, as in my case, you've been that grants administrator! For several years at a large complex organization in the 90s I was that spreadsheet geek trying to rationalize a dozen grants with differing rules and reporting requirements, and I'm sure our hard-working program staff didn't enjoy the process any more than I did. (If Laurel, Dave, Steve, Michael or Diane read this they will right now be either laughing or wincing.) Of course now I'm on the funder side of the conversation, to which role I bring direct knowledge of how the bodies get buried so to speak...

Which is not to say that I think the process was entirely time wasted -- actually it forced us as a staff team to deal with important decisions including programmatic choices. But it sure was awkward and messy and arbitrary, and some of the incentives were perverse: the honest answer to a funder's question "What are the overhead costs?" would be "It depends, what are your overhead rules?" Yecch. Many perfectly well-intentioned staff teams have had that experience, and many funders have felt misled.

That last is actually what Keating means by her slightly-unfortunate presentation title "Is There Enough Overhead in This Grant?" She's not particularly arguing that funders should be magically made to only issue unrestricted grants. (Which is good cause they ain't about to, and there are good reasons why not.) Rather she argues that the core of the problem is that there is no consistent definition of "overhead" in detail or even in principle, and that the two parties in the funder-fundee relationship aren't honest enough with each other about the subject.

Keating proposes that non-profits adopt the sort of transparency that is standard for corporations about their finances, and she's working on some promising tools (software, and report formats) for that. She proposes mandatory non-profit openness on this subject once they get big enough to accept project grants: "Once a non-profit has to figure out an overhead allocation for any one grant, they must make that data public as part of financial reporting or annual audits." In return, foundations would agree (locally or nationally) to standard definitions of what is overhead and how much of it is reasonable. We could as a sector have sensible conversation about how much is or is not too much, and have no more jerry-rigged 90-page spreadsheets which arbitrarily assign the copier lease to this grant and the office assistant's salary to that one. Works for me, and the sooner the better.

24 comments:

Adi said...

Find Internet Marketing resource hare Online Marketing Strategy Internet Marketing Tools Online Marketing Campaign Online Marketing Business Online Marketing System Online Business Online Home Business Online Business Tips Internet Marketing Online Online Marketing Affiliate Marketing Online Marketing Success Selling Online Free Online Marketing Online Marketing Tools Online Marketing Blog

Adi said...

Oes Tsetnoc one of the ways in which we can learn seo besides Mengembalikan Jati Diri Bangsa. By participating in the Oes Tsetnoc or Mengembalikan Jati Diri Bangsa we can improve our seo skills. To find more information about Oest Tsetnoc please visit my Oes Tsetnoc pages. And to find more information about Mengembalikan Jati Diri Bangsa please visit my Mengembalikan Jati Diri Bangsa pages. Thank you So much.
Oes Tsetnoc | Semangat Mengembalikan Jati Diri Bangsa

Anonymous said...

Hey I'd like to thank you for such a great quality forum!
Was thinking this is a nice way to make my first post!

Sincerely,
Hilary Driscoll
if you're ever bored check out my site!
[url=http://www.partyopedia.com/articles/over-the-hill-party-supplies.html]over the hill Party Supplies[/url].

Anonymous said...

Hello everyone! Who knows where to upload the film Avatar?
I even bought the film Avatar for a SMS to http://rsskino.ru/kinofilm/avatar.html , the link was, but download fails, the system will boot quite strange cocoa something.
Men, advise where to normal as quickly download film avatar?

Anonymous said...

I sell a boat-program which will help you to outwit auction and to win, initially the boat was created for the Scandinavian auction http://internet-aukcion.ru/ but now the program can work with similar auctions: gagen ru, vezetmne ru and with ten.
The program-boat stakes for you, i.e. for this purpose it is not necessary to sit constantly at the monitor. The boat can set time when it is necessary to stake, thus you as much as possible will lower expenses for rates, and as much as possible increase the chances of a victory.

The price of the program a boat for the Scandinavian auctions 20$

For the first 10 clients the price 15$

To all clients free updating and support.

Behind purchases I ask in icq: 588889590 Max.

Anonymous said...

[b]Set software LoveBots v 5.2[/b]

All for a mass mailing dating http://24lux.ru/

The script is written in php5

Features:

[i]registration, account activation
manual input captures, or the solution through antikapchu
filling data accounts:
- Gulf desired photo
- Инфы about yourself
- Diary
- Sexual preference[/i]

gulyalka on questionnaires spammer on lichku
- Randomization Posts: replacement of Russian letters in Latin analogues

optimized to work in a continuous loop
check-activation-filling-spam check ..

Updates and support free of charge.

Price per set 100 wmz

For the first 10 buyers price 70 wmz (your feedback on the software).

For shopping I ask in icq: 588889590 Max.

Scrin program:

[IMG]http://i066.radikal.ru/1002/9d/a7a68e8c96ee.jpg[/IMG]

[IMG]http://i054.radikal.ru/1002/19/9db76967c0e5.jpg[/IMG]

[IMG]http://s003.radikal.ru/i202/1002/24/20716e86512e.jpg[/IMG]

Flooding in the subject no! Write to feedback after the purchase.

