La misurazione dell’impatto sociale. Approcci e strumenti

Translated title of the contribution: [Autom. eng. transl.] Social impact measurement. Approaches and tools

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Since the 90s, there has been a proliferation of different tools for measuring social impact. Indeed, public institutions promote voluntary adoption of non-financial performance measurement systems, as well as specific non-financial reporting obligations, have been introduced for large companies. Among the different forms and methods to assess non-financial performance, there had been an increasing interest and dynamism in both academic research and the managerial world in social impact assessment and measurement. The concept of social impact relies on the Theory of change, and since social impact embraces social change, its evaluation poses some challenges. Indeed, there is an overall confusion over the term social impact, and even if this impact has been identified, several difficulties arise in finding objective systems to measure it. Nowadays, there is a general confusion around the topic, and no clear and complete classification of these tools is available. Consequently, this paper aims at covering the existing gap in the field of social impact measurement systems classification, by offering a systematic overview of existing systems and a map which can guide managers in the adoption of a specific approach. We tried to accomplish a full list of the social impact measurement and assessment systems through a literature review and classified them according to four different criteria: the type of methodology, the applicability, the level of analysis and the measurement method. Our findings suggest that there is a lack of social impact assessment systems focused on objective evaluation. Moreover, we found that most of the measurement systems do not focus on the assessment of either the effectiveness or the efficiency of a single project. As a result, those companies which would like to measure their social impact, will not find dedicated methodologies and will have to refer either to universal tools or to methods that simultaneously use both monetary and non-monetary indicators. The analysis carried out allows having an overview of the existing social impact measurement methodologies, pointing out the correct scope of application of each tool. Our paper is of importance for both academic and non-academic researchers, who need a guide to choose the right social impact measurement tool and who need to have an awareness of their impact on the society.
Translated title of the contribution[Autom. eng. transl.] Social impact measurement. Approaches and tools
Original languageItalian
Pages (from-to)57-71
Number of pages15
JournalRIVISTA ITALIANA DI RAGIONERIA E DI ECONOMIA AZIENDALE
Volume120
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Keywords

  • impatto sociale
  • misurazione

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