Warren Buffett has famously called philanthropy "society's risk capital." The best foundation leaders view their resources in exactly this way. Here’s an example from the Bay Area.
The first round of TED’s new philanthropic venture is channeling serious money to worthy causes. Can it get past its fixation on ideas and startup culture to support lasting progress?
This is not a time for the holders of "society's risk capital" to play it safe, with payout strategies that stay the same in the face of urgent threats. The Wallace Global Fund is one foundation that gets that.
Some city governments are getting serious about raising outside funds, and Detroit’s 20-person team is ramping up private support for city projects. What are the implications for the public sector?
Running a nonprofit is draining, and funders rarely provide the kind of support that allows staff to fully thrive. But the idea of backing sabbaticals to refresh leaders and strengthen organizations is slowly catching on.
The Alliance for Good is a donor-advised fund started by the founders of an up-and-coming health food e-commerce startup. They’re inviting other like-minded millionaires to join and figure out specific causes as a group.
Measured by giving, The Foundation For The Carolinas is now the number two community grantmaker in the country. Rising wealth in the region is one big reason for its surge. But there's more to the story.
In key respects, the #MeToo movement was made possible by decades of work by women’s funds. Hallmarks of their approach include openness, listening, and participatory grantmaking.
Rapid response funds have emerged as a favored tool in the Trump era, with some funders moving faster than others. One collective of grantmakers gave $605,000 to 50 groups in its first year, learning lessons along the way.
Giving circles have become a key part of philanthropy's push for inclusion and more "democratic" giving. Now, this no-minimum donor-advised fund wants to use tech to give them a boost.
There are more left-leaning heirs around than ever. But organizing them into a potent force within philanthropy takes work—and money. Surdna is pitching in.
Heintz has been an influential foundation head for over 15 years. But what shaped him early in his career? And what is he and the leadership of RBF thinking about right now?
Trumpism is anathema to the values of philanthropy's first couple, while the administration's policies are a wrecking ball that threatens their foundation's gains. So why aren't they speaking out more forcefully?
She's a key player at one of the biggest anti-poverty funders in the country, which focuses laser-like on the nation's largest city. Amy Houston talks about Robin Hood's approach and more.
Wealthy donors face ever-increasing scrutiny, whether for their business practices, political ties or unsavory donations. The Mercer family is at ground zero of this backlash.
He leads a community foundation that's put race and class at the center of its work—in a city that's become a symbol of urban stratification. Blackwell talks about his life path and what keeps him up at night.
He leads a top foundation in Silicon Valley that's working on such tough challenges as climate change and the polarization of U.S. politics. Kramer explains what keeps him up at night and more.
Last week, Pennington became the most senior program person at the Ford Foundation, one of the top jobs in the philanthropy world. In this revealing interview, she discusses her background and work at Ford.
In another sign that participatory grantmaking is gaining traction, the Emergent Fund's model engages movement leaders to advise, and ultimately determine, where its grants go.
New York Community Trust has engaged in quite a bit of grantmaking over the past year in response to Trump administration policies. But what about all its other longstanding priorities?
There's a lot going on in philanthropy right now. We cast an eye forward, offering predictions about what lies ahead for the world of giving in 2018.
For years, donors have been complaining that it’s hard to find nonprofits that can absorb very large grants. Now, MacArthur hasn't just made its own $100 million bet. It's teed up a whole bunch of other well-vetted ideas.
It's not just that the bill will increase the dominance of wealthy donors over civil society by reducing giving by ordinary Americans. It will also lead to more government cuts, with private givers filling the void left behind.
GiveWell, the charity evaluator, believes that most gifts achieve little impact. Its push to redirect donor dollars is making headway—even as the limits of its approach have also become clearer.
A recent report provides a big-picture view of the state of philanthropy in the American South. Where are grants going, and how effective are funders at addressing entrenched inequities in the region?
With government at all levels facing fiscal problems, more donors are stepping forward to pay for public services. We dive into the latest example—and the tricky issues raised by such giving.
A new study on giving circles shows the networks have tripled in the last decade, and they're including people often left out of institutional philanthropy. America's biggest foundation is cheering on this trend.
Giving Tuesday was a big success. But charitable giving by ordinary Americans is down, the wealthy give crumbs relative to their soaring assets, and nonprofits are in crisis in many cities.