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Social Outcomes Conference 2024

This is the provisional SOC24 programme, we will be announcing many more session formats, speakers, and session topics over the course of the next few months.

Why not join us for our annual pre-conference Pub Quiz at 7:00pm Wednesday 4th. This is the perfect chance to have a taste of our well-loved British pub culture and what could be more 'Oxford' than doing a quiz for fun! Whether you've been before or it's your first time, this is a great chance to meet (& compete with) fellow attendees & our GO Lab team. All are welcome!

Inamori Forum

Registration opens

In-person participants will be able to register at the reception of the Blavatnik School of Government and enjoy tea, coffee and pastries with other in-person attendees and speakers.

Lecture Theatre I

Welcome to the Social Outcomes Conference 2024

The Government Outcomes Lab's leadership team will welcome online and in-person participants to this year's conference.

Lecture Theatre I

Keynote Discussion by Professor Tina Nabatchi

We are delighted that this year's keynote address will be offered by Tina Nabatchi, Joseph A. Strasser Endowed Professor in Public Administration and Director of the Program for the Advancement of Research on Conflict and Collaboration at the Maxwell School of Citizenship & Public Affairs, Syracuse University. She will draw on her decades of research on citizen participation, collaborative governance, conflict resolution and challenges in public administration to explore this year's conference theme of accountability, transparency & trust in cross-sector partnerships.

The keynote address will be followed by a panel disucssion.

Lecture Theatre I

Deep Dive 1.1 Strengthening partnerships for outcomes-based financing for Sustainable Development Goal 4: Quality education

This panel discussion will showcase the pivotal role of collaboration between diverse partners in shaping the landscape of SDG 4 financing decisions. By fostering partnerships aimed at achieving educational outcomes, stakeholders engage in a collective effort to address the challenges of outcomes-based financing (OBF) programmes in education.


The Royal Shakespeare Company's Outcomes Framework

In 2024, the Royal Shakespeare Company launched the findings from its Paul Hamlyn Foundation-funded research project, Time to Act. The project’s randomised controlled trial measured the impact of RSC teaching …

Outcomes-Based Finance in Early Childhood Care and Education: Reflections and Opportunities

Over the past decade, the early childhood care and education (ECCE) sector has witnessed the emergence of outcomes-based finance (OBF) programmes, marked by both promising initiatives and notable challenges. In …

Understanding views on value based mental healthcare payment reform in a complex healthcare system. The Australian experience.

Objectives: Many developed countries have fragmented mental healthcare systems that are costly and don't align well with patient preferences. To improve integration of care, insurers are exploring new payment methods …

Tun Razak Lecture Theatre

Deep Dive 1.2 Thinking big, thinking little: partnerships for climate and environmental impact at multiple scales

Climate change and environmental degradation present challenges on a global scale. The need to increase funding for environmental programmes and to maximise the impact of that funding, requires cross-sector coordination among states, international organisations, and the private sector. At the same time, environmental policy must adapt to specific places, their communities and contextual characteristics. The voices of citizens, civil society groups, and local co-creation become requirements for policy sustainability. This session will explore cross-sector partnerships for environment and climate policy at multiple scales. Key themes include: Global climate finance and the impact of investment; varying definitions and metrics for results; stakeholder engagement and co-creation of ‘green’ solutions; governance and administration to support multi-scale partnerships.


Paying for climate results – tackling the climate crisis with Results-Based Climate Finance

While climate finance has increased, it still falls short of the $3-6 trillion annual needs estimated by the World Bank to mitigate climate change impacts. It is thus critical not …

Modeling Community Accountability beyond Insider Stakeholder Silos: Capturing Public Voice in Developing Policy for a Net Zero Greenhouse Gas Economy

The United States seeks to have a net zero greenhouse gas economy by 2050. Citizens as well as scientists, special interest groups including environmental justice groups are not afforded the …

Governance factors driving the co-creation of green solutions in different administrative systems

Sustainable development challenges include issues such as the consequences of climate change, inequalities in access to health and education, integration of immigrants and refugees, and several others which embody the …

Seminar Rooms 1 & 2

Deep Dive 1.3 Benefits and challenges to outcome-based financing for health

In this session, we will take global stock of the landscape of outcome-based investments in health. We will then explore the experience of the benefits and challenges in this field, as well as the tried-and-true solutions to mitigate risks. This will be informed by international case studies in Europe, Australia, UK, and Netherlands. We will investigate key questions which have relevancy for any stakeholder interested in the area of health.

