Weekly Reader – February 29, 2016

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, February 29

Foundation Benchmarking Demystified (Ruth Masterson, Exponent Philanthropy) ICYMI: Are you uncertain whether your foundation is benchmarking to its fullest advantage? Do you wonder if you should do more? Benchmarking can be a simple, straightforward process. Your foundation can benefit from it with minimal time and effort, and on any budget.

Tuesday, March 1

A New Way Forward: Bringing an Equity Lens to the Work of Reducing the Influence of Money in Our Democracy (Issue Lab by the Piper Fund) The reality of the money in politics and fair courts field is that it has historically fallen short of adequately and meaningfully engaging the very communities most impacted by the issues we address: most notably, communities of color, women, and young people. We believe that if we grow the makeup of the field and its leadership, we have incredible potential to build a strong national movement, poised to demand real change.

Wednesday, March 2

It’s the Data, Stupid (Note to Self) (Lucy Bernholz, Philanthropy 2173) What data must be made public (and auditable) by platforms that facilitate public services (transportation, shelter, funding charitable or public goods)?

Thursday, March 3

What About Men and Boys? (GrantCraft) Successfully engaging communities to create a better, more equitable world requires conscious efforts to include men and boys. (INFOGRAPHIC)

Friday, March 4

Capacity Building 9.0: Fund people to do stuff, get out of their way (Vu Le, Nonprofit With Balls) ICYMI: Capacity is actively prevented by restricted funds, pressure on nonprofits to keep overhead low, single-year one-time grants, unnecessary and burdensome reporting requirements, and the endless and annoying focus on “sustainability.” We need to remove these barriers if we want to create an environment where organizations can thrive.

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Nikki Powell

Nikki Powell is PEAK Grantmaking's communications and practices director. You can find her on Twitter @nikkiwpowell.