The Surprising Truth Behind Charity Rankings

Who’s choosing the Top 10

Why It Matters

In theory, charity rankings hold organizations accountable, and can help donors identify which organizations are having the greatest impact — especially helpful information during times of crisis or hardship. But what kind of criteria are these rankings using — and what are the unintended consequences?

Charity Intelligence released its Top 10 List of Impactful Charities in November 2019, following Maclean’s list the month prior of 100 Best Charities in Canada. The latter sparked criticism amongst social impact sector leaders who vocalized their concern with the ranking criteria. 

These lists, produced annually by publications like The Globe and Mail, The Nonprofit Times, Moneysense, and Givewelln generate a fair bit of buzz. In

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