Philanthropy and the Social Economy: Blueprint 2014

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Philanthropy and the Social Economy: Blueprint 2014 is an annual industry forecast written by leading philanthropy scholar Lucy Bernholz about the social economy — private capital used for public good. The Blueprint provides an overview of the current landscape, points to major trends, and directs your attention to horizons where you can expect some important breakthroughs in the coming year.

 

 
 
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GrantCraft guides are based on the actual experiences of grantmakers and grant users, and are told through their voice. Each guide contains special features to help you scan topics quickly, review key lessons, and explore ways to use the guide with different groups.

      • ADVOCACY FUNDING
        The Philanthropy of Changing Minds

        Grant makers tend to be cautious about funding advocacy, and for good reason- yet advocacy can play a crucial role in advancing a foundation's mission. In this guide, contributors explain that advocacy includes a lot of opportunities to improve public policy through work that is well within the limits of the law.

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      • ASSESSING & MANAGING PRI RISK - A CLOSER LOOK
        Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained

        When grant makers talk about assessing and managing the risks associated with program-related investing, they're referring to both financial and programmatic concerns. GrantCraft asked five experienced PRI makers how they think about risk, how they weigh and balance different sorts of risk, and how they mitigate risk in their PRI portfolios.

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      • BUILDING COMMUNITY INSIDE & OUT
        With a Good Neighbor Committee

        Many organizations - businesses, civic groups, foundations, or otherwise - might like to have a regular vehicle for supporting and participating in community activities in the neighborhoods where they operate. Forming a Good Neighbor Committee can help with that goal, and can do something more: provide a leadership opportunity for employees who are interested in the organization's relationship with its neighbors.

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      • COMMUNICATING FOR IMPACT
        Strategies for Grantmakers

        Foundation communications goes far beyond an annual report or the occasional press release about grantees. And it's no longer the exclusive domain of big foundations, communications staff, or consultants. Integrating communications is critical to advancing programmatic goals.

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      • THE EFFECTIVE EXIT
        Managing the End of a Funding Relationship

        In grantmaking, is there such a thing as the good goodbye? Yes, say contributors to this guide, who have found ways to plan for exits upfront, clarify expectations with grantee organizations, and overcome the tensions that so often arise.

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      • EXECUTIVE TRANSITIONS
        Grantmakers and Nonprofit Leadership

        Even for seasoned funders, supporting leadership transitions can be a tricky business. Where is the fine line between helping and intruding? What interventions work? And how can a grantmaker play a constructive role? Learn how grantmakers take up the transition challenge, engage with boards, support new CEOs, and help grantees use the moment to go in promising new directions.

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      • FOUNDATIONS IN EUROPE WORKING TOGETHER

        The practice of foundations in Europe is very diverse and the context in which they work may vary from country to country. This diversity enriches collaboration among funders in Europe, but it can also present challenges.

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      • FOUNDATIONS MOVING ON
        Ending Programmes and Funding Relationships

        Funders move on, and relationships with grantees, partners, or investees change along the way. Exit decisions and strategies are complicated; while a diversity of experiences has not (yet) produced blueprints for smart exits, we’ve pulled our favourite practices.

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      • FUNDER COLLABORATIVES
        Why and How Funders Work Together

        After years of hearing that more collaboration would be a good thing, grantmakers seem ready to find new ways to work together. Contributors to this guide share approaches that have worked for them, as well as the challenges.

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      • FUNDING COMMUNITY ORGANIZING
        Social Change through Civic Participation

        Grantmakers who fund community organizing say it is the best option when you want to promote civic engagement and support lasting solutions to a community's problems.

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      • FUNDING FOR INCLUSION
        Women and Girls in the Equation

        Foundations in Europe can play a much larger role in improving the position of women and girls. This guide reflects on how gender considerations are being addressed in European foundation programmes, processes, and procedures, and it provides a wealth of practical examples and recommendations to inspire other foundations to do so.

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      • GETTING INSIDE THE STORY
        Ethnographic Approaches to Evaluation

        To get insight into a complex community, problem, or process of change, sometimes you need to look beyond conventional research or evaluation methods. Ethnography is a powerful way to step inside the culture of an organization or community, hear ongoing feedback from multiple points of view, and understand a program's real impact.

