Check out CEP’s new searchable database of resources for individuals and grantmakers.

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About Us

The Center for Effective Philanthropy seeks to influence foundations and major donors to be more effective.

Our Mission and Vision


CEP provides data, feedback, programs, and insights to help individual and institutional donors improve their effectiveness. We do this work because we believe effective donors, working collaboratively and thoughtfully, can profoundly contribute to creating a better and more just world.


This mission is based on a vision of a world in which pressing social needs are more effectively addressed. It stems from a belief that improved effectiveness of philanthropic funders can have a profoundly positive impact on nonprofit organizations and the people and communities they serve.

For more on CEP’s work and mission, watch this brief video here.

Our YouthTruth Initiative

Learn about our YouthTruth initiative where we harness student perceptions to help school system leaders and education funders accelerate improvements.

More About Our Work

How We Make a Difference

Our working definition of philanthropic effectiveness guides us. Everything we do is in service of helping more funders exemplify effectiveness.

Foundations and major donors can take on pressing challenges that have defied government and business solutions. But being effective in this work is uniquely challenging.

To make every dollar count, foundations and major donors need to continually assess their performance, learn from data and exemplars, and adapt their practices in ways that are consistent with effectiveness.

That’s where CEP comes in.


Our core assessments – the Grantee Perception Report, Applicant Perception Report, Donor Perception Report, and Staff Perception Report – offer grantmaking institutions the opportunity to learn from data, insights, and benchmarked feedback from their key stakeholders.

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Our grant-funded research projects delve into issues central to funder effectiveness, informed by rigorous quantitative and qualitative analysis of large-scale datasets, in-depth interviews, and profiles of high-performing organizations and staff.

Explore our resource library

CEP Learning Institute

Through learning cohorts, trainings, and custom workshops, CEP’s Learning Institute supports individuals and groups looking to improve philanthropic practice and maximize positive impact on partners, fields, and communities.

See our offerings


CEP’s YouthTruth initiative harnesses student perceptions to help school and school system leaders and education funders accelerate improvements through validated survey instruments and tailored advisory services. YouthTruth also engages in grant-funded research leveraging its dataset to generate insight for a national audience.

Learn how you can engage


CEP hosts in-person and virtual events where foundation leaders, trustees, philanthropic advisors, major donors, and nonprofit leaders can learn and connect in ways that are meaningful to their work. Our expert staff are dynamic speakers who frequently appear at global and regional sector events.

Learn More

Our Team

Meet Our People

We are a group of high performers doing high-quality, meaningful work with a commitment to excellence

Our Staff
Board of Directors
Advisory Board

Our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Plan

We are committed to a diverse, equitable, and inclusive work environment, where all feel welcomed to be authentic and contribute fully.

Our Demographics

As part of our commitment to openness and transparency, CEP shares data about the demographics of our staff and board.

From the Blog