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The Hewlett Foundation Blog




Friday Note: Ten Predictions for 2014 

December 27, 2013 — By Ruth Levine

As the new year draws closer, I’ll spare you a long note and limit myself to ten predictions for 2014:

  1. A few of the policy changes we care most about will come to pass.  For each of them, three to five organizations we support will have played crucial roles in the success. Ten to twelve grantees will take credit.
  2. Almost everything will take longer than we anticipate. According to economists, who should know these things, everything will take precisely 2.71828 times as long as expected. 
  3. Two out of every five consultant reports will tell us something we didn’t already know.
  4. About one-quarter of our grants will be surprisingly complicated to work through the system.  Of those, half will end up being complete duds. The other half will be great.  (Wouldn’t it be nice if we knew ahead of time which were which?)
  5. By June, we’ll be getting three invitations per day to post-2015 events.  By September, we’ll be getting five.
  6. Until October, we will worry about not having enough money; after that, we will worry about having too much money.
  7. Every time we go out into the real world and talk with people we imagine to be benefiting from the work we do, we’ll learn something that helps us do better.  Every time.
  8. We will struggle to figure out better ways to explain what we do.
  9. We’ll spend a lot of time trying to coordinate with other funders, and sometimes it will pay off big.
  10. Every Friday afternoon, you’ll get a blog post from me with a few passing reflections and a few little bits of silliness.  Sometimes you will read them.  Especially the silly bits.