Anonymous said...

Hello. My wife and I bought our house about 6 months ago. It was a foreclosure and we were able to get a great deal on it. We also took advantage of the 8K tax credit so that definitely helped. We did an extensive remodeling job and now I want to refinance to cut the term to a 20 or 15 year loan. Does anyone know any good sites for mortgage information? Thanks!

Mike

Anonymous said...

Upon the crowd of hundreds of satisfied clients and embrace unreserved after us scuttle you beyond complete to guaranteed gorgeous.

[url=http://minichill.com/FreeMC/]free samples for baby[/url]

Yoke the work together of hundreds of satisfied clients and set off d emit us get you beyond appealing to guaranteed gorgeous.
We specialize in mise en close of arhitectural textured exact replica row, melted magnifying plating drinking-glass, insensitivity and newcomer disabuse of doorlights, railings, frameless doors, decorative windows, dividers, skylights, refracting summarize floors, countertops, plentifulness units, back-painted binoculars, displays, lorgnette signs, goggles fireplaces, effects, binoculars sinks, mirrors, waterfalls, fountains, accessories, etc.
[url=http://www.hammerpackaging.com/pressure_labels.asp]pressure sensitive labels[/url]

[url=http://minichill.com/FreeMC/]free samples no surveys[/url]
[url=http://minichill.com/FreeMC/]sampling bias[/url]
Be coextensive with the team of hundreds of satisfied clients and charter out us take you beyond beautiful to guaranteed gorgeous.
We specialize in making of arhitectural textured glassware, melted magnifying lens, commiserate with and incrustation doorlights, railings, frameless doors, decorative windows, dividers, skylights, refracting summarize floors, countertops, sprinkling units, back-painted binoculars, displays, tumbler signs, crystal fireplaces, instrument, window-pane sinks, mirrors, waterfalls, fountains, accessories, etc.
[url=http://www.powerpublicrelations.com/]dallas pr firms[/url]
[url=http://www.powerpublicrelations.com/]dallas pr firm[/url]
[url=http://www.minichill.com]relaxation beverage[/url]
[url=http://www.minichill.com]relaxation[/url]
[url=http://www.minichill.com/ChillRecipes.html]alcohol[/url]
[url=http://www.minichill.com]relaxation shot[/url]
[url=http://www.minichill.com]relaxation shots[/url]
[url=http://minichill.com/FreeMC/]free samples in canada[/url]
[url=http://minichill.com/FreeMC/]product samples[/url]

Anonymous said...

free ebook brotherhoods by joseph benner http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/es/The-Coast/p226645/ ebook hergenhahn [url=http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/fr/William-F-Nolan/m132319/]ebook security options[/url] reengineering the corporation rapidshare ebook

Anonymous said...

windows 2000 tuneup software maintenance http://buysoftwareonline.co.uk/de/manufacturer-11/Quark windows mole 2003 software pocket pc [url=http://buysoftwareonline.co.uk/es/product-16762/UltimateDefrag-2008-2-0]computer software pole barns[/url] sharepoint free software
[url=http://buysoftwareonline.co.uk/product-22416/Firefly-Data-Compare-Tool-10-0]Firefly Data Compare Tool 10.0 - Software Store[/url] zip code map software
[url=http://buysoftwareonline.co.uk/fr/category-1/Syst-mes-operationnels][img]http://buyoem.co.uk/image/6.gif[/img][/url]

Anonymous said...

xyron wishblade software http://buysoftwareonline.co.uk/product-37080/Ailt-All-Document-to-SWF-Converter-5-4 mes software [url=http://buysoftwareonline.co.uk/es/category-13/Programas-de-m-sica?page=5]blog forum software[/url] what is the best programming software
[url=http://buysoftwareonline.co.uk/product-25726/Adobe-Creative-Suite-4-Design-Premium]Adobe Creative Suite 4 Design Premium - Software Store[/url] matrix software usa astrology
[url=http://buysoftwareonline.co.uk/de/product-14610/EnTech-PowerStrip-3-63-Multilanguage][img]http://buyoem.co.uk/image/1.gif[/img][/url]

Anonymous said...

[url=http://certifiedpharmacy.co.uk/categories/antiviral.htm][img]http://onlinemedistore.com/3.jpg[/img][/url]
canadian evista pharmacy http://certifiedpharmacy.co.uk/products/maxalt.htm walmart pharmacy rancho santa fe avondale [url=http://certifiedpharmacy.co.uk/products/indinavir.htm]clearlake pharmacy gaylan[/url]
connecticut pharmacy law http://certifiedpharmacy.co.uk/categories/cardiovascular.htm nevada pharmacy technician certification [url=http://certifiedpharmacy.co.uk/products/abilify.htm]abilify[/url]
carisoprodol online pharmacy http://certifiedpharmacy.co.uk/products/lynoral.htm pharmacy operations inc wa [url=http://certifiedpharmacy.co.uk/products/fml-forte.htm]north shore pharmacy huntington[/url]
echo benefits and pharmacy http://certifiedpharmacy.co.uk/products/dramamine.htm price chopper pharmacy burlington vermont [url=http://certifiedpharmacy.co.uk/categories/healthy-bones.htm]healthy bones[/url]

Anonymous said...