Key questions:

  • What are the barriers to investing in health outcomes?
  • What is the value-add of new funding types for achieving better health outcomes?
  • How can we overcome the risks perceived by different actors in investing in health at the system-level?


Understanding views on value based mental healthcare payment reform in a complex healthcare system. The Australian experience.

Objectives: Many developed countries have fragmented mental healthcare systems that are costly and don't align well with patient preferences. To improve integration of care, insurers are exploring new payment methods …

Smart Capacitating Investments: Lessons learned from outcomes-based financing schemes

While the importance of long-term investment in prevention and health promotion has been at the forefront of policy discussions for decades, the actual level of investment in this area still …

Monitoring en action performance management during the HIB Standing Strong

In North Limburg (the Netherlands) 7 municipalities, 2 health insurers teamed up to pay for outcome with the health impact bond standing strong. The programme, worth €2,8 million, is funded …

Lecture Theatre I

Deep Dive 1.4 Beyond impact bonds: exploring new (and not-so-new) uses of outcomes-based contracting and impact investing

This session will explore innovative ways of working with outcomes-based contracts and impact investing. Building on the recently published ‘Beyond Impact Bonds’ report, we will delve into a number of projects making different uses of outcomes contracting and cross-sector partnerships. We will think together how to collect data on these experiences in a larger database on outcomes contracts.


Exploring the next generation of outcomes-based financing models

KOIS and Tiko are partnering to develop a new flexible and replicable financing model to fund the scale up of Tiko’s activities in its mature markets. To this end, we …

Pull finance for innovation and impact

The Village Enterprise Development Impact Bond spurred iteration to ensure success. While the project met and exceeded performance targets, the question arises: How can we foster innovation that transcends mere …

Smart capacitating investments: lessons learned from outcomes-based financing schemes

While the importance of long-term investment in prevention and health promotion has been at the forefront of policy discussions for decades, the actual level of investment in this area still …

Implementing “Partnership Defined Quality” (PDQ) Methodology to Build Social Accountability for Health Service Performances in Somalia: A Pre-Post Study Design

Background: In many fragile contexts like Somalia, the coverage of essential health services is low. Different social accountability approaches were tested to address these challenges. Partnership Defined Quality (PDQ) is …

Shifting the public spending mindset towards an institutional framework for social outcomes

In Colombia, addressing the lack of measurement in government-implemented social programs has long been a challenge, impeding the assessment of their cost-effectiveness and transparent use of public resources. However, since …

Tun Razak Lecture Theatre

Deep Dive 1.5 Reaching marginalised communities and enhancing inclusion in outcomes-based service provision

Outcomes contracts are designed around measurable impact. This session asks ‘measurable impact for whom?’, and explores the difficulties of providing beneficial services for vulnerable and marginalised people. From programmes for disabled children, to refugees, to survivors of domestic abuse, we will critically reflect on initiatives to include and support vulnerable communities within outcomes contracts. Key themes include: incentives to enhance inclusion; trust and sensitivity between providers and service users; developing community-centric definitions of outcomes and impact.


