Peer Review: An Authentic, Rarified Glimpse

Kristen Molyneaux, Vice President, Social Impact, Lever for Change, shares insights from the Peer-to-Peer Review process for the 100&Change competition.

In almost every conversation regarding the second round of 100&Change, we are asked, “what did you learn during the first round of the competition, and what changes have you made based on those learnings?” Of the many findings in our learning and evaluation report, one of the most illuminating was that many judges felt they spent valuable time reviewing non-competitive proposals.

Recognizing that our Wise Head Panel of external judges volunteer their time and expertise to 100&Change and that they worked diligently and with great empathy to provide valuable feedback on each proposal they reviewed, we sought ways to elevate only competitive proposals to our judges. It was also critical to stay true to our core values of openness and transparency, while relying on outside experts to help us advance the best ideas to our Board.

In searching for a solution, our competition partner, Common Pool, recommended that we try using an applicant-to-applicant or Peer-to-Peer Review process. This would be an added step between the administrative review, which assesses the basic eligibility of applicants, and the Wise Head Panel. We saw the Peer-to-Peer Review as providing several advantages for both applicants and judges.

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Jill Geiger