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Several organizations and individuals have produced recommendations on the most effective charities.

Recommended charities tend to work in recommended focus areas, implementing recommended interventions. This is because there can be significant variations in effectiveness between focus areas and between interventions.

However, intervention effectiveness is not the only important factor. It may also be important to consider whether the organization's returns are diminishing: whether additional funds will have an impact comparable to earlier funding. Additionally, it may be important to assess the team, strategy, and transparency of the organization, since these provide indications of the quality and cost of their implementation, which may be important, particularly in areas where the intervention is complicated.