Giving Compass’ Take:
• In this story from The Conversation, author David Campbell evaluates the negative side of using a business mindset in philanthropy. While businessmen and women making enormous charitable donations is undeniably positive in many ways, they may be limiting their positive impact if they are unwilling to affect changes that would jeopardize their hyper-wealthy status.
• Campbell highlights the negatives of using a business-like approach to philanthropy, but there are also positives of employing a results-focused mindset. How can donors effectively use their business knowledge while reconciling the sometimes opposite approaches one must take in business and philanthropy?
• To learn about impact investing and how it can change the way we think about philanthropy, click here.
Learning whether their giving achieves the results they want is front and center for charities and their funders, as many scholars of philanthropy, including me, have found. Many of the largest givers are increasingly reporting results information on their websites and sharing what they’ve learned.
But perhaps all the focusing on data misses a larger point. [Anand] Giridharadas questions whether these well-intentioned donors have diagnosed the problems correctly. If what he calls “solutions peddling” is focused on the wrong thing, he suggests, the results they seek will inevitably fail to address the most pressing issues of our times.
Giridharadas contends that the wealthy philanthropists and other prominent social change leaders co-exist in a parallel universe he calls “MarketWorld,” where the best solutions to society’s problems require the same knowhow used in corporate boardrooms. That is because MarketWorld, as he sees it, ignores the underlying causes for problems like poverty and hunger.
Its virtual inhabitants do this, he argues, because inequality causes many of these issues. And taking on inequality directly threatens the status and power of elite donors.
Read the full article about business and philanthropy by David Campbell at The Conversation
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