Youth Development Program: Edna McConnell Clark Foundation, 1999

Center for Strategic Philanthropy and Civil Society (Duke)



Case Study Sector


The Youth Development Program of the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation (EMCF) is guided by a rigorous strategy and theory of change. Developed with the help of the Bridgespan Group, this strategy cum logic chain entails a six-step process:

  1. Identifying organizations
  2. Pre-screening
  3. Due diligence
  4. Business planning
  5. Investments
  6. Performance tracking and evaluation

The Foundation describes its approach as Institution and Field Building (IFB). On the one hand, it seeks to strengthen youth development organizations and to help them reach larger numbers of low-income children and teenagers. On the other hand, EMCF hopes to build and improve the youth development field. One way it does this is through its support of excellent institutions, which can then serve as leaders and models to other youth-supporting nonprofits. Another way is by disseminating the knowledge gained along the way.



  • Field Building
  • Evaluation
  • Strategy


  • Northern America

Blog Posts


Jan 27

JOIN US Wednesday, January 27th at 4:30 PM, on Zoom, for a VIRTUAL discussion on reinventing local journalism with philanthropic and civic capital. Registration is Required