Opinion

Two cheers for Giving USA

While Giving USA’s annual reports fulfill a need for serious study of the charitable sector, fundraising professionals would do best to ignore all the buzz and focus on data that is more relevant to their specific organizations.

Lawsuit promises to clarify donors rights over DAFs, leaves larger questions unasked

A lawsuit against Fidelity Charitable’s management of a donor-advised fund may begin to answer questions about the legal rights donors have over the these increasingly popular charitable vehicles.


What can funders do to support localism and decentralization?

Philanthropists can help locally minded government officials by providing advice, evaluation, and using their own grantmaking to strengthen civil society.

The higher calling of fundraising

Several authors reflect on the value of nonprofit fundraising as a vocation and its role in strengthening our democracy. They also also offer important practical tips for fundraising professionals.


Embarrassment about SPLC should be shared by others

Pillars of establishment philanthropy—including GuideStar and Charity Navigator—should be subject to increased scrutiny because of what went on at SPLC and their reactions to it.

Conservative policy funders have become as impatient as liberal donors

Restoring a more patient philanthropy means backing away from the obsession with immediate policy and political outcomes.


Nonprofit funding: Ordering a cake and restricting it too

Too many nonprofits spend too much time navigating the complex maze of funding restrictions, time that could be better spent delivering and improving on services.

How can funders support scholars with an alternative point of view?

Funders interested in supporting intellectual diversity should pay attention to the ideas of social psychologist Jonathan Haidt, and academic organizations doing their part to encourage alternative points of view.


Consumption philanthropy and the quest for coherency

John Ruskin’s keen observations on living coherent and integrated lives sheds some light on our modern practice of “cause marketing” and “consumption philanthropy.”

Listening to the poor

If you really want to fight poverty, you need to start by listening to (and respecting) the poor.




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