Some people believe that philanthropy produces more value when it operates under a deadline. But testing that proposition is a lot harder than it sounds. Here’s a way to frame the question.
Recent decades have seen a marked shift in not just the amount of philanthropic contributions directly into public-policy debates, but the explicitness of their intent. Whereas most foundation grants in the policy arena used to take the form of “demonstrations” and “models," funders today have tended to leap directly into the promotion business, advocating changes based on normative arguments that may be only loosely grounded in empirical evidence.
We recognize that perhaps our greatest accomplishment—with the exception of the kids we raise—will not come from businesses we've started, but from the help we provide to people and causes around the world.
President, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
Investing in our Future: How Early Childhood Development Became a Chief Priority for the Pritzker Foundation
The Pritzker Family Foundation
President and CEO
The Kresge Foundation
In 2014, preparing for its final burst of expansive, long-vision grants, Atlantic drew its core programs to a close, downsized its staff, ramped up a final communications strategy, and became, in all respects, an institution in the final stages of work.
Almost all grants support human beings. But only some concentrate on cultivating human excellence. Five factors, drawn from The Atlantic Philanthropies' work in Viet Nam, seem to define this important form of grantmaking.
Modesty is a personal virtue, but it can be a vice for foundations and their causes. Paul Grogan of the Boston Foundation recently explained why.