Build grantee capacity: Catalyst:Ed Exchanges

Catalyst:Ed Exchanges apply the Catalyst:Ed model to networks of organizations that are collectively working on common problems of practice. Built for foundations and other network conveners, Exchanges help grantees and cohort-members connect with providers, knowledge resources, and each other to build capacity and foster peer learning.

Learn more about how Exchanges can help build grantee capacity, while also informing your grantmaking below.

Build Grantee Capacity

  • Identify Needs

    We work with your grantees to help them identify their needs and build a capacity building plan.

  • Access Support

    We connect grantees with expert technical assistance providers, coaches, and consultants.

  • Learn and Build

    We create opportunities for grantees to learn from and build on the work of their peers

Inform Your Grantmaking

  • Power Grantee Efforts

    by funding high-impact and individualized capacity-building projects.

  • Track Grantee Progress

    and learn what’s working and why.

  • Connect the Dots

    across projects to surface patterns and build collective knowledge

  • Our partnership with Catalyst:Ed has been a great way for us to make sure our ventures get the thoughtful and timely support they need to build strong organizations. The breadth and depth of expertise in the Catalyst:Ed network ensures that leaders across our portfolio can access coaching and consulting help in any area.

    Frances MessanoFrances MessanoPresident, New Schools Venture Fund

Exchange Components

We design and create each foundation’s Exchange keeping in mind the foundation’s specific priorities and the profile of its grantees. Key components of Catalyst:Ed Exchange include:

  • Capacity Assessment and Planning

    We build a tailored needs assessment for your grantees and administer it to help them identify their capacity building needs. We then work with them to prioritize identified needs and convert them into actionable plans.

  • Connections to the Catalyst:Ed Provider Network

    Our team connects grantees with education and management providers from our provider network who are available for technical assistance and office hours.

  • Online Platform, Including Resource Library

    The Exchange is a password-protected platform, accessible only to your grantees, where they can learn about their peers, keep track of their capacity building plans, request provider support, and share and access knowledge resources.

  • Advisory Support From Our Team

    Our team provides hands-on support to grantees at every stage so that they get the most out of their capacity-building efforts.

  • Knowledge Aggregation and Sharing

    We collect post-engagement survey results from grantees and providers to understand if engagement goals were met, aggregate knowledge resources developed through engagements, and sharing them with your grantee community through the Exchange platform.

  • Program Design and Management

    We work closely with your team to design the Exchange so it meets your portfolio-specific needs. We share emerging data on grantee needs and progress with you through reports and develop case studies to capture grantee journeys.


  • Spotlight

    Networks for School Improvement (NSI) Exchange

    Catalyst:Ed is the capacity-building partner to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Networks for School Improvement (NSI) Community of Practice. In this role, we work with intermediaries to help them identify their strengths and areas for growth, hone in on areas where increased capacity will result in greater outcomes for their network, and connect with vetted providers who can help them achieve their goals. We operate the NSI Exchange to facilitate intermediary connections with resources, each other, and with providers.

  • NewSchools Exchange

    With NewSchools Ventures, we are helping teams who are planning to open new, innovative public schools and teams working to diversify the pool of teachers and leaders to better reflect and serve public school students. Together, we clarify teams connect with providers who can support their capacity-building efforts.


Interested in learning more?