Using outcomes-based contracting to support refugees in England- Learnings from service delivery and practice

The Refugee Transitions Outcomes Fund (RTOF) was a cross-Government initiative led by the Home Office, running from 2022 to 2024. The RTOF piloted new place-based approaches to supporting people with …

Advancing the Economic Wellbeing of Women Facing Disadvantage through Cross-Sector Partnerships

The NSW Government, through the Department of Education (DoE) and Office of Social Impact Investment (OSII), has partnered with five job-focused social enterprises to advance the economic wellbeing of women …

Transforming Beneficiary Dependency into Autonomy: A Culturally Sensitive Approach to DIB-funded poverty alleviation in Kenya

This on-going thesis investigates how a culturally sensitive, community-based savings model can be developed for the ultra-poor in poverty alleviation interventions. The research context is a DIB funded BRAC graduation …

Inclusion in OBF Puzzle

This presentation will explore the puzzle of how an outcomes fund can be harnessed to support inclusive outcomes for all. In many contexts, including sub-Saharan Africa, disability inclusion in early …

Seminar Rooms 1 & 2

Deep Dive 1.6 Revolutionary, responsible, and responsive relationalism in public procurement

This session will delve into the public procurement professional's role in relational public contracting for innovation, sustainability and VCSEs. By exploring the intricate relationship between procurement practices and relational contracting, we will highlight how professionals can drive social value through collaborative and responsible partnerships.


Sustainable procurement at local government level in the Czech Republic and Slovakia

The Czech Republic and Slovakia are the countries with the lowest share of green procurement in the European Union. At the same time, these two countries are among the most …

The “Rule of Two” and Federal Contract Set-Asides: The Effect of Kingdomware vs. U.S. on Equity in Contracting

Public procurement is often used to invest in small and disadvantaged businesses (SDBs), both to help such firms grow and to advance marginalized communities. In the U.S., the federal government …

The Interplay of Discretion and Complexity in Public Contracting and Renegotiations

Governments and private partners often face unforeseen contingencies that make contract renegotiations unavoidable. This study leverages data from the Tender Electronic Daily eProcurement platform—based on European Union (EU) public procurement …

Embedding social value in procurement

There is increasing expectation for public procurement to deliver positive outcomes for society and the communities which public bodies serve. This emphasis on social value is not a new concept, …

Big Picture: Restoring trust in the public sector: capabilities, collaboration, and culture

This year over half of the world’s population are heading to the polls for elections, yet governments are facing a crisis of confidence from their citizens. Restoring this trust requires governments to deliver results against a backdrop of what is being dubbed a ‘permacrisis’. What can be done to restore faith in the public sector? And what wider lessons might we learn from outcomes-based contracting to build and renew public sector capabilities, collaboration, and culture?

In this session, we will lift our gaze to these broader issues and ask:

  • How can an outcomes-focus strengthen government capabilities through value for money and ensured impact of policies such as children's care, health, and homelessness?
  • How might government meaningfully collaborate with other sectors to improve the delivery of public services?
  • How might public services be strengthened with preventative spending, enabled through an outcomes-focus?
Inamori Forum

From Peterborough to Kirklees: What have we learnt from over a decade of experimentation with social outcomes partnerships in the UK?

Nearly fifteen years since the world’s first social impact bond was launched at HMP Peterborough in England, the impact bond model has been stretched and flexed to fund a growing array of social programmes across health, employment, education, social care and many more. Alongside this adaptation, we have also seen a shift in how this funding model is used and understood.

Yet for many beyond the immediate community working on these cutting-edge partnership projects, social impact bonds still equal the Peterborough SIB. This means that the understanding of the practice, potential and proof of impact of these innovative approaches remains fragmented and partial. Significant opportunities for public sector reform and systemic change will be missed as long as a fog of baffling terminology and mis-interpretation clouds how we see the role of outcomes and effective cross-sector in tackling the acute public services crisis the country faces.

This report brings together perspectives from across academia, policy and practice to take stock of UK’s experience with impact bonds over the past 15 years, to help inform and inspire best practice across the globe.

Oxford landmarks morning run

Stay active during the conference and discover some of Oxford's most iconic landmarks by joining us on an easy morning run. We will be starting the run at the Radcliffe Camera, in the very heart of Oxford.

Inamori Forum

Registration opens

In-person participants will be able to register at the reception of the Blavatnik School of Government building before joining our Croissants and Collaborations for tea, coffee and pastries with other in-person attendees and speakers.

