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IDEA Journey accelerates nonprofit digital transformation

PRESS RELEASE July 22, 2019 Contacts: Nan Hall, Ric Brewer NetHope Communications Team | 206-604-5118 | 206-276-5200   […]


July 22, 2019

Contacts: Nan Hall, Ric Brewer

NetHope Communications Team | 206-604-5118 | 206-276-5200


SEATTLE – NetHope’s Center for the Digital Nonprofit announces that its IDEA Journey,  a new and innovative, once proprietary method to accelerate nonprofit digital transformation, is now available for wide release to all nonprofits.

The IDEA Journey—a social impact accelerator that stands for Imagine, Design, Execute and Assess—represents a $2 million venture investment. It’s aimed at revolutionizing how nonprofits rapidly leverage digital technologies to further advance their missions. It was launched and refined under the sponsorship of Microsoft as Dream, Design, Deliver (D3) and has been pilot-tested for the past 14 months by NetHope members with headquarters both in Europe and the USA.

To date, 15 NetHope member organizations have begun IDEA Journeys, addressing challenges at all scales, ranging from operational transformation to beneficiary-facing solutions. The Dream Books have been made public, documenting and addressing the challenges for any nonprofit to build on. These organizations represent more than $7 billion in annual aid and operate on all continents. The new resource guide released today documents the IDEA Journey and invites all nonprofits to submit specific challenges they would like to tackle.

“Over the last 18 months, Microsoft and our partners have been working with NetHope members to help them identify and bring to life their digital transformation goals to help accelerate impact. We are excited to see Dream, Design, Deliver evolve and grow to help even more nonprofits,” explains Justin Spelhaug, General Manager of Microsoft Tech for Social Impact.

“The novel use of design thinking in IDEA quickly ushers in people-focused solutions. It ensures humans remain at the center of humanitarian technologies,“ observes Jean-Louis Ecochard, Chief Innovation Officer of The Center for the Digital Nonprofit.

The genesis for the IDEA Journey methodology began with the realization that a “business as usual approach” to the way we solve world problems was not going to work. The only way the ambitious United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals set for 2030 are to be achieved is to change our process.

“The IDEA Journey is becoming the standard social sector digital transformation methodology, and NetHope invites the participation of all nonprofits interested in accelerating their impact and advancing their missions,” said Fredrik Winsnes, Director of The Center for the Digital Nonprofit.

Two NetHope members who took part in the initial phases of the IDEA Journey made the following observations:

 “This is by far one of the most transformational and strategic steps HIAS has taken and will truly set us on the path toward transformation, both digital and non-digital.” — Farhan Irshad, COO of HIAS

“Knowledge management is complex. The Dream workshop has helped us to identify how to view that complexity through the eyes of individuals, in order to create solutions based firmly on user experiences. This is a powerful methodology and one which we hope will create great dividends for us.” —  Caoimhe DeBarra, CEO of Trócaire

NetHope is a consortium of nearly 60 leading global nonprofits with a mission to change the world through the power of technology. Its membership collectively delivers over 60 percent of all annual, international, non-governmental aid. In 2017, NetHope launched The Center for the Digital Nonprofit with the aim to accelerate digital transformation of the sector.

The IDEA Journey adds to The Center’s growing body of work as it sets standards for nonprofit digital transformation, as well as providing open resources, tools, and guidance for nonprofits navigating this journey. The Center has created two assessments aimed at sector benchmarking, Digital Nonprofit Ability™ (DNA) and Digital Nonprofit Skills™ (DNS), that are used in orienting nonprofits to the IDEA Journey.

A typical IDEA Journey starts with identifying a challenge a nonprofit seeks to address. Its success requires full cross-organizational participation, engaging representatives from the CEO to the field, as well as beneficiaries. Workshops are led by Consulting Partners, who have deep expertise with the nonprofit sector.

Lauren Woodman, CEO of NetHope, explains “The IDEA Journey takes us one step closer to our goal of digitally transforming the global nonprofit sector to improve the world we share. The only way we can do this important work is through active, creative collaboration between nonprofits, tech partners, and donors.”

IDEA Journey Participants (NetHope Members)

British Red Cross | Compassion International | HIAS | International Refugee Council | Marie Stopes International | Medair | Médecins Sans Frontières | Mercy Corps | Norwegian Refugee Council | Pro Mujer | SOS Children’s Villages | Team Rubicon | The Carter Center | Trócaire | Winrock

IDEA Journey Consulting Partners

Avanade | Accenture Development Partnerships | AKA | Revel | Wipfli


Founding Partners of The Center for the Digital Nonprofit

Avanade | Blackbaud | | Microsoft | Okta | Oracle NetSuite


About NetHope and The Center for the Digital Nonprofit

NetHope empowers committed organizations to change the world through the power of technology. NetHope, a consortium of nearly 60 leading global nonprofits, unites with technology companies and funding partners to design, fund, implement, adapt, and scale innovative approaches to solve development, humanitarian, and conservation challenges. Together, the NetHope community strives to transform the world, building a platform of hope for those who receive aid and those who deliver it.

In fall 2017, NetHope launched The Center for the Digital Nonprofit, an initiative that pulls the future forward so that international nonprofits can “Do good better.” Through innovation and collaboration, The Center brings together the expertise of the technology sector with the on-the-ground experience of global nonprofits to create a network for committed, forward-looking organizations to improve the world we share. The Center has three areas of focus: People, Process, and Technology. By providing the guidance, resources and tools, and grantmaking needed for digital transformation, The Center helps nonprofits achieve the promise of tomorrow today.

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