Mario Morino's book, Leap of Reason, is the clearest articulation of how and why we should be thinking hard about data, information and learning in order to do what we do. Take 6 minutes and listen to Mario himself:
I think we're beginning to reinvent the core elements of philanthropy and the nonprofit sector. This include the kinds of organizations we will build and support to produce and distribute shared social goods. Leap of Reason is much more pragmatic then the abstract, long term reinvention that I'm watching occur. The core idea - the role of information in creating shared social goods - will persist. In fact, it may well be at the core of the institutions and networks we are just beginning to invent.