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      • GRANTMAKING WITH A GENDER LENS

        Grantmakers and grantees describe the experience of using a gender lens in their work. They explain what gender analysis is and isn't - and why it can help shape more effective programs and organizations. The guide also takes a closer look at how gender analysis has led to new thinking in fields as diverse as public health, international development, juvenile justice, and youth services.

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      • GRANT MAKING WITH A RACIAL EQUALITY LENS

        A focus on racial equity can increase your effectiveness at every stage of the grantmaking process. Blending experience and candid advice from grantmakers, this guide explores how a racial equity lens can help you scan your field or community, cultivate new leaders, and nourish change inside your own foundation.

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      • GRANTS TO INDIVIDUALS
        Investing in People and Their Communities

        Grantmakers talk about the rigors and rewards of investing in people. Learn how to design and manage a grants-to-individuals program, including developing a theory of change, using the right funding mechanism, and finding the right people to support.

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      • INTERNATIONAL GRANTMAKING
        Making a Difference Globally and at Home

        Experienced international grantmakers talk about how they've brought a global perspective to their funding. The guide explains the regulations that govern cross-border grantmaking and shares the experiences of funders who have coped with working across geographic and cultural divides.

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      • LEARNING TOGETHER
        Collaborative Inquiry among Grantmakers and Grantees

        Many grantmakers champion the idea of using evaluation to improve grantee effectiveness or advance a field of practice. It's a worthy endeavor, but how can you make it happen in the real world? This guide explores an increasingly popular method called . Grantmakers define the practice, consider potential benefits and grapple with common challenges.

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      • MAKING MEASURES WORK FOR YOU
        Outcomes and Evaluation

        An outcomes-based approach to evaluation works, proponents say, because it uses straightforward metrics to assess actual impact. How else to know if the work you are supporting is leading to the desired changes? Other grantmakers counter that outcomes measurement should be approached with care. This guide looks at tensions that drive the debate about outcomes measurement, as well as common questions about its potential risks and rewards.

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      • MAPPING CHANGE
        Using a Theory of Change to Guide Planning and Evaluation

        Grantmakers ask evaluation questions like these of their grantees and themselves. This brief guide explains why grantmakers use theories of change to guide their questioning, unearth assumptions that underlie their work, establish common language, and develop strong action plans.

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      • NEXT GEN DONORS
        Shaping the Future of Philanthropy

        This guide aims to increase understanding and stimulate discussion about Gen X and Millennial major donors - the generations that have the potential to be the most significant philanthropists in history.

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      • OPENING UP
        Demystifying Funder Transparency

        Through examples from foundations around the world, this guide explores how transparency can strengthen credibility, improve grantee relationships, facilitate greater collaboration, and build communities of shared learning.

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      • PARTICIPATORY ACTION RESEARCH
        Involving in Evaluation and Change

        said a program officer, Participatory action research offers grantmakers a way to do so. It engages all parties in all aspects of an evaluation, from defining the problem to gathering and analyzing data to preparing recommendations. In this guide, learn about a unique evaluation method and how grantmakers used it to evaluate programs in agriculture, early childhood development, and immigration.

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      • PERSONAL STRATEGY
        Mobilizing Your Self for Effective Grantmaking

        Grantmaking includes many moments when one has to manage situations where there is . Like saying No to a good proposal, advocating for new ideas, or negotiating terms for a troubled project. Organized around ideas about role, self and system this guide offers a framework for being effective in difficult situations.

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      • PHILANTHROPY AND THE SOCIAL ECONOMY
        Blueprint 2013

        An annual industry forecast written by leading philanthropy scholar Lucy Bernholz about the social economy — private capital used for public good.

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      • PROGRAM-RELATED INVESTING
        Skills & Strategies for New PRI Funders

        Program-related investments are loans and equity investments that foundations provide at favorable rates to support activities that have a direct charitable purpose. Frequently referred to as PRIs, they expand the resources from foundations - and, in the right circumstances, can be even more effective than grants. In this guide, experienced PRI makers walk through the process, offering practical advice at each step.

