Edd Baldry

Director of Innovation

Why your nonprofit needs an AI strategy

3 mins read

AI is changing the fabric of society. That means it’s rewriting the nonprofit landscape. That’s a huge opportunity to amplify your impact and unlock the value of AI in your organisation. But to take advantage of this change every organisation needs a clear strategy of how to engage with AI.

AI is transforming our world

AI is a technology that will transform society. This is the argument from researchers, thinkers and politicians across the spectrum. Folks like Joy Buolamwini, Fei-Fei Li, Timnit Gebru, Klaus Schwab and António Guterres are all in this camp. Others are going further. They argue that not only will AI transform society but that it will become the next General Purpose Technology. This is where Bill Gates, Mira Murati, Mo Gawdat and Mustafa Suleyman are. If they’re right it would mean future generations will look at AI in the way we think of steam power, electricity and computers.

Nonprofits are already using AI for good. Some of the applications feel like science-fiction. An example: the Earth Species Project is aiming to decode non-human communication. Others are simply enabling amazing organisations to increase their impact. That ranges from the World Food Programme tracking and preventing world hunger through to WWF being able to better drive climate action.

The transformation of society from AI is already underway. The systems thinker, Kasper Benjamin Reimer Bjørkskov says there are 12 interconnected systems that make up human society. Our own research has shown that every one of these systems is being impacted by AI. Many of these are positive changes, some are negative. In the ‘Cultural system’ we see the democratisation of creativity but likewise the increased precarity of creative workers. In the ‘Political system’ we see the ability to improve policy development but a risk of misinformation being easier to produce. In the ‘Communication system’ it’s now easier than ever to build a digital platform but it’s harder for organisations to cut through the noise.

If you’re interested in the impact that AI is having on society you can download our playbook ‘An introduction to AI for Nonprofits

An AI Strategic Framework for nonprofits

We’ve worked with Oxfam, Mind, RNIB, Art Fund, GOSH and many others on their AI journeys. Innovation at Torchbox exists to empower positive changemakers. We set direction, we experiment and we scale impactful solutions.

Over the past months we’ve developed our Strategic AI framework for nonprofits. We’ve developed it through extensive research and collaboration with our clients. We’ve developed the framework to enable nonprofits to leverage AI for positive impact.

AI is touching every part of society. Our framework reflects that. We take a strategic long-term view that considers your nonprofit as the complex network of interconnected systems that it is. As an overview it considers your ecosystem, your organisation’s impact, your value, people, organisational structure, and organisational processes.

The framework will help take your organisation from being new to AI to being a pioneer with the technology. If you’re interested in more details about our framework you can download it for free in the resources second of our AI website.

Create your strategy

You need a strategy. For better or worse the suite of technologies that make up AI aren’t going away. Almost every VC company, large corporation and government is investing large amounts of money into AI. That’s going to create ‘innovation spillovers’ and new possibilities that will only be discovered with a strategy.

If you’re interested in working with us let’s chat. We’ve created an AI leadership workshop for nonprofits. These are one-hour sessions where we’ll discuss:

  • The current state of AI
  • The potential of AI in your organisation
  • How and where to get started
  • How Torchbox’s Strategic AI Framework works

You can book your AI leadership workshop here.

Hear how an AI strategy can maximise your nonprofit's impact

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