From the Director: Oct 2011
Why give? Everywhere I go people ask, why does philanthropy matter? I think about these questions as I listen to students in class and as we host workshops, public seminars and events. Stanford PACS believes that philanthropy is not one discipline or one approach but rather the opportunity to bring an interdisciplinary lens to explore new ideas for social change. We have such a robust civil society in the United States, but recently it is under constant scrutiny—should nonprofits be regulated or who should be able to benefit from charitable tax deductions? I was reflecting on how philanthropy has impacted so many aspects of our lives and how my year-end giving might make a small difference in someone’s life. Is that enough or should I demand more? How can I balance passion with impact?
Whether your passion is education reform, women’s reproductive health or trying to create a new framework for philanthropy in the 21st century, as the fall season leads into the year-end giving cycle, now is the time to start thinking about your personal giving priorities. What is your philanthropic passion? How is innovation being integrated into your philanthropic work? How are you giving your time and resources? And are your gifts effective in creating impact?
And yes, many of us have less to give due to these challenging economic times but I am continually amazed at how during these difficult years, individuals continue to make up 75% of giving and bequests from individuals make up another 8%, which is staggering! YOU are the philanthropic heroes giving 83% of philanthropic gifts--making a difference in communities and systemic change too. Foundations were responsible for 13% of gifts providing leadership and dynamic signaling on critical issues and corporations gave 4% in 2009. While there has been disagreement on the actual “giving” numbers for 2010 the differences are insignificant in my mind, but what we should worry about what is happening in 2011 and what 5-year trends we should assess since 2006. Is there a new imperative for nonprofits, many who will struggle to make up for the 30% of revenue to the sector that government provides, which will most certainly be reduced in the near future? Where are the points of leverage?
As we continue to see tighter budgets everywhere, creativity and innovation will be required to do more with less. But where can we learn about new research or from thought leaders? Stanford PACS is launching a new research project on “Innovation in the Established Social Sector” that is being led by Johanna Mair- Visiting Scholar, Hewlett Fellow and Academic Editor of SSIR along with Christian Seelos, Visiting Scholar. Additionally, Rob Reich-Stanford PACS Faculty Co-Director and Lucy Bernholz-Visiting Scholar have launched their sabbatical year research on the exploration of a new framework for the 21st century: The Promise and Peril of the New Social Economy Philanthropy, Policy and Technology. Both research initiatives include that important component of bringing together interdisciplinary teams of scholars and practitioners to inform thinking, methodology, papers and publications. Chiara Cordelli, Stanford PACS Post-Doc and political philosopher hailing from London and Italy has joined the Reich-Bernholz research team.
As we engage established scholars for research, Woody Powell-Stanford PACS Faculty Co-Director is leading a team of up and coming young scholars, which includes two of our 2011-2012 Stanford PACS PhD Fellows Karina Kloos and Carrie Oelberger along with undergraduates Simon Shachter and Ayna Agarwal. Valeska Korff, Stanford PACS Post-Doc and social scientist from the Netherlands and Germany has recently joined Powell’s research team.
This year with Bruce Sievers, Stanford PACS Scholar, we are hosting Peter Varga, Fulbright Scholar from Hungary. He is a former Yale undergrad and NESsT employee. His research is an exploration of extending the power of social enterprise into the human rights space, specifically around LGBT issues.
And for the intellectually curious, the learning continues in many venues. In addition to a very full research agenda for Stanford PACS this year, we have a series of public events that we are hosting or co-sponsoring this fall. Come and learn more about “how to give” effectively or “how strategic philanthropy” is making a difference globally.
In September, we hosted Tom Tierney-Harvard University and Bridgespan; Joel Fleishman-Duke University; Rob Reich and Lucy Bernholz in a private San Francisco salon discussion; the SSIR Nonprofit Management Institute for 320 nonprofit leaders, which featured Stanford Professors Frank Flynn, Doug McAdam and Buzz Thompson; and Robby Robinson, Director of the film Saving Philanthropy. View event details in our event archive.
Looking ahead: Mark your calendars!
Thursday, October 27, Doors Open 5:30pm. Program 6:00pm-7:00pm CEMEX Auditorium at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Be the first to hear the extraordinary leader Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen, Stanford PACS founder and Advisory Board chair, and author of the new book Giving 2.0: Transform Your Giving and Our World during launch week. Jim Canales, President of The James Irvine Foundation and Stanford Trustee will be making the special introduction. Laura is a remarkable leader, teacher, speaker, and philanthropist providing important, accessible insights for givers of all ages, interests, or levels, and whether giving time, networks, or expertise. In Giving 2.0, readers go on a fascinating journey through the fast-changing world of giving and read compelling stories of individual philanthropists. (See the website for the current co-host listing.) RSVP here Enjoy the first blog posting from Laura on Huffington Post!
Friday November 4, Doors Open at 6:30pm. Film & Program 7:00pm to 9:30pm. CEMEX Auditorium at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Join Stanford PACS for a special screening of Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, a story set in 19th century China and centered on the lifelong friendship between two girls who develop their own secret code as a way to contend with the rigid cultural norms imposed on women. The film will be followed by a dialogue with luminaries Director Wayne Wang; Producers Wendi Murdoch and Florence Sloan; and Author Lisa See. This program will launch a new Stanford initiative to facilitate an intergenerational conversation on the women’s movement in collaboration with the Clayman Institute for Gender Research, CDDRL’s Ripples to Waves Program and SparkSF. RSVP here
Thursday, November 17, Doors Open 5:00pm. Program 5:30pm-6:30pm Encina Hall, Bechtel Conference Center. Join thought leaders and innovators from the field of philanthropy. Steven McCormick, president of The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, former president of The Nature Conservancy, will be interviewed by Alexa Culwell, visiting practitioner with Stanford PACS and past CEO of The Helen and Charles Schwab Foundation and the Larry Stupski Foundation. They will explore the issues facing “Philanthropy in the 21st Century.” Our event co-host is the Woods Institute for the Environment. RSVP here.
Also of note...tonight Stanford PACS is co-sponsoring the film Women, War, and Peacefeaturing producer Abigail Disney on Wednesday, October 12, 2011 at 7:00pm-8:30pm CEMEX Auditorium. PBS launched the five-part series last night on national television. The film features the stories of the three women who won the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize last week! There are a few tickets remaining! RSVP here.
Join Stanford PACS as we co-host Dr. Paul Farmer for his presentation of "Building A Movement for Global Health Equity" on Saturday, October 15, 2011 at 7:00pm-9:00pm Memorial Auditorium, Stanford University. Dr. Paul Farmer, founding director ofPartners In Health, will deliver the keynote address at FACE AIDS annual conference. Dr. Farmer is a remarkable physician, medical anthropologist, and leader. Register now for this nearly sold out event.
This is an exciting time of year for Stanford PACS! We have so many opportunities to connect with you at these public events, in the classroom and in the community. Thank YOU for including us in your plans—we are grateful for the interest and support that we receive daily for our research, faculty, students and publications. The high level of engagement from all of you with Stanford PACS and SSIR has been a wonderful outcome of our work together this past year!
Thank you for the opportunity to facilitate our time together—whether in person or email. Special acknowledgement to YOU—and our Advisory Board under the visionary leadership of Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen, faculty co-directors Rob Reich and Woody Powell, our PACS students, and the University at large.
With you in our smart, motivated and engaged Stanford PACS community we have an incredible opportunity to make the world a better place!
Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society
Stanford Social Innovation Review
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