How We Give Now is a call to re-imagine what we include in what is called philanthropy, since people do a whole lot more than just give money to charity. Lucy Bernholz makes 3 overall arguments:
- What is called philanthropy in the US – $ to nonprofits – is only one piece of what people actually do. We also give time and data and we give them through mutual aid, politics, consumer choices, investing, etc. Bernholz tells stories of people doing these things well and provides tips on how readers can think about their choices.
- We’re now giving data – a huge opportunity but one that needs careful consideration to be done equitably and avoid harm, and we can’t let big corps capture it (which they are, of course, trying to do). The thinking and planning here should be led by people of color, women, and people with disabilities – communities who have been most harmed in past. This gives us an opportunity to define both a new path for giving that is equity and justice centered and follow new pathbreakers. It includes considering what data shouldn’t be given (or even collected). Civil society must lead here.
- Hey, if you take #2 and #1 together – It’s time to redefine philanthropy – and the book makes recommendations for advocacy groups, associations, foundations/nonprofits who are thinking ahead.
Available October 12, 2021
For speaking opportunities or to order bulk copies, please contact MIT Press.
How We Give Now is available to order at MIT Press, Bookshop, IndieBound and all other booksellers.
- October 12, 2021 at 8:00 AM PT Rewriting the Rules of Philanthropy: How We Give Now (Virtual event)
- October 12, 2021 at 3:00 AM PT Book Launch with Sciences Po (In-person event in Paris, France)
- October 18, 2021 EFC Annual Conference, Vienna, Austria (Invitation only)
- October 20, 2021 at 8:10am PT Talk Radio Europe
- November 3, 2021 Infrastructure Funders Group Event (Invitation only)
- November 4, 2021 at 1:00pm PT Making a difference without millions: How Americans give now
- November 5, 2021 at 9:00am PT League of California Community Foundations (Invitation only)
- November 9, 2021 Calgary Chamber of Voluntary Organizations Conference (Conference attendees only)
- November 10-11, 2021 Nordic Foundation Conference (Invitation only)
- November 15, 2021 SVP Portland (Invitation only)
- November 16, 2021 Philanthropy and Power
- November 18, 2021 We Contain Multitudes
- December 8, 2021 at 5:00 PM PT Seattle Arts and Lectures
- December 16, 2021 SVP Tampa Bay (Invitation only)
- 2022 PROSE category winner from the MIT Press: How We Give Now: A Philanthropic Guide for the Rest of Us, by Lucy Bernholz, is the category winner in economics. This title explores the everyday ways that we can give our money, our time, and even our data to help our communities and seek justice. Read the full announcement.
“How We Give Now is an engaging, must-read guide to the politics of giving time, money, and data; philanthropy’s changing landscape; and its influence on our lives and society.”Angela M. Eikenberry, University of Nebraska at Omaha
“How We Give Now delivers a futurist discussion of philanthropy that is desperately needed in our sector. I see data in a whole new way thanks to Lucy’s masterful exploration.”Edgar Villanueva, Principal, Decolonizing Wealth Project and Liberated Capital
“With this book, Lucy Bernholz shows us that philanthropy is about much more than money. It is about enacting our values in the world. A vitally needed book, How We Give Now offers a fuller understanding of generosity, the foundation of our shared future, giving us a lot to consider, to be wary of—and to hope for.”Asha Curran, CEO, GivingTuesday
“I’m aiming for something different with this book. I want to bring people from all races, abilities, ages, and traditions into the center of the conversation to show how we give now: people making daily decisions about how to help others; using all of their resources to lift up their com- munities; using time, money, and data to advance causes; and people facing a dizzying array of giving choices with no guidance, only sales pitches. It’s these people who power change in the world. But it’s also these people whose choices about giving are ignored and devalued in current legal frameworks and incentive structures. Some of the choices being made by the majority of givers reflect their commitment to help and support others without questioning the broader political context. Others anchor their choices in commitments to collective well-being, or a vision of solidarity and abundance, or approaches that have sustained their communities and cultures for millennia. These visions and practices are legitimate in their own right, even as they are ignored or dismissed by laws, professional practices, and incentives of formal, financialized philanthropy. Recrafting the legal definitions and institutions to reflect and embrace this range of approaches would benefit all who participate. It might even mark a true effort to expand, dare I say democratize, philanthropy.”
Read the reviews
“Dr. Lucy Bernholz has written the most important book on philanthropy this year… Bernholz’s biggest contribution with this book is the demonstration of how much generosity is happening outside the transaction of writing a cheque to a charity, and how much oxygen is taken up in the charity sector by this narrow framework.” – The Charity Report
“How We Give Now offers anyone interested in a fuller understanding of how we participate in society, whether it be with our time, money, or data, a lot to consider — about what our shared futures can look like, if we were to pause to think more deeply about how we do things.” – Philanthropy News Digest