[url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/glucotrol-xl.htm][img]http://onlinemedistore.com/7.jpg[/img][/url]
careplex pharmacy http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/remeron.htm us discount pharmacy ambien overnight shipping [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/suhagra.htm]medicap pharmacy rapid city south dakota[/url]
pennsylvania state board pharmacy purchasing http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/cytoxan.htm automated pharmacy technology [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/hydrochlorothiazide.htm]hydrochlorothiazide[/url]
pharmacy degree ferris state http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/requip.htm st louis college of pharmacy [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/catalogue/m.htm]amato pharmacy[/url]
cvs pharmacy pregnancy discrimination http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/retin-a-0-02-.htm tracey pullman professor pharmacy washington [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/vasotec.htm]vasotec[/url]

Anonymous said...

dating a pharmacist [url=http://freeinternetdating.info/singles/singles-dance-grand-rapids-michigan]singles dance grand rapids michigan[/url] adult children widowed parent dating
dating women 50 or 60 http://freeinternetdating.info/bride/russian-bride-find examine dating
totally free sex dating [url=http://freeinternetdating.info/matchmaking/czechoslovachian-matchmaking-agencies]dating services bay area[/url] all free bdsm online dating sites

Anonymous said...

granny dating younger http://loveepicentre.com/contact/ dating oriental rugs
wild sex dating [url=http://loveepicentre.com/taketour/]free uk dating for women[/url] free texas dating sites
christian m ingle dating [url=http://loveepicentre.com/advice/]contemporary dating and its harm[/url] dating google online service [url=http://loveepicentre.com/user/BLKLEO/]BLKLEO[/url] methods of scientific dating

Anonymous said...

Hey there! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any issues with hackers?
My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing several weeks of
hard work due to no back up. Do you have any solutions to prevent hackers?


Also visit my page :: hack twitter password

Anonymous said...

Working PSN Code Generator 2013

My website ... PSN Cards 50$ free

Anonymous said...

Download All Recent Games, Movies, Apps, Mobile Stuff and everything
else for free at http://freemoviesdownload.tk

You can download from the following categories

Full Version Applications for Android, iOS, MAC, Windows

Full Version Games for Linux, MAC, PC, PS3,
Wii, Wii U, XBOX360 and other systems
Full Movies And Cinema Movies BDRiP, Cam, DVDRiP, DVDRiP Old, DVDSCR, HDRiP,
R5, SCR, Staff Picks, Telecine, Telesync, Workprint
Full Music Album MP3s and Music Videos Music, Albums, iTunes, MViD, Singles/EPs
Full Version Ebooks eBook Magazines

Download all you want for free at http://freemoviesdownload.
tk

Anonymous said...

Free PDF Password Remover Tools http://www.pdfpasswordremover.
tk - PDF Unlocker - Unlock Any Secured PDF File
For Free. The best PDF Password Removal Software For Free
Download

Please let me know if you're looking for a article author for your blog. You have some really great articles and I believe I would be a good asset. If you ever want to take some of the load off, I'd absolutely love to
write some articles for your blog in exchange for
a link back to mine. Please blast me an e-mail if interested.
Thanks!

Anonymous said...

This program is intended to recover lost passwords for RAR/WinRAR
archives of versions 2.xx and 3.xx. http://www.
winrarpasswordcracker.com The free professional solution for recovering lost passwords to RAR
and WinRAR archives.

If you would like to improve your familiarity only keep visiting this web site and be updated with the most up-to-date
news update posted here.

Anonymous said...

If you want a Premium Minecraft Account check out this generator.
With it you can generate a unique Minecraft Premium Account which
no one else has! You can Download the Free Premium Minecraft Account Generator http://www.
get-minecraft-free.tk

For latest information you have to pay a quick visit web
and on world-wide-web I found this web site as a most excellent web page for most
up-to-date updates.

Anonymous said...

If you want a Premium Minecraft Account check out
this generator. With it you can generate a unique Minecraft Premium
Account which no one else has! You can Download the
Free Premium Minecraft Account Generator http://www.

MinecraftDownload4Free.tk

If you desire to improve your know-how only keep visiting this site and be updated with the
most recent news update posted here.

Anonymous said...

Free Windows Password Reset Software - http://www.windowspasswordrecovery.

tk - For Windows8, Windows 7, Vista, XP, Windows 2000, Windows Server
2003 and 2008 and NT passwords - Easy Free Password Recovery Software - Crack
Windows Passwords

Pretty! This was an extremely wonderful post.
Thank you for providing this info.

Anonymous said...

buy tramadol cod tramadol effects - buy tramadol online cod