RE: Philanthropy Blog

Posted Date: Tue, 03/05/2013 - 15:00
Two years ago, the Foundation Registry i3 was a lifesaver for me. I was working as a philanthropic advisor and was looking for an opportunity to lead a group of emerging philanthropists interested in education reform from talking about collaboration to taking action. The U.S. Department of Education’s Investing in Innovation (i3) competitive grants program seemed tailor-made for my crowd: a marketplace of ideas, evidence-based approaches, and five-to-one leverage. I informed several dozen high-net-worth donors about the i3 program and vetted the highest-rated applicants based on the quality of their project designs, evidence and evaluation, capacity, financial review, and need for a match. My clients pooled over $5 million in flexible new funds to provide matches for i3 projects working in sixteen states and D.C. and, along with other private funders, leveraged $145 million in public funds.
Posted Date: Mon, 03/04/2013 - 16:11
The prevalence of computers in modern society has led to a greater need for technology-based curricula and wired classrooms for students of all levels. Top online PhD programs are now available, but some primary schools don’t have a single computer. As a result, companies and organizations nationwide are providing under-funded classrooms with state-of-the-art, electronic educational implements. This philanthropic push has increased classroom performance and, in many cases, led to a higher rate of college attendance for children in these classrooms.
Posted Date: Mon, 03/04/2013 - 15:45
I recently attended a conference and between brochures, pamphlets, and folders, I amassed quite a bit of print material. Upon viewing the stack, I wondered: Why does information transfer require so much paper? For those who are interested in going green for their own events, here are four ideas to cut down on the paper trail:
Posted Date: Mon, 03/04/2013 - 08:49
I recently had the opportunity to connect with several young nonprofit professionals at a lunch meeting. After learning about issues several were facing that ended up complicating work with grantees, I immediately suggested several free technology tools that could streamline their current work.
Posted Date: Mon, 03/04/2013 - 08:45
With one-third of Americans still lacking broadband Internet connections at home, access to the internet is often considered an equity issue. Yet programs aimed at narrowing the digital divide may leave their strongest legacies in the areas of community and economic development. Online access is a gateway to opportunities in education, workforce, and health, and other areas that increasingly depend on digital access and digital skills.
Posted Date: Fri, 03/01/2013 - 10:39
Isssues: Technology
Recently, I had the pleasure of attending the Center for Digital Information’s session on philanthropy and the digital public dialogue at theCouncil on Foundations Annual Conference in Los Angeles.
Posted Date: Fri, 03/01/2013 - 08:18
Isssues: Technology
“The movement towards outcomes-driven philanthropy has done a lot to diminish creativity,” concluded one CEO at a recent GMA Foundations’ NPO Conversation on creativity. At this regular lunchtime forum, leaders of seven Boston-area nonprofits were asked to open up about their organization’s most creative moments, their innovation wish list for 2012, and obstacles to organizational creativity. Judging by the conversation, creativity and innovation are still essential to the daily existence of these organizations. The question, though, remains: Is outcomes-driven philanthropy affecting creativity?
Posted Date: Thu, 02/28/2013 - 10:06
Isssues: Technology
Funders, nonprofit journalists and academics gathered this week at the Council on Foundations convention in Los Angeles to discuss challenges nonprofit news outlets face in getting charitable 501c3 status. It’s part of a project called the Nonprofit Media Working Group, a partnership between Knight Foundation and the Council.
Suzanne Stringfield
Posted Date: Mon, 02/25/2013 - 07:43
Isssues: Technology
Don’t get me wrong: I love Madonna. Really, I do. But for a while there, anytime I searched the topic of global philanthropy, the only news that surfaced focused on Madonna and her effort to build a number of schools in Malawi. I’m not saying it’s not important or that she’s not doing great work, but come on philanthropy! We all know that there is a lot more going on out there than that. Why should Madonna get all the press?
Posted Date: Fri, 02/22/2013 - 09:47
Isssues: Technology
Wayne Gretzky famously said that a great hockey player skates to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been. These are instructive words for philanthropic foundations and other groups confronting fundamental and rapid shifts in the communication landscape. Two disruptive forces are reshaping the terrain on which our public dialogue takes place: digital communication technology and the unraveling of traditional journalism. This is of enormous consequence for social sector organizations whose effectiveness relies in part on a functioning, well-informed public debate on issues such as health, education, the economy, global development and the environment.

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