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Friday
Nov212014

Reality Check: Gates Looks for Impact of Digital Learning

Online courses have tantalized funders and others who dream of expanding access to education at a low cost. But how well are students actually learning? Gates just gave $1.6 million to help find the answer.

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Friday
Nov212014

A Single Four-Legged Focus: The Tech Philanthropist Giving Millions for Animals

Many funders spread their money too thinly and then wonder why they aren't having impact. Not David Duffield, who's laser-focused on animals and gaining on his goal of making "no-kill" shelters the norm.

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Friday
Nov212014

Keep an Eye on the Ikea Foundation. It's Getting Bigger, and Goes Where the Pain Is

You might think that Angelina Jolie was running the place, given how this funder is drawn to hotspots and alleviating human suffering in its rawest forms. Its latest move: A whopping $31.5 give to UNICEF.

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Friday
Nov212014

Is U.S. Economic Growth in the Hands of Women? The Kauffman Foundation Thinks So

The Kauffman Foundation, which supports entrepreneurs, is yet another funder applying a strong gender lens to its thinking about jobs and opportunity, and with big hopes for the future.

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Thursday
Nov202014

Control: Why So Many Funders Fear General Support and Can't Stop Micromanaging  

By now, everyone has gotten the memo that nonprofits thrive best with general operating support, and foundations have been hounded for years to change their ways. They haven't, really. Here's why.

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Thursday
Nov202014

What Can We Learn from Alvin Ailey Dance's Staggering Fundraising Success?

Ailey may exist in a far off stratosphere of big money, but the basic message it's selling to donors—that success breeds new financial needs and you should go with a winner—can also be used down here on Earth

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Thursday
Nov202014

Here's Another Rockefeller Outfit That's Worried About the Planet

There's a lot to keep track of when it comes to the different pots of Rockefeller money, but the environment is a common thread. The Rockefeller Family Fund is particularly keyed in on climate change.

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Thursday
Nov202014

The Foundation Helping Moms Take on the NRA

Though their detractors are—quite literally—armed and dangerous, the Joyce Foundation is squarely in the corner of the new efforts by moms to take on gun violence.

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Wednesday
Nov192014

For the Alcoa Foundation, "Sustainability" Means Education

Alcoa was ranked the most generous U.S. company last year, so we follow it closely. And one interesting thing is how the Alcoa Foundation thinks about "sustainability," and especially in regard to education.

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Wednesday
Nov192014

Jeff Skoll Makes a New Kind of Bet on Storytelling With a Gift to UCLA

It's commonly said that if you want to connect to people, or influence their behavior, tell them a powerful story. But many philanthropists give short shrift to this elementary approach. Not Jeff Skoll.

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Wednesday
Nov192014

Diller Island: Private Park Funding Gone Overboard

Consider for a moment that a billionaire is planning to literally reshape the shoreline of Manhattan by funding a floating island park. Maybe, just maybe, private funding for parks has gone too far.

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Wednesday
Nov192014

Gearing Up for the Next Fight: Inside the Gill Foundation's Strategy Shift

On the cusp of its 20th anniversary, the Gill Foundation is announcing an ambitious push to end all forms of discrimination faced by LGBT Americans. CEO Courtney Cuff explains how it came about.

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Tuesday
Nov182014

"Compelling Stories" — We Talk Shop With a Fundraiser for Animal Advocacy

A video of a baby elephant caught in a poacher’s snare may be hard to watch, but images like this are one way that Born Free USA galvanizes donors. Development Director Angela Grimes fills us in.

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Tuesday
Nov182014

With a Big Campus Give, Spotlight Falls on the Philanthropy of a Low-Profile Couple 

You may not know the names of John and Tashia Morgridge, but they've given $440 million for higher ed, with another big gift just going out the door. And that's only one of their interests.

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Tuesday
Nov182014

Big Gifts, But No Grand Plan Yet: A Look at Steve Ballmer's Philanthropy

When a retired CEO has $22 billion and is only 58, we watch him like a hawk. Two big gifts offer some hints as where Ballmer philanthropy may be going, up to a point, anyway.

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Monday
Nov172014

Conservative Policy Wonks: Your Favorite Sugar Daddy is Gone, But He Left Big Treats

Few donors have had more impact on public policy than Richard Mellon Scaife. And although he recently died, his philanthropic footprint is set to increase. Here's what that means.

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Monday
Nov172014

Meet the Anti-Whaling Ship Named After a Simpsons Co-Creator

People have been digging our coverage of Sam Simon's frenetic giving to protect animals. So here's more: Out on the high seas, there's a 182-foot vessel, the MV Sam Simon going head-to-head with whaling ships.

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Monday
Nov172014

About That Latest Big Gift for Teach For America

Which gift, you might ask, there are so many. One reason TFA is a fundraising juggernaut is because it's adept at tapping into whatever is hot in the funding world. Case in point: a new $5 million gift for STEM.

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Monday
Nov172014

Who's Giving Millions to Fight Sex Trafficking in the United States? We Don't Always Know

Sex trafficking is an issue that commands a lot more attention from donors today than it did a few years ago. But, judging by a rash of anonymous gifts, not all donors want to make their support public.

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Friday
Nov142014

Putting Money Close to the Ground: How a Key Funding Group Has Fought the Education Wars

Heavy hitters like Broad, Gates, and Walton can seem to dominate the education field. But at every turn they've been challenged by local organizers—many backed by a funding collaborative run by NEO.

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