Croissants & Collaborations

With our brand new 'Croissants & Collaborations', we're giving power to our communities by inviting them to lead informal sessions on topics of shared interest. These informal, thematic chats are for in-person participants over breakfast and a hot drink. These are a great opportunity for networking and to exchange ideas.

Lecture Theatre 1

Deep Dive 2.1 Exploring outcomes funds: Evidence & lessons learnt from around the world

This session will feature a deep exploration of the latest practice and evidence around the use of outcomes funds. To date over 20 outcomes funds have been launched and implemented, spanning diverse countries and policy areas of focus. What is the state of play globally with outcomes funds? Where are new funds being developed? What can we learn from the practice to date about how to design and implement outcomes funds effectively?


Governance structure in Outcomes-Based Financing: The role of the intermediary

This presentation delves into the governance structure of outcomes-based financing (OBF) programs involving various stakeholders, such as impact bonds and outcomes funds. Drawing on insights from the Sierra Leone Innovation …

Exploring Outcomes Funds: Benefits, Challenges, and the Path Forward

Outcomes funds were identified as early as 2018 in the first meeting of the Impact Bond Working Group as a promising OBF structure. Since then, the landscape has evolved significantly, …

Tun Razak Lecture Theatre

Deep Dive 2.2 Cross-sector services in fragile settings: crisis, collaboration, and results

Stability and social cohesion are the foundations of improved social outcomes. It is therefore little surprise that populations affected by violence and displacement often have weak services and poor outcomes. While aid to fragile and conflict-affected states has increased, the success of development spending in these contexts remains questionable. There is an urgent need to better understand factors that would constitute more effective support for vulnerable populations.

This session explores the theory and practice of cross-sector collaboration in fragile contexts. Key themes include: results-based partnerships; trust and inclusion; accountability and transparency.


Displacement Practice: Lessons learned from implementing results-based approaches to transform how services are delivered to improve outcomes for refugees and migrants.

For the last two years, Instiglio, with the support of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, has been implementing the Forced Displacement Practice Initiative. We work with government agencies and service …

Seminar Rooms 1 & 2

Deep Dive 2.3 Data into evidence, and evidence into practice: putting data at the centre of decision-making

This session will showcase a number of initiatives where data on outcomes plays a key role in shaping decisions. Producing and using data on outcome metrics, targets and achievements takes time and effort. In this session, we will discuss what are the metrics and indexes that are used the most, how they feed further decision-making processes and the trade-offs that happen when data is transformed into action.


Towards a 100 year vision for wellbeing: The Cook Islands experience

A Cook Islands approach towards defining and improving turanga memeitaki (wellbeing) for all through our ‘Akapapa’anga (genealogical world view).

The Cook Islands National Sustainable Development Plan 2016-2020 (Cook Islands Government, …

Transforming evidence into action: insights from evaluating the Skill Impact Bond

Skill Impact Bond (2021-2025) is a pioneering results-based financing (RBF) programme, which seeks to improve employability and livelihoods for India’s youth – particularly young women. The largest development impact bond …

Practical tips for funders, investors and SMEs to link innovative finance to social outcomes

Global resources and interest in both outcomes-based financing and impact investing have surged in recent years, and there is an impetus to deepen and widen impact whilst balancing dynamics in …

Using a Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) to inform poverty reduction policies

Since 2008, over 40 countries have implemented national Multidimensional Poverty Indices as official statistics to monitor poverty in all its forms. In addition, the index is being used by various …

From Data to Impact: Harnessing Real-Time Data Transparency to Create Trust and Accountability Through a Development Impact Bond in Kenya

Tiko, a tech-driven African non-profit organisation, will showcase the transformative power of transparent, real-time data within the context of Development Impact Bonds (DIBs), specifically focusing on their efficacy in innovative …

Connecting data with practice to reach better decisions and outcomes

In collaboration with local authorities and county administration boards we are exploring data-driven practices to better address risk and protective factors concerning health and wellbeing for children and adolescents. The …

Lessons using data to build trust from the implementation of the Skill Impact Bond

India has a history of strained trust and transparency among civil society, government, and the private sector. Instances of fraud and poor outcomes have plagued development programs. At the same …

Seminar Rooms 1 & 2

Academic paper workshop

We are delighted to be hosting an academic paper workshop for the first time at the Social Outcomes Conference. This will be an interactive session, providing an opportunity to gather with peers and workshop your academic paper.

If you are interested in participating, please contact Michael Gibson.

Learning from the Life Chances Fund projects: impact & ways forward

In this practice-focused session we will dive deep into the experience of some of the social outcomes partnership projects supported through the Life Chances Fund. We will look at projects across different policy areas to explore impact, success factors as well as implementation challenges. We will also reflect together on the projects’ sustainability plans and legacy.

The Life Chances Fund (LCF) is a pioneering £70m programme, launched by the UK Government in 2016. It supports 29 locally-commissioned projects focussed on supporting vulnerable individuals, and it is underpinned by an ambitious and innovative data and evaluation agenda. Find out more about the impact of the Life Chances Fund through this video.


It's not what you do, it's the way that you do it: style over substance in cross sectoral partnerships

The imperative for robust multi-stakeholder partnerships has emerged as a cornerstone for initiating meaningful social change. The Skill Mill Social Outcomes Partnership (SOP), a model borne from a statutory, multi-disciplinary …

Supporting sustainable reunification of children and young people in Norfolk: Lessons and learnings from Stronger Families in balancing trust-based partnership with focus, support and accountability

The Stronger Families partnership will host a conversation, considering relationship development within the partnership and the role this has had in creating supportive systems for programme delivery and adaptations to …

Social impact poster gallery

We recognise that there is so much exciting and meaningful work which can’t be fit into the discussion panels. This is why we are hosting a social impact poster gallery where participants are invited to showcase evidence and insights from pioneering work.

The posters will be on display physically in the Inamori Forum at the Blavatnik School and virtually on the SOC24 webpage. They will be displayed both virtually and physically so that all attendees, both online and in-person, can view the posters.

Lecture Theatre I

Deep Dive 2.4 Disrupting the narrative: global perspectives to inspire leading outcomes practice

Join us for this session where we'll explore pioneering initiatives in social outcomes partnerships worldwide. Hear from experts representing diverse regions including the Middle East, Latin America, Africa, and Asia, offering invaluable insights beyond conventional Western paradigms. Gain fresh perspectives and innovative strategies to drive impactful change in social outcomes initiatives.


Building Bridges: Partnering for Inclusive Sustainability Governance and Mandatory Self-Governance in the Global South

In the evolving discourse on corporate responsibility and sustainability, the concept of Mandatory Self-Regulation (MSR) emerges as a critical framework for ensuring that partnerships deliver tangible benefits to marginalised communities. …

The First Social Outcomes Contract in Türkiye

Istanbul Kodluyor is the first Social Impact Bond in Türkiye, launched in August 2023 by the government in Turkiye. The programme is targeted to support 600 long-term unemployed young people …

Outcomes oriented practice in social services- The Israeli case

More than ever before, changes in welfare services in Israel and worldwide require us to continually examine the implementation of interventions and their suitability for their purposes. These professional, normative …

Tun Razak Lecture Theatre

Deep Dive 2.5 Empowering voices, bridging gaps: innovative approaches to locally-led development and cross-sector collaboration

This session will explore innovative strategies that empower local communities, engage service users and vulnerable groups, and enhance cross-sector collaborations for sustainable development and social impact.


Privilege and freedom: obstacles to engaging vulnerable communities in tackling grand challenges.

Tackling grand challenges requires working with, for, and across vulnerable communities. While scholarly work has outlined the types and roles of communities in driving positive social change, we lack empirical …

Outcomes based approaches to locally-led development: insights from the Educate Girls Maitri Programme.

Locally led development recognises the importance of involving the people and communities affected by development and humanitarian challenges in designing and delivering solutions. Ensuring that local people and organisations can …

Amplifying Not-for-Profits’ Voices in Outcomes-Based Contracting in India.

In the landscape of outcomes-based contracting, the voices of not-for-profits play a crucial role in effective project implementation and driving social change. Present-day private financing is predominantly donor-driven, limiting scalability …

Governing for success: managing collaborative outcomes projects.

Two recent outcomes-driven collaborations in Australia have shown the critical nature and the value of strong governance and accountability systems to establishing strong, viable trust-led outcomes-based partnerships.

In the first …

At the Speed of Trust: Cross-sector Collaborations to Center Community Voice in Research and Practice.

We present two case studies of cross-sector partnerships, which include nonprofit organizations, local government, and academic institutions to highlight the potential of community driven research and impact, which engages community …

Intangible cultural heritage in public procurement: challenges, opportunities and the role of storytelling


Intangible cultural heritage is often neglected in public procurement, but its inclusion can contribute to ensuring that local and cultural practices, expressions, knowledge, skills and traditions, …

Seminar Rooms 1 & 2

Deep Dive 2.6 The public sector in relational contracting: contracting by the People, for the People

At SOC23, we examined the potential for formal relational contracting to support more effective contracting when the public sector seeks to source complex services from private providers. In this SOC24 session, we'll instead focus on the role of the public sector in formal relational contracts, examining (1) the particular challenges posed by the involvement of a public actor in the contract (e.g. public accountability, political pressure etc.) and (2) the public sector capabilities needed to overcome these challenges.


Contracting for Outcomes: Perspectives from the Field

Drawing from WorldCC research and market engagement plus an up-coming report on public sector outsourcing (Justice working party), the presentation will offer insight to the challenges of contracting for outcomes. …

Fostering trust-based relationships in a highly opportunistic environment: An economic analysis of administrative disputes in the French water sector

In France, public contracts for the concession or outsourcing of public services to a private provider represent 6% of the national GDP (Institut de la Gestion Déléguée, 2022). For the …

Lecture Theatre I

Big Picture: Beyond pilotitis: rethinking narratives and actions to institutionalise outcomes

This session will bring together some of the most experienced leaders in the field to ask: how can we move beyond pilots and experiementation to harness the potential of outcomes-based funding for social and environmental change at scale? We will anchor the discussion in three core questions:

- What can we learn from the success but also failure to date in using outcomes-based approaches as a catalytic enabler of a broader transformation of systems to be re-oriented towards delivering impact?

- What are the key structural barriers that prevent mainstream adoption of outcomes-based programmes by the public sector and is a ‘blueprint to scale’ possible?

- Do we need to improve what we deliver, how, and who we build outcome-focused partnerships with, or should we simply adjust our expectations on the pace of change?


Unlocking potential: Scaling outcomes-based programmes in government

Through interviews with global experts from government agencies, delivery partners, and investors from across South-East Asia, the Middle East, Europe, Africa and the Americas our research revealed that obstacles to …

A failure to impress? Why has replicating outcomes funds been (much) slower than we hoped?

The Pioneer Outcomes Funds (POF) programme is the FCDO’s first attempt at using innovative pay-for-success instruments at scale, across a number of outcomes areas, in order to drive better public …

Scaling and institutionalizing results-based financing within aid institutions: lessons, strategies, and next steps from the MCC, The Global Fund, FCDO and the Swiss Development Cooperation

The effectiveness of the global development sector’s spending is constrained by several factors, including aid institutions deploying their funding without strong impact incentives. In response to international agreements such as …

Scaling social impact through innovative finance: lessons learned and perspectives

Reaching the SDGs is not just about spending more money; it is also critically about spending the money we have more effectively. One promising solution is outcomes-based finance (OBF), where …

Inamori Forum

SOC24 Closing celebration gala & remarks

A celebratory ending and closing remarks with moments of community, insights, and connection. Join us for drinks, nibbles, music, and reflections for this final celebration in our beautiful venue.