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Making the Internet a More Humane Place · A Theory of Change

Urusaro Rwagaju
April 8, 2024

Impact is a multifaceted and somewhat scientific assessment of how an organisation or initiative influences the world around it. It is ultimately measuring the ripple effect of what we do in the world. Whether intentional or incidental, beneficial or harmful, impact is the ultimate goal we all pursue with our projects. It is long lastIt represents our capacity to clearly articulate how we contribute to any change and informs us whether we are achieving what we set out to achieve.

At MoSS, our overarching goal - of fostering a more humane internet and world, serves as our guiding principle. To methodically assess and chart our progress towards this goal, we employ various impact frameworks, beginning with a theory of change.

Coined by Carol Weiss of the US-based Roundtable on Community Change in 1995, "theories of change" serve to evaluate social impact. Although this model exists in diverse forms, structures, and scales, and lies amongst a plethora of other frameworks for social change, behaviour science, and social impact, its utility and clarity are contingent upon context.

For our project centred on cultivating a more humane internet, during our initial three years at the Museum of Sticks & Stones, our approach wasn't to define what should or shouldn't be said or to dictate permissible discourse, but rather to foster understanding each other's experiences that would prompt reflection on our own actions. This, in turn, would lead to more deliberate choices in our digital interactions for the betterment of humankind.

In order to map how this transformation would manifest and to what extent, we developed a simplified Theory of Change model employing a methodology created by Mettlesome, known as Train Theory. This streamlined approach aids in charting the progression from our current state to our desired destination.


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