Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Six Trends for Philanthropy Noticeable by 2014

In a guest post on the National Center for Responsive Philanthropy’s blog, Bill Somerville of the Philanthropic Ventures Foundation predicts six trends for philanthropy that will be noticeable by 2014. He makes these predictions based on pressures that are building in the current system of philanthropy, including; increasingly burdensome paperwork and slow decision-making in the face of urgent need, a shift of generational power, a resurgence of interest in grassroots initiatives, and a need for more entrepreneurial grant-making to tackle complex issues.

These changes include:
• More entrepreneurial mindset within foundations: “Philanthropy will involve more risk taking” and “more tolerance for an occasional failure”
• More focus on seeking out and funding “outstanding people and organizations,” versus long drawn-out application processes, as the means to undertake due diligence
• More true partnering between grantors and grantees: “More collegial relationships” between applicants and foundation staff
• More trust-based relationships within foundations, resulting in more discretionary grant-making and faster grant-making processes
• More discretionary and flexible funding for grassroots programs in particular
• A critical mass of young people engaged in philanthropic work, bringing new experiences, perspectives, and practices to shape the field

Myrna Meadows, NRS, International Falls

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