The Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society (Stanford PACS) develops and shares knowledge to improve philanthropy, strengthen civil society and effect social change. Stanford PACS connects students, scholars and practitioners and publishes the preeminent journal Stanford Social Innovation Review (SSIR).

Our Work

Stanford PACS is a research center for students, scholars and practitioners to explore and share ideas that create social change. Its primary participants are Stanford faculty, visiting scholars, postdoctoral fellows, graduate and undergraduate students, and nonprofit and foundation practitioners.

As publisher of Stanford Social Innovation Review, Stanford PACS informs policy and social innovation, philanthropic investment and nonprofit practice. SSIR is a shared intellectual space where scholars and practitioners publish inter-disciplinary and cross sector research and ideas to advance social change. The journal is complemented by a website, blog, conferences, webinars and podcasts.

Stanford PACS has relationships with five schools at Stanford University (Humanities & Sciences, Engineering, Education, Business, and Law) and twenty departments, and we leverage the intellectual assets of a diverse, world-class faculty across the University. This provides a unique platform to share our work with the nonprofit and for profit community in Silicon Valley and globally.

Stanford PACS offers postdoctoral fellowships, PhD fellowships and financial support for undergraduates completing honors thesis work. Additionally, Stanford PACS sponsors a regular public speaker series and other symposia and salons that include speakers who are well known academic, foundation or nonprofit leaders.


Our Leadership

Stanford PACS was founded in 2006 by Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen and faculty co-directors Woody Powell & Debra Meyerson. The Center welcomed our first cohort of four PhD Fellows the same year.

Stanford PACS is led by Kim Meredith and by distinguished Faculty Co-Directors who teach a quarterly PhD graduate student workshop in addition to their ongoing research, speaking and publishing.

Logic Model and Strategic Plan

Stanford PACS Logic Model


Stanford PACS Strategic Plan


What’s new @StanfordPACS

Paul Brest and @hal_harvey reflect on the changing intellectual currents among philanthropists and philanthropic organizations, and share their hope for the future of #philanthropy. Read the @HistPhil post https://t.co/nScoltM9It and buy their book https://t.co/8z3ZooBGVo

A problem with #philanthropy is that it’s “looking for the magic bullet” packaged in proposals from charismatic leaders. Instead, suggests @claybornecarson, find community organizations already producing successful change and “give money without a proposal.” #SSIRInstitute

And why it is so important to be #LegacyLeaders who use our #privilege to empower and benefit others, especially those who traditionally lacked access to leadership positions #SSIRInstitute #diversity #equity #inclusion https://t.co/pRtlD9UC51