Think tank publishes free 10-point guide to the theory of change

NPC's document, aimed at small and medium-sized charities, can help them design a theory of change based on what they hope to achieve

The NPC guide
The NPC guide

The charitable think tank NPC has published a free 10-point guide to help charities consider new ways in which their activities can help them to achieve their goals.

Theory of Change in Ten Steps is aimed at small to medium-sized charities that are unfamiliar with the theory of the change method of planning.

It is particularly suitable for organisations that campaign or provide services, according to NPC, which encourages charities to improve their impact.

The 10 steps describe how charities can understand the situation they're in, how they can contribute to change and how they can then design a theory of change focusing on what they hope to achieve.

It also describes ways in which they can challenge their assumptions and think about their weaknesses.

James Noble, principal for measurement and evaluation at NPC, says in the report's introduction that NPC's 2014 theory of change guidance is among its most-read publications.

"Since we last published advice on theory of change, we’ve worked with hundreds of charities of all shapes and sizes up and down the country and overseas," he writes.

"It’s given us a good idea of what people find confusing, what they find useful and what’s relevant – we’ve poured that into this new guidance."

The guide includes questions and exercises, which charities can use to develop a new theory of change or reflect on their existing ones.

It is the first step of NPC's plan to refresh all of its thinking on theory of change this year.

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