Publications

Built On Principle: A Guide to Family Foundation Stewardship

Built on Principle will help family foundations achieve excellence using the Stewardship Principles for Family Foundations as a blueprint for excellence.

Closing a nonprofit charitable institution presents a range of unknowns to the grantmaking community. In this analysis, authors John Dickason and Duncan Neuhauser provide guidance to foundations considering whether to create a time-limited foundation or bring a foundation to an end. Topics include managing finances, grants, human and physical resources, archives, history and records.

The report explores the ways in which infrastructure organizations think about the value and the mechanics of collaboration—the drivers and barriers to collaborative work—and to determine ways to encourage more effective partnerships. The publication features a framework for understanding different types of collaboration, a set of recommendations for better collaboration, and a series of case studies that show a range of partnerships that tease out the potential benefits and challenges of various kinds of collaboration.

Facing Forever: Planning for Change in Family Foundations

Family foundations can find opportunities even in times of great change and crisis. Facing Forever will arm you with the tools, stories, and resources to help you prepare for current and future transitions. At the very least, the difficult issues it raises will help get your board talking about and planning for highly personal and highly probable possibilities.

The Council conducted the foundation management survey in March 2010 in cooperation with the Foundation Center. Respondents were asked to provide information on their boards' demographics, compensation and reimbursement practices, liability insurance, ethics policies, and information on their foundations' administrative expenses and fiscal oversight. All reports in the series provide detailed breakdowns of survey data by foundation type and asset size. The second report of the series, Administrative and Investment Expenses, provides a variety of administrative and investment expense ratios.

The Council on Foundations’ Foundation Management Series provides foundation boards and staff with the tools needed to benchmark their practices and operations against peers in the field. Containing data from the Council’s 2009 Foundation Management survey, the series will consist of three reports: Board Composition and Compensation, Administrative and Investment Expenses, and Fiscal Oversight. The first report of the series, Board Composition and Compensation, offers a summary of key findings on foundation policies regarding board compensation and board diversity. The report also provides detailed breakdowns of survey data by foundation type and asset size.

Fiscal Oversight covers the use of independent auditors, the fiscal responsibilities of board committees, and the impact of audit results. The study also provides data on conflict of interest policies, directors and officers liability insurance, and board discretionary giving and matching gifts.

Foundation CEOs and trustees share insights and personal stories related to significant paths of change and how they overcame setbacks. Download a copy and gain best practices to help you successfully lead your foundation, boards and staff.

The Principles were created by representatives of more than 40 charitable sector organizations including the Council on Foundations (the working group coordinator), Independent Sector, InterAction and Grantmakers Without Borders, as an alternative to the U.S. Treasury Department's Voluntary Anti-Terrorist Guidelines.

The Giving Family: Raising Our Children to Help Others

The Giving Family offers parents dozens of simple family activities to teach children of any age how to give their time, their talents, and (yes!) their money to people and causes they care about

The Grandparent Legacy Project

The Grandparent Legacy Project is an oral history tool that helps grandparents communicate their stories—their legacies—across the generations. Created by 21/64 and the Association of Small Foundations, this resource excerpts interviews with 15 well-known philanthropic grandparents, a CD to hear their voices, and a workbook.