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      • PROGRAMMING WITH A BLANK SLATE
        A Case on grant making in rural poverty

        Imagine starting a new grant-making program from scratch — no prior grantees, no established procedures, no set objectives.

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      • PROVIDING FOR THE LONG TERM
        Supporting Endowments and Investable Assets

        An endowment can be an effective way to ensure the permanence and stability of a grantee organization. But it's far from foolproof. In this guide grantmakers discuss the opportunities and how to avoid the pitfalls of supporting endowments and alternatives to endowments.

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      • SAYING YES/ SAYING NO TO APPLICANTS
        Strengthening Your Decision-Giving Skills

        Most grantmakers review more proposals than they can fund. How do you say Yes, or No, so that grant applicants understand your foundation's rationale, feel that they've been treated fairly, and can make realistic plans about their next steps? This guide offers observations and suggestions from grantmakers and grantees to make this task easier and more meaningful.

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      • SCANNING THE LANDSCAPE 2.0
        Finding Out What's Going on in Your Field

        We talked with funders working in the US, Europe, and internationally about when, why, and how it’s useful to scan the landscape for new ideas and new directions. This updated edition of a 2004 GrantCraft guide reflects key changes in philanthropy, from the rise of social media to a growing tendency to scan continuously for changes and opportunities.

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      • SCANNING & NETWORKING - A CLOSER LOOK
        Routines for Discovering the Unexpected

        Scanning is no longer something done only when planning a new program or contemplating a shift in strategy. Using learning networks, grantmakers are starting to scan continuously, looking beyond the usual sources to find innovative organizations and fresh ideas. GrantCraft asked seven grant makers how they build networks to discover the unexpected in their fields and communities.

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      • Speaking Up!
        Foundations and Advocacy in Europe

        European countries have very diverse traditions in philanthropy, and many foundations not only fund advocacy but directly influence policy agendas through their operational programmes. This guide explores how foundations do so through interactions with local and national governments as well as the European institutions.

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      • USING COMPETITIONS AND RFPS
        Requests for Proposals

        When does it make sense to hold a grant competition or use an RFP? In addition to looking at management issues to consider along the way, this guide explores how grantmakers shape competitions to serve larger strategic goals, communicate with wider audiences, create a learning community, and find ways to work with those who are not selected.

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      • WHEN PROJECTS FLOUNDER
        Coming to the Rescue When Good Grants Go Astray

        Every troubled grant is unique, as is it's path to resolution. Grantmakers recount their experiences with troubled projects and tell how they responded - or how they wish they'd responded. With the benefit of hindsight, veterans describe what they learned and offer advice on the most effective and timely way to handle distress signals.

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      • WORKING WITH THE BUSINESS SECTOR
        Pursuing Public Good with Private Partners

        How can grantmakers cross the divide between philanthropy and business? Looking at the push and pull between sectors from the vantage point of those working in independent and corporate foundations, this guide examines efforts to partner with and influence the business world.

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      • WORKING WITH GOVERNMENT
        Guidance for Grantmakers

        Foundation-government collaborations seem to be on the rise as each sector looks to pool resources with new partners. How can grantmakers take advantage of the benefits while managing the risks of working on terrain that can be unfamiliar to all parties?

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      • WORKING WITH INTERMEDIARIES
        Global Grant Making through Partner Organizations

        Making grants through an intermediary is often the simplest way to fund internationally, and sometimes the most effective. How does the relationship between donor and intermediary really work?

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      • WORKING WITH START-UPS
        Grantmakers and New Organizations

        Grantmakers from a wide range of funding organizations describe their experiences as supporters of new nonprofits or startups. Find out how they negotiated the path from idea to organization, and what they learned along the way about how to solve problems and help an organization sustain itself into the future.

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      • WORLD SUMMITS & CONFERENCES
        Grantmaking on a Global Stage

        Summits and world conferences can give grantees an important opportunity to contribute ideas to governments and international agencies - and to link with counterparts and kindred movements around the globe. This guide, drawing on grantmaker experiences, looks at how funding in connection with a summit can advance grantees' programmatic goals and help them get the most from a summit experience.

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