Evaluating science: Opening a debate

David Jaclin & Peter Wagner (2021)

Social Science Information, Online first

Abstract. This article briefly reviews the long-lasting commitment of Social Science Information to the critical analysis of orders of knowledge and the conditions for their creation to, subsequently, reflect on the current co-existence of a plurality of orders of justification across society, including the institutions of knowledge production. Furthermore, it suggests that recent social transformations have accentuated an asymmetry within this plurality, namely towards those forms of judgement that operate with quantitative measures and that are geared towards enhancing performance.

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Measuring the Worth of Social Good: Valuation in an Emergent Non-profit Social Enterprise

Paul-Brian McInerney (2021)

Journal of Social Entrepreneurship, Online first

Abstract. Non-profit social enterprises address social problems with business models. This paper examines the founding years of an early non-profit social enterprise in the United States to highlight the role venture capital and venture philanthropy played in shaping performance measures. While venture philanthropies funded the creation of blended value models of performance measures, other practices from venture capital, such as taking board seats and engaging in managerial oversight, were quietly playing a profound role in the financialization of performance measurement in non-profit social enterprise. The early influence of venture capital valorised quantitative performance measures, the objectivity, calculability, and commensurability of which made them attractive to key stakeholders. More recent work in performance measurement have sought to incorporate a wider range of stakeholders. However, this paper explains the legacy of venture capital in financializing performance measures with which social enterprises continue to grapple.

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