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PEAK Grantmaking

Weekly Reader – May 1, 2017

What we’re reading and recommending this week. We add to this post throughout the week and look for your suggestions in the comments.

Monday, May 1

Value, Time, and Time-Limited Philanthropy (Philanthropy News Digest) Limited-life foundations are based on the premise that if a foundation’s grants generate a social return, and that return compounds at a higher rate than its financial assets would, then making the grants sooner generates more social value than preserving the capital and making more grants later — but how would we know, asks a report from the Atlantic Philanthropies, whether, or when, this is true?

Tuesday, May 2

Philanthropists, nonprofits need you to be brave (Jennifer Lentfer, How Matters) Speaking truth to power is something to which I have always aspired. But having had experience as both a grant seeker and grant maker over the years, it’s funders who I look to for bravery first. And because of the power they hold, it may feel even more vulnerable from where they sit. But here’s the courage we need to see from funders:

Wednesday, May 3

A Spending Bill Summary for Nonprofits: Trump Gets Warned and Threatened Cuts Don’t Materialize (Ruth McCambridge & Michael Wyland, Nonprofit Quarterly) Congress agrees on a five-month spending bill that surprisingly doesn’t represent an immediate disaster for nonprofits and communities. Even as some conservative talk hosts try to bait the GOP, are we seeing a corrective trend in progress or just a temporary reprieve?

Thursday, May 4

Foundation Boards Dominated by ‘Coastal Elites,’ Study Finds (Drew Lindsay & Rebecca Koenig, Philanthropy News Digest) The boards of large foundations tend to be dominated by “coastal elites” with degrees from top private colleges, lending credence to the criticism that major philanthropic institutions are well-heeled, insular, and disconnected from ordinary Americans, the Chronicle of Philanthropy reports.

Friday, May 5

Philanthropy: Will today’s approaches satisfy tomorrow’s needs? (Vinod Rajasekaran, By and large, the philanthropic sector is good at adapting and preparing for financial shocks and shifts. What about preparing for the other shifts that are